(#063) 1 Corinthians 12 - God Prefers That We Value Differences Between Each Other

FCOR-84-210131 - length: 89:21 - taught on Jan, 31 2021

Class Outline:

Life has a unique set of obstacles that require all of our unique gifts to handle them.









Welcome To 


a Christian Church


Rory Clark



Good Morning!  


Welcome to Barah Ministries…an intimate, local Christian Church with worldwide impact.  My name is Pastor Rory Clark.  Welcome to this Bible lesson!  


At Barah Ministries we know this truth…that Jesus Christ is God.  As the Lord He is 100% Deity…He is God the Son, a member of the Triune Godhead.  He is also 100% human just like you and me, and His name is Jesus Christ.  The Lord…God the Son…became flesh…Jesus Christ...and lived among us.  He is the uniquely born One…100% God and 100% man in one Person forever.  He is the Sovereign God of the Universe.  He is the Jewish Messiah.  


At Barah Ministries, we make a difference by teaching the Word of God

from God’s perspective and not from man’s perspective.  As those who make Barah Ministries our spiritual home, we are Christians.  Being a Christian means we believe in the DEITY of the Lord Jesus Christ, and we have a deep, intimate, and personal relationship with Him.  

God has an enemy, Satan, whom God made ‘the ruler of this world.’  He is a liar who deceives the whole world, including you and me.  He doesn't want us to get to know God, and he interferes with our chance to know God.  In John, Chapter 12, Verse 31, the Lord says…


JOHN 12:31

“Now judgment is upon this world…now the ruler of this world (Satan) will be cast out (he will be dethroned at a future time).”


Satan’s strategy against the human race is religion, which is designed to make us either indifferent or antagonistic to God.  Matthew, Chapter 23, Verse 15 says…



"Woe to you scribes and Pharisees…you hypocrites!  You travel around on sea and land to make one convert to your religion and when he becomes converted, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are!"


Religion deceives many into thinking they are saved when they might not be…and it works really well!  Billions of people are deceived.  Those who are deceived by religion don’t stop to examine the doctrines of their religion to look for the deception by comparing their religion’s doctrines to the Bible’s doctrines.


The Word of God…the Bible…is the truth…and it informs us about Satan's insidious deceptions.  As believers in Christ, we are in union with Christ, and we have the victory over Satan through our Lord, who has overcome the world. 



God Prefers That We Value Differences Between Each Other




It is the Lord’s wish “that there might not be division in the body…instead… that the members will have genuine concern for one another.”


There is no insignificant or inconsequential person in God’s plan, especially among believers in Christ.  There is no insignificant spiritual gift in God’s plan. A well-functioning body requires many members with many functions.

If you were working out, what if you only worked your biceps?  You’d have pretty strong biceps and the rest of your body would be flabby. 


We’re studying Paul’s first letter to the believers at Corinth, people who had a pretty distorted view of how God operates.  A distorted view of how God operates leads to a distorted viewpoint about people.  For example, if you think God is partial, you’ll think being partial (elitism) is okay, as in my spiritual gift makes me better than you.  

Instead, when we look at others, God wants us to ask, “What is the unique thing God placed this person here to do?  When we look at ourselves, God wants us to ask, “What is the unique thing God placed me here to do?”


In today’s lesson, Paul gives us instruction on how to handle differences in a congregation, especially the differences between spiritual gifts….with love rather than with elitism.




In John, Chapter 15 Verse 5 the Lord says…


JOHN 15:5

I (the Lord Jesus Christ) am the vine…you believers in Christ are the branches…the believer who abides in Me and I indwelling him…he bears much fruit…for apart from Me you can do nothing.


Danny Gokey sings it this way…Lord…what’s life IF YOU AIN’T IN IT?



Be Occupied with the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ

Enjoy the Singing of His Praises



Danny Gokey



Let us pray...


We're grateful, Heavenly Father, for the privilege of studying Your absolute truth...the Word of God…


Father, thank you for treating us as equals, even though we are not…thank you for valuing us, even though we are flawed in our thinking and our actions…thank you for demonstrating unconditional love so we can model it…


Help us to keep on seeing our lives from Your point of view…show us how to be a reflection of Your will…let the fruit of the Spirit radiate from within us so that we draw people to Christ…


…we ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ’s




God Prefers That We Value Differences Between Each Other


We continue our study of First Corinthians at Chapter 12.  Here are the verses we have studied so far…First Corinthians, Chapter 12, Verses 12 to 14…



For even as the body is one (an independent unit)…and yet has many members…(parts dependent on each other)…and all the members are part of the body…though they are many, they are one body (cooperating interdependently)…so also is Christ (one in unity with the body of Christ…the Church).


