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Flesh Bugs that Cause Division in the Church

Updated on August 27, 2015

Pastor Collin Smith once said that we Christians ought to preach the gospel to ourselves every day. Not for the purpose of getting saved, assuming that we all already are, but for the purpose of reminding ourselves. To remind ourselves the depths of God’s love, the richness of His mercy, the purity of His holiness, and the greatness of His justice. It is to remind ourselves His amazing grace that we undeservingly received, the beyond comprehension of our redemption and adoption which we can never earn or be deserving of. It is to remind ourselves everything God is, everything He did for us. It is to remind ourselves how sinful and unworthy we are. How we were saved purely by the grace and mercy of our Lord. That is why we ought to preach the gospel to ourselves every day, as much as we should preach it to the lost. We preach it to the latter that they may be saved, but we preach it to the former, to ourselves, that we may always be reminded. When we are always well reminded of who God is and of who we are now in Christ then one of the clear fruits that we will bear is unity. But if we allow ourselves to be forgetful then we are surely headed to regression and unfruitfulness. A life void of the joy from faithfully serving our God.

So what do remembering and forgetfulness has to do with divisions in the Church? Everything.

“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into Him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.”-Ephesians 4:15-16

{Also see Deuteronomy 8:2, 11 and Numbers 15:39-40}

As the bride of Christ we ought to remember and not forget. We ought to remember the command of unity, of love, of purity, of service, of growth, and etc. Of course we ought to remember every other command of our God and faithfully obey them. But for this article we’ll be focusing on the unity of the Church.

You might be wondering by now what I meant with “flesh bugs,” well, it simply means disobedience. (Walking in the flesh instead of in the Spirit.) Divisions in the Church are caused by our disobedience to love another, to forgive another, etc. So here are some (and not all) of those pesky flesh bugs and how it can be exterminated for the glory of our God;

Insecurity bugs!

Oh yes, the insecurity bugs. They’re small, unnoticeable, and seemingly harmless but slowly destroys you like acid. It can start from a simple admiration before it can turn to a full blown insecurity.

From “Oh, sister ______ is so pretty!” to “She’s really not that pretty.”

From “What a faithful brethren!” to “I can be more faithful.”

From “So wonderful that brother has so many ministries!” to “Show off. He’s probably not that committed. Even if I have few ministries I know I’m more committed.”

From “Everybody loves her! She seems so wonderful!” to “Plastic. I bet if they know her past life they wouldn’t love her as much as they do right now.”

From “I love you brethren!” to “I secretly hate you.”

Better stop using the queen’s (from snow white) mirror and start looking through the eyes of Jesus!

Competitive bugs!

It’s really both sad and dangerous how a family can act like competitors. Not against an outside competitor but against each other. It’s great to get in the zone of service but if we are not careful, we can end up competing and not serving. We start measuring everything! Then we start making inventories of our achievements. We even race each other in terms of spiritual growth. By doing so, we are robing God of His glory, and at the same time we are just wasting our time. We must remember that if it’s not done for His glory then it’s in vain and not worth anything. So let’s lose the competitive attitude and put on the working-together-for-the-glory-of-God motivation. See 1 Corinthians 12:16-20, Colossians 3:23

“So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.”-1 Corinthians 3:7-8

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.”-Colossians 3:23

Unforgiving/bitter bugs!

Let’s face it. We all have this idea of an unforgivable sin. One sin can have a greater chance to be forgiven than the other. While one sin has a zero or a measly chance to be forgiven, and if it does receives pardon the stain of bitterness lingers on. We develop unforgiving bugs when we forget the kind of forgiveness God has given us. If God has forgiven all of our sin, If God has forgiven us, sinners unworthy of forgiveness. Then who are we to withhold forgiveness? (Especially to our brethren).

“Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”-Colossians 3:13-14

“…as the Lord has forgiven you,” this means that we ought to forgive freely and fully. No strings attached and no bitterness that lingers.

Self-love bugs!

