DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT PART 8- Spiritual gifts
“A demonstration of the Spirit is given to each person to produce what is beneficial: to one is given a message of wisdom through the Spirit, to another, a message of knowledge by the same Spirit, to another, faith by the same Spirit, to another, gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another, the performing of miracles, to another, prophecy, to another, distinguishing between spirits, to another, different kinds of languages, to another, interpretation of languages. But one and the same Spirit is active in all these, distributing to each person as He wills.”1 Corinthians 12:7-11 HCSB
Today’s teaching is on the various charismatic gifts that the Holy Spirit gives to the people of God as mentioned in the Corinthian verse. Though Scripture does not always define the characteristics of these, we can glean from other passages of Scripture what they might be. A message of wisdom. This is a wise utterance spoken through the operation of the Spirit. It applies the revelation of God’s Word or the Spirit’s wisdom to a specific situation or problem. An example is of the apostle Stephen, “But they were unable to stand up against his wisdom and the Spirit by whom he was speaking.” Acts 6:10 A message of wisdom is not the same as having the wisdom of God for daily living, such as is found in the book of Proverbs. The latter is found by diligent study, prayer and obedience to God’s Word and ways.
A message of knowledge- this is an utterance inspired by the Spirit that reveals knowledge about people, circumstances, or Biblical truth. It is often closely connected with prophecy. Read Acts 5:1-10 concerning Ananias and Sapphira. Faith- this is not saving faith, but a special gift of supernatural faith imparted by the Spirit that enables a person or people to believe God for the extraordinary and miraculous. It is faith to move mountains, 1 Cor 13:2. Gifts of healing- these are given to the church to restore physical health by supernatural means. The plural (gifts) indicates healing of various illnesses and suggests that every act of healing is a special gift of God. Although gifts of healing are not given to every member of the body, “Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in other languages? Do all interpret?” 1 Cor 12:30; all members may and should pray for the sick. When faith is present, the sick will be healed. (James 5:14-16)
Miraculous powers- these are supernatural power that alter the normal course of nature. “God was performing extraordinary miracles by Paul’s hands,”Acts 19:11 Prophecy- we must distinguish between prophecy as a temporary manifestation of the Spirit and prophecy as a ministry gift of the church (Eph 4:11). Just because you have a gift of prophecy, or the Spirit manifests in a word of prophecy to a congregation; does not make you a prophet. Prophecy as a charismatic gift, is available to every born again believer, 1 Cor 14:1; but a prophet is a ministerial anointing and calling to aid in leading the church in righteousness and purity.
Concerning prophecy: it is not primarily foretelling the future (although prophecy can include future events); it is proclaiming God’s will and exhorting and encouraging God’s people to righteousness, faithfulness and endurance. The message may expose the person’s heart, offer strength, encouragement, comfort, warning and/or judgment. A NT word of prophecy must not be presumed to be infallible as there can be a sincere mixture of the human messenger in the message; or there can be insincere false prophecy meant to impress or deceive. Therefore all prophecy must be tested for genuineness and truth by asking whether it confirms to God’s Word, whether it promotes godly living, and whether it is uttered by one who is sincerely living under Christ’s lordship. The NT does not explicitly describe the church actively seeking revelation or direction from those claiming to be prophets. There is no more office for the OT prophet. The NT prophet works in unison with the four other ministerial offices.
There is way too much nonsense going on in the church from these “rogue” prophets wandering around thinking they are the new Elijah, disrupting local churches and undermining the pastoral authority of that church. This is unbiblical and godless. Furthermore, stop posting your prophetic nonsense on FB, leading others astray by saying, “Thus sayeth the Lord”. You are taking God’s name in vain. “Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should evaluate. And the prophets’ spirits are under the control of the prophets, since God is not a God of disorder but of peace.”1 Corinthians 14:29, 32-33
If you ask those who know me, they would tell you I have a prophetic anointing and operate in the office of a prophet. I am also committed and submitted to a local church and a number of other leaders outside our church. These know me and know the fruit of my life. I do not share any prophecy without having it be judged by these trusted others. Be very careful how you handle God’s Word and any Word of knowledge, wisdom or prophecy from God. It is serious business. I’ll continue tomorrow with the rest of the charismatic gifts. God bless!#runyourrace
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