All for One

Key Verse: “The manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.”
—I Corinthians 12:7

Selected Scripture:
I Corinthians 12:1-13

FOR ONE TO TRULY BE A follower of Jesus, it requires both recognition of singleness of purpose and mind, and also an appreciation of the importance of the individuality of each member of the body of Christ. “There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.” (I Cor. 12:4-6) Our all-wise God has structured his plans and purposes concerning those who follow in the footsteps of his dear Son in such a way that the same Holy Spirit can guide and influence the life of each one so as to make use of their individual strengths and talents, and compensate for their individual weak areas. Because the Lord’s followers are all different in natural makeup, this unified, yet individual, working of God’s Spirit brings forth blessings to all. We are helped and encouraged by the strengths of others in those areas where we may be weak and, contrariwise, others may have weaknesses along lines that may be our strength. If we are thus activated, the body of Christ is mutually edified and grows together toward spiritual maturity.

The Key Verse, according to the New American Standard Bible, states, “To each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” The common good, or building up, of the church as a whole should always be at the forefront of our motives, as we are energized by the Holy Spirit. Paul, as he continues this lesson, lists some of the many manifestations of the Spirit that were working in his day in the individual body members—wisdom, knowledge, faith, gifts of healing, working of miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, diverse tongues or languages, and interpretation of those languages. (I Cor. 12:7-10) All these workings, though manifest individually, are from “that one and the selfsame Spirit.”—I Cor. 12:11

One of the primary points of this lesson is to understand that every member of the body of Christ has positive things to contribute to its overall growth and development. Each one has abilities and talents that can be used for the benefit of the other members, and for the ultimate good of the whole. This means that each member is important. None should feel that they have nothing to contribute. Paul uses the illustration of the human body to emphasize his lesson. We know that the human body is made up of thousands, yes millions, of individual cells, tissue, muscles, bones, organs, and innumerable other parts, large and small. Not only are all these parts necessary to the proper functioning of the body, but they must also work together in unison and harmony. “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. 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.” (vss. 12,13) It matters not, Paul says, what the background of each member is—whether they be a Jew, or Greek, bond or free—because in Christ all are begotten by the one Spirit, the power and influence of God, the same Spirit which descended upon his Son, Jesus at Jordan. Truly Jesus is our head, and we are his body. Together, we are ‘All for One.’

Dawn Bible Students Association
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