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Summary: Paul draws upon an analogy between the human body and that of the church. He compared the church to a human body.

THE BODY

I CORINTHIANS 12:12-31

INTRODUCTION: Paul draws upon an analogy between the human body and that of the church. He compared the church to a human body. Keep in mind the controversy in the church over spiritual gifts, in particular “tongues”. Paul argued that one gift was not more important than other gifts. “The body of Christ” was one of Paul’s favorite sayings. He used it “91” times in his letters.

I. Think About the Human Body

A. Contemplate on the Unity (v.12-13): One body but many parts. Each has a different function, yet all are part of the same body. Each is to function in cooperation with the other parts.

B. Concentrate on the Equality (v.14-20): No part is insignificant. Each part is valuable. They may not be the same or have the same function, but all are important. No one part of the body can adopt a superior attitude. All parts are essential.

C. Meditate on the Interdependence (v.21-26): Each part needs the others. The eye may see the food, but can’t pick it up without the hand.

II. Think About the Church Body

A. It’s His Body (v.12-14): The human body is a “model” for the body of Christ. Study Rom. 12:4-5; Eph. 1:22-23, 4:15-16; Col. 1:18. How does one become a part of the body? See v.13. The Spirit is the agent of regeneration. The baptism of the Spirit occurs at the moment of conversion. See Matt. 3:11; John 3:5-8; Titus 3:5. All come into the body the same way, therefore all are equal.

B. It Must Work Together (v.15-26): Paul rebukes “individualism” which led to division. No part is inferior or superior. Paul ridicules “egotism” which was disruptive. We are interdependent. All members are essential to the body.

C. It Has Different Ministries (v.27-31): Again, take notice of the eight (8) ministries. “Tongues” is listed last.

CONCLUSION: Most Baptist churches have a problem with “tongues”, but it’s not the unintelligible utterances!

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