Verse of the Day Devotion: Romans 12:4
“For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function,” – Romans 12:4
Paul is laying out here how we are to view the Church, not necessarily a local church, however it can also apply to it, but the corporate church. The body has many parts, all of which are essential for the body to operate as it should. Lets look at how Paul addressed this idea to the Church at Corinth. “For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot says, “Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. And if the ear says, “Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the sense of smell be?” 1 Corinthians 12:14-17. Paul is stating here that the body is made up of many members, not just many of the same member. In other words, the foot is not the heart, and the pancreas is not the brain. And this is because the foot cannot do what the heart can and vice-versa. And the same with the pancreas and the brain.
Paul uses the example of the eye and the ear. If the whole body was an eye we would not hear anything, likewise if the whole body were an ear we would not see anything. Now, since each part of the body is important, “And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; or again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 1 Corinthians 12:21. Each part of the body is there for a reason, and each is as important as any other. And this was done by God. “But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired.” 1 Corinthians 12:18.
Lastly, each member of our physical body has a different purpose. The eyes are so we can see and the ears so we can hear. If our eyes go bad, we cannot just let the ears take over so we can see. Both are equally important, but for a different purpose. There are certain parts that can takeover for another, such as when the arms and hands go bad, the leg and foot can take over in certain functions, but as a whole, this is not the case.
The same can be said regarding the church. God has placed each one of us where He wants us and performing the function He has called us to perform. Some of us will preach and some of us will lead worship. And some of us will handle the books of the church, while another my clean the church. “Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith; if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.” Romans 12:6-8. Each of our ministries are different. Some teach, some exhort, some show mercy, and some give. We should never look down on others because they cannot do what we do, or place others on a pedestal because they can do what we cannot do. We are not meant to work independently, but in unity; with each other. If we can do this while seeing each other as equal partners, who can tell what we can accomplish in this world..
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.