Spiritual gifts and the priesthood of all believers.
With Peter Veysie
Sunday 16th May 2021
In addition to the 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit, the Bible also tells us that there are over 20 gifts of the Holy Spirit.
If you were asked to name your spiritual gifts, what would you say? Can you readily identify specific spiritual gifts members of your congregation might share in ministry? Can everyone be included in your church’s ministry of mercy? Every Christian has at least one dominant spiritual gift, and they differ, as Paul notes in Romans 12:6: “We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us.”
The Bible identifies at least twenty eight spiritual gifts that are distributed by the Spirit throughout the Christian community to enable God’s work to be accomplished. These are some of them :
tongues (speaking and interpretation)
These gifts are identified in Exodus 35:31-33; Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12; Ephesians 4:7-13; Ephesians 6:18; Colossians 4:12; and 1 Peter 4:7-11. These are not the only spiritual gifts, but they are the ones most clearly identified in the Bible.
As the 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit have to do with God imparting part of His divine nature into the core of our personalities to help make us into a much better people we need to understand that
God’s ultimate aim for all of us is our sanctification in Him, and part of that sanctification process has to do with the Holy Spirit Himself transmitting divine qualities and attributes into our personalities.
“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.” (1 Corinthians 12:7-11)
And 1 Corinthians 14:1-9.
Some of the gifts that are more spiritual and possibly more contraversial and definitely both abused and incorrectly manipulated by generations of churches are the following :
The Word of Knowledge The Word of Wisdom The Gift of Prophecy The Gift of Faith The Gifts of Healings The Working of Miracles The Discerning of Spirits Different Kinds of Tongues The Interpretation of Tongues
This is not to say that they are not important and that they have a place in our worship services and in our personal lives. There some scriptures making it clear that we should ask for them :
- “Therefore, desire earnestly to prophesy.” (1 Corinthians 14:39)
- “… and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.” (1 Corinthians 14:1)
- “Do not quench the Spirit, do not despise prophecies.” (1 Thessalonians 5:19)
- “Do not neglect the gift that is in you … Meditate on these things, give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.” (1 Timothy 4:14)
- “Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” (2 Timothy 1:6)
- The Word of Knowledge –
This first gift I will talk about is the one I believe will manifest the most in your daily life with the Lord.
With God having absolute perfect knowledge on all things, and with us having knowledge levels that are completely imperfect and limited, this means that we all need to receive words of knowledge from the Lord on a very regular and frequent basis in order to be able to safely journey through this life.
As such, I believe the Holy Spirit will really manifest this specific gift with a lot of frequency in your daily life if you can learn how to pick it up from Him when it does come in.
I believe that the Holy Spirit actually manifests this gift a lot more than people realize, but they fail to realize it or pick it up when it does come their way because they have never been taught that the Holy Spirit can do this for them in the first place.
The Word of Knowledge is simply the Holy Spirit transmitting His specific knowledge to you on something that you would have no ability or means to be able to know about with your own limited intelligence and knowledge levels.
It is supernatural knowledge and insight being given directly to you by the Holy Spirit Himself, not by your own mind or your own intelligence levels.
These words of knowledge that you can receive direct from the Holy Spirit can literally cover an infinite number of things in your daily life.
They can cover anything from something very trivial such as where you may have misplaced your car keys at, to giving you life-saving knowledge on how to solve an impending crisis.
As you can see from these kinds of examples, there is literally nothing that the Holy Spirit cannot get into in your own personal life where He can then give you a word of knowledge on how to properly handle something that you are currently dealing with, or give you a word of knowledge to help someone else out with what they may be dealing with on their end.
The Bible say that the Holy Spirit will bear “witness” with our human spirits.
This inner witness is the inner knowing. All of a sudden, you will receive a without-a-doubt type knowing on the knowledge that He is trying to transmit to you. It can come in the form of a thought or an impression on your mind, or possibly come in the form of a vision or a picture in your mind’s eye.
