The Discipline of We


- Think, Act, Be | Dr. Bill Shiell

The Discipline of We

Scripture Reference: Ephesians 4:7-16

Today, I preached about the “We” disciplines: spiritual gifts. These are the blessings that Christ gives believers because of his victory. It seems odd to us that a winner would award his former enemies a prize. Jesus takes it one step further. He graces us with spiritual gifts to mend broken bodies, to build the church, and to help us mature in our faith.

Paul lists five gifts in Ephesians 4. They are a working list of both the people and the gifts: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. The person and the gift were interchangeable. The church discerned a person’s gift under the guidance of the Holy Spirit because the person was already exercising that gift in some way in the body. The qualifications were simple—did the Holy Spirit give this person this gift, and how is this person using this gift now?

Apostle- someone who went out on behalf of the church to start new work and strengthen existing work.
Prophets- those who spoke and interpreted God’s word to the people.
Evangelists- person who networked and built relationships with nonbelievers
Pastors- those who shepherded God’s flock under their care
Teachers- those who taught, mentored, and discipled believers in the faith.

The emphasis in Ephesians 4 is not “what is my gift,” but rather—why did Jesus give us gifts, and what happens to us when we use them.

Paul shares three things that happen.
1.) We stabilize our lives.
2.) We share our faith with others lovingly.
3.) We unite with other people in the church by using our gifts.

So here’s some homework. Fill out this simple online profile of these 5 gifts from Ephesians. Ask yourself- where does our church need these gifts right now? How can your gifts be used to glorify God here in Tallahassee?