Summary of passage: God has given each of us different gifts. Let us use our gifts (whatever they may be) for His glory and to the best of our ability.
12) 1 Corinthians 7:7b: Each person has his or her own gift from God.
1 Corinthians 12:4-6: Each gift we have works to glorify God.
Ephesians 4:11-13: God gave us each different works of service to build each other up and mature to the fullness of Christ.
1 Peter 4:10-11: We should use our gifts to serve others, administering God’s grace and speaking as if we are speaking the very words of God.
13) Prophesy: “let him use it in proportion to his faith.” If one hears a word from God, share it.
Serving: “let him serve” If one is called to serve in an area of church, serve.
Teaching: “let him teach” If one is called to teach, teach.
Encouraging: “let him encourage” If one is blessed with encouraging words, share them.
Contributing to the needs of others: “let him give generously” If one is called to contribute to the needs of others (which we all are to a certain degree), do so!
Leadership: “let him govern diligently” If one is called for leadership, govern according to God’s principles.
Showing mercy: “let him do it cheerfully” If we need to show mercy, do so with a kind heart in forgiveness.
14) Personal Question. My answer: He’s given me some of these and others not listed. I’m always teaching my kids like in homeschool or in daily living. I teach other how to workout correctly with my fitness/CrossFit jobs. I serve others be it my family or in my work. I donate to charity groups. I serve on a local board and hope one day to be on the Town Board and mayor of my town. I’m not the best at encouraging but I try. Same with mercy. I also write via this forum and my novels. Every day is an opportunity to do His will in all areas of life and in the areas in which we are gifted. Do you take advantage of it?
Conclusions: Great reminder and verses to remind us all that we each have a different purpose here on this planet for Him. We each have different gifts to use for His glory. We need to take advantage of these and use them for Him and give Him the glory for all we accomplish for Him. Is it for Him or for you?
End Notes: The ancient Greek word for “spiritual gifts” is charismata, which means a gift of grace. This term was apparently coined by Paul to emphasize that the giving of these spiritual gifts was all of grace.
Spiritual gifts are given at the discretion of the Holy Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:11 says, But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.
Paul is careful to warn us against being proud of our gifts and exalting them/us instead of God.
Prophecy: God may give us something to say to an individual or church body that stretches our faith. If we can’t prophecy in faith and trust that God has really spoken to us, we shouldn’t do it at all.
Prophecy in the Biblical understanding, isn’t necessarily “fore-telling” in a strictly predictive sense. It is more accurately “forth-telling” the heart and mind of God, which may or may not include a predictive aspect.
This warns us against flippant, “stream of consciousness” prophecy that has no difficulty saying, “Thus says the Lord” at the drop of a hat.
In proportion to our faith: The ancient Greek text actually has “the” before faith. Paul may be cautioning that prophecy must be according to the faith, in accord with the accepted body of doctrine held among believers.
Some take the proportion of faith to be the proportion of the faith of the audience of the prophecy; this has truth also.
This was a warning that meant more in Ancient Times as many claimed that God spoke to them and then their words were not from God or Biblically-based. This was a warning against false prophets.
Ministry can be seen as serving in practical ways and not necessarily as a pastor or priest. Paul sees this as important ministry from the Holy Spirit as well.
Teaching has in mind instruction, while exhortation encourages people to practice what they have been taught; both are necessary for a healthy Christian life.
When someone who is called and gifted to be a giver stops giving, they will often see their resources dry up – having forgotten why God has blessed them.
It is easy for leaders to become discouraged and feel like giving up, but they must persevere if they will please God by their leadership.
It can be hard enough to show mercy, but even harder to be cheerful about it. This reminds us that the gift of showing mercy is a supernatural gift of the Spirit.