Christ is the HEAD…believers in Christ are the BODY.  The Latin expression of this sentiment is E PLURIBUS UNUM…from many…one.  It is the motto of our country…in the United States of America there are many states and one country.  We are in union whether we operate that way or not.



For by one (God…God the Holy) Spirit…we believers in Christ were all baptized into one body (the body of Christ…through the baptism of the Spirit…we believers have been placed into union with Christ)…whether Jews or Greeks (we are racially diverse)… whether slaves or free (we are socially diverse)…and we were all made to drink of one Holy Spirit (in unity).


Baptism washes away the things that divide us…we become members of the Body of Christ.  Being IN CHRIST takes social, gender and racial distinctions out of play.  There is no partiality with God.  By the way… Romans, Chapter 5, Verses 5 uses the “drink” analogy of First Corinthians, Chapter 12 Verse 13 as well…



…and hope does not disappoint, because the unconditional love of God the Father…(as if it is a drink)…has been POURED OUT within our hearts through God the Holy Spirit who was given to us by God the Father (as a pledge of our inheritance).


First Corinthians, Chapter 12, Verse 14…



For the body is not one member, but many members.


Some members are weak…some are strong…but all are one.  Let’s continue our verse-by-verse study at First Corinthians, Chapter 12, Verse 15…



If the foot says, “Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body,” it is not (ouk…not no way…not no how) any less a part of the body (is it?)



And if the ear says, “Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body,” it is not (ouk) any less a part of the body (is it?)



If the whole body were an eye, where would the (ability for) hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be?


There are cool parts of the body, and they are not greater than the not-so-cool parts of the body. Don’t believe me?  One heart valve malfunction can cause a stroke.  There are “cool people” in a congregation, yet they are not any better than the “not-so-cool” members of the congregation.



God does not want us to flaunt our spiritual gift.  God does not want us to belittle the spiritual gift of another.  God does not want us to be jealous of the spiritual gift of another…yet the human malady, especially in the Corinthian congregation, is to do all three of these things.  That’s immaturity! 


Paul wants the Corinthians believers to learn that every member of the body is a valuable member of the body, and that God placed each member and each spiritual gift there for a purpose.


Your spiritual gift is special!  


Each spiritual gift provides a special kind of nourishment to the Body of Christ.  Do you think of your gift as special?  Do you think of yourself as special?  If not, it is unlikely that you will seek to learn about your spiritual gift.  It is unlikely you will see yourself as special to God.  Satan doesn’t want you to think you and your spiritual gift are special.  That’s why he sows seeds of division, within you and within a congregation.  God KNOWS you and your spiritual gift are special because He made you special.  You are special to Him.  


In marriages, Satan sows seeds of division by convincing wives that being in submission to their husbands is weak.  Ephesians, Chapter 5, Verses 22 to 24…



Wives, be in submission to your own husbands, just as you are in submission to the Lord.



For the husband is the head of the wife…just as Christ also is the head of the Church…He Himself being the Savior of the body.



But just as the church is in submission to Christ, so also the wives ought to be in submission to their own husbands in everything.


What is submission?



Being under the rule of a sovereign


Often, people don’t want to do their assigned function but they want to usurp the function of another.  Maybe when you realize ARE in submission you become an, “I don’t want anyone telling me what to do” person.  You duplicate Satan’s rebellion within yourself.  Satan didn’t want God telling him what to do.  If you don’t want anyone telling you what to do, you can never be successful.  What if someone didn’t tell you the gospel message?


It is not God’s intention that any of us would feel inferior because of our circumstances, our environment, or our choices.  




But now God the Father has placed the members of the body…each one of them…in the body, just as He desired.


God plans that the different parts of the body would work in conjunction to serve the whole body. Thank God this happens every day!   Thus, God plans that we would value the spiritual gift differences in spiritual gifts in the Body of Christ and that we would use them in conjunction with each other every day.



If they were all one member, where would the body be?



But now there are many members, but one body.


Body parts are independent…there is dependence among body parts… body parts are interdependent.  So it is with Christians.  Elitism has no place in the plan of God.  Paul makes it clear that it is foolish for one Christian to flaunt his spiritual gift as if it is better than another's.  Where would we be without each other?



The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you” (can it?) … or again the head cannot say to the feet, “I have no need of you (can it?)”


Republicans and Democrats.  Democrats are taught to hate the rich.  Republicans are taught to despise the poor.  Do they need each other?  If you think the janitor is dispensable, wait until the garbage piles up.  If you think there is no need for the owner of the business, wait until the business shuts down and you don’t have a job.  The Pastor is not superior to the congregation members.  We need each other.  The attitude of the Corinthian believers was, “I’m better than you.”




