THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT
What are these gifts of the Spirit? How can you know that you have particular gifts of the Spirit? Can others give us an indication of what our gift is? What does the believer do with these gifts in the church? Are some gifts more important than others? Are the gifts of healing still available today to believers? Is the gift of miracles still existent in the church today?
Each and every believer has been given by the indwelling of the Spirit of God, gifts of the Spirit (Acts 2:38). In Acts 8 and in 1 Corinthians 12-14 we see external gifts of the Holy Spirit. They were not gifts that they have been developed by human capacities, therefore the believer has absolutely no right to brag on these gifts. It is just that; a gift that was not yours but given to your freely and it is given apart from any inherent capabilities that you have within you.
At the same time, no believer can say that they have no gift of the Spirit from God. God has given all believers gifts; some have several but everyone has a gift. These gifts of the Spirit are given not for the believer but for the Body of Christ. It is to make the Body complete. They are intended to edify, strengthen, exhort and empower the Church to do the work of Christ. These gifts are always to exalt Christ, to witness to God’s power, to build up to empower the Church in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with the lost.
Nine gifts of the Spirit are mentioned in I Corinthians 12: Word of Wisdom, Word of Knowledge, Faith, Gift of Healing, Working of Miracles, Prophecy, Discerning of spirits, Tongues and Interpretation of Tongues. This is not an exhaustive list as some are said to have the gift of mercy, leadership, giving etc. While there are different kinds of gifts, it is the same Spirit distributes them (v 4). No two gifts are the same and also no two believers have exactly the same manifestation of the gifts. But always these gifts are given for the common good of the church (v 7). So this week, let us earnestly desire them (v 31), be activated in them and grow in them!
2016 YEAR OF STRENGTH
Ps Dr Philip Lyn