“11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,
12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,
13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head–Christ–“
Just as we have parents in homes, lecturers in universities, teachers in schools, coaches in games, so also Jesus Himself set some in the Church for a specific purpose. These supernatural ‘ministry gifts’ are not set in the Church by man, but by Christ Himself, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Paul wrote to the Galatians in chapter 3:28-29, “In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ. Also, since you are Christ’s family, then you are Abraham’s famous “descendant,” heirs according to the covenant promises.”
These spiritual ministry gifts, like all other blessings received, were given to both men and women, they have to be nurtured and developed or else they can be suppressed by the traditional and cultural environment they are in, or killed by destiny or dream killers. If we have only men ministry gifts, where only one sex is represented but both are gifted, treating women as second class citizens within the Church, we will have an unbalanced and unbiblical system running, like a plane with one wing. Half of ministry will be done not all. We need to break out of our cultural biases, stereo-type prejudices, to allow and experience the supernatural power of God in its fulness within the body of Christ.
Gifts may or may not be recognised by men and women, however they have been set in the Church by Christ for a specific purpose:
The Message Bible puts the same scripture like this:
“He climbed the high mountain,
He captured the enemy and seized the plunder,
He handed it all out in gifts to the people.”
“Is it not true that the One who climbed up also climbed down, down to the valley of earth? And the One who climbed down is the One who climbed back up, up to highest heaven. He handed out gifts above and below, filled heaven with his gifts, filled earth with his gifts. He handed out gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor-teacher to train Christ’s followers in skilled servant work, working within Christ’s body, the church, until we’re all moving rhythmically and easily with each other, efficient and graceful in response to God’s Son, fully mature adults, fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ.”
“No prolonged infancies among us, please. We’ll not tolerate babes in the woods, small children who are easy prey for predators. God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love—like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love.”
May we be led by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit in the Church, just as we are led by His Word and the Holy Spirit within our Christian marriages and households.