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1 Corinthians Chapter 12:4-5

Cross the Bridge / David McGee
The Truth Network Radio
May 18, 2024 1:00 am

1 Corinthians Chapter 12:4-5

Cross the Bridge / David McGee

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May 18, 2024 1:00 am

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So we're all different. And that's good. Because if we weren't different, we would be missing something.

If your body was just one big hand, it would be missing a lot of vital organs and couldn't survive. The body of Christ, if it doesn't have the diversities of the people and the personalities and the gifts, it won't survive. Welcome to Cross the Bridge with David McGee. David is the Senior Pastor of the Bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina. When it comes to spiritual gifts, we should find out what our gifts are and walk in them, but not try to walk in someone else's gifts. David discusses this and more as he continues in the book of 1 Corinthians chapter 12. But first, do you ever feel like God is cutting away parts of you, like a gardener pruning a tree?

Well, I hope you said yes to this question because it means God is shaping you so that you can bear even more fruit in your life. We want to help you embrace God's pruning in your life by sending you Pastor David McGee's three-part audio series, Abiding in Christ, Keys to a Fruitful Life. It's our way of saying thank you for your gift to help share the truth of Scripture with more people around the world through Cross the Bridge. So get your copy of Abiding in Christ when you give today at and discover how you can bear more fruit for God's kingdom.

Now here's David McGee with his teaching, Gifts that Keep Giving. Turn with me to 1 Corinthians chapter 12. A lot of times we don't know about the Holy Spirit. He's probably the mystery of the Trinity, if you will. A lot of people understand the theology of the Father, the theology of the Son. But when it gets to the Holy Spirit, not so much. And a lot of people, sadly enough, there's a fear about the Holy Spirit. Now let's understand, God is not about fear. The enemy is about fear. And I think a lot of that is rooted and not just you've probably seen some bizarre stuff in your life that people said was the Holy Spirit, but also because the enemy doesn't want you to be empowered. If you're getting ready to fight with somebody and this person has bazookas and hand grenades and a.45 and all this around his feet, you don't want him to pick those weapons up if he's fighting you, right? Well, the enemy doesn't want you to pick the weapons and the gifts of the Holy Spirit up because he's in a fight with you.

We're going to pick it up with verse 4. There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. Now the word gifts is the word charismata in the Greek. It's where we get our word charisma. If somebody's charismatic, we think of them as gifted or appealing. And then from this word charismata in the Greek, we get the word charismatic. We term certain churches charismatic. And let's understand, oftentimes when we use that word charismatic or Pentecostal is another word that comes from the visitation of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2 on the Feast of Pentecost, which was one of the seven Jewish feasts, and they had the visitation of the Holy Spirit, so we use that Pentecostal. There's a wide range of churches that are charismatic and Pentecostal. There are some that maybe their services would tend to be, just to be honest, tend to be more bizarre and manifestations of people running around and screaming and running over the pews and all sorts of stuff.

We'll do that in just a minute. And then there's churches in the middle that believe in the gifts, but they believe, according to 1 Corinthians 14, that there's a scriptural exercise to the gifts. In other words, the Bible talks about if all the gifts are in action in a church service and somebody who doesn't know Jesus, an unbeliever, comes into that environment, he's going to think everybody's crazy.

It literally says that. And I've been to those churches, you know, I'd invite an unbeliever, and I would hope that, you know, the weird things wouldn't happen. And sure enough, that particular morning, you know, this woman would stand up and do whatever, cluck like a chicken or something, and then, you know, and I'm going, oh, man, you know, he's going to ask me why she's doing that. The answer is, I don't know. So, when we use these words, let's understand we're describing a wide variety of churches. So, we want to look at what the Bible has to say about this. And also, an interesting root, charismata, the root of that is charis. Now, charis in the Greek means grace. Grace.

I like that. Because God's gifts aren't a reward for being spiritual or being righteous, they're a reward just because He loves you. They're given according to grace. A lot of people think, well, you know, if I'm going to receive any sort of spiritual gift, I must be holy enough and no sin in my life. And people actually have tarrying meetings where they wait and then if somebody doesn't get filled, they're like, oh, there's sin in your life. No, wait a minute. And the word gifts is the word grace.

Can't be by accident. Holy Spirit's also called the comforter, the helper, the counselor. And when we talk about the Holy Spirit, what you're going to notice is I won't use the word it.

That's not appropriate. It's He and Him. The Holy Spirit is a person. Sometimes I hear people and say, well, I got it. I don't know what you got, but you need Him. It's Him.