On the contrary, it is much truer that the members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary…


The body can survive without some body parts…eyes…ear…legs…feet… but not without others...the heart…the brain…the lungs.



…and those members of the body which we deem less honorable, on these we bestow more abundant honor, and our less presentable members become much more presentable...whereas our more presentable members have no need of it. 


Paul is talking about the unseen parts of the body like the genitals.  Those things that appear weak have real value.  The unseen gifts are just as important as the unseen gifts.  Think about the care we take to cover our genitals and to protect them.  So we are to be in our care for every part of the body….and especially in the Body of Christ.



The Lord does not want Christian thinking and actions to reflect the world’s thinking and actions.



But God has so composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that member which lacked…



…so that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another.


God expects that the “lesser” members of the congregation to be treated well and taken care of well by the “greater” members of the congregation.  Do we?


When we return from the break, we’ll take the offering, and then we’ll finish up our study of First Corinthians, Chapter 12.




Casting Crowns



God Prefers That We Value Differences Between Each Other


In Luke, Chapter 6, Verse 38, the Lord says…


LUKE 6:38

Give…and it will be given back to you…for by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”


When it comes to life and to giving, our Lord always reinforces the sowing- reaping theme.  When you give generously, God always rewards your generosity with much more abundance.  Thank you for always being so generous and for making Barah Ministries a recipient of your sowing.  You’re helping reap souls for Christ all throughout the world.


Let’s welcome up Deacon Denny Goodall with one of his always inspiring offering messages.



Deacon Denny Goodall





I (Paul) pray that the eyes of your heart (believers in Christ) may keep on being enlightened (so you have true insight into God’s thinking)…so that you will know for a fact what is the present hope of God the Father’s calling you to salvation…and what are the glorious riches that are yours in the future…His inheritance for the saints…




Don Moen



God Prefers That We Value Differences Between Each Other


Continuing in First Corinthians, Chapter 12 at Verse 26…



And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it…if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.



Now you Corinthian believers are Christ’s body, and individually you are members of His body.


The whole purpose of a church is to be a classroom for unconditional love, forgiveness, and grace. From giving these three things to others, we learn patience.  Just as God orchestrates how the physical body works together, He orchestrates how the Body of Christ works together.



Here are some of the spiritual gifts God has placed in the church…



And God the Father (the Planner) has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miraculous deeds, then grace gifts of healings, then helpful deeds, then administration (guidance for the community), and then various kinds of tongues.


Those who have the spiritual gift of tongues are no more special than those who have other spiritual gifts, although in the Corinthian church, the tongues crowd flaunted themselves as better than those with “lesser” gifts.


This is not an inclusive list of spiritual gifts…but it’s an important list. Notice that tongues, the spiritual gift being flaunted by the elite in the Corinthian church as special, is listed last.  A spiritual gift is effective to the degree that it does God’s will.  What is God’s will?  First Timothy, Chapter 2, Verses 3 and 4 say…



This is what is good and acceptable in the sight of the God who is our Savior…the Lord Jesus Christ…



…who desires all men to be saved and who desires for all men to come to the knowledge of the truth.


Even the most powerful spiritual gift is ineffective if the other gifts are missing.  A Pastor-Teacher is critical, perhaps like the brain or the heart… but he needs congregation members and their spiritual gifts to function!  By the way, our spiritual gifts are functions, not people (“the spiritual gifted ones”).  It’s the gifts that are special, not the people.



All are not apostles, are they? All are not prophets, are they? All are not teachers, are they? All are not workers of miracles, are they?



All do not have gifts of healings, do they? All do not speak with tongues, do they? All do not interpret, do they?


Paul concludes with a thought he will elaborate on in Chapter 13…



But keep on earnestly desiring the use of the greater grace spiritual gifts (pursuing the use with the fervor of a zealot)…and I show you a still more excellent way (to use your fervor).


Elitism is not a more excellent way.  Unconditional love in the use of our spiritual gifts is the more excellent way that Paul will develop in Chapter 13.  


We are one body…we are many members.  Christ is the HEAD.  The Church is a BODY.  How are we to live?  Second Corinthians, Chapter 10, Verse 5…



We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ…


Elitism is not Christ.  Destroy it!  God prefers that we value differences between each other!



Make the Most Important Decision of Your Life


There is a Person at the very core of Christianity who cares about you.  Jesus Christ.  He is the Sovereign God of the Universe…He is the truth…He is God.  The good news for you is that God wants a relationship with you!  This is your chance to have a personal relationship with Him.  


