1 Corinthians 12:11 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 12:11, NIV: All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

1 Corinthians 12:11, ESV: All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

1 Corinthians 12:11, KJV: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

1 Corinthians 12:11, NASB: But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills.

1 Corinthians 12:11, NLT: It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have.

1 Corinthians 12:11, CSB: One and the same Spirit is active in all these, distributing to each person as he wills.

What does 1 Corinthians 12:11 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul has concluded his first list of spiritual gifts distributed by God's Spirit to Christians. He repeats once more, as he has throughout the chapter, that all these gifts are given by one and the same Holy Spirit of God. He is the unifying factor in all spiritual gifts. Now Paul adds that the Holy Spirit is the one who decides to whom each gift will be given.

The point of Paul's emphasis is that nobody selects their own spiritual gifts. Nobody generates the power behind their spiritual gifts. Nobody earns their gifts. Because of that, nobody can take credit for which gift or gifts they receive from the Spirit. Paul will urge the Corinthians to understand that the gifts are not meant to glorify the people who receive and use them. They are intended to be used to serve other believers and to bring glory to God.

This is a key concept in the idea of Christian unity: that we can be differently-abled, differently-blessed, and differently-assigned, yet serve with equal value, purpose, and meaning.