The Meaning of Spiritual Giftedness
TEXT: Ephesians 4:7-16
ETS: The Lord has given grace gifts to every believer.
ESS: Every believer is to use his God-given spiritual gifts within the body of Christ.
OSS: Believers will commit to serve through the church.
PQ: What does the Bible teach about spiritual gifts?
TOPIC: The Meaning of Spiritual Giftedness
Someone once called a preacher to say he wanted to place church membership. But, he went on to explain that he did not want to worship every week, study the Bible, visit the sick, or serve as a leader or teacher.
The minister commended him for his desire to be a member, but told him the church he sought was located in another section of town. The man took the directions and hung up.
When he arrived at that address, the man came face to face with the logical result of his own apathetic attitude. There stood an abandoned church building boarded up and ready for demolition.
I. EACH BELIEVER IS GIVEN SPIRITUAL GIFTS (VS. 7).
A Each believer is given a spiritual gift or multiple spiritual gifts at the point at which he is saved.
1. It begins with the giving of the gift of the Holy Spirit (Text, Acts 2:38)
2. The Holy Spirit imparts a gift or gifts to the believer (text, 1 Cor. 12:11).
B Each believer’s gifts are given by grace.
1. Spiritual gifts are not earned but given without personal merit.
2. Spiritual gifts are abilities that are specifically imparted by the Holy Spirit and are not natural abilities.
3. Spiritual gifts are given to profit the whole church, not build up the individual (1 Cor. 12:7).
II. EACH BELIEVER IS GIVEN SPIRITUAL GIFTS IN ORDER TO HELP THE BODY OPPERATE EFFECTIVELY (VS. 11).
A Different gifts are given to different individuals (vs. 11; 1 Cor. 12:4,8-10; Rom. 12:4-6a).
1. He alone is the source of spiritual gifts.
2. The Holy Spirit gives the gifts as He desires.
3. He gives different gifts to different believers.
B Different ministries are assigned to different individuals
( 1 Cor. 12:5).
1. Similar gifts may operate in different ministries of the same church.
2. God appoints different believers to different types of ministries.
C Different aspects of the ministries are determined for different individuals (1 Cor 12:6).
1. Different operations or aspects of the same ministry gift and ministry are appointed to different believers.
* example: People with the gift of teaching can be appointed by the Holy Spirit to teach in different ministries (Bible teaching, Discipleship, Missions). People who teach in the same ministries are appointed by God to teach different age groups or classes.
III. EACH SPIRITUAL GIFT IS GIVEN WITH PARTICULAR GOALS IN MIND (VSS. 12-15).
A To equip each member of the body of Christ to do the work of the ministry (v. 12a).
1. Every member of the body of Christ is to be involved in ministry.
2. The purpose of spiritual gifts is to equip other members of the Body to minister.
* The feet are not there for their own glory, but to carry the rest of the body (equip) so that each other part can do it’s job, and the whole body can do its job.
B To build up the whole body of Christ (v. 12b).
1. The purpose of each gift is to help the body to grow.
2. If a body oes not grow, something is wrong!
C To create unity in the body of Christ (v. 13a).
1. The purpose of each gift is to unify the body for effectiveness.
2. When one member of the body begins to wage war on another member, the result is disease and death.
D To promote spiritual maturity in the Body of Christ (v. 13b).
1. Through learning more about Jesus.
2. Through helping believers become more like Jesus.
E To help believers to become firmly grounded doctrinally (v. 14).
1. Doctrine is important!
IV. EACH GIFTED MEMBER OF THE BODY IS VITAL TO THE WHOLE BODY (VS. 16).
A The whole body is held together when every member does his part (v.16a).
1. There are no extra parts in the Body of Christ! (1 Cor. 12:20-27)
* When one member of the body is removed or does not function, there are problems throughout the body. The disease of Diabetes is a prime example. The organ that should produce insulin does not do it’s job…creating all kinds of other problems.
B Every member of the body must do his share if the whole body is to function properly (v. 16b).
1. All parts must do their job completely or the body cannot function effectively.
*Example: If a blood vessel is blocked and does not carry the needed blood supply, it spells disaster for all other members of the body.
C When the wole body works together the result is a church that is built up in love (v.16c).
1. When all members of the body function properly, the result is a harmoniously knit, unified, loving body of Christ.
1. Have you been saved? If so, you have been gifted for service within the Body of Christ. Why not yield to the Lord and let the Holy Spirit empower you for service?