Galatians 5:14,15 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.
Thank God for the eternal security that we have in Christ Jesus. Because of His perfect sacrifice and marvelous grace, we are forgiven and seated in heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6). Jesus said that the gates of hell cannot prevail against the church (Matthew 16:18). Praise God for these glorious, positional truths regarding our standing before God in Jesus Christ.
But we are not in heaven. We are here on earth. Perfect people are not allowed into the church. Question: Can you and I be used by the enemy as instruments of implosion? Read the texts. The Greek word for “bite” means to cut with the teeth or wound with reproaches. It speaks of the constant barrage of criticism and verbal venom. Think of a pit bull that refuses to let go of your leg after it sinks its teeth into you! The Greek word for devour means to consume the strength of the body. It is the very same word used by Jesus in the parable of the sower to describe how the devil devours the seed of the word of God. No matter what God says, I refuse to hear it.
You see, if we are walking around with a hard heart and bad attitude towards this brother or that sister, it is going to be manifested in our body language and the way we act around that person. Biting and devouring are actions that spring from the refusal to forgive others. They are the weeds of bitterness. You can see them on a person’s face. You can sense the coldness when you are around them.
Just like Satan moved David to number Israel, Satan works within the hearts and walls of the church to bite, devour, divide, and destroy. I know this is not a pleasant topic to write about, but it is the truth that we need to come to grips with in the body of Christ. The supreme commandment of Jesus is that we love one another, as He loves us (John 13:34, 15:12). To bite and devour one another is not loving. Whether it is the divisiveness as in Corinth over our favorite teachers (1 Corinthians 1:12), or the secret drive to be prominent and preeminent in the church like like Diotrephes(3 John 1:9), or the flat out refusal to forgive as we have been forgiven (Matthew 18:21-35), the net result is the same. The Name of Jesus is dragged through the mud. The body of Christ is weakened. The Spirit of God is quenched. And if undetected, we simply go on our merry old way singing “Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.”
When the body of Christ bites and devours one another instead of loving one another, Who bleeds?