Summary: This message is for all Christians to remind them of their importance in the body of Christ i.e. the local church. Every Christian is placed in the body of Christ as God desires. Each of us should use our talents, our grace gifts, our personalities, and
How Important Each Member Is
• Romans 12:1-2 calls for a total commitment to God.
• To be living sacrifices – this is our spiritual act of worship – this is how we worship God in spirit and in truth that Jesus spoke of.
• Out of this commitment comes the teaching comparing the church to the human body.
• Thus our commitment is first to God and the appropriate worship of God.
• Worship of God moves from the worship service into the realm of every day living as each of us discover and practice our place within the body of Christ.
I. Every member has a place in the body of Christ. Verses 3-5
a. Grace is the spiritual motivation for all a Christian does.
b. To know our place in the body of Christ, we must have a spiritual outlook on where we belong in the body of Christ.
c. Paul was thinking in terms of those who think too highly of themselves. We must also encourage those who think too lowly of themselves.
d. God has placed every member in the body as He desires.
Ephesians 4:7, 11-13 (NIV)
7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.
11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
e. We do not all have the same ministry.
f. We belong to one another. My purpose for being in Mullins First Baptist Church is to belong to all of you. Just as all of you belong to me.
g. And as we use our gifts through active participation in the ministry of the church, our church body will be built up, our unity will be strengthened, and we will mature spiritually.
h. Right after these verses, the apostle Paul explains that ultimately the result is that we will not be blown around by every wind of doctrine and defeated by the enemy!!!
II. God has given every member a gift. Verse 6a.
a. We must first remember that the Holy Spirit is the gift giver.
b. We cannot choose which gift we want. God gives us our gifts so that He can use the combination of our personality (that He is always tweaking), our natural talents, and our spiritual gift to do the most good within the body of Christ.
c. The best way to describe these gifts is to call them grace gifts.
d. Charismata means grace. The Greek word from which we get the English word Charismatic.
e. Baptists have made that a bad word and it is not.
f. Now the Charismatic Christians have given it a bad rap by saying that we must all have a certain gift or we do not have the Holy Spirit.
i. Biblically not sound doctrine.
ii. God never says every one is to have a certain gift as well as other gifts.
iii. Use a gift as they do creates the opposite environment in the church from what God desires for our gifts.
iv. They create an environment of look who is the most spiritual – they have the right gift.
v. God clearly says we are to humble ourselves, not think more highly than we ought, and to use our gifts for service not glorification!!!
g. You see, our spiritual gifts when used properly will display the grace of God before others.
h. Like a diamond, there are many facets to God’s grace. Each of us, as we exercise our gifts, we show the church another facet of God’s grace.
i. I first experience God’s grace in salvation.
j. I grow in God’s grace as I discover and exercise my gift.
k. But, I only fully experience God’s grace as I see other Christians exercise their grace gifts and show me God’s grace through their ministry!
l. This shows us, then, how important it is to be in a church and actively involved in that church.
m. If you stay at home, never exercise your gift in the local church, then others will never experience the part of God’s grace you have to show them through the grace given you by Christ Jesus.
n. Bottom line: You can always test how well you are doing by how much grace is displayed by the use of your gifts.
o. If others see God’s grace rather than you on display, you are using your gifts rightly!!!!