I have found from personal experience that the Holy Spirit loves to communicate knowledge through these pictures, which are really visions in your mind’s eye. These pictures can be used to give you quite a bit of information and knowledge on what He is trying to give you knowledge on.
- The Word of Wisdom
This next gift at times will work in conjunction with the word of knowledge. Sometimes all you need is a direct word of knowledge from the Holy Spirit and it will completely solve the problem or dilemma you are dealing with.
However, there will be other times that a word of knowledge will not be quite enough to solve the problem. This is where you will now need a word of wisdom. A word of wisdom will give you the ability to be able to properly apply the knowledge that you may already have on a particular situation.
This is why we all need words of wisdom from the Holy Spirit in our daily life, so we will know how to handle more complex types of problems or issues that can occur at a moment’s notice in our daily lives.
- The Gift of Prophecy
This next gift may just be the greatest of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The reason I say this is because the Paul, purposely singles out this gift when telling you to seek after the spiritual gifts.
He says in this verse to “desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
The gift of prophecy is when you get a direct Word from the Lord to usually give to someone else. And when I say a direct word, I mean the message from the Lord that will be given to you will literally be word for word.
All of a sudden the Holy Spirit will give you a direct, clear, prophetic word to give to someone else. You speak out the word to this person and then you will be done with it. It might be a very short word and it really does not need to be recorded or written down.
The Bible tells us that God uses the gift of prophecy to speak:
and comfort to other people.
“But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to others.” (1 Corinthians 14:4)
Many times prophecy is also used to help confirm what has already been given to the person earlier on by the Lord. Sometimes God will confirm for you what He has already told you earlier so you will know that it really was Him all along giving you that specific message.
“Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things; hold fast what is good.” (1 Thessalonians 5:19-21)
- The Gift of Faith
This next gift, the gift of faith, is something that comes directly from the Holy Spirit.
The Bible tells us that we all have a certain measure of faith that has already been given to us by the Lord. God has to give each person a certain measure of faith or we would not be able to get saved, as the Bible tells us that we are saved by grace through faith Ephesians 2:8,9.
In your mind and in your spirit you will find that your own levels of faith are not going to be good enough or high enough to try and do this, as you have never tried to heal someone of something this heavy before.
And this is where the Holy Spirit will now be moving in big time so this miracle can be fully accomplished for the Lord.
- The Gifts of Healings
What this means is that at anytime the Holy Spirit can manifest this special gift through any believer so He can then heal someone of any kind of disease, illness, or sickness.
You do not have to have the gift of healing as any kind of a full time ministry to be able to have the Holy Spirit do this through you. Again, this can literally happen to any single believer at anytime with the Lord.
As such, this is another gift that you will definitely want to try and stir up with the Lord, because there are just so many people who need some kind of healing due to the fact that we still have to deal with all kinds of diseases, sicknesses, and illnesses on a regular basis as a result of the covid pandemic.
Also notice that the wording being used in this verse is that this is the “gifts” of healing. The word “gifts” is plural, which means there are different kinds of healings the Lord will want to do.
What people who walk with this kind of anointing on a regular basis have found out is that some people will be more gifted and anointed in some areas than they will be in other areas.
- The Working of Miracles
An intervention in the natural universe by God
A phenomena that transcends natural laws
A divine act by which God reveals Himself to people
Good examples of actual miracles from the Bible are the following:
Jesus and the apostles healing and casting demons out of people.
Jesus turning water into wine at the wedding of Cana.
Jesus feeding 5000 people by multiplying 5 loaves of bread and two fish.
God parting the Red Sea for Moses and the children of Israel.
Daniel not being eaten by the lions in the lion’s den.
Peter walking on water.
The Bible says that God does not change, and if both Him and Jesus were constantly doing miracles in both the OT and NT, then God will also be wanting to do miracles in our day and age.
- The gift Discernment
This next gift is one that is really needed in the dangerous and perilous times that we are now living in with so many conspiracy theories and information creating much fear.
