|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:3-8 Pride is a sin in us by nature; we need to be cautioned and armed against it. All the saints make up one body in Christ, who is the Head of the body, and the common Centre of their unity. In the spiritual body, some are fitted for and called to one sort of work; others for another sort of work. We are to do all the good we can, one to another, and for the common benefit. If we duly thought about the powers we have, and how far we fail properly to improve them, it would humble us. But as we must not be proud of our talents, so we must take heed lest, under a pretence of humility and self-denial, we are slothful in laying out ourselves for the good of others. We must not say, I am nothing, therefore I will sit still, and do nothing; but, I am nothing in myself, and therefore I will lay out myself to the utmost, in the strength of the grace of Christ. Whatever our gifts or situations may be, let us try to employ ourselves humbly, diligently, cheerfully, and in simplicity; not seeking our own credit or profit, but the good of many, for this world and that which is to come.
Verses 4, 5. - For as in one body we have many members, but all the members have not the same office; so we, the many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. The illustration of the body with its members to set forth the mutual dependence on each other of the several members of the Church with their several gifts and functions, and the importance of all for the well-being of the whole, is further carried out in 1 Corinthians 12:12, seq. In Ephesians 1:22 and Ephesians 4:15, 16, Christ is regarded, somewhat differently, as the exalted Head over the Church which is his body. Here and in 1 Corinthians 12, the head is not thus distinguished from the rest of the body (see 1 Corinthians 12:21); the whole is "one body in Christ," who is the living Person who unites and animates it.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For as we have many members in one body,.... The apostle illustrates what he said last concerning God's dealing to every man the measure of faith, by comparing the church of Christ to an human body, which is but one, and has many members in union with it, and one another; and which are placed in an exact symmetry and proportion, and in proper subserviency to each other, and for the good of the whole:
and all members have not the same office, or "action"; they do not exercise the same function, and perform the same operation, but each that which is peculiar to itself: the eye only sees, but does not hear, nor taste, nor smell; the ear only hears, but neither sees, or does any of the aforesaid things; the palate tastes, the nose smells, the hand handles, the foot walks, and the same may be observed of the other members of the body, which have not the same, but their particular offices, and all and each of them their usefulness.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
4, 5. For as we have many members, &c.—The same diversity and yet unity obtains in the body of Christ, whereof all believers are the several members, as in the natural body.
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