Tag Archives: Discernment

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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There Are Two Sides of the Spiritual Realm

16 Oct

Paul says in the 12th Chapter of I Cor. That the church, as the body of Christ, are believers, exercising various gifts, even as the human body have different functions and purposes. Paul describes how these members working harmoniously together, become the mystical Body of Christ on earth. Without the Gifts of the Spirit, the Church becomes something quite different from that which God intended. Instead of being a supernatural organism, the Church is then only another human organization.

  • There is no evidence whatever that the Gifts ceased because the Lord withdrew them. (Gordon Lindsay, All About the Gifts of the Spirit)

    A Scripture that has been commonly used by those who hold the position that the Gifts of the Spirit have ceased is I Cor. 13:8-10. Here we are told that prophecies, and tongues, and knowledge shall cease, or pass away. Just one glance at the Scripture shows however, that the period referred to is not this age at all, but the perfect age which is yet to come! (Lindsay)

    • 8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
    • 9  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
    • 10  But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. (KJV)

    Many hold back in seeking the Gifts or even the knowledge of them. Some have decided (without Scriptural confirmation) that  the manifestations of the Spirit they see couldn’t possibly be “holy”, so they mistakenly decide that it must be from the devil himself.  We all have a little fear of the unknown but without knowing the facts it is like watching a football game without knowing there is a football on the field! We would just see big men, dressed kind of strangely, running around and knocking each other down! We would see part of it but not understand what it was all about because we didn’t know what the object of the “game” was.

  • We actually need the Spiritual Gifts to give us power in the battle – in our spiritual warfare. Scriptures give us means to test the spirits and discern which is not from God. Keep in mind that satan always attempts to counterfeit what God does. There will always be people in the world who prefer to believe in the evil side of the spiritual realm than the godly side. Why is that? If we can believe the things we read in God’s Word it should be evident that God doesn’t do things like man does. There is a touch of the supernatural in so many of the Biblical testimonies. God has not ceased to do His mighty works. The Scripture above does not mean that after Jesus came all the other miracles of God ceased! Just the opposite – Jesus came to fulfill those promises and magnify those gifts. If you read the verses again you will see that “when that which is perfect is come” — that means when Jesus comes to take us all home — He will take the place of everything we have known – He IS love and love (charity) NEVER fails.

  • Regular Bible reading is so vital to our spiritual growth! If we don’t study God’s Word for ourselves we will listen to so many untruths about God and His ways, including the gifts He has so freely given us to live in a world full of hate and evil. It seems obvious that we need His gifts in order to help us overcome our obstacles, as Jesus promised. Jesus also told us (in Scripture) that we would do GREATER things than He did (provided we are born-again believers).  We really need to relax a little about God’s spiritual gifts.

  • I heard a story about a man being given a tour of heaven after having just arrived. During the tour, he was shown many beautiful things. The angel  guiding him passed up one particularly large room with a beautiful door. The new resident of heaven asked why they passed it by without looking in. He was told that if he were to look inside the room he would become very sad. But, the new resident pleaded until he was granted permission. When the door was opened he saw a room full of unopened gifts – all sizes and shapes – beautifully wrapped. He asked the angel what all the gifts were for. He was told by the angel that they were gifts from God, intended for him while we was on earth but that they were never accepted.

  • Wouldn’t you just be heart-broken if you knew you were refusing to accept amazing gifts from your Heavenly Father? He won’t force them on us. He loves us enough that He gave us His only Son. Why in the world would He then offer us something that would hurt us in any way? God loves us so much. Think of how you have felt at a time when you wanted to give something special to someone you love and it was rejected. Remember how it felt. You were probably hurt and/or disappointed. But, you can’t force someone to accept a gift. A gift is just that – a gift. A gift is something given to someone to express love or appreciation.  It is usually something special, out of the ordinary.

  • What better way for God to express His love and appreciation for us and to reveal more of Himself to us than to give us Spiritual Gifts? God IS Spiritual – His gifts should be supernatural. He does give us all kinds of gifts in the natural – some we don’t even realize are gifts. God IS love – He desires to bless us. His spiritual gifts are one of the ways He does that. It is one of the ways He shows His love.

