The Church As Christ Planned It

Audio of Sermon: 

1In 1 Corinthians 11 we talked about God’s created order. We also discussed the order and ministration of the Lord’s Table. Now the Lord talks about the Church as Christ meant it to be. We read:

1 Corinthians 12:1-7 (KJV)1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. 2 Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led. 3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. 4 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit with all.

The Christian Church has three sources of power that the world does not have.

The Church Is Empowered By God’s Word

The Church has as a source of power The Word of God. The Word of God instructs us.

I saw a friend trying to put a baby crib together one time, and all the time he was fussing. “Who is the world thought this thing up! Nothing fits. It makes no sense!”. I asked him “What do the instructions say to do?”. His reply? “I don’t need any instructions. I can do this myself!”

This is what the world does today in nearly every part of life.
Is your marriage falling apart?
Could it be because you’re not following the Manufacturer’s Instructions, the Bible?
Is your family in disarray?
Could it be because you’re not following the Maker’s Plan?

God says of His Word:

Isaiah 40:8 (NKJV) The grass withers, the flower fades, But the WORD OF OUR GOD stands forever.”

Jesus’ Words when attacked were “It Is Written”. God’s Word makes for growth and order. The Bible says that in the early Church when …

the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith. (Acts 6:7)

There is NO SALVATION without the Word of God. It is the Word of God that gives us the Gospel promises. It is the Word of God that must be believed to be saved. There is NO SANCTIFICATION or growth without the Word of God. The Bible says:

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NKJV) All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

It is this Word of God today that will instruct us on …

1 Corinthians 12:1 (KJV) Now concerning SPIRITUAL GIFTS, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.

The Church Is Empowered By The Spirit Of God

The first word in SPIRITUAL Gifts is SPIRITUAL or SPIRIT. The Holy Spirit of God. There are Spiritual Gifts in the Church, but before the Apostle speaks of Spiritual Gifts he speaks of the HOLY SPIRIT. Why? Because …

The power of the Christian – the power to understand Scripture and the power to do great works is in the indwelling Holy Spirit of God.

We were all “Gentiles” or lost people before we were saved by the Grace of God.

1 Corinthians 12:2 (KJV) Ye know that ye WERE Gentiles,
carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led.

We WERE Gentiles. You were a Gentile before you were saved. As Gentiles YOU WERE “carried away by dumb idols”. You followed NOTHING. You followed:

Flesh
Feelings
Foolishness
Fantasies

You made gods of these nothings, these imaginings, these desires. You were “carried AWAY” by these things.

Psalm 115:4-9 (NKJV) Their idols are silver and gold, The work of men’s hands. 5 They have mouths, but they do not speak; Eyes they have, but they do not see; 6 They have ears, but they do not hear; Noses they have, but they do not smell; 7 They have hands, but they do not handle; Feet they have, but they do not walk; Nor do they mutter through their throat. 8 Those who make them are like them; So is everyone who trusts in them. 9 O Israel, trust in the Lord; He is their help and their shield.

As Gentiles we were carried away by dumb idols.
The lost today are carried away by their nothing gods.
But the saved are empowered by their God.

1 Corinthians 12:3 (KJV) Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.

The Mark of the Christian is how that person perceives and expresses Christ. The person who is lost “calls Christ accursed”. They use Jesus’ name in foul curse words. They mock His teachings.

The lost dissect what God has said, and throw away the parts that they do not like,
but keep the parts they do like.
Like the Deist Thomas Jefferson they take a knife to the Bible,
and cut out what they disagree with while retaining what they like.
“God is love” is in, but “God commands” is out.

You say “but I know Christians who do not believe the whole Bible”. They may be “Christian” but they are operating as if lost. The Christian proper and genuine follows the Word of God and the Spirit of God. The Christian is indwelt by the Spirit of God, also called the Spirit of Truth. Jesus said:

John 16:13-15 (NKJV) However, when He, the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, HAS COME, HE WILL GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 14 He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. 15 All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.

John 14:15-17 (NKJV) “If you love Me, KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH, WHOM THE WORLD CANNOT RECEIVE, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.

