Frail and faltering follower of Jesus

Corporate worship and personal giftings

By Gavin Davies

What is the main purpose to meeting as a church, and how do our giftings play into that?

In my eyes, the main purpose of church services is to meet as the body of Christ to worship. We have the Word and sacraments and liturgy, and we worship God corporately in the presence of the angels and in relation to one another as redeemed sinners.

Whilst being able to use our gifts at church initially seems secondary to those matters, because Paul teaches that the gifts are for building up the whole body, gifting actually ties significantly into worship. If I was in a church that refused my gifts, BUT was offering acceptable worship to God through Christ and otherwise related well to me, I would initially sit at the foot of the table and remain and apply these gifts in other ways. However, such a situation seems unlikely long term, as a truly Biblical church will be looking to use the full spectrum of the gifts the Holy Spirit has given its people!

Provided we can bring the full spectrum of our gifts to bear in the full picture of our lives, we don’t feel thwarted; it doesn’t all have to be in one sphere. For example, I use my software skills at work but my sound tech skills aren’t used there. Likewise, whilst I don’t use what little I know about doctrine from the pulpit, folks privately tell me they benefit from it in small group, so I don’t feel at all thwarted where I am now. However, if one aspect of our gifting is suppressed entirely in both the Lord’s assembly and community, then we may be right to feel aggrieved; such suppression may go so far as quenching of prophecy.

Just my current perspective and probably riddled with errors!