  • This is the season for Halloween – spooky – strange things. It is one of the largest holidays celebrated – bigger than Christmas to some merchants. People are curious about the supernatural – more so the evil side. They aren’t so willing to accept the godly side. Please understand that the spiritual realm is very real – both sides. We know plenty of the world’s carnal side – we need to desire more of God’s supernatural side. Our pride is usually what keeps us from it.

  • Pray about it. Study the Scriptures and ask God to open your heart to His truth. He won’t embarrass you. He won’t force anything on you. He wants you to have everything you need to fight the spiritual battle you face every day of your life. Trust Him.

    In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice
    • David Francis
    • KJV
  • You May Have The Gift of Prophecy If . . .

    12 Oct

    SPIRITUAL GIFTS (23)

    The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

    • Rom 12:3-8
    • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
    • The word “Prophecy” can bring about many different reactions in people. The main reason is because it is misunderstood. Some of the misunderstandings include the belief that prophecy passed away after Jesus came. Others just simply believe that prophecy is not necessary today.
    • The dictionary gives us a couple of different definitions: 1) A statement of something that will happen in the future; 2) The power or ability to know what will happen in the future; 3) An inspired utterance of a prophet; 4) the function of a prophet; specifically: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose. (Merriam-Webster)
    Inspiration is a technical term for the Holy Spirit’s supernatural guidance of those who received special revelation from God  . . .
    The end result  . . . the truths which God wants His people to know  (from Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary).
    Definition – PROPHECY, PROPHESY, PROPHESYING
    Propheteia ^4394^ signifies “the speaking forth of the mind and counsel of God”
    • • “Though much of OT prophecy was purely predictive, see <Micah 5:2>, prophecy is not necessarily, nor even primarily, fore-telling.
    • •It is the declaration of that which cannot be known by natural means, <Matt. 26:68>
    • •It is the forth-telling of the will of God, whether with reference to the past, the present, or the future, see <Gen. 20:7; Deut. 18:18; Rev. 10:11; 11:3>….
    • •(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)
    • . . . But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.  (2 Pet 2:1) (KJV)
    • •The difference is that, whereas the message of the prophet was a direct revelation of the mind of God for the occasion, the message of the teacher is gathered from the completed revelation contained in the Scriptures.”
    • •(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)

    More characteristics of the Motivational Gift of Prophecy:

    They can sometimes “see” something going on in someone else’s life
    They are  able to discern and foresee the consequences of that decision
    They are interested in correcting the decision – NOT their feelings -NOT their attitude
    They are NOT interested in whether they accept him/her or not. . .Just in getting that thing corrected in your life before you really blow it!
    They are NOT interested in the details – they want to keep you from making a mistake
    According to Strongs and Brown, Driver, Briggs “Discern” means:
    1. To know
    2. To perceive
    3. To perceive and to see
    4. To discriminate, to distinguish
    5. To know by experience
    6. To recognize
    7. To have knowledge, to be wise

    The person with the gift of Prophecy has a very strong sense of discernment. God teaches them how to discern truth. He uses His Word from Scripture to teach this discernment. The better a person knows the Word of God, the sharper their discernment will become.

    They have:

    • The capacity to identify, define and hate evil – Romans 12:9, I Timonty 3:7
    • The willingness to experience brokenness to prompt brokenness.
    • The dependence on Scriptural truth to validate their authority.
    • A desire for outward evidence to demonstrate inward conviction – I Peter 4:11
    • They look at outward expressions or verbal responses. – I Corinthians 14:25
    • They have a directness, frankness and persuasiveness in speaking.
    • They are honest and want others to be honest. (Titus 2:8)
    • They have a concern for the reputation and program of God
    • They have an inward weeping and personal identification with the sins of others.
    • They care for others.
    • They have a real love for the lost.
    • They have an eagerness to have others point out their blind spot(s).
    •(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)

    In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice
    • David Francis

    The Motivational Gift of Prophecy

    5 Oct

    SPIRITUAL GIFTS (22)

