The Gifts of Christ
Christ gave gifts to men, some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, some to be pastors and teachers, in order to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ.
Christ gives gifts to the church
Ephesians 4:11-12 New International Version (NIV)
11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up
Christ gives gifts to equip the church
In Ephesians 4:7-16, the apostle Paul explains how Christ gives certain gifts to believers in order to equip them for ministry in the church. These gifts include apostles, prophets, evangelists, and shepherds (or pastors). These gifts are given not only to individuals but also to the whole church, so that the church can be built up and mature in love.
The goal of these gifts is that the body of Christ would be unified in faith and knowledge, and that we would grow into maturity in Christ. This unity does not come about through our own efforts but is a work of the Spirit of Christ in us. As we submit to his lordship and allow him to use these gifts in our lives, we will be transformed more into his image and become more like him.
The Purpose of the Gifts
In Ephesians 4, God gives gifts to the church for “the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” These gifts are given for two main purposes: to equip Christians for ministry and to build up the body of Christ.
The gifts are for the building up of the church
Paul tells us in Ephesians 4 that the gifts given to us by Christ are for the “equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” In other words, these gifts are not given to make us happy or fulfilled in ourselves, but rather they are given to equip us to build up the church.
The word “edifying” here comes from a Greek word that means “to build.” So these gifts are given to enable us to build up other believers and help them grow in their faith. This is why it is so important that we use our gifts wisely and not try to use them for our own benefit.
The gifts are for the equipping of the saints
The gifts that God has given to us are not for our own benefit, but for the benefit of others. In Ephesians 4:11-12, Paul says that these gifts are given for “the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” In other words, God has given us gifts so that we can help build up His church.
The word “equipping” here refers to the idea of being fitted or prepared for something. To equip someone is to provide them with the tools they need to do a job. In this case, God has given us gifts so that we can be prepared to do the work of ministry.
Ministry is not just something that pastors and missionaries do. All Christians are called to ministry (1 Peter 2:5). We are all called to serve one another and share the gospel with those around us. And God has given us gifts so that we can do this effectively.
Each one of us has been given unique gifts and talents by God, and it is our responsibility to use these gifts to serve others and build up the body of Christ. When we do this, we are living out our purpose as Christians.
The Use of the Gifts
Ephesians 4 is a popular Scripture that is often used in Christian circles. It is a very powerful Scripture that speaks about the use of gifts. The gifts that are mentioned in this Scripture are very important and can be used to help the body of Christ.
The gifts are to be used in love
Ephesians 4:11-12 says, “It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.”
The gifts that have been given are to be used in love. We are to use them to prepare God’s people for works of service. In doing so, the body of Christ will be built up.
The gifts are to be used in service
In Ephesians 4, the apostle Paul talks about the gifts that God has given to the Church. He says that these gifts are given for the purpose of building up the body of Christ. In other words, they are given so that we can serve one another and grow in our faith.
The gifts that Paul mentions include wisdom, knowledge, prophecy, evangelism, teaching, and administration. These are all important gifts that can be used in a variety of ways to serve the Church.
For example, someone with the gift of wisdom can help others make decisions, solve problems, and see things from a different perspective. Someone with the gift of knowledge can share their understanding of Scripture and help others grow in their faith. And someone with the gift of prophecy can share messages from God that will encourage and edify others.
All of these gifts are important, but Paul makes it clear that they are to be used in service to others. We are not to hoarde our gifts or use them for our own benefit. Instead, we are to use them to build up the body of Christ and help others grow in their faith.
The Unity of the Body
The body is to be united in love
Ephesians 4 describes the unity of the body. The body is to be united in love. There is to be one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
That we henceforth be no more children (Eph 4:1-16).
The body is to be united in service
Ephesians 4:1-3 ESV / 15 helpful votes
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, …
The body is to be united in service. Paul is urging Christians to live up to their calling as members of Christ’s body. We are all called to be humble, patient and kind as we bear with each other in love.