September 25, 2022 – Pastor Mark Albrecht
Message Big Idea – The human body is an intricate and interconnected wonder. Scientists and biologists are still discovering new wonders about how and why things work the way they do. There are whole systems in place like the nervous system and respiratory system where different parts of the body and organs interact to accomplish specific tasks often without your knowledge. Paul draws on this idea to show the church that each individual member is needed and part of the interconnected and intricate wonder that is the body of Christ, the church. Each part of the body, when working properly will build up the body in love (Ephesians 4:16). The problem is that the body of Corinth was not working properly. It appears that there were quite a few people in the church who competed with each other over gifts, and others who were either undervaluing or overvaluing the contribution they made to the church.
- Take some time and share with each other: What are you grateful for today? What are you struggling with today?
- Have you ever injured a finger or toe or gotten a sliver in your finger (seemingly a small, insignificant part of the body) and it affected several functions beyond the injured area. Share with the group your worst toe-stub or broken bone story.
- Read 1 Corinthians 12:12-27 (Read twice – ESV and either NLT or Message)
- Go around the group and briefly retell the passage in your own words.
- What word or phrase “jumped off the page” and intrigued you the most? Why?
- In 1 Corinthians 12:12-14 Paul gives us a theological vision for the idea of being one body and many members. In one spirit we were baptized into one body and this was regardless of our backgrounds. Why would Paul address this at the beginning of this passage? What kinds of distinctions or divisions existed in the ancient world and how are they similar to what exists today?
- Looking at the image of a human body, how are different parts of the body essential and interconnected? What would it be like to have a church where everyone was “the same” with the same outlook, experience and gifting?
- What does this passage say to those who undervalue their contribution? How about those who overvalue their contribution?
- 1 Corinthians 12:25-26 shows us how interconnected the church ought to be. There should be no division and when one rejoices we all rejoice and when one suffers we all suffer. How have you experienced this in the past? How can we grow in experiencing this in the future?
Live It Out:
- This week, ask 2-3 other followers of Jesus you know (from small group or church) some ideas about how you might serve together. Jot down some ideas.
- Thank the Lord for how He uniquely made you and gifted you to serve others. Reflect on how God has used you in the past and ask Him to direct you to your next serving opportunity.
- Share you at least one person what God has been teaching you in your quiet times.