    The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

      • Rom 12:3-8
      • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
    • The word “Prophecy” can bring about many different reactions in people. The main reason is because it is misunderstood. Some of the misunderstandings include the belief that prophecy passed away after Jesus came. Others just simply believe that prophecy is not necessary today.
    • The dictionary gives us a couple of different definitions: 1) A statement of something that will happen in the future; 2) The power or ability to know what will happen in the future; 3) An inspired utterance of a prophet; 4) the function of a prophet; specifically: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose. (Merriam-Webster)
    • I am extremely interested in this particular gift because it is my Motivational Gift. As you might imagine, I don’t like being misunderstood, any more than anyone else. But, since I have lived it, I am hoping that I can enlighten those who many have questions about it.
    • We are not discussing the “Prophet” as in the ministry gift; nor or we discussing the ability of some to “prophesy”, as discussed in I Corinthians, 12:6-8. There are many gifts spoken of in God’s Word. We are discussing the motivational gifts as given to us by God so that we can help others. The gifts are all given by the Holy Spirit. They are given as God determines.
    • To clear this up a little more – a prophet was (and I believe still is, at times) called by God to speak of things to come. In the Old Testament, God used His prophets to speak to His people. The Priests were delegated the task of speaking to God for the people – and the prophet to the people from God. Today, as Christians, we can talk directly to God and His Word tells us He speaks to us. ( . . . my sheep hear my voice).  There are some gifted with the ability to prophesy (rhymes with amplify). This means that they are given a divine utterance by God to His people, usually in an unknown language (called “tongues”). If God calls on someone to prophesy, there should be someone to give an interpretation. The interpretation can come from the same person who gives the prophecy, or by another.
    • Our subject is somewhat different. We are talking about a different kind of gift when we talk about the motivational gift of prophecy. So, for now, that will be our focus. I will write more on the other gifts after we complete this series.
    • Now, for the Gift of Prophecy – it is one of the speaking gifts.  Today, it is associated more with powerful preaching and teaching. This doesn’t mean that every teacher or preacher has the gift of prophecy, nor does it mean that every person with the gift of prophecy is a preacher or a teacher.
    • The person with this particular gift goes “out of their way” to exercise one or more of these basic points:
      • An analysis of the current situation from God’s perspective
      • The consequences of continuing in that path
      • The need for change/repentance
      • The promise of God’s grace and restoration if the change in direction is made
    • A person with this gift, if they are dedicated to obedience to God, will do everything in their own power to walk in obedience to God. They will hunger for God’s Word and they will want to make sure that whomever they are listening to (spiritually) is staying in line with God’s Word. They will spend much time in God’s Word and it will become their standard for everything. (This obviously won’t happen over night!) Along with this gift is usually a strong gift of discernment – the ability to determine truth.
    • It is important to say that many of us have seen and/or heard of some things that are just not proper when it comes to things we see or hear in church. I believe that is why many are fearful when the word “gifts” or “prophecy”, etc. are used. In other words, we are all human. We are not supernatural – it is GOD who is supernatural. But, we are His body on this earth. We yield ourselves to Him and we walk with Him and learn of His ways. We are not just “all of a sudden” zapped with the ability to operate in God’s gifts. We also need to know that we cannot use these gifts from God just anyway we want to. There are definite characteristics of using God’s gifts in the Spirit or in our own flesh. If your Spirit is in tune with God’s Spirit, then He will help you and guide you. Your inner spirit will be taught of the Lord, by the Holy Spirit and through His Word. Also, the things you do will be in line with God’s Scriptures. If they are not – you are definitely not following the Spirit of God.That being said, let’s move forward.
      1. Prophecy does not usually involve foretelling – predicting the future – as much as it does forthtelling – forcefully speaking the truth.
      2. The word “proclaim” is perhaps a better word than preach to describe what a person with the gift of prophecy does.
      The person with the Gift of Prophecy will show obvious signs in the following ways:
      • Typically their ministry is a public one (Again, not every public ministry has the gift of prophecy).
      • They are not as comfortable in smaller groups as others
      • They prefer speaking to larger groups than ministering one on one as do those with other gifts
      •  They are tuned in to how God views situations, especially if evil or hypocrisy is present
      •  Issues-oriented; usually have an opinion about everything! Not fearful to tackle tough issues.
      •  Proclaim God’s truth with a passion, even if they must do so alone.
      • Their message is one of urgency; tend to expect an immediate decision or response (Repent NOW!)
      • Deeply concerned about the reputation of the church
      •  Quick to give advice; sometimes impatient with people and their problems
      •  Speak with authority, especially about the Bible
      • Sometimes viewed as negative; have to work to be positive
      • They edify (build up), encourage (exhort), and console (comfort)
      • Their message is incomplete if it stops short of these goals
      • This gift is intended primarily for believers, though an unbeliever who hears their message may come under conviction
      • Often accused of talking too much, but just can’t seem to help it!