Certainly, you wouldn't think it was a term of affection if somebody called you it. Oh, it's here. So the Bible has a lot to say about the Holy Spirit. Let's look at a few verses. John chapter 14, Jesus is describing the Holy Spirit and He says, And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another comforter, that He may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of truth.

It's another word for the Holy Spirit. Whom the world cannot receive because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him, but ye know Him, for He dwelleth with you and shall be in you. For I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you. So that's the King James. Give it to you in the New King James. I'm going to give it to you on three verses. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another helper, that He may abide with you forever, and the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him, but you know Him, for He dwells with you. And look at this. And will be in you.

It's an important thing. I will not leave you orphans. I will come to you. Or in the New Living Translation. It says, And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive Him because it isn't looking for Him and does not recognize Him. But you know Him because He lives with you now, and later will be in you. No, I will not abandon you as orphans. I will come to you. So this comforter, the parakletos in the Greek, part of that means, para means to come alongside.

And it's interesting. Jesus is talking to the disciples, and He's saying, Jesus in the Greek is saying, He's alongside of you, para, but He's going to be in you. Now, why wasn't the Holy Spirit already in the disciples? Because Jesus had not yet died and risen from the dead. We were still in our sins. See, in the Old Testament, the Hebrew Scriptures, the Holy Spirit would come upon somebody for a certain function or a certain office, but the Holy Spirit couldn't really reside in a person.

Why? There was sin there. God is a holy God.

He's a righteous God. He cannot abide where sin is. Once somebody asks God to forgive them of their sins, then they have a place where the Holy Spirit can reside. So the relationship changes from the Holy Spirit being beside you to being in you. And before you come to know Jesus as your Savior, the main ministry of the Holy Spirit, well, really, the only ministry of the Holy Spirit is to convince or convict you of your need for Jesus. But once you come to know Jesus, the Holy Spirit wants to empower you and give you gifts to serve the Lord. I remember as an early young believer developing a love for the Bible, and there was a verse that I used to read every time I got ready to read or study the Bible. John 14, 26 says, with the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. I would encourage you as you read your Bible, perhaps pray a short prayer and say, Lord, would you send your Holy Spirit to reveal your word to me, the truth of your word to me?

And He will. And according to this verse, He'll also remind you of verses that you know. Have you ever been talking to somebody and then all of a sudden a verse pops in your mind? Now, you can write that off to your great, incredible memory and your genius, which seems to dissipate as you get older, or you can give God the glory because it's the Lord that will bring verses to mind. That's the Holy Spirit.

If you've ever done that, you've had an encounter or experience with the Holy Spirit. Romans chapter 12 talks about how we're all different and in verse 4 is saying there's diversities of gifts but the same spirit. Romans chapter 12 verse 4 says, just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ's body.

We are many parts of one body and we all belong to each other. The Bible seems to indicate that each of us have a different personality, that we're fearfully and wonderfully made, that God was forming us while we were yet in the womb, making us very unique in our personality and our giftings. The problem is sometimes we see somebody else who has different gifts and we want to be like them. God doesn't need you to be like them. He needs you to be you and the unique expression of humanity that you are.

Now, this can lift a whole lot of frustration off you as a follower of Jesus because we're always trying to be somebody else. We're always trying to have some gift that we don't have. Certain people are gifted in music, certain people are not. Certain people are gifted with kids, certain people are not. And that's okay because as we all bring our gifts together, it just forms this wonderful symphony, if you will.

This orchestra is so beautiful. You're listening to Pastor David McGee on Cross the Bridge. He'll be back with more powerful insight from God's word in just a moment. But first, what does it mean when God prunes away at parts of your life? Is he angry at you? Have you done something wrong?

Far from it. Jesus teaches in John 15 that God lovingly removes things from your life so that you can grow into the person he created you to be and bear more fruit for Christ. We want to help you do that by sending you Abiding in Christ, Keys to a Fruitful Life, a three-part audio series from Pastor David McGee on what it means to be pruned by God and how you can embrace the process. This encouraging resource is our way of thanking you for your gift to help reach more people with the powerful truth of the gospel through Cross the Bridge. So go to today and request your copy of this series. This is Pastor David McGee with Cross the Bridge. I want to thank you for listening to Cross the Bridge.