The Holy Spirit indwells every Christian who is saved by faith in the LORD Jesus Christ. As our text tells us:

no man can say that JESUS IS THE LORD, but by the Holy {Spirit}.

It is the Holy Spirit that promotes the preeminence of Christ in SALVATION and in CHRISTIAN LIVING. It is the Holy Spirit that causes God’s Church to be in one accord.

The Church Is Blessed By The Manifestation Of The Spirit, The Spiritual Gifts

1 Corinthians 12:4 (KJV) Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.

The Spiritual Gift when it operates is the MANIFESTATION of the Holy Spirit. The Apostle tells us “there are DIVERSITIES of GIFTS”, that is, there are many different spiritual gifts in the Church, but “the same Spirit” – only One Holy Spirit behind that gift.

1 Corinthians 12:5 (KJV) And there are differences of ADMINISTRATIONS,
but the same Lord.

“Administrations” is the Greek διακονία diakonia which means ministry or service to those in need. God raises up and empowers people to act as servants, ministering to the needs of the saints of His house. There are different types of DIAKONIA, but the same Lord is behind every gift.

1 Corinthians 12:6 (KJV) And there are diversities of OPERATIONS, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.

“Operations” is the Greek ἐνέργημα energēma which means “workings”, a focused expenditure of energy. Some spiritual gifts do not so much as minister to a weakness so much as they supply other necessary functions. Though there are different out-workings, the same God works all in all. It is not a human function, but a Divine enablement.

What is the point the Apostle makes here? Regardless as to what is done in the Body of Christ, the Church, everything is to be done through the power of God’s Holy Spirit. This necessitates that every action done be done PRAYERFULLY and FOR GOD’S GLORY.

This is where many Churches fail today, and why so many Churches close their doors every year. The Francis A. Schaeffer Institute of Church Leadership Development noted that 4000 Churches close every year compared to 1000 new Church starts. Why is this? The Churches that close rely on human effort rather than God’s Empowerment. Jesus said:

John 15:4-6 (NKJV) Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.

The local Church in America today is in many cases trying to compromise with the world rather than align itself with God’s Power and God’s Word. As Light aligns with darkness it becomes part of the darkness. This is why many close. There is no more value in going to a dead, spiritless Church than there is in going to a movie theater whose projector bulb is blown out.

Abiding in Christ we bear MUCH fruit. Abiding in the darkness we bear NO fruit. Abiding partway in Christ and partway in self we bear LITTLE fruit. We must abide in Him. And here is a key passage:

1 Corinthians 12:7 (KJV) But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit {with all}.

The Spiritual Gift exercised is a MANIFESTATION of the Holy Spirit. The Gifts are given not to bless just the person who wields the gift, but to BLESS THE CHURCH ITSELF.

No Spiritual Gift is operated SELFISHLY but SELFLESSLY.

The King James says the “manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit WITHAL”, which is the Old English word for “With All”. Where a gift functions, if it is a gift, it profits the Body of Christ. These “Gifts” are given as God sees fit to bestow them. They are “Gifts”. We do not earn nor deserve them. God gives them to each member to bless His Church.

Part 2
The Church As Christ Planned It

Last Sunday night we discussed the Church as Christ planned it. Let me share with you a common conversation that your Pastor often has with others. This conversation was between myself and someone who is NOT a member of our Church.

Do you visit Nursing Homes?” I am asked. “Why yes. I visit where ever our people are.” Then he looks at me. “Well, so and so is in this Nursing Home, and you haven’t visited him. You know that he’s a member of this Church”.

Of course I’ll go and visit so and so at this Nursing Home he’s in. But the individual that is a “member” of our Church has not entered the building since I’ve been pastor here these five years. Someone is in the “Membership Roll” but never attends the Church, is never a part (unless it’s a non-preaching eating meeting), never tithes, and never contributes in any way, no one knows them. Yet this person or persons are “Members”. I had a similar conversation years ago when someone lamented that “This Church doesn’t take care of its members”. I asked, “Who are we not taking care of?” They told me someone’s name that I have NEVER met, NEVER seen in Church, wouldn’t know if they came up and smacked me.

