Manifestations of the Holy Spirit

20 Oct

I have been writing about the many gifts God has given us so that we might minister to one another as needed. We are His body and we need one another. God intends for us to live in harmony and to reach out to one another as His disciples. Before I discuss what is sometimes called “the five fold ministry” (Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher,  – Ephesians 4:11-13), I believe the next step should be in describing some of the manifestations of the Spirit.

God sometimes gives us a “Word of Knowledge” –

  • Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.” I Cor. 2:12-13 KJV

As we seek God in prayer or in searching His Word, or as we pray with others, God’s Holy Spirit sometimes gives us what we call  “A Word of Knowledge”. This simply means that our all-knowing God promised to send His Holy Spirit to be our Helper and our Counselor among other things. As we search for God’s truth and His answers, He will sometimes supernaturally give us knowledge about something that only He knows. He tells us in a way that something inside of us leaps with excitement or joy – sometimes maybe even tears. He knows our inner most being. He knows things about us that we don’t even know about ourselves. Sometimes we can’t even put into words what we may be feeling or struggling with or searching for. God may show us in His Scripture or He may speak to us through another person or in any number of other ways. The point is, when He speaks to us – we know it has to be God speaking because no one else could possibly know.

Many times another person who may be praying for you or just talking with you about a concern will suddenly say something that touches you in a special way. You may even ask them “Have you been talking to someone about this situation?” Or you may be curious about how they knew how to say just what you needed to hear at that moment. Most of the time the person who spoke the “Word of Knowledge” may not even know exactly why they are saying to you what they are saying. This is one way God speaks to you in a personal way, through the Holy Spirit, to touch you deeply about what is on your  heart.

Another of God’s gifts, or manifestations of the Spirit, can (and usually does) work along with the “Word of Knowledge”. It is the “Word of Wisdom”.

  • This wisdom is an explanation of the mystery of God that centers in Jesus Christ – “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him.” Eph. 1:17
  • This wisdom is the result of revelation from the Holy Spirit – “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit; for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” I Cor. 2:9-10 KJV

As with the “Word of Knowledge”, God’s “Word of Wisdom” is something said or prayed over you that may give you the “wisdom” you need as an answer to the “Word of Knowledge” spoken about your situation.  As an example – A “Word of Knowledge” might be something like “God sees that you are struggling with . . . . and He wants you to know  . . . . ” In other words, the person praying with you may receive the knowledge of what you need to hear and then give you the answer as a “Word of Wisdom”.

This doesn’t mean God tells everybody your business. The person praying over you or speaking with you usually doesn’t even know why they are saying what they are saying. They just “hear” God’s Holy Spirit speak as they pray or as they talk to you and only you and God know what it means.

God is a personal God. It is not His nature to tell  your business to other people or to embarrass you, or to condemn you. His only motive is to love you and help you. Some of us have seen and heard of things that I call “Spooky Spiritual”.  This is when a person doesn’t walk in wisdom as the gifts of the Spirit begin to move in their lives. They try too hard to reach too far into things God doesn’t intend for them to know. Scripture tells us that we “see through a glass darkly”. This means that God doesn’t intend for us to know everything about every situation. As disciples of Christ, we walk by faith, not by sight. He will give us signs along the way and encourage us as we walk. But, He never intended for anyone to be spooky spiritual and tell us things that they have no business telling us.

This is where the two spiritual realms come into play. The spiritual world is real. Those who walk with God and know His Word, know how to hear his voice and can discern what God is saying. Those who are not submissive to the Holy Spirit of God and seek to know more (fortune tellers, psychics, etc.) can reach far  into places that God never intended for us to go. This doesn’t mean the “other side” has the information we need and God doesn’t want us to have it.   It means that the devil is just waiting for you or I to be vulnerable enough to believe his lies. Don’t forget, the devil comes to steal, kill and destroy you and he does not play fair! God has given us the power to be overcomers in this world. In order to do that we must know Him and know what His Word (the Bible) teaches us about Him.

God speaks to all his children. Some who try to talk to us about what God is saying don’t even know how to hear Him for themselves so they certainly can’t hear Him for you! Always be cautious. It is imperative that we know God’s Word so we can know God Himself. Then, the enemy won’t be able to deceive us.

At times, as we pray,

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