“And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it ” (1 Corinthians 12:26).
In teaching about the unity that is to exist within the spiritual body of Christ, Paul has used the metaphor of the human body, all of whose parts depend on the others for proper functioning. When one part of the human body suffers pain, all other parts of the body feel that pain.
So with the spiritual body, “No man is an island,” that is, no Christian exists independent of other Christians. If we exist as Jesus intended that we do, we have such a connection with each other that we feel each other’s pain—we have empathetic feelings for one of our own who is suffering, regardless of the kind of suffering it is—physical, emotional, or spiritual.
Consequently, never can we say, “That’s their problem.” The very nature of our Christianity demands that we never step on one who is down—that we do what we can to encourage our fellows, to boost them up in their time of trouble, to help them in any way possible to make it through this night in their lives.
- Joe Norton