The Apostle saw the Church as an operating Body of Believers,
DISCIPLES who follow the Lord TOGETHER.

A DISCIPLE is a believer who follows the DISCIPLINES of the Scripture.
DISCIPLES believe the Word of God, study the Word of God, and live by the Word of God. DISCIPLES who grow allow the indwelling Holy Spirit to operate through them.

1 Corinthians 12:8-12 (KJV) For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. 12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.

It’s impossible to read through this text and not see the Spirit of God as the main Subject. In this text we learn that …

The Same Spirit Manifests
The
Various Gifts In The Body

vvs 12 … as the body is ONE, and hath MANY members, and
all the members of that one body, BEING MANY, ARE ONE BODY

MANY can be ONE when the Holy Spirit is operating through them all.

The Church is likened to a Body, a human Body. Just as the human body has many members – eyes, ears, mouth, tongue, head, hands, fingers, feet – both seen and unseen – heart, lungs, stomach, bowels – so does the Church. Each “Member” in the Church is not a “Member” on paper alone. Each “Member” is a “Member” because God set them in the Body. Each “Member” is a “Member” because each person has a function in the Church. And though each “Member” has differing “manifestations of the Spirit” the “Members” function together for the overall spiritual health of the Body, the Church.

That is why saying “so and so” is a “member” but “so and so” never attends the Church meetings is so foolish. I knew a man years ago (he is now with the Lord) who was in a tragic accident, one which severed his right leg from his body. As a result he wore a prosthesis, an artificial leg to take the place of that member that was lost. He didn’t keep the old leg. That leg was dead. Though it WAS a member of his Body, it no longer is because it was severed.

And here is another thing that the Apostle’s writing clears up. I have heard people say “I am a Christian, but I do not attend Church. I can worship Jesus fishing on Sunday just as well as I can coming to a Church”. The Apostle illustrates that every member of Christ is a member of some Body some where. To say “I am a Christian” but to deny the assembly of the Body is Biblically unsound. The Apostle says in another text:

Hebrews 10:23-25 (NKJV) Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

Part of “holding fast our confession of hope” is that we gather together as Christ’s Body stirring one another up to love and good works. We come together as Christ intended as a Body. Before our Lord Jesus began His earthly ministry He …

  1. was Baptized in water (Matthew 3:13-17)

  2. called others to minister with Him, people He called “disciples” (Matthew 4:18-22)

Now Jesus is “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” (1 Timothy 6:15) to Whom “every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess” (Philippians 2:10). If it were possible that anyone be a “Church of One” it would have been Jesus. But Jesus Christ surrendered to water Baptism and faithful attendance with His people. You are NOT being a Christian if you are not part of a Body of believers, a functioning part.

1 Corinthians 12:8-10 (KJV) For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:

It is the Holy Spirit of God Who gives the gifts. The Apostle does not list all of the Spiritual Gifts here, nor do I believe He lists every spiritual gift that is possible. A Spiritual Gift is a manifestation of the Spirit designed to bless and edify the whole Body.

Word of Wisdom
Word of Knowledge
Faith
Gifts of Healing
Working of Miracles
Prophecy or Preaching
Discerning Of Spirits
Many Types Of Tongues
Interpretation Of Tongues

The Apostle Paul lists spiritual gifts here, as well as in:

Romans 12:6-8 (KJV)  Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;  [7]  Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching;  [8]  Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.

Ephesians 4:11-13 (KJV)  And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  [12]  For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  [13]  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

What is interesting is that the Apostle Paul is the only Apostle who lists spiritual gifts. Each gift is given by the Holy Spirit to members of the Body of Christ as He wills. We do not earn nor deserve the gifts, nor can we work our way up to them. The Apostle Paul became an Apostle on the day Christ knocked him down on the Damascus Road (Acts 9:5-6). When God told Ananias to go to the newly converted Paul He said:

Acts 9:15 (KJV)  But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Paul was God’s Apostle cause God said so, and God gives His calling and gifts as He sees fit.

The Spiritual Gifts are designed to work together. You can see this in the Gifts that Paul mentions. There is wisdom, which is the ability to apply knowledge. Then there is the gift of knowledge. God gives some members a great ability to KNOW, and others a great ability to APPLY WHAT IS KNOWN or Wisdom. God binds the Body together through His Spirit.