      In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

      • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
      • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
      • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
      • Biblesoft Libraries
      • Sandy Trice
      • David Francis

    Yada, Yada, Yada

    24 Aug
    SPIRITUAL GIFTS (15)

    The gifts we are discussing in this series are the Spiritual Gifts from Romans 12:3-8:

    • Rom 12:3-8
    • 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body , and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7 If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8 if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. NIV
    PROPHECY, PROPHESY, PROPHESYING
    Propheteia ^4394^ signifies “the speaking forth of the mind and counsel of God” (from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)>

      We all need to ask God to bless us with discernment. We need discernment in our lives so that we can know and recognize truth, or the absence of truth. This gift is very strong in some with the gift of PROPHECY. Otherwise, many of the other characteristics would not be as prominent in their character.>

    • The meaning of discernment according to Strongs and Brown, Driver, Briggs) is:
      • •3045  yada`
      • •To know
      • •To perceive
      • •To perceive and to see
      • •To discriminate, to distinguish
      • •To know by experience
      • •To recognize
      • •To have knowledge, to be wise

      We  have been studying about the motivational gift of Prophecy.  Listed below are a few more personality traits and characteristics  of this gift and the people God have entrusted it to.

    A person with the gift of PROPHECY:
    • Can sometimes “see” something going on in someone else’s life
    • Is able to discern and foresee the consequences of that decision
    • Is interested in correcting the decision, NOT their feelings, NOT their attitude
    • Is NOT interested in whether they are accepted or not. . .Just in getting that thing corrected in someone’s life before they really blow it!
    • Is NOT interested in the details – they want to keep you from making a mistake
    In addition:
    • They have the need to verbalize their thoughts concerning right and wrong – (Illustrations from the Life of Peter) – Peter spoke more often than any other disciple in the Gospels 
    • They speak up quickly and make quick judgments on what is seen and heard – Peter spoke first more than any other disciple
    • They have the ability to discern insincerity and hypocrisy (double standards, pretense) and react harshly to them. – Peter’s condemnation of the deception of Ananias and Sapphira resulted in their death
    • They are zealous defenders of the truth, and want to see that justice is accomplished so that others will be warned, – Peter was reluctant to forgive his offender and asked how long he had to put up with him. Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? (Mt. 18:21)
    • They are very honest and open about their own faults and invite correction from God. – Peter fell at Jesus’ knees and said “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” (Luke 5:8)
    • They have a tendency to be impulsive in their actions and to be completely involved in whatever they do. – Peter was eager to walk on water. He forbad Jesus to wash his feet, then wanted Him to wash his hands and head.
    • They have a tendency to be blunt when bringing correction. – Peter rebuked Jesus for a course of action which Peter did not think was right for Him to take. (Mark 8:31-33) – They openly give assurance loyalty and total commitment. Peter assured Jesus that he would never deny Him, and he defended Jesus by cutting off the ear of the high priest’s servant (Mt. 26:33, John 18:10)
    • They are very persuasive in declaring what is right and what is wrong. – God brought conviction to thousands as Peter pointed out,   “. . . Ye have taken (Jesus), and by wicked hands have crucified and slain (Him). . .” (Acts 2:14-47)
    • They want to be used as an instrument in what God is doing in other’s lives.
    • They have the ability to discern the character and motives of people. (II Peter 2:1-3)
    • They reject dishonesty of any kind.
    • They see and understand what is going on.

    You may recognize many of these characteristics in yourself or in someone else. Keep in mind that none of us has “arrived”. God is continually molding us and shaping us to become all He has planned for us from the beginning. Our lives don’t end here on this earth. One day we will rule and reign with Him. God uses everything that happens in our lives to shape our personalities and to prepare us for use in His great plan.

    In addition to my own material I have included quotes from the following:

    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice
    • David Francis

    Were The Gifts to Cease?

