Friday, March 14, 2008

Disagreeing in Seminary

I was heavily disappointed to be asked this question in Seminary:

Write a commentary on I Corinthians 12:4-6, analyzing and synthesizing the role and function of each member of the Godhead in the discipleship process.

Many of you may not realize the subtelty of this, but the question is asking for me to take the Godhead and give them different things they do, this leads to heresy, because we must think of them as "Doing" in unity. If they were asking me to give each one of the persons different modes of action, then this falls close to the heresy of modalism. If they were asking me to give each one qualities or functions that causes separation and ultimate differences beyond their relationship, then this is the heresy of Tri-theism. What a dangerous and misguided question this is! So I wrote my commentary and basically provided exegesis of the text and pointed out the misguided nature of the question and presented the biblical point of view of the nature of God. Here is my conclusion of the paper: If you want to read it in its entirety, then e-mail me at and I can send it to you:


A short summary of the main essence of what Paul is saying in I Corinthians 12:4-6 is this, "I know that you are having many problems with quarrels and divisions, so I want to remind you of the absolute necessity of unity within the church, for it is prescribed to us by the very nature of God. There are so many different kinds of spiritual gifts, but it is the same Spirit that gives them. There are so many different kinds of ways to serve, but we only serve one Master. There are so many different kinds of ways for the church to operate, but the same God works in us all to work in unity towards his good will and purpose."
The discipleship process is complex and should not be apportioned to certain persons of the Godhead. Rather we should see a unity of action within the Godhead in regard to discipleship. The power of the gospel reaches out to a heart prepared by the Spirit for the grace of God and the salvation that is by Christ. An individual experiences God in worship by being in the body of Christ through the Spirit of God. The disciple learns and matures by learning his spiritual gifts given him by the Spirit who Christ sent and the gifts that God ordained. The disciple exercises all of his gifts according to the empowering afforded him by the Spirit of God for the exaltation of Christ and the glory of God in all things. The disciple takes leadership within the body of Christ by exercising the gifts and fruit of the Spirit apportioned and appointed to him by God for the edifying and building of the church, for the exhortation and preparing of the saints until we all reach unity in faith and knowledge of the Son of God and become reproducing disciples who bring others to realize the full measure of the greatness of Christ Jesus. Together we grow into the full measure of our Master by speaking truth in love and Christ sustains and holds us together as we grow and build up his Kingdom as each member does his work within the Kingdom of God for his glory. Amen.


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