Tag Archives: Word of Wisdom

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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Do You Ask Amiss?

14 Oct

It’s time to switch our focus a little to some of the other gifts given by the Holy Spirit. We have been talking about motivational gifts which are given to individuals so they can be used of God to meet the needs of others. I have summarized them below:

Motivational Gifts found in (Romans 12:6-9)
  • Leadership/Administration – organizes and guides God’s people to attempt great goals –
  • Service/Helps – enables pastors, teachers, evangelists, etc., to have more time to study and leaders and administrators time for giving the church body purpose and direction
  • Prophecy – Proclaimers/God’s Loudspeakers
  • Exhortation – Encouragers – “How to” Persons
  • Teacher/Pastor  – Guardians of the Flock/Explainers
  • Mercy – Reaches out with genuine love which uplifts, soothes and  heals those who are hurting

Discovering the gifts God has given us is a process. We aren’t mature, spiritually sensitive overnight. God is progressive. He will always be working with us and grooming us. We will be continually running our races until He calls us out of this world. We should be sensitive to the gifts God may have given us,  listen for confirmation from others. We should make the practice of our gift(s) a priority in our lives and be willing to work at the process of understanding ourselves.  We should be content with the person God is shaping us to be and careful not to  compare ourselves to others or covet the gifts and callings God has made evident in their lives. Keep in mind that to desire the gift or calling of another is to keep us from what God has planned for us and would keep them from the call of God upon their lives.

We should expect a constant discovery of all that God has placed within us. We need to yield to Him as He guides us to the work He is preparing for us and should not isolate ourselves from others. We must be alert, not imitating others or trying to model ourselves after anyone other than our Creator. We have to be honest with ourselves about our likes and dislikes and be willing to face the areas in our lives that God wants to help us change. He doesn’t expect perfection from us. He wants our submission and our willingness to let Him lead us. He wants our friendship and our fellowship. He isn’t in a hurry. After all, we have an eternity with Him!

We can be  hindered in finding our gifts or what God has for us. James 4:2,3 says, “You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you gt on your pleasure.” Our motives must be to honor God by edifying others, not to build up ourselves.

Christians and non-Christians alike have been gifted with abilities and talents. Natural gifts usually edify the person and draw attention to them and their particular talent. Gifts from God are not inherited or earned. They are given freely by Him as He chooses and are evidence of the Holy Spirit being present in their lives. They have experienced the gift of salvation and made Jesus their Lord.

God is the source of all gifts. He weaves them together with our personalities – our temperaments –  as we yield our lives to Him. God can use our natural abilities, and/or talents as a path for a spiritual gift.  He will make it clear as we follow Him.

There are differing gifts, but one Spirit. Following are the Ministry Gifts found in Ephesians 4:11-13 which will be discussed in  our next series.
  1. –Apostle
  2. –Prophet
  3. –Evangelist
  4. –Pastor
  5. –Teacher

There are also Manifestations of the Spirit – Operational Gifts as seen in I Corinthians 12:7 (listed below):

REVELATION GIFTS
  • Word of Wisdom
  • Word of Knowledge
  • Discerning of Spirits
POWER GIFTS
  • Faith
  • Healing
  • Miracles
UTTERANCE – INSPIRATIONAL GIFTS
  • Prophecy
  • Tongues
  • Interpretation of Tongues

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

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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