    23 Jul
    SPIRITUAL GIFTS (8)
    Are the Gifts of the Spirit for the Church Today?
    Paul says in the 12th Chapter of I Cor. That the church, as the body of Christ, are believers, exercising various gifts, even as the human body have different functions and purposes and that all these members working harmoniously together, become the mystical Body of Christ on earth. Without the Gifts of the Spirit, the Church becomes something quite different from that which God intended. Instead of being a supernatural organism, the Church is then only another human organization.
    Spiritual Gifts are the products of the Holy Spirit’s residence in the life of a person. Only persons who have experienced the gift of salvation have Spiritual Gifts. When used with the proper motive, Spiritual Gifts edify others and bring honor to God and his church.
    God is the ultimate source of both natural  gifts and Spiritual Gifts. He weaves them together with our temperament and personality when we yield all these components of our lives to him. (Rom. 12:1) God may use a natural gift as a vehicle for a Spiritual Gift.
    Were the Gifts to Cease?
    • There is no evidence whatever that the Gifts ceased because the Lord withdrew them. (Gordon Lindsay, All About the Gifts of the Spirit)
    • A Scripture that has been commonly used by those who hold the position that the Gifts of the Spirit have ceased is I Cor. 13:8-10.
    • Here we are told that prophecies, and tongues, and knowledge shall cease, or pass away. Just one glance at the Scripture shows however, that the period referred to is not this age at all, but the perfect age which is yet to come! (Lindsay)
    I Corinthians 13:8-10
    • Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
    • 9  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
    • 10  But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. (KJV)
    There can be some hindrances to finding your Motivational Gift:
    • I don’t have time for this
    • I have too many other things to do
    • Maybe I can do this later
    • I probably don’t have any gifts anyway

    Or feelings of unworthiness: 

    • God can’t use me
    • I don’t know enough Scripture
    • I wouldn’t know what to do or say
    • I need to get some things straight first
    • What would people say?
    The purpose in seeking to know our Spiritual Gift is not just so we can take pride in ourselves or for any other reason other than to glorify God and to edify His church.
    Some hold back some in seeking the Gifts because they are afraid of the “unknown”. However; we actually need the Spiritual Gifts to give us power in the battle – in our spiritual warfare.
    Scripture gives us means to test the spirits and discern which is not from God:
    • –“If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? Or, if he ask a fish, will  he for a fish give him a serpent?. . . If ye the, being evil know how to give good gifts unto your children; how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” (Luke 11:11-13)
    Added to what God has shown me personally, some of my material came from the following:
    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice

    Recognize Your Motivation

    22 Jul

    Spiritual Gifts (7)

    We are now ready to get more specific with the individual motivational gifts. As you meditate on them you may recognize some of your personal characteristics and those of your friends and family. It may take a while for you to identify your gift right away, so be patient and give yourself plenty of time. When you do recognize your gift, realize that it is your gift for life and that as you grow stronger in the Lord, your gift will also mature.

    Train yourself to be sensitive to your reactions to your likes and dislikes and your motivation for doing what you do. For example, if you are asked to help someone move, and you agree to help – examine how it makes you feel. Are you agreeing because you feel obligated or because you really enjoy helping people? If you really want to help someone because you enjoy helping others, chances are that your gift may be “Service”. If you do it mainly because you are obligated or for any other reason, you can probably mark “Service” off your “Gift” list.  Keep in mind that we are not excused from “Service” just because we don’t have that particular motivation!

    Motivational Gift of PROPHECY – Characteristics

    • Strong desire to understand the Bible and God’s Word to His people
    • Strong discernment
    • Able to forsee the consequences of decisions made
    • Strong desire to help others to correct their bad decisions – (not their feelings and not their attitude)
    • Not interested in whether or not they are accepted by others, just that others know the truth and don’t make choices that will bring them more problems

    Ways the Gift of PROPHECY can be used:

    • Teaching
    • Moral Concerns
    • Church Council
    • Counseling
    • Personnel Committee
    • Church Officer
    • Group Committee Leader
    • Worship Committee
    • Prayer Groups

    Motivational Gift of TEACHING – Characteristics:

    • Strong desire to clarify truth
    • Desire to search out and study God’s Word in detail so they can validate the truth
    • Carefully investigates the Word of God
    • Very interested in words and the way they are used
    • God-given interest in getting details correct

    Ways  the the gift of  TEACHING can be used:

    • Bible Teaching
    • New Member Training
    • Mission Education
    • Vacation Bible School
    • Sunday School
    • Church Training
    • Church Council

    Motivational Gift of ADMINISTRATION – Characteristics:

    • The ability to see the overall picture
    • Can clarify long-range goals
    • Can see and understand what needs to be done
    • Knows who can do the job the best
    • Likes to appoint the individuals to do them