The Gifting And Forming Of The Church Is Of The Spirit

1 Corinthians 12:13-14 (KJV) For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.  [14]  For the body is not one member, but many.

There are FOUR THINGS the Holy Spirit does to the believer at the point of salvation:

  1. You are BORN AGAIN by the Spirit. Our Lord Jesus told Nicodemus,

John 3:5 (NKJV) … “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

  1. You are INDWELT by the Spirit.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NKJV) Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.

  1. You are SEALED by the Spirit.

Ephesians 1:13-14 (NKJV) In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

  1. You are BAPTIZED by the Spirit. We are baptized or united into one Body by the Holy Spirit. The Baptism of the Spirit places the believer into union with Christ and with other believers in the Body of Christ. The Baptism of the Spirit occurs in every believer’s life at the point of salvation. Note the Apostle said:

by one Spirit are we ALL baptized into one body

and

have been ALL MADE to drink into one Spirit

The Baptism of the Spirit is not just a special experience for a select few. This is what many “Pentecostals” believe, but this is not supported by the Scripture.

It is through the Spirit’s Baptism we are separated from the sinful world, translated into Christ’s Kingdom. The Apostle said:

Romans 6:1-4 (NKJV) What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? 3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

It is not water baptism that causes us to die to sin, but Spirit Baptism.
Water Baptism is an outward expression of faith in Christ.
Spirit Baptism is an inward change wrought by God the day you were saved.

My relationship with the world changed the day that Christ came into my life, and yours did, too. You became buried with Christ, identifying with His death. Because of Spirit Baptism we walk in newness of life. Dr. Charles Stanley notes in his book The Wonderful, Spirit Filled Life:

Every believer has been baptized by the Holy Spirit. Baptism symbolizes our identification with the body of Christ. To be baptized into the body is to be placed into the body, which happens at the moment of salvation.”

Dr. Billy Graham wrote in his book The Holy Spirit:

In my own study of the Scriptures through the years I have become convinced that there is only one baptism with the Holy Spirit in the life of every believer, and that takes place at the moment of conversion.”

Dr. R.C. Sproul wrote in his book The Mystery Of The Holy Spirit:

The Bible does not support the notion that one group of believers has the baptism and another group does not: “There are not two levels of believers—–gifted and non-gifted, baptized in the Spirit and not baptized in the Spirit.”

If you have been saved by faith in Christ you have been baptized by the Spirit. You are transformed from the Kingdom of Darkness into Christ’s Kingdom.

Someone asked “Should I seek to be baptized by the Spirit?”. Dr. Ray Pritchard writes:

The answer is no. Nowhere in the New Testament are believers told to seek the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We are exhorted to be FILLED with the Spirit, to WALK in the Spirit, to QUENCH NOT the Spirit, to make sure that WE DO NOT GRIEVE the Holy Spirit. All these things are ongoing commands for the people of God—and all should be on our hearts and minds everyday. But NOWHERE IN SCRIPTURE ARE WE COMMANDED TO BE BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT. {this is something God does to YOU}

If we ask why there is no such command, the answer is not difficult to find. If you are a Christian, you were baptized with the Spirit the moment you were saved so you don’t need to seek what you already have. If you aren’t a genuine Christian, you don’t need to be baptized with the Holy Spirit, you need Jesus first and foremost.”

We are baptized in the Spirit so that we can …

We Walk TOGETHER In Newness Of Life

If God has saved you, you are INDWELT, SEALED, BORN AGAIN, and SPIRIT BAPTIZED. Those whom God has changed and is changing He calls together to walk in newness of life.

We work together for the glory of our God! Just as the human body is comprised of many different parts, and every part equally important, so is the Church, the Body of Christ. Every Church member is important. Every part of your body is important.

1 Corinthians 12:15-18 (KJV)  If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  [16]  And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  [17]  If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?  [18]  But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, AS IT HATH PLEASED HIM.