I also want to tell you about an exciting website. The website is, and it works very simply like this. You go to the website and you put the first names of up to ten people that we begin praying that they get saved. Now it takes two things to get saved, presentation and prayer. And what we're offering is prayer, and also there's different tools there to help you present the gospel to them. So we're there with you, helping you with the presentation, helping you with the prayer. There's over 920 people that belong to the prayer team on Lost Loved Ones, and you can join the prayer team as well and help us to pray for others who don't yet know Jesus, and together we can see a huge revival starting with your lost loved ones.

Now, back to today's message. Ephesians chapter 4 says, Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, there is one body and one Spirit just as you were called and 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. So we're all different, but we have gifts.

I think this is one of the beautiful parts of the body of Christ. We're not all the same. I don't expect you to be the same as I am. As a matter of fact, I'm grateful you're not the same as I am, because that would be, I've thought about it before, it would be a nightmare to try to pastor a congregation of Dave McGee's. I've thought about it.

No, I just, I couldn't do it. So we're all different, and that's good, and that's okay, because if we weren't different, we would be missing something. If your body was just one big hand, it would be missing a lot of vital organs and couldn't survive. The body of Christ, if it doesn't have the diversities of the people and the personalities and the gifts, it won't survive. The life lesson here is find out your gifts and walk in them, and don't try to walk in someone else's gifts. Find out your gifts and walk in them, and don't try to walk in someone else's gifts.

If you're sitting there going, well, I'm not sure what my gifts are. Well, we're going to help you as we go through this chapter to discover what your gifts are. And there's some natural gifts, if you will, in this chapter.

There's some supernatural gifts in this chapter as well. But in the New Living Translation, this verse says, there are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. So the ministry of the Holy Spirit to the believer is different than the ministry of the Holy Spirit to the unbeliever. The ministry of the Holy Spirit to the unbeliever, somebody who's still rejecting Jesus, is to convince them of their need for Jesus. Now, we need to understand that role of the Holy Spirit because if we don't understand the role of the Holy Spirit towards the unbeliever, we're going to try to play the role of the Holy Spirit.

You can't do that. See, if I go to somebody and I'm sharing the gospel, the good news with them, the Holy Spirit's there. As a matter of fact, even the sharing of the gospel has a power. It's the power of God.

The word power there is dunamis where we get a word for dynamite. So we start sharing the gospel, the Holy Spirit is there. Now, at some point in the conversation, you have to quit talking. And the person walks away thinking about the things that you said. You cannot follow that person home and be knocking on their window that night. Hey, hey, hey, you need to get saved.

You cannot do that legally. But the Holy Spirit can. The Holy Spirit will. Follow somebody home. Keep them up at night. Remind them, you need Jesus. You need Jesus. You need to be forgiven.

That guy, that girl, that man, that woman, they're right. You need Jesus. So the Holy Spirit will continue to convince somebody.

And that really takes a load off of us in evangelism. Why? Because we need to do the presentation. And it needs to be crisp.

It needs to be clear. But then allow the Holy Spirit to do his job. Some people in evangelism are like vacuum cleaner salesmen.

You know, they get their foot in the door. No, no, no. Today only, right now, you've got one shot. Sorry if you're a vacuum cleaner salesman. No offense intended. But you realize most people in this country, statistics suggest that they hear the gospel seven times before they receive Jesus as their Savior.

So you don't know if you're number one or you're number seven. And to be blunt, it's none of your business. God will take care of it. But we share his goodness. And the Holy Spirit continues to convince. Verse 5 says, there are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. The life lesson is, your spiritual gifts do not come from you, they come from God. Your spiritual gifts do not come from you, they come from God. As the verse says, there's differences of ministries, but it's the same Lord who gives the gifts. Some people have more gifts, some people have less gifts.

It doesn't matter. God's the one that gives them. I've talked to people that actually ran down the list of spiritual gifts. I got this one, and I got that one, and I got this one, and I got that one, and I got that one.

As a matter of fact, I got most of them. You got another one that's not listed, it's a gift of pride. I'm like you, I look at some people and go, God, why'd you give them that gift?

He's God, he knows what he's doing. So if God's the giver of the gifts, let's understand the gifts come from God. The desire to use the gifts come from God.

And the gifts should glorify God. Do you understand God can create in you the desire to use your gifts to bless others? And God will make you willing.

He has a very unique way of making you willing. Sometimes people are, oh, Pastor Dave, I'm so glad that you started a home Bible study. I'm so glad God sent you. Every now and again, I get real just brutally honest, and I say, you know what, I tried living in the belly of a well. It didn't go too well. There was a season in my life I ran from God. It didn't go so well. Jonah ran from God.