    Ways the Gift of ADMINISTRATION can be used:

    • Records and Statistical Data
    • Church Finance
    • Financial & Budgeting Resources
    • Office Administration
    • Insurance Committee
    • Priority Planning
    • Church Council

    Motivational Gift of SERVICE – Characteristics:

    • Can become grieved when they see the person they are serving squandering their time and wasting it on minute things
    • Greatly delighted in giving of themselves to serve when they see the other person is investing their life in worthwhile projects
    • They are willing to invest service in your life in order to help you get what you want out of life, then you, in turn, are going to be motivated to do more
    • Has the gift of giving of themselves in order to help someone else to succeed in whatever their interest is

    Ways the Motivational Gift of SERVICE can be used:

    • Hospital Ministry
    • Deacon Ministry
    • Benevolence Committee
    • Social Ministries
    • Missions Committee

    Motivational Gift of GIVING – Characteristics:

    • Gives more and expects less
    • Ready and willing to give of their finances to see that a project is accomplished
    • Will make personal financial sacrifices in order to give a large amount of money

    Ways the Motivational Gift of GIVING can be used:

    • Stewardship Committee
    • Moral Concerns (Poverty, Politics, Family)
    • Outreach Ministry
    • Church Finances
    • New Ministries

    Motivational Gift of EXHORTATION – Characteristics:

    • Has the ability to see your potential and desires to motivate you to reach that potential
    • They have discernment and may sometimes seem nosey
    • They usually make good counselors
    • They want you to learn something and move on to the next step of action

    Ways the Motivational Gift of EXHORTATION can be used:

    • Vocational Guidance
    • Youth Ministry
    • Counseling
    • Ministry to Families
    • New Member Training
    • Church Leader Training
    • Nominating Committee

    Motivational Gift of MERCY – Characteristics:

    • Reaches out with genuine love which uplifts, soothes and heals those who are hurting
    • This gift keeps others on their toes because even if words are not spoken, they can pick up on the feelings and attitudes of others
    • Has a greater vulnerability to deeper and more frequent hurts because of lack of love

    Ways the Motivational Gift of MERCY can be used:

    • Prayer Groups
    • Hospital Ministry
    • Couseling
    • Benevolence
    • Homebound Ministry
    • Social Ministries
    • Mental Health
    Some of this material was quoted from the following:
    • C. Peter Wagner “Your Spiritural Gifts”
    • Gordon Lindsay “All About the Gifts of the Spirit”
    • Adult Education and Discipleship Ministries – FBC – Garland “Gifts are for Giving”
    • Biblesoft Libraries
    • Sandy Trice

    Natural Ability or Gift From God?

    20 Jul

    Spiritual Gifts (6)

    Everyone of us is gifted and/or talented in some way. I want to write a little bit about the differences between natural abilities and God-given gifts.

    One of the easiest ways to recognize a natural gift or ability is that it usually edifies the individual and brings honor and attention to them personally. A Spirit given gift edifies others and gives God glory.

    Natural gifts and talents can be inherited skills or skills that can be learned. For example, music, sports, art – even speaking abilities.

    Spiritual Gifts are given by the Holy Spirit of God and are only available to people who have accepted Jesus Christ. These gifts, if administered properly, will edify the Body of Christ, benefit others and give glory to God. As believers, we can possess both Spiritual Gifts and natural abilities/talents. We can also use them selfishly if we are not careful.

    This is a good place to introduce some of the other Spiritual Gifts mentioned in the Bible. We have been learning about Motivational Gifts and now we are going to begin to learn how to recognize the differences between the individual Motivational gifts and the Ministry gifts that God has given us.

    Motivational Gifts
    (Romans 12:6-9)
    Prophecy
    Serving
    Teaching
    Exhortation
    Giving
    Administration
    Mercy

    Ministry Gifts
    (Ephesians 4:11-13)
    Apostle
    Prophet
    Evangelist
    Pastor
    Teacher

    The following terms are also used when speaking about God’s Gifts. These are the manifestations of the Ministry Gifts.

    REVELATION GIFTS
    Word of Wisdom
    Word of Knowledge
    Discerning of Spirits

    POWER GIFTS
    Faith
    Healing
    Miracles

    SPEAKING GIFTS –
    Prophecy
    Tongues
    Interpretation of Tongues

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