Small Group Bible Study

Life with the Spirit
 - Week 

A Partial Look at Full Beauty

1 Corinthians 12:27-31
Discussion Guide
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Please take advantage of our 1st Corinthians 12-14 Tool Kit with additional resources for further learning.

Discussion Questions

Before discussing in Groups, DNAs, mentorship and other gospel conversations around First Corinthians, consider the three different sources of engaging questions described at the bottom of this page. This will help lead to inspiring conversation and discussion instead of simple ‘yes’ and ‘no’ answers.

  • The list of gifts in 12:27-30 is one of five similar lists in four different passages (Romans 12:3-13; 1 Cor 12:4-11; 1 Cor 12:27-30; Ephesians 4:1-13; 1 Peter 4:7-11). Take a time to read each list and briefly discuss each of the gifts listed there.
  • Each of these texts contain a context similar to our home texts in First Corinthians. Notice the themes of love, unity, diversity and God’s design/supply/will. Leaving aside the specific gifts mentioned for a moment, what about the greater context of these passages provides deeper insight into the purpose and place of the gifts of the Holy Spirit?
  • In 1 Cor 12:28, Paul says “God has appointed in the church first… second… third… then…”  Why do you think Paul communicates some sort of order or priority? What is his point and purpose in doing so? (NOTE: Paul will continue to “prioritize” prophecy in chapter 14, likely because of a specific tension or imbalance in Corinth.)
  • If the Spirit of God distributes gifts as He wills (12:11), and God places the members of the body (a picture of gifts and roles) just as He desired (12:18), how can Paul say to “earnestly desire the greater gifts”? What does this mean practically? (See also 14:1)

Discussion Format Suggestions

First, consider some simple, regular, thought-provoking opening questions to get the group discussions started. Try these on for fit: 

  • So, as we begin, where and How did you sense God’s Presence this week?
  • What is the state of the key relationships in your life right now? 
  • What were your biggest challenges? Biggest blessings? 
  • What are you most grateful for right now? 

Second, you can continue the discussion by honing in on the specific passage of First Corinthians that we’ve just studied on Sunday, or that you just read and studied together. You can engage some or all of the questions organized above for each of the passages. It’s always a good idea to read the particular passage again in the group discussion. 

Thirdly, please feel free to add your own questions as a result of your study and prayer through First Corinthians. You are the leader. Lead. Shepherd your people closer to Jesus.