In an earlier post I wrote about how we are married to God. Looking back I feel it would be good for me to make a related point. So here goes.
God is not a polygamist.
Jesus didn’t marry you and me and everyone else individually. He has only one wife and it is us. He married the Church. Singular.
If you look at the Greek forms of words used in the bible you will find that writers like Paul continually stressed the group above the individual. There is a reason for this.
The group is more important than any number of individuals in it, because the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
We were created to depend on each other. That’s how humans function. Dependency is not negative. We can even see it in the Trinity. God is love because there is love between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Their loving is dependent on the others. Without the others, there wouldn’t be anyone to love. Without the triune personhood of the Godhead, it would be impossible for God to be love. God would be self-focused rather than other-focused.
The “Christian culture” most of us grew up in would have us think otherwise. While the early Church primarily read scriptures corporately, nowadays most bible reading is done alone (because people are told to do so). Paul calls Jesus the savior of all men and John calls him the savior of the whole world, but it is now popular for people to call him their “personal” savior. Worship was originally done with everyone facing each other (i.e. there was no worship leader), but these days the lights are dimmed and people don’t look at each other during worship services (because those times are all about you, Jesus, and no one else, right?).
Too often the focus is on the individual instead of on the body.
There’s an idea among believers that “it’s all about God.” It sounds pretty pious, but it falls short of the truth. It’s not all about God; It’s all about us, God and humanity, together. Because that’s what God has made it about through the incarnation. Jesus identified with humanity; now humanity identifies with God.
On a related note and contrary to popular opinion, God is not enough. Adam was in the garden with all his animal buddies and even God himself, but seeing this, God said it was not good that Adam was alone (which was the first time God said something was not good).
This doesn’t mean we are incomplete as individuals or are in lack, but that we can’t be separated from the Church. Just like when I am talking about Jesus I am also talking about God, when I talk about myself I talk about the Church, and vice versa. I am one of many persons within a single entity. This is also true of the Church and Jesus. Because we are united to him, we can’t talk about Jesus without talking of ourselves, and vice versa. This is not to say that the two are the same thing. Yet our oneness is a mystical reality.
My thoughts were a bit scattered in this post, but I plan to elaborate on related topics soon. Thanks for reading :]