Paul wanted the Christians in Corinth to realise how much they needed each other. When God saved them, he did not do that in order to separate them into opposing groups. He saved them in order to join them together with people from many other nations as his people (12:13). It was because of their own weakness that they had separated themselves into opposing groups (1:10-12).
So, Paul used this word-picture about a body to teach them. All Christians together are like Christís body (12:27). God has arranged a body to have many parts, and each part is necessary for a certain reason. Each Christian is like a part of the body. So, although all Christians are different from each other, each one is necessary for a certain reason.
God has done this because he wants Christians to show love to each other (12:25). He wants Christians to be different from each other, but that is not a proper reason for arguments. Instead, it means that each one does something important for the benefit of other Christians. They have a relationship with each other; they need each other.
Someone in the church may seem so important that everyone respects that person. Other people, like the Christian slaves in Corinth, may think themselves too unimportant to belong to the church. However, in Godís opinion, all people who have trusted him to save them belong to his church. They are all important and necessary. So he gives each one special gifts by his Spirit so that the person can serve him, and other people, better.
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© 2014, Keith Simons.