by Joel Comiskey
Christ’s presence in the cell has been a very important topic lately. Christ is the Head of the body, His church, and we are joined to Him. The cell is the church (just like the celebration) and is a supernatural organism, as opposed to a man-made organization. Cells work as each member hears from Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, and responds accordingly. As each body part functions properly, the cell comes alive and true edification takes place. Believers are edified and non-believers are transformed through the supernatural ministry of each member. Ralph Neighbour does a great job of detailing Christ work in the cell in his book, Christ’s Basic Bodies. I just reread Neighbour’s book as well as two other books about Jesus Christ’s role in the body (e.g., E. Stanley Jones entitled The Unshakable Kingdom and the Unchanging Person).
The Holy Spirit also plays a critical role in the cell group. 1 Corinthians 12-14 tells us that the Holy Spirit dwells within the cell and distributes His gifts according to His will: “All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines”(1 Corinthians 12:11). My book, The Spirit-filled Small Group, highlights the Spirit’s role in the cell. And we must not forget the Heavenly Father’s critical role in cell ministry!! The fact is that the Trinity, God’s fullness, make cells work effectively.
The unity between the members of the Trinity is our example for community and love within the cell. Jesus and the New Testament writers were constantly telling us to love one another, serve one another, and walk in humility with each other. Because God, the Trinity, lives in a loving relationship, He expects His people to live in the same way. Individualism, however, bucks this idea and resists walking in unity.
Biblical culture is group oriented because it reflects the Trinity’s nature (see Hellerman’s book, When the Church was a Family). When writing my book, The Relational Disciple, I realized that I had to repent of my individualistic ways and ask the Trinity to make me more like Himself. I realized that the Bible, not culture, should dictate all that I say and do.
It’s true that each member of the Trinity plays an essential role in cell ministry, but I believe the most powerful model for cell ministry is the Trinity Himself. He desires to mold us and our cell groups to reflect His nature.