Manual The Proper Use Of Spiritual Gifts (NOW CONCERNING SPIRITUAL GIFTS - Book 4/6)

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When considering all of this we need to keep in mind that the laws, political structures, and cultural customs were all geared towards the Romans even thought it was a Greek City Hays 3. From Acts we know that there was a small Jewish community in Corinth. They were not able to gather any information about the size of this Jewish community.

This meant that Paul was faced with the task to reshape the Gentile converts into patterns of life consistent with the God of Israel Hays 4. The integrity of 1st Corinthians has been questioned. In one case scholars have suspected that 1st Corinthians had been compiled by many different interpolations. Interpolations are when an author pulls other resources together to get a final document. Other scholars have also questioned that the Epistle is made up of several portions of two, or even three different letters put together Hays xvii.

Thus giving the appearance that fist Corinthians was compiled by many different sources. But the fact of the matter is, Paul wrote this letter over a period of time. His writing style might have changed over a period of time, when Paul was given the different problems that he needed to address. Take from Logos Bible Software 3. Most scholars have such a strong case for the Pauline authorship. Both the external case and the internal evidence for his authorship. The external evidence that supports the Pauline authorship is very strong.

Some proof that we have that Paul wrote this letter came from Clement of Rome around 95 A. The internal evidence has just as strong of evidence. These letters show characteristics of a strong and original text, only the product of an Apostle. Thus giving us great evidence of the Pauline authorship Hays xviii. Some people suggest that the Epistle could have been written in two different place. The first place is Ephesus, give from 1st Corinthians The second places is The Textus Receptus.

In general the dates in which Paul writes his letter lies between the two points which can be approximately determined by his escape from Damascus under Aretas Acts ; 2nd Corinthians 32,33 and the arrival of Festus as procurator of Judea Acts in succession to Felix Hays xxvii. The people of Corinth have been abusing and have a terrible misunderstanding of Spiritual gifts.

The main gift that the people were struggling to understand was tongues. So Paul wrote to the people of Corinth to try and correct these misunderstandings. It was very crucial for Paul to write the people of Corinth and correct these misunderstandings and to educate the people of the importance of all the Spiritual gifts. The people of Corinth were using this gift from the Holy Spirit to show off, for personal status, instead of using it to glorify God. They would stand up in group meetings and stand speaking in tongues to try and impress the other people.

The first emphasizes the source of the gifts, the Holy Spirit , second, the diversity of the gifts in their unity a the third, necessary ingredient of love in the exercise of all gifts 31b Gaebelein Paul uses the past tense, when you were heathens, he must have been thinking about before they became Christians. Before the conversion of the Corinthians they had been idolaters, enslaved by evil spirits. Paul might have been thinking not only manifestations of the Holy Spirit but of evil spirits as well. Paul implies that the Gentile Corinthians Christians have been made part of Israel.

Paul stresses the twofold test of the presence of the Holy Spirit. Only where the lordship is confessed can we truly know that the Holy Spirit is at work. For example, Gnostic Christians cursing the fleshly Jesus of Christians cursing Jesus in order to escape persecution. The Spirit of God would never lead anyone to blaspheme the name of Jesus. The Spirit of God leads people to confess that Jesus is Lord, not only with their mouth, but with their actions MacDonald. Verses are almost poetic in character and include a good deal of balance, rhythm, and repetition Ellingworth Paul indicates that such gifts were useful in serving the Christian community Gaebelin Paul explains this point by the means of Trinitarian formula in verses Some scholars seem to think that Paul here is talking about the trinity, because these things are given by the same spirit, same Lord, and the same God.

This passage shows, however, that he experienced God as Trinity: he can describe the activity of God in the community in three synonymous parallel clauses as the working of the Spirit and of the Lord Jesus and of God. Paul points out that there are differences of ministries and services within the church. We might be different but what we all have in common is what we do is done for the same Lord, with the attitude of serving others. In this verse there is a heavy emphasis on; the manifestations are given to each believer, and the manifestation is to benefit the whole community for the common good.

In the original Greek manuscript, the Greek sentences run on without break from verse 8 to the end of It is the translators that give those breaks where they think it is appropriate Ellingworth Others lists are found in Romans and Ephesians 4: In the list of spiritual gifts listed in 1st Corinthians, there could be some significance in the grouping. With him pausing for a breath, it breaks the list into three sections Hays When Paul talks about faith in verse nine he is not talking about ordinary faith.

Working of miracles could include casting out demons, raising the dead, and exercising power over the natural elements. The gift to discerning spirits, describe the power to detect wheatear a prophet or other person is speaking by the Holy Spirit or by evil spirits. The person that has this gift has the ability to discern if a man is an imposter or an opportunist.

Prophecy is preaching that is inspired by God, but in the normal understandable human language. The gift of interpretation of tongues is the gift of being able to interpret what other people are saying in a foreign language, and conveying the message back to the people. These people could have never heard the language before and have been able to interrupt what they were saying. The overall picture of the church is implied in these verses.

He gives each one individually as He wills. The sovereign Spirit gives the gifts. In the conclusion in verse 11, Paul again stresses the central point, the diversity of gifts. Whether it is one of the gifts listed in 1st Corinthians or listed somewhere else, they are ally from the same Spirit. The Corinthians are dealing with the conflict over the manifestation of Spiritual gifts, which is the main topic of these chapters.

In verses is the introduction of the body, which explains the basis for thinking of the church as one body Hays In verse twelve Paul takes two steps in one. First, Christians in the church are like various parts of the body; second, the church is the body of Christ Ellingworth Although the believers are different we all perform different functions, and all together we make up the body. We cannot do it all by our self we need each other in order to operate correctly as one unit.

All believers are members of the body. The Spirit is not the agent who does the baptizing, but the element into which the new believers were immersed. In verse 13 there are two different clauses that refer to the same experience. Even though they might come from different ethnic and social backgrounds, Jews and Greeks, slaves and frees, they are still bonded together by the Spirit into one body.

The day of Pentecost was the day that the church was born. On the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit was baptized. When we are born again we partake of these benefits that happened on that day.

II. The Gifts of the Spirit

We become members into the body of Christ. First, in verses the theme is necessity for diversity. No member of the body or church should consider themselves worthless or unimportant. Each member should accept gracefully and gratefully whatever gifts God has given to them, and we need to use them to benefit the community. Second, in verses the theme is interdependence of the members of the body.

The different members of the church need everyone Hays These two verses are very closely related in their structure. These two verses show the equal importance of each of the body parts. Weather it is a very important part or a small part; every part is needed in order for the body to function correctly. Paul now emphasizes the necessity of having diversity in the body for it to operate as one. Each part must be willing to perform its own function in a role that God planed for their life.

The apostles were to function as apostles, elders as elders, and the deacons as deacons Gaeblein So for the church to function properly, it must have different gifts and offices Gaebelin It is God who has organized the body in the way he wants it. The church with their various functions needs each other Gaebelein They are needed to make the body function, but more important God arranged the body is a special and specific way. The differences in members should not lead to division. Paul relates the body back to the dominating theme of the first part of the letter, the appeal for unity Hays One gives to another what is needed, and receives in return the help which only that other member can give MacDonald.

What happens to one part of the body affects the whole body. When one of us suffers then we all need to suffer together. When one of us receives honor we need to be happy and not jealous. Anything that hurts another Christian should be felt throughout the whole entire body. The rhetorical questions of verses 29—30