God begs us by His mercies to present our bodies (plural) a living sacrifice (singular), holy, acceptable unto Him. (Rom 12:1) This isn’t a call to personal sanctification; it’s a call to a corporate sanctification, one which presumes intense, progressive personal sanctification in every member. It’s our only rational response to God.
To present our bodies as part of a living sacrifice, we must agree with a group of believers to offer ourselves up together to God to do with us as He pleases, totally given over to His will. This presumes that every member is already seeking to fully align themselves with God as individuals.
To discern His will for our particular assembly, we must submit to being transformed by God together (Ro 12:2), resisting the world’s expectation of religion, renewed in a common mind and purpose. (1Co 1:10)
This can only happen if we’re established in community on the foundation: Jesus Christ. We must be meeting together for Jesus, in Jesus, by Jesus and because of Jesus, hearing Jesus and being taught by Jesus in and through each other (Ep 4:21), in order to help each other know Jesus and walk with Jesus. (Php 3:10) In doing so we become a dwelling, a residence of the living God, as He incarnates Himself anew, to tabernacle on Earth again in and through us. (2Co 6:16) Nothing else will do.
Because this life of God is so amazing, beautiful and powerful (1Co 14:25), religion inevitably tries to imitate it, but only God can build His church (Mt 16:18), the tangible expression of His Being (Eph 5:30), unleashing His power to do His will, uniquely for His glory.
If you ever find Him doing this again, this side of Heaven, what would you not give, my dear soul, to taste Him there?