Just as every part of the human body has a distinctive gifting and ability, every part of the Church of Christ has a distinctive gifting and ability. Some say “But I had no idea I have a spiritual gift”. This is perhaps because you have not been surrendered in your life to the Spirit of God. Let me ask you:

Do you READ His Word daily?
Do you DO what God says do, or do you critique His commands?
Do you PRAY and seek God’s will in your life?
Are you ABIDING in Christ?
Do you seek out opportunities to PUT LOVE IN ACTION?
Do you just USE people, or do you LOVE people?

How you answer these questions will determine whether you are used of God or not. And if God has gifted you, praise Him, because every gift is important. God sets the gifts as it pleases HIM, not us, but HIM. We use the gifts to glorify and magnify the Name of our Lord.

1 Corinthians 12:19-25 (KJV)  And if they were all one member, where were the body?  [20]  But now are they many members, yet but one body.  [21]  And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.  [22]  Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary:  [23]  And those members of the body, which we think to be less honorable, upon these we bestow more abundant honor; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness.  [24]  For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honor to that part which lacked:  [25]  That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.

In the next Chapter (1 Corinthians 13) the Apostle focuses on what the King James called “Charity” or Love. Why did God require His Children to be gathered together as a Church? Because through the Church the Father teaches us LOVE.

The Kingdom of God is based on LOVE. I’m going to preach 1 Corinthians 13 this Sunday morning. Love is outward as well as inward. The world needs Love as God has defined it. There are many members in the Body of Christ, the Church, but each member requires the loving operation of the other member to function.

Vs 21 the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee:
nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. 

As God gave each human a body with varied members that work together for the good of the body, so has God given us His Church. Every member needs the other. The human body was not given to us with its various giftings to be used selfishly for us, but to glorify God. As the Scripture says:

1 Corinthians 10:31 (KJV)  Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

We who are born, sealed, indwelt and baptized by the Spirit are not enemies of the Cross and partners with darkness. These who do not love God are those of whom the Scripture says:

Philippians 3:19 (KJV)  Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things…

Our God is the God of the Bible, the God of true Scripture, the God Who saved us by giving His Blood for us. His Spirit flows through us, empowers us, causes us to ever move forward and ever reach upward. God gave us His Church so that we can learn love.

Vs 25 …. that the members should have the same care one for another

The Scripture says “God hath tempered the Body together”. It is God Who adds to the Body. It is God Who takes away from the Body. It is God at work in us, doing what He feels we need for His glory.

1 Corinthians 12:26-31 (KJV)  And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honored, all the members rejoice with it.  [27]  Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.  [28]  And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.  [29]   Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?  [30]  Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?  [31]  But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

As Paul enumerates the gifts he emphasizes that not all have the same gifts. Each member is gifted as God sets the gifts.

The Pentecostal will say – incorrectly so – that you must speak in tongues before you are baptized in the Spirit. Pastor Dr. Charles Stanley gives a wonderful explanation as to why tongues were used in the early Church. On pages 152-162 of his book The Wonderful Spirit Filled Life Dr. Stanley notes than in each instance when tongues were used as a sign in the early Church, a major new group was introduced into the Body of Christ.

The Jews entered the Church in Acts 2.
The Samaritans entered the Church in Acts 8.
The Gentiles were incorporated into the Church in Acts 10.
And the Disciples of John the Baptist entered the Church in Acts 19.

This was the beginning of the Baptism, and tongues were used as a sign so the early Church could believe. But by the time the Apostle wrote 1 Corinthians he declared:

29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?  [30]  Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?

The rhetorical question Paul was asking requires a firm NO. Not all are Apostles. Not all are Prophets. Not all are Teachers, nor Miracle Workers. Not all have gifts of Healing. Not all speak in Tongues, nor Interpret Tongues. The Pentecostal second blessing teaching does not stand the test of Scripture.

The purpose of the Spiritual gifts was not elitism, nor schism, but the same Spirit working all in all. The Church that loves and unites in love will experience the blessing of the Spirit’s manifestation not just this Sunday, but every time it meets.

May God touch your hearts with His Love.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
This entry was posted in 1 Corinthians, Church, Following Disciples, Following Jesus, General, Sermons Preached and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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