“For when one says, "I follow Paul," and another, "I follow Apollos," are you not being merely human?” (v4). The Corinthian believers were tempted to see Paul and Apollos as competing charismatic leaders. But Paul reminded them that God’s people should not put a human leader on a pedestal; Jesus is our one and only Head. Leaders have an important part in nurturing and building up the body of Christ, but “neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth” (v7).
Idolizing leaders keeps us immature in Christ (v1). As God’s temple, the Spirit lives in each of us (v16), empowering us for the particular callings God has given us.