It didn't go so well. Biblical story talks about how he was swallowed by a whale. It was in there for three days, and the whale threw up, threw him up on the beach, just trying to figure out some other... The whale got nauseated. Threw him up on the beach, and I mean, how weird would that...

If you would have been standing there and this guy comes up all covered in whale vomit, repent, repent. I don't know if you ever heard that little story. A little girl was in a public school, and the teacher was talking about whales, and the little girl said, oh, yeah, Jonah got swallowed by a whale. The teacher said, no, he didn't. She goes, yeah, it's in the Bible. The teacher said, the Bible's not true. It's filled with lies and fairy tales and folklore. She said, no, it's not.

The Bible's true. The teacher said, how in the world would Jonah be able to live for three days in the belly of a whale? And the little girl said, I don't know. When I get to heaven, I'll ask him. The teacher said, oh, yeah, what if Jonah goes to hell?

The little girl said, well, then you can ask him. So God has this way of getting you to want to do what he wants you to do. The Spirit will prompt you lightly if you don't respond a little stronger. But the Holy Spirit, let's understand, the Holy Spirit will never take over your body, and you lose self-control. That's unbiblical, because one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the fruit of the Holy Spirit, is self-control.

I had a neighbor who, good guy, good guy, loved the Lord. When you talk about Jesus, he's fine. I'd say, you know, the Holy Spirit, he's tense up. I was like, dude, what? So finally, I was like, dude, every time I say the Holy Spirit, you like tense up.

What's up with that? He goes, I just think you're going to do something weird. I said, why do you think that? He said, because I had a guy that I worked with.

He came to work and said that he came forward at a church service and laid down, and he was paralyzed for like two hours and couldn't move. And he said, what the guy was describing to me didn't sound like God. It didn't sound like the Holy Spirit. And I said, that does not sound like the Holy Spirit to me either. See, sometimes people do stuff and they go, well, that was the Holy Spirit.

But if it doesn't line up with the Word of God, it wasn't the Holy Spirit. The Bible says one of the things the Spirit gives you is self-control. So God's never going to violate your free will. Now, he will make you willing to do something that perhaps you weren't willing to do before. Philippians 2, 13 says, for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for his good pleasure, for God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.

Now, that doesn't mean that, you know, the skies are going to part and you're going to sense something. Some people have those experiences, but here's a real practical movement of the Holy Spirit in your life. You're here. Why are you here? Because the Holy Spirit prompted you.

That's awesome. Look at verse 6, and there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. Same God, diversities of activities. I don't expect every church to be like this church. Some say it's wrong.

It's just different. But look for the same God. Friend, do you know for sure that your sins have been forgiven?

You can know right now. I want to lead you in a short, simple prayer, simply telling God you're sorry and asking him to help you to live for him. Now, God wants you to pray this prayer so much that he died to give you the opportunity and the ability to ask him to forgive you.

Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now. Dear Jesus, I believe you died for me, that I could be forgiven. And I believe you were raised from the dead, that I could have a new life. And I've done wrong things. I have sinned.

And I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things. Please give me the power to live for you all of my days. In Jesus' name, amen. Friend, if you prayed that prayer, according to the Bible, you've been forgiven. You've been born again. So congratulations, friend.

You just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you. If you prayed that prayer with David for the first time, we'd love to hear from you. You can call us toll free at 877-458-5508 to receive our First Steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ. Do you feel like you're bearing fruit for Christ, yet God keeps pruning away at your life and you're not sure why? If so, we'd love to send you Pastor David McGee's series, Abiding in Christ, Keys to a Fruitful Life.

This encouraging resource shares from Jesus' own words as found in John 15, where he teaches that God's pruning is a sign that he is pleased with you and wants to prepare you to bear even more fruit for his kingdom. This series is our way of thanking you for your gift today to help share the gospel with thousands around the world who need to hear God's word in clear, straightforward language. So visit today to request your copy of Abiding in Christ when you give.

You know each day comes with its share of stresses. So what better way to wake up than with an encouraging word from the Lord? Visit and sign up now for David McGee's email devotionals. Each devotion includes scripture and a message from the heart of David McGee. It's easy and it's free. Sign up today at And be sure to join us next time on Cross the Bridge with David McGee to hear more from the book of 1 Corinthians. We'll see you then.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-18 00:09:38 / 2024-05-18 00:20:09 / 11

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