“Now you [collectively] are Christ’s body, and individually [you are] members of it [each with his own special purpose and function].” 1 Corinthians 12:27
There was an interesting concept I learned as a young Marine that has stuck with me through the years. It was the idea that just to earn the title of Marine was your greatest accomplishment as a Marine. Yes, just like in every branch of the military, there are various jobs and specifications of duty. One may serve as a cook while another serves as military police, aircraft mechanic, or admin clerk. Yet, regardless of the specificity in which one serves, the greatest title is that of Marine, and that title, once earned, is never taken away. There is no “special class of Marine,” there are just Marines.
This is even seen in the Marine Corps Uniform, and especially the BDU (battle dress uniform.) On this particular uniform as others, there are no special patches to be worn on the sleeves. In fact, the only two patches on this particular uniform are a patch with your last name and a patch that says MARINE. You can pass an individual Marine anywhere and all you can surmise by looking at them is that they are just simply a Marine.
In a similar way, the Apostle Paul wanted us to understand that we shouldn’t draw distinctions or divisions among ourselves based on the giftings God has given to us as believers. We should never think of ourselves as better than another believer because of the gifting in which we operate. Just like in the Marines, there is no “special class of believers.” Our highest honor is not found in our gift, but just simply in our identity as a Member of the Body of Christ, and once received by faith, this membership is forever.
Today, let’s remember to thank the Lord for the gifts He has so graciously given to us, while we walk in the identity of our highest honor, as Beloved Members of the Body of Christ.