Gifts and the Church (October 26)

Ephesians 4:7-8


Timothy Brock (Discovering Our Spiritual Gifts, pp. 17, 18) defines some of the spiritual gifts found in Ephesians 4:

“Missionary [Apostleship]
The ability to move beyond race, culture, faith tradition, nationality, or lifestyle to meet the physical and spiritual needs of neglected peoples.”

The capacity to receive, to reveal, or to interpret God's Truth, publicly, no matter the consequences or risks.”

The capacity to discern whether and how the Gospel message should be communicated to persons outside the Christian community.”

The capacity to create an environment in which obedience to God's Truth can be practiced.”

Kenneth Cain Kinghorn (Discovering Your Spiritual Gifts, pp. 12, 13) defines an additional spiritual gift found in Ephesians 4:

“Shepherding [Pastor] is the ability to give pastoral leadership to an individual or to a community of Christian believers. The primary function of this gift is to feed, guide, and nurture other Christians with sensitivity and sacrificial concern.”

Reading the Scripture

Here is an activity to use as you read the scripture:

Wrap the individual spiritual gifts listed in the passages used during this unit (1 Corinthians 12, Romans 12, and Ephesians 4), each in a separate package or gift bag. Open them each week as you discuss them.
1 Corinthians 12
Interpretation of Tongues
Romans 12    
Ephesians 4    

Teaching Suggestions

  • A Piece of the Puzzle (This Sunday): Your class has been given an 11 by 17 inch puzzle piece, along with all twelve adult Sunday School classes. On this Sunday, October 26, from 9:30 until about 9:40, we invite you to the Welcome Cafe' to work the puzzle with the other adult classes.
  • The Teaching Guide, p. 40, “Keeping Church Uncool?”, refers to a discussion in the Study Guide (pp. 48-49) about younger adults (Millennials) in the church. Our deacons have been discussing our church's ministry with young adults. Tommy shared these articles:
    • If you have a deacon in your class, you might invite them to share some insights from the deacons' discussions
  • In October and November, Tommy will be preaching a sermon series entitled, “I love LABC because...” The Teaching Guide (p. 42) suggests an activity, “Growing Prayers”, which asks class members to share what they are thankful for about the church. If you do this activity, it would be helpful to Tommy to learn some of our members' answers to this question.


I have set aside a shelf in the library with resources for Sunday School teachers. I will place there resources of general interest and some specifically applicable to current lessons. Other resources are kept in my office.

  • Books and Resources on Spiritual Gifts in Keith's Office
    • Yours for the Giving: Spiritual Gifts, Barbara Joiner (Birmingham, AL: WMU Press, 1986).
    • Klesis: God's Call and the Journey of Faith, Kathy Dobbins, Colin Harris, Doris Nelms (Atlanta: Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, 2005).
    • Discovering Our Spiritual Gifts: A Seminar in Spiritual Formation, Timothy Brock
    • How to Discover Your Spiritual Gifts, John Hendrix (Nashville: Convention Press, 1979).
    • Rediscovering Our Spiritual Gifts, Charles Bryant (Nashville: Upper Room, 1991).
    • Discovering Your Spiritual Gifts: A Personal Inventory Method, Kenneth Cain Kinghorn (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1981)
  • For additional commentary on the text see these commentaries in our library:
    • Mercer Commentary on the Bible (Mercer University Press, 1995)
    • Harper’s Bible Commentary (Harper & Row, 1988).