Each Christian is called and gifted by God according to His will, not according to their own will or the will of other people. It is God who determines the function of each part of the body of Christ (see 1 Cor. 12:1-12).
According to 1 Corinthians, it is a good thing for us to pray and ask God to give specific gifts and equip us for the correct use of them. God is indeed glorified in the healthy function of all the various parts of the body, as well as in all the various gifts in the Church. Therefore, as Paul warned the Corinthians, we must not despise others for their gifts and calling from God, but we must rather edify one another with the gift of brotherly love after the example of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Brothers, show your spiritual health by your love for the parts of Christ's body that do not have the exact same function as you do. Show your love as members of Christ and of His diverse Church, and not as members of "the Church of Discerning Eyes", or "the Church of Sensitive Noses", or "the Church of the Working Hands", for such divisions do not glorify Christ.
You know what I am referring to. One gifted brother in the church looks at fellow Christians with great suspicion and doubt for the genuineness of their salvation because they are not gifted as he is. Such spiritual arrogance is not only evidence of the clear absence of love (the greatest gift), but is also greatly damaging to the health and upbuilding of Christ's Church.
May our God and Savior make you abound in His grace, truth and love.
May 26, 2011
May 12, 2011
For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” [Psalm 44:22]
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(English Standard Version)