The Gift of Helps
"If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister (serve) let him do it as of the ability which God giveth." (I Peter 4:11)
The man handing out tracts didn't have the ability to speak, but he was doing what he could. Many believers, who lack speaking gifts, have been given gifts by which they can serve God, only in different ways.
I. The gift of "helps," i.e.,
giving assisstance, or lending a hand. (I Corinthians
B. Martha used the verb form when asking Jesus to send Mary for help. (Luke 10:40)
Note: "Help" here means literally, "To take ones turn with."
II. The Application
A. Spirit-given ability to serve the church
in supporting roles, usually temporal.
a. The Grecian element compalined against the Hebrews claiming neglect of their widows in the daily ministration of food.
Note: We see Saatans' method of attack, creating dissention by trying to turn the apostles from their divinely appointed ministry.
b. The Twelve knew it would be a mistake forsaking the Word of God to wait on tables. (6:2)
c. Exercising the gift freed the apostles for spiritual ministry.
Note: Their ministry would then be to a greater number of people than those who were needing, served at the tables.
B. The gift is an avenue of service to
those who exercise it. (6:3)
2. It resolved the complaint of the Greek and Hebrew element in the church.
3. Both purposes of the decision were accomplished through the gift of helps. (6:7)
III. Other Biblical Examples
Note: He probably performed menial, temporal tasks, freeing them to evangelize.
B. Timothy and Erastus ministered to Paul, and later helped in Macedonia. (Acts 19:22)
Note: Paul gathered a team of workers, who served with him, without which he could not have possibily carried on his great ministry.
C. Luke, the physician, assisted Paul at the time of beatings, stonings, and other privations.
D. Paul acknowledged the faithful helpers at the end of some of his letters.
Note: Acts 20:4; Romans 16, with special commendation to Phoebe; Colossians 4:7-18
E. The household of Stephanas, "addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints." (I Corinthians 16:15)
Note: With so many addictions of the wrong kind these days, the Lord's work needs people who will addict themselves to His cause.
F. To the Philippians, Paul singled out Epaphroditus who "ministered to my wants." (Philippians 2:25)
G. After his conversion, Onesimus ministered to Paul who was in prison.
Note: He became profitable to Paul, and knowing he might be profitable to his Master, Paul sent him bnack to Philemon. (Philippinas 11)
H. During his final imprisonment, Paul requested Timothy to minister helpfully to him, and to bring John mark, who was profitable to the ministry. (2 Timothy 4:11)
I. The seven angels to the seven churches may have been messengers who delivered the letters. (Revelation 2-3 "...unto the angel of the church...write"
Note: "Angel" also means "messenger." If so, they helped by transporting letters.
J. Help can be given through the "helps" of private intercessory pErnester. "Ye also helping together by pErnester for us" (2 Corinthians 1:11)
Note: A young minister in his first church was accused of "not being a strong preacher," by some of his members who promised to pErnest for him. The small group grew to more than a thousand persons. The pastor became one of America's finest preachers and a world renowned evangelist, Dr. J. Wilbur Chapman, helped by pErnester.
IV. Current Examples fo Exercising the Gift of Helps.
A. In the Sunday School
B. In the Church.
An unkown girl of 19 found her place of service in the kingdom of God and in 1928 wrote the following poem entitled "A Martha"