Self-love bugs aka selfishness. It’s when we get selfish over our time that we refuse to go out of our way to help and serve. When we get too selfish over the blessings we have received that we fail to be a blessing. It’s when we get too selfish of the comfort we are in that we refuse to get dirt in our hands to serve the Lord. Everything becomes my money, my time, my work, my effort, my possessions, my life. Oh yes, selfishness is definitely a great struggle. But be reminded that it’s not who we are anymore. Remember 1 Corinthians 5:17? How about Galatians 2:20?

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”-Ephesians 5:1

Gossip bugs!

Prayer is powerful and God glorifying. But if we slip into forgetfulness, prayer times will often lead to gossip times. A burden can turn into a juicy scoop. A struggling brethren that was supposed to be prayed for and encouraged becomes a hot topic. Prayer meetings can transition into a condemning jamboree.

Let’s tighten our belts and put a leash on our tongues, constantly asking the Holy Spirit to take full control. Lose the holier than thou attitude. We are all sinners that were graciously forgiven; saints that are all experiencing a painful yet joyful process of sanctification. Let us then be obedient to God’s command regarding our ministry of edification towards one another.

“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”-Ephesians 4: 29

Picky bugs!

Unity can come off as an arduous task because of our diversity. But it can very much also be a joyous labor if we do it for the Lord. Nonetheless, we are often tempted to be picky and isolated. When we forget the call to unity, we often act like typical high school students. Forming exclusive cliques, bashing other cliques, hating those we feel like hating, and liking those we want to like. Such behavior is childlike, un-Christ like, and worldly. Remember, the Bride of Christ (the Church) does not solely consists of the people in our immediate groups.

Though it is absolutely okay to develop intimate/immediate groups. We cannot expect every brethren to have the same sets of interests and have the exact qualities that fits ours perfectly. That’s why we develop such groups. It’s actually a very effective way of producing unity in the Church, but it ought not to be an isolated one. We should also not be offended if a brethren grows closer to another, unless we are aiming for Mr. /Ms. Popularity.

Consequently, we should not force ourselves to be besties with everyone, instead, we ought to prayerfully strive to be godly brothers and sisters to one another. We ought to pray for all of our brethren, we ought to love all our brethren, forgiving all, encouraging all. No saint left behind. All for the glory of our God!

Be bug free!

“Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart……… (As saints, you are to...) …put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on your new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”-Ephesians 4:17-18, 22-24


Soli Deo Gloria!



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    • sujinmikee profile image

      Sujin Mikee 2 years ago from Philippines

      MsDora and Muses on Life; Thank you so much my dear friends! To God be all the glory! May all be blessed.

    • sujinmikee profile image

      Sujin Mikee 2 years ago from Philippines

      blessedp; Hello my dear friend, I thank the Lord for the privilege to be a blessing to you. I bring back all the glory to His name. And yes, we all have struggles, or so I say, "bugs" to deal with yet we rejoice because Jesus Christ will finish the good work He has started in us. Be encouraged my dear friend! press on in Jesus name! =0)

    • Muses on Life profile image

      Samantha Lim 2 years ago

      So true, the observations reflect many unspoken issues that cause difficulties in churches. A well-written, thought provoking read.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Very creative and effective also. I wish I could honestly say that I was bug free. You helped give us the courage to destroy them. Thanks!

    • blessedp profile image

      blessedp 2 years ago

      Thank you great hub. I am struggling with some of those bugs you mentioned. It is not a coincidence it was a few minutes before i stumbled on your hub, I was saying to a friend that it is not only sins as fornication and adultery that will hinder us to enter heavens gate but sins like those that you mentioned and much more.

      Sometimes we are so holy that we are deceived in believing we don't sin. But I pray God through the holy spirit will let me see when I loose focus and stumble and help me to humbly live according to His will and His way.

      Your hub was my devotional reading this morning. Stay faithful to God and let Him continue to use you to reach more like me.

      Have a blessed day in Jesus name.