Daily Encouragement: Day 342

Adapted from Handbook to Spiritual Growth


God has given each believer a combination of opportunities and gifts that is perfectly suited to his or her situation in life. Every Christian is really a minister with a unique contribution to make to the body of Christ.

The three major New Testament lists of the gifts are all introduced by a description of the unity and diversity in this spiritual body. Paul’s metaphor for the church could not be more appropriate, because both the universal church (all believers) and the local church (geographically localized groups of believers) are unities which are built out of diverse elements. Christ is the head and ruler of the body (Ephesians 1:22; 4:15; Colossians 1:18), and believers are the individual members or components. In this analogy, each Christian has been given a special function to perform and the ability to fulfill it in a way that will benefit the other members. Each part of the body depends on the rest for its well-being, and there are no useless organs. The Spirit has sovereignly distributed spiritual gifts to every member of the body, and no single member possesses all the gifts. Thus, growth does not take place apart from mutual ministry and dependence.

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