Summary: This message was preached to help our congregation se the beauty of being a church that works together to reach our community for Christ.

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“All for One and One for All”

Ephesians 4:1-16

If you are a sports fan then there have been plenty of games to watch to keep you busy. The baseball playoffs, the world series coming up. Plenty of football also. Until Thursday night we had the #2 football team in the nation right here in Tampa. USF. Thy lost Thursday night so we will see what happens to their standings. The mazing ting is that for a long time they did not even have a football team at USF. This is their 11th season. When they were first getting started they didn’t even have a lighted field to play on. All the players would drive up and park their cars around the field and turn their lights on so that they could practice at night. All of them working together mad this happen.

One of the greatest football coaches in history was Bear Bryant at University of Alabama. When asked how he won so many games through the years he said, “well I’m just an old plow hand from Arkansas, but I have learned how to hold a team together. How to lift some men up, how to calm down others, until finally they’ve got one heartbeat together, a team. There’s just 3 things I’d ever say: if anything goes bad, I did it. If anything goes semi good, then we did it. If anything goes real good, then you did it. That’s all it takes to get people to win football games for you.

One heartbeat together, a team. A team is exactly what the apostle Paul is describing in our text today. Webster gives us a couple of definitions of teamwork (1) 2 or mor people working together (2) a single unit composed of individual components for the purpose of accomplishing a common goal. That is why Paul says of the church, verses 4-7. Paul says we are many, yet at the same time we are one. We are a team and our team is defined by our relationship to Christ. In this passage we find some important principles related to TEAMWORK.

Principle one. Team work involves many people who are often very different. Paul reminds us in his letter to Corinth that there are different kinds of gifts but the same spirit. There are different kinds of service but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working but the same God works all of them in all men. They key word in this passage is the word different. It is mentioned 3 times. We have different kinds of gifts, there are different ways to serve and there are different workings. There is not just one gift that fits all believers.

The word “gifts” comes from the Greek word “charismata” is the root of the word grace. He says there are different kinds of service. In other words, there are different kinds of opportunities we have to use our gifts. What I do with my gifts may look different from how you use yours.

(2) Teams work for the good of everybody. We all benefit. The scripture tells us that we’ve been given at least one spiritual gift for the common good or benefit of the body. Ephesians 4:16. Gifts are given so that they can be used through our service to others so that the church can grow stronger. When Paul wa writing to young Timothy, Paul was concerned that Timothy not only be able to identify his spiritual gift but that he would also actually do something with it. He said, “do not neglect your gift... I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God. Listen let me remind you of are needed in this church. God has given you a gift and now He wants to use you. Don’t think for a moment that what you do doesn’t count or that you are not a valuable player on the team. No one can do everything but everyone can do something.

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