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Posts Tagged ‘Gifts’

Reviewing the Gifts Passages (from Part 2)

Now to each one the manifestations of the Spirit is given for the common good (1 Cor 12:7-11):
The message of wisdom, The message of knowledge, Faith, Gifts of healing, Miraculous powers, Prophecy, Distinguishing between spirits, Speaking in different kinds of tongues, Interpretation of tongues

In the church God has appointed (1 Cor 12:28):
First apostles, Second prophets, Third teachers, Then workers of miracles, Those having gifts of healing, Those able to help others, Those with gifts of administration, Those speaking in different kinds of tongues

Christ gave some to be (Eph 4:11-13):
Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers

Different Gifts (Rom 12:4-8):
Prophesying, Serving, Teaching, Encouraging, Contributing (to the needs of others), Leadership, Showing mercy

The Different Gifts and Serving Appointments

Now, for clarity, if we were to represent each gift by a single word, and if we do a little sorting and notice there is some overlap in the gift passages, then we can see that there are nine Spiritual manifestations given to each one for the common good(1 Cor 12:7-11) and there are fifteen God given serving appointments(Eph 4:11-13, 1 Cor 12:28, Rom 12:4-8) for the edification and equipping of the body, and for the glory of His ‘Kingdom come’ here on earth.  Highlighted in red they are…

Wisdom, Knowledge, Faith, Healing, Miracles, Prophecy, Discernment, Tongues, Interpretation (1 Cor 12:7-11)

Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Evangelists, Pastors (Eph 4:11-13)
Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Miracles, Healing, Helpers, Administration, Tongues (1 Cor 12:28)
Prophecy, Teaching, Serving, Encouraging, Giving, Leadership, Mercy (Rom 12:4-8)

Just to make that clearer there are…

Nine Spiritual Manifestations (given to each one for the common good)

Wisdom, Knowledge, Faith, Healing, Miracles, Prophecy, Discernment, Tongues, Interpretation (1 Cor 12:7-11)

Fifteen Spirit Given Serving Appointments

Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Evangelists, Pastors, Miracles, Healing, Helpers, Administration, Tongues, Serving, Encouraging, Giving, Leadership, Mercy (Eph 4:11-13, 1 Cor 12:28, Rom 12:4-8)

With regard to the nine Spiritual manifestations…

It is my understanding and my belief and my experience, that those who are born again of the Spirit of God (John 3:5-8) will naturally or rather supernaturally manifest the nine gifts of the Spirit from time to time, through the exercising of their faith, and as the Spirit leads and directs and enables. These gifts aren’t just for the ‘super-Christians’ or the ‘wacky-charismatics’ 🙂 they are for ALL of us to build up the body of Christ for the common good.

With regard to the fifteen Spirit given serving appointments…

Now, I want to make the distinction here between the manifestations of the Spirit (given to all (who are born of the Spirit) from time to time, as faith is exercised and as the Spirit leads and directs and enables) and the specific roles or offices given by the Spirit for the function and equiping of His body.

Dr. Dale A. Robbins puts it this way…

The ministry of Spiritual Gifts originates in the New Testament, commissioned by our Lord Jesus Christ. After He established His church on the earth and ascended to Heaven, Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to equip His church with power and spiritual gifts (Greek — charismata) so that His disciples could continue to carry out His ministry objectives. While there are certain gifts of a spectacular nature that are often given greater attention, the New Testament mentions at least 21 that are provided to the church. These gifts are listed in Eph. 4:11, Rom. 12:3-7, and 1 Cor. 12:1-12,28, and are generally assigned to one of three categories, as listed below:

  • Charismatic (spiritual) gifts: Wisdom, Knowledge, Faith, Healing, Miracles, Prophecy, Discernment, Tongues, Interpretation
  • Ministry (office) gifts: Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Evangelists, Pastors
  • Motivational (practical) gifts: Service, Encouraging, Giving, Leadership, Mercy, Helpers, Administration

I find Dr Robbins list quite helpful but it’s difficult (perhaps impossible) to define or categorise the Spiritual with mere words.  Note that the specific appointments of Miracles, Healing and Tongues from the 1 Cor 12:28 passage are not apparent in his list.  Note also that I don’t believe this list is suggesting that some gifts are Spiritual and some aren’t.  But, as you browse the list, can you see those in your church with the gift of ‘service’ for example?  Or perhaps the gift of ‘encouraging’ or ‘giving’ or ‘leadership’ or ‘mercy’ or ‘help’ or ‘administration’?  I can!  I  mean, we are all called to do all these things but there are those in your church and my church who have these specific gifts.  Just as a side note, I find it interesting (to say the least), that those with these gifts often tend to beat their drum from the perspective of their gift and say things like “If we are all better at leadership then the church will grow” or “If we acted more mercifully the church would grow” etc, etc. 🙂

Hold on a minute…

Let’s just stop here for a moment and make an observation.  Is there any ‘office gift’ missing in your church or my church?  I mean, I’m sure you have a Pastor(s) and maybe a Teacher(s) (you might be overrun with teachers 🙂 ) and, if you are really ‘lucky’ (sarcasm), you may have an Evangelist, but what about an Apostle or a ProphetWhat is an Apostle anyway? And prophet, “Oh, we have prophecy from time to time” it may be said.  No, no, no!  The ‘office’ of prophet (Eph 4:11-13, 1 Cor 12:28, Rom 12:4-8), not the ‘each one manifestation of the Spirit’ as mentioned in 1 Cor 12:7-11.  Do some homework on what an Apostle isHere is a linkDo some homework on what a Prophet is. Here is a link.

