I Corinthians 12:26-31
Ranked Number One
In the world of business there exists a striving for excellences. Manufacturers making automobiles strive to be ranked number one. More sales are based upon quality of the product. More sales, more prosperity, more jobs, more stockholders increases the viability.
In the world of professional sports it’s the same thing to be ranked number one represents the quality of the athlete and the victories represent more bonuses and higher salaries, greater fan base with supporting advertisers.
In the world there is the existence of the church commissioned by Jesus to preach the gospel and disciple believers. This is accomplished when the church body exercises their spiritual gifts. All the gifts are necessary in the body of Christ but some gifts are ranked higher than others because there is a greater productivity and a greater edification and encouragement.
Members of Christ’s Body – v.26-27
Genuine care in sickness and health – (The Song -Dem Bones)
One suffers all suffer, One is honored all the members rejoice
You are the body of Christ
Called saints in spite of their wide spectrum of problems
Ranking the Gifts – v.28-31
God’s appointment – v.28
We do not choose our gifts
Paul’s specifically designates first, second and third place – Eph. 2:20
The apostles and replacements – Luke 6:13-16; Acts 1:23-26; Rom. 1:1; Acts 14:14; Heb. 5:4; Rom.1:1-4; 15:8
Prophets – Acts 15:32; 11:28-30; 21:10
Teachers – I Thess. 5:20; II Tim. 1:11
Other revelatory gifts –v.28 b.
Rhetorical Questions – v. 29-30
Desiring the greater gifts – v.31
Context: Since the Corinthians had given prominence to the gift of tongue-speaking, Paul points out its last on the list. (12:11,18)
It is not inconsistent to suggest that the Corinthian’s do well by being zealous of identifying the teaching gifts and prepare them in a preliminary way.
Paul is building a bridge from chapter 12 to chapter 13 “a more excellent way,” that which is ranked number one – love, a way of life and a fruit of the Spirit – Gal. 5:22-23
Pastor Nick Iamaio
Reformed Presbyterian Church, 207 South First Street, Fulton, NY 13069
Web Site fultonrpc.org