It is sometimes suggested that spiritual progress is best made by discarding all human help and expecting Divine guidance through reading the Bible. It is a mistake. God gave apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, says Paul to the Ephesians, for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, until we all come to maturity in Him. We are exhorted to build up one another in the faith and to esteem the servants of God for their works' sake. From the beginning of the Church God has raised up in its midst some who have special teaching ability for ministry to all. Jesus commended the minister who at his appearing is found giving meat in due season to the household. Christians are members of a body of which Christ is the Head. Each member of that body, says Paul again (1 Cor. 12) has a function to perform for the well-being of the body as a whole. If one member fails to play his part the whole body suffers. Conversely we all need to accept graciously from our fellows that which they can contribute to our own spiritual wellbeing. "The eye cannot say to hand, I have no need of you; nor again the head to the foot, I have no need of you." The Bible is certainly the authority and basis of our faith but the accumulated knowledge and experience of the past and present in its understanding and exposition is an essential factor in our own Christian growth.