Why does the Modern Church have mainly Pastors and Teachers?

Would it fair to say that the church (at large) has a handle on Pastors and Teachers because these can be performed naturally instead of supernaturally? – these can be performed without faith and without the Spirits empowerment? (and then we wonder why people and churches ‘crash and burn’).

To be continued…

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Does it amaze you (it does me) that God gives us His most precious gift, the gift of His Son Jesus, and yet continues to lavish upon us further gifts for His plans and purposes and His Kingdom come here on Earth?

What are the Gifts?

So, what are the gifts?  There are four main passages in the Bible that speak about gifts.  They are Romans 12:4-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4-13, 1 Corinthians 12:27-31 and Ephesians 4:7-13.  However, I think it is important to consider the whole of the chapters of Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4.  I think it also important to include 1 Corinthians 13 and 14 as well as parts of Paul’s letters to Timothy and some things that Jesus said but I may not get time to include these in this blog.

Romans Chapter 12

Submission and Transformation; Gifts and Love

Rom 12:1-3 (Submission and Transformation)
12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your spiritual  act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will. 3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.

Rom 12:4-8 (Different gifts but one body – we belong to each other)
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.

Rom 12:9-21 (Love)
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.  14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.  Do not be conceited.  17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”  says the Lord. 20 On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”  21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Different Gifts (Rom 12:4-8):
Prophesying
Serving
Teaching
Encouraging
Contributing (to the needs of others)
Leadership
Showing mercy

1 Corinthians Chapter 12

1 Corinthians 12:1-31
12:1 Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. 2 You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. 3 Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.

4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,  and to still another the interpretation of tongues.   11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines. 12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by  one Spirit into one body — whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free — and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.

14 Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.  21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28 And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues ? Do all interpret? 31 But eagerly desire  the greater gifts.

To each one the manifestations of the Spirit is given for the common good (1 Cor 12:7-11):
The message of wisdom
The message of knowledge
Faith
Gifts of healing
Miraculous powers
Prophecy
Distinguishing between spirits
Speaking in different kinds of tongues
Interpretation of tongues

In the church God has appointed (1 Cor 12:28):
First apostles
Second prophets
Third teachers
Then workers of miracles
Those having gifts of healing
Those able to help others
Those with gifts of administration
Those speaking in different kinds of tongues

Ephesians Chapter 4

Eph 4:1-32

4:1 As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit— just as you were called to one hope when you were called— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. 8 This is why it  says: “When he ascended on high,he led captives in his trainand gave gifts to men.”  9 (What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions ? 10 He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.)

11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

17 So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18 They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19 Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.
20 You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. 21 Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. 25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.  29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Christ gave some to be (Eph 4:11-13):
Apostles
Prophets
Evangelists
Pastors
Teachers

So putting them all together…

Different Gifts (Rom 12:4-8):
Prophesying, Serving, Teaching, Encouraging, Contributing (to the needs of others), Leadership, Showing mercy

Now to each one the manifestations of the Spirit is given for the common good (1 Cor 12:7-11):
The message of wisdom, The message of knowledge, Faith, Gifts of healing, Miraculous powers, Prophecy, Distinguishing between spirits, Speaking in different kinds of tongues, Interpretation of tongues

In the church God has appointed (1 Cor 12:28):
First apostles, Second prophets, Third teachers, Then workers of miracles, Those having gifts of healing, Those able to help others, Those with gifts of administration, Those speaking in different kinds of tongues

Christ gave some to be (Eph 4:11-13):
Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers

To be continued…

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The Lord has had me focusing in on just one verse today.

1 Cor 12:7
Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.

Thoughts:
Now to EACH ONE (ie: not just SOME people) the manifestation of the Spirit (the materialisation and evidence and demonstration and expression of God’s power and grace and purposes and pleasure and freedom, the tangable and perceptible embreaking of the Kingdom of God here on this earth by His Spirit through His people) is given (ie: the gifts are divinely given by our Heavenly Father) for the common good (for the the common and shared and collective good of His church (not for the gain or profit of an individual) but for His power and His glory to be displayed through His body, the Church). You see…

The Lord wants His bride, the church, to shine His glory and power and grace and freedom and love to this world

Isa 60:1-3
“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.  2 See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the LORD rises upon you and his glory appears over you.  3 Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.

Are we too self centred/individualistic to receive the gifts mentioned in the following verses?


1 Cor 12:8-11
8 To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,  and to still another the interpretation of tongues.   11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.

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