“A person who speaks in tongues is strengthened personally, but one who speaks a word of prophecy strengthens the entire church. I wish you could all speak in tongues, but even more I wish you could all prophesy. For prophecy is greater than speaking in tongues, unless someone interprets what you are saying so that the whole church will be strengthened.”
1 Corinthians 14:4-5 NLT
The gifts of the Spirit are for edifying (to teach in a way that benefits) the church. God wants His church to be strengthened, not weakened. When we do anything out of order, the body of Christ is not benefited, rather, damaged. It is utterly important that the church be strong. When we don't think about the good of the whole, we become selfish and do harm to our fellow brothers and sisters. The Holy Spirit is the One who empowers the church (see Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8; Acts 2:1-4).
God has placed us all in certain positions and has given us various gifts by the Holy Spirit. We must operate within those established positions and gifts. Remember that we shared three categories of abilities yesterday?
1. Natural talents. Our God given natural talents compliment the church.
2. The Fruit of the Spirit. The presence of the Holy Spirit gives us God's character. Because He is present within us, we should demonstrate God's character. This means we should act like Jesus.
3. The Gifts of the Holy Spirit. They contribute to the order and proper function of the church. They also bring supernatural power and intervention within the church.
When we properly understand God's design and let God have His way, the church is always strengthened and will experience the glory and beauty of the body of Christ at work. Otherwise, we will only see disorder, dissension, and damage.
God wants health and wholeness. What do you want?
Prayer for today: Father, in Jesus name, fill me with the Holy Spirit and help me operate beneath Your control. I want to contribute to the health and well being of the church.
Rev. Curtis Norris