The bad news is that you were born a sinner.  Sinners need a Savior.  That Savior is Jesus Christ and He wants you to be saved…First Timothy, Chapter 2, Verses 3 and 4…



This is what is good and acceptable in the sight of the God who is our Savior…the Lord Jesus Christ…



…who desires for all men to be saved and who desires for all men to come to the knowledge of the truth.


You will spend eternity in the Lake of Fire at physical death if you choose not to believe in Him.


There is only ONE WAY to get to heaven…by placing your faith in what Jesus Christ has done at the Cross on your behalf.  If you’re going to place your confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ for your eternal salvation, you probably should get to know Him as soon as you can.  While there are many things to know about Him, here are the critical few things.  


The Lord Jesus Christ is Your Creator…John, Chapter 1, Verse 3…


JOHN 1:3

All things came into being through the Lord (God the Son) … and apart from Him, nothing came into being that has come into being.


The Lord Jesus Christ loves you UNconditionally… First John, Chapter 4, Verse 8…



The one who does not love unconditionally does not know the Lord, for the Lord IS unconditional love (it’s His Person and His identity).


The Lord Jesus Christ has already forgiven ALL of your sins…past… present…and future…Isaiah, Chapter 43, Verse 25…


ISAIAH 43:25

“I, even I (the Lord), am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake…and I will not remember your sins.”


The Lord doesn’t want you to work to please Him…Romans, Chapter 11, Verse 6 says…



But if salvation is by grace, and of course it is, it is no longer on the basis of your works…otherwise grace is no longer grace.


The Lord Jesus Christ doesn’t want you to go to the Lake of Fire…Second Peter, Chapter 3, Verse 9…



The Lord is not slow about His promise of salvation, as some accuse Him of…instead, He is patient toward unbelievers…not wishing for any of you to perish (in the Lake of Fire) but for all of you to come to repentance (a change of mind about having a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ).


The Lord Jesus Christ is the Perfect Person to lead you to salvation.


God’s graciousness offers you the chance to be saved as a free gift.  So how can you get to heaven?  This loving, forgiving, patient God who wants you to be saved is willing to save you right this minute.  John, Chapter 14, Verse 6…


JOHN 14:6

Jesus said to the doubting apostle, Thomas, “I am the way (to salvation), and I am the truth (through the Word of God), and I am the resurrection life (eternal life)…and no one comes to God the Father (in heaven) but through believing in Me.”


Right where you sit, RIGHT NOW, you can tell God the Father that you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that is the moment of eternal life for

you.  Acts, Chapter 16, Verse 31…


ACTS 16:31 

“Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and everyone in your household who also believes.”


So, heed the warning in John, Chapter 3, Verse 36…


JOHN 3:36

“He who believes in the Son has the resurrection life right at that moment… but he who does not obey the command to believe in the Son will not see the resurrection life…instead the wrath of God (the Lake of Fire) abides on him.”


Who is this God who saves you?  The apostle Paul describes the Lord Jesus Christ…in First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verses 3 and 4… 



For I (Paul) delivered to you as of first importance the gospel message…the good news I also received … that it was Jesus Christ who died for our sins according to the Scriptures…



…and that He was buried…and that He was raised from the dead on the third day…according to the Scriptures…


When you get to know Jesus Christ, you’ll have no problem placing your confidence in Him, both for your salvation and for everything else.  Why?  Because you’ll know that Sovereign God of the Universe wants a relationship with you, He loves you and He died for you.  So, take advantage of His grace and you’ll be saved RIGHT NOW!




Let’s close with music!  Ephesians, Chapter 4, Verses 4 to 6…



There is one body (The Body of Christ)…and one Holy Spirit…just as also you were called (by God the Father) in one hope of your calling (to salvation)…



…there is one Lord (Jesus Christ…the Savior)…one faith (Christianity)… one baptism (the baptism of the Spirit)…



…and one God and Father of all mankind…who is sovereign over all…and who is living through all…and who is indwelling all (manifesting Himself).


Here’s June Murphy to sing…THERE IS JUST ONE HOPE!




June Murphy




         A Doxology of Praise to Our God


ROMANS 15:5 

Now may the God who gives endurance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another (to think the exact same way…operating in harmony) according to your union with Christ Jesus…


ROMANS 15:6 

…so that with one accord you believers in Christ may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.


ROMANS 15:7 

Therefore, keep on accepting one another…and keep on receiving one another…just as Christ also keeps on accepting us all (in unconditional love)…to the glory of God the Father.



Let us pray...


Thanks for coming!

Thanks for watching!

Thanks for listening!


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