About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
In a recent article
I commented on 1 Corinthians 12:4 through 6.
After Paul listed nine gifts of the Spirit and referenced the
ministries of the Lord, he said this in verse 6.
The King James Bible reads:
are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in
In my recent
article I commented on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the ministries of
Christ, and the operations of God seen in 1 Corinthians 12:4 through 6,
all of which are given to believers for the good health of the Body of
Christ, the church. I now
comment further on the operations that are given to everyone from God.
I do so because people often tell me that they are unaware of
having any inherent quality by which to serve Jesus.
To remedy this unawareness costly seminars have been promoted over
the years to help people discover their God-given abilities.
Maybe I can spare you the time, effort, and expense, in this brief
Paul said that
there are diversities of operations but it is the same God who works all
in all, or, in everyone as newer translations put it.
The word "operations" is translated from the Greek word
word suggests an energy or an ability that God gives to everyone.
I cannot say for sure if everyone refers to all Christians or every
human being. I tend to believe
these operations are the abilities, talents, and character qualities
inherent in everyone from birth. I
think Zechariah 12:1 speaks to this. It
word of the LORD
concerning Israel. The LORD,
who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and
who forms the human spirit within a person ..."
I understand the
role genetics play in the essence of a human life but Zechariah informs us
that God forms the human spirit within a person.
We may differ on how to define human spirit, but I think we can
agree that more basic than genetics, is God's creativity in forming who
one is. I, therefore, suggest
that in conjunction with God forming your human spirit, He provides you
with certain abilities, talents, and character qualities that Paul called
operations by which you can serve Jesus.
You may not possess
one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit or function in one of the ministries
of Christ, but you do have abilities, talents, or character qualities
gifted to you by God when He formed your human spirit.
In 1 Corinthians 12:28 Paul lists two such qualities.
They are the ability to help and the ability to administrate.
In Romans 12:6 he adds to this list with the ability to serve, to
teach, to encourage, to give, to lead, to govern, and to show mercy.
We can certainly add to Paul's list.
If, therefore, by nature you are friendly, your God-given gift of
friendliness can be used to serve Jesus.
If you are creative, your God-given gift of creativity can be used
to serve your Lord. If you are
hospitable, your God-given gift of hospitality can be used to reach out to
others in the name of Jesus.
In many respects,
but not all, low self-esteem causes us to question our God-given
abilities, talents, and character qualities.
Unlike our secular culture's humanistic ways to boost low
self-esteem, there is a Bible based, Holy Spirit inspired, self-esteem
boost that brings an awareness of who God has formed us to be at birth.
You, I, and everyone else, has an ability, a talent, or a character
quality by which we can serve Jesus and those to whom He places before us
at any given moment. You are
certainly able to serve.