1 Corinthians 12:12
One Body, Many Parts…
While we are one body of believers, we each have a unique role to play:
“As a body is one though it has many parts, and all the parts of the body, though many, are one body, so also Christ.” -1 Corinthians 12:12, NAB
The phrase “body of believers” is used often in various Christian circles, and it is used to represent the Church as a whole. While we use this phrase often, we often forget the rest of this verse, and it is equally as important. It is used without explaining the depth and beauty of the context of this verse. The context of this verse is important because the verse follows Paul’s teaching on gifts, which we have seen in the past couple of days. With spiritual gifts in mind, let’s take a second look at this verse.
Not only are we all parts of one body, but we are each different parts of the body called to a unique purpose. We discussed how important it can be for each member of the Church to play his or her role. As the mouth of the body, the writers and speakers are the voice of the Church. As the brain, the theologians share the knowledge and wisdom of Christ’s teachings. As the hands of the body, some are called to acts of service using the talents God gave them. As the feet, missionaries are called to take Christ’s message out into the world. As the shoulders, the martyrs and those being persecuted for their faith carry the burdens of the Church. The list goes on.
Without any one of these parts, the body would not function the same. If one part of the body is not functioning, we struggle to function as one Church under God. Together, if we all fulfill our roles as a unique part of the body, the Church can show Christ’s love and mercy to the world. Never feel that your role is insignificant; you were made for it.
“Now the body is not a single part, but many… If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But as it is, God placed the parts, each one of them, in the body as he intended. If they were all one part, where would the body be? But as it is, there are many parts, yet one body.” -1 Corinthians 12:14-20