Monday, April 16, 2018

The Apostle by Chapter | 1 Corinthians Chapter 12

By Sam Nobles

There were believers in Corinth who had received the gift of tongues, which means that they were given the power to speak foreign languages without ever having studied those languages. Instead of using this gift to magnify God, they became filled with pride, and it became necessary for the apostle to correct these erroneous attitudes and to establish controls in the exercise of the gifts, especially tongues and prophecy.[1]

Chapters 12-14 deal with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The church in Corinth had apparently abused the gifts they had, especially the gift of tongues. In this part of his letter, Paul seeks to correct those abuses.

Concerning Spiritual Gifts (v.1-11)
Paul wanted the Corinthian Christians to be aware and informed that there was one God and one Holy Spirit who issues spiritual gifts to individual believers for the edification of the entire church. The giftedness of the Corinthian believers was second to none, but their gifts were actually serving to divide them instead of bringing them into unity. Paul mentions the gifts found among the believers in Corinth as wisdom, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, discernment, and tongues. The point Paul was making is that no matter what gift you have, the concern is whichgift, but whogave it to you.

One Body, Many Members (v.12-32)
To combat this pride and division, Paul uses an illustration to help make his point. Using the human body, Paul explains that it is made up of different parts, such as ears, eyes, etc. Likewise, the body of Christ (the Church) is made up of different parts. If everybody was gifted the same way, it would not be beneficial to anyone. Paul also brings up that just as some parts of our human body seem weak, there are also those in the body of Christ who may seem weak, but they have purpose and function. Your internal organs are never seen or put on display, but your very life and being is dependent upon their functioning properly. Not everyone is gifted by the Spirit in the same way, but every person is indeed gifted, and made by God for a purpose that is vitally important to the body of Christ as a whole.

Scripture to Remember:
“As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.” (1 Corinthians 12:20 ESV)

[1]William MacDonald,Believer’s Bible Commentary: Second Edition, ed. Arthur L. Farstad, 2 edition (Thomas Nelson, 2016).

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