What does 1 Corinthians 12:6 mean?
ESV: and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.
NIV: There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.
NASB: There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons.
CSB: And there are different activities, but the same God produces each gift in each person.
NLT: God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us.
KJV: And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.
NKJV: And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.
Verse Commentary:
In prior verses, Paul has written of a variety of spiritual gifts given to Christians. These unique endowments enable believers to serve each other in a variety of ways. However, only one Spirit gives those gifts, and they can be used only under the authority of one Lord. The Spirit and the Lord are the same for each and every Christian.

Now Paul adds that the number of activities spiritual gifts can be used to participate in is varied as well. Paul will list some of those various activities later in this chapter. Again, though, he shows that the power to participate in these activities all comes from one and the same God. It is His power at work in believers through the Holy Spirit and under the authority of Christ that is at work when any Christian receives and uses spiritual gifts to serve others.

Paul wants the Corinthians to understand that even though spiritual gifts are given to people, in the end it's all about God. The gifts of the Spirit don't make God's people impressive; they reveal how powerful and impressive He is.
Verse Context:
First Corinthians 12:1–11 details Paul's specific teaching on what spiritual gifts are, who receives them, and why they are given. Every believer in Jesus is spiritual, because each Christian has God's Spirit with him or her. The Spirit gives one or more spiritual gifts to every believer for the common good, to be used in service to the church. Nobody acquires or earns their own gifts. The same Spirit gives them away, for free, as He sees fit, meaning that having one or the other gift does not make a Christian more important than another.
Chapter Summary:
Apparently in response to further questions from Corinth, Paul describes what spiritual gifts are, who receives them, and what they are for. His emphasis is that particular spiritual gifts do not make believers spiritual. Every believer is spiritual because every Christian has God's Spirit with him or her. In addition, the Spirit gives one or more spiritual gifts to each believer to be used to serve the church. The church is like a body, in which every part is needed, and all the parts exist to serve one another. Every believer must discover how they are gifted by the Spirit and value the function they serve in Christ's body.
Chapter Context:
After tackling the issues of head coverings for women and the Lord's Supper in the previous chapter, Paul moves to the issue of spiritual gifts in 1 Corinthians 12. Paul insists that the display of spiritual gifts does not make one believer more spiritual or important than another. Every believer in Jesus has the Spirit, and the Spirit gives to every believer one or more spiritual gifts. The gifts are given for the common good, and the church is like a human body. Each gifted function in the church represents a body part, and all the parts are essential. This sets up a description of love, as defined from a Christian viewpoint, and famously recorded in chapter 13.
Book Summary:
First Corinthians is one of the more practical books of the New Testament. Paul writes to a church immersed in a city associated with trade, but also with corruption and immorality. These believers are struggling to properly apply spiritual gifts and to resist the ungodly practices of the surrounding culture. Paul's letter gives instructions for real-life concerns such as marriage and spirituality. He also deals with the importance of unity and gives one of the Bible's more well-known descriptions of love in chapter 13.
Accessed 7/18/2024 10:55:19 AM
© Copyright 2002-2024 Got Questions Ministries. All rights reserved.
Text from ESV, NIV, NASB, CSB, NLT, KJV, NKJV © Copyright respective owners, used by permission.