The first thing to notice about this gift is that the “s” in the word “spirits” is with a small “s.” This means that it is not referring to the Holy Spirit.
What happens in this gift is that the Holy Spirit will give you supernatural discernment, insight, and knowledge involving these three kinds of spirits. Many of the times, this gift will be be used to fully expose what is really going on and operating behind the scenes with someone.
- Different Kinds of Tongues
The gift of tongues is simply the Holy Spirit giving you the supernatural ability to speak in a foreign tongue that you have no knowledge or ability to speak out on your own.
There are two types of tongues He can give you. One is a tongue of this earth. For instance, if your native language is English, then He can give you the ability to speak in Chinese, Japanese, or Spanish. I spoke in Swahili to a young man in Zanzibar once as I was sharing with him the love of Jesus and I never knew until I recognised that he understood me and John Diviani one of our stewards at Ridgeway was with me when it happened.
The other type of tongue that He can give you is a tongue direct from heaven, a heavenly language that is not of this earth. The Bible tells us in 1 Corinthians 13 that there are “tongues of angels.”
But in either event, it will be a foreign language that you will not be able to speak out on your own, and only the Holy Spirit’s supernatural transmission of this language out of your spirit will give you the ability to be able to speak this language out.
And whatever tongue the Holy Spirit will give you, you will be able to use it 24/7, whenever you want. It will be your own personal, private, prayer language between you and the Lord.
The only problem with this gift is that for the most part, you will never know or understand what you are praying about when you go into this gift.
The Bible tells us that we will be speaking out “mysteries,” and only God the Father and the Holy Spirit will be knowing exactly what the prayer will be about on any given occasion when you are actually doing it.
So if we will not know exactly what we are praying about when using this gift, then why would God even want us to have this kind of a gift in the first place? I believe the reason is in the verse where it says that sometimes we will not know how to pray as we ought to.
Sometimes we will not be able to find the right words to use in our own personal prayers to the Lord due to our own natural imperfections in being able to properly communicate with Him.
“Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” (Romans 8:26)
And since the Holy Spirit knows how to present a perfect prayer to God the Father, then you can actually play a part in that perfect prayer to God the Father.
Another reason that you will want this gift is for emergency type situations.
“For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.” (1 Corinthians 14:2) “I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for those who prophesies are greater than those who speak with tongues, unless indeed they interpret, that the church may receive edification.” ( 1 Corinthians 14:5) “Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.” (1 Corinthians 14:13-14) “Though I speak with tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I have become as sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.” ( 1 Corinthians 13:1) “Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers…” (1 Corinthians 14:22) “Therefore,desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak with tongues. Let all things be done decently and in order.” (1 Corinthians 14:39-40)
- The Interpretation of Tongues.
This next gift is where the Holy Spirit will give you the interpretation of the tongues that you have either done for yourself or when they are being done by someone else in a church setting.
Here are the two main verses telling you where the gift of interpretation will come into play with the gift of tongues:
“If anyone speaks in a tongue, let there be two or at the most three, each in turn, and let one interpret. But if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God.” (1 Corinthians 14: 27-28)
“Therefore let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.” (1 Corinthians 14:13-14)
The first verse has to do with others interpreting a tongue when it is done in a church service. The second verse is showing you that the Holy Spirit can give you the interpretation of your own tongue as you are praying in it all by yourself.
Again, another very powerful gift that you can ask to receive from the Lord if you would like to tread into these kinds of deeper waters with Him.
Phil shared a powerful word on gifts at the 8am service and you can use these as a template for discussion. It’s based on the word SHAPE
What are your spiritual gifts ?
If you think of your heart, what do you have a deep heart for in society?
What are your own personal abilities and skills ?
How would you describe your personality ? Introvert,extrovert, outgoing etc…
What has been your experience as a christian and how has the Lord used this in the past ?
Pray for each other to receive the gifts.