Paul’s letter to the Corinthians featured answers to issues that continue to hover among Christians today. To find ourselves in Christ as we fulfill our mission according to God’s perfect plan, this is the meaning of a Christian’s life.
In this section of his exhortation to the believers in Corinth, the apostle seemingly offers a reply to a question previously posed by his readers.
“1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant: 2 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led.” (1 Corinthians 12:1-2)
Possibly making a reference to the oracle of Delpho which was nearby Corinth, Paul points out the fact that other than Jews, all believers were Gentiles before they were in Christ. Some among them were idolaters, clinging to “aphōnos” or mute, insignificant idols representing false gods.
The spiritual gifts mentioned here were supernatural gifts, given to men and women to empower them to spread the good news about Jesus Christ and about the mystery revealed by the apostle Paul, that through faith salvation was offered not only to Jews but also Gentiles.
“3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.” (1 Corinthians 12:3)
Paul labels a hypocrite anyone speaking against the deity of Christ. The apostle confirms that those who glorify God and Jesus do so through the Holy Spirit, in truth and according to the word.
“4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.” (1 Corinthians 12:4-5)
Paul brings the variety of spiritual gifts, of ministries and activities as one under the umbrella of the trinity that is the Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ and God. Through faith in Jesus Christ, inspired by the Holy Spirit all roads lead to God in heaven.
“7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.” (1 Corinthians 12:7-10)
For the benefit of those in Corinth looking for affirmation or direction, the apostle lists the wide array of possibilities by which one could serve God and fulfill his or her purpose. The focus is not on the means by which believers serve but the goal, to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ to the four corners of the earth.
“11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.” (1 Corinthians 12:11)
Paul points out the fact it is of our own free will that fulfillment comes, that our purpose is achieved as we continue to walk the narrow path toward eternal life with our Father in heaven. Through the Holy Spirit we are inspired to serve using gifts given onto us by God, predestined to fulfill His perfect plan for our lives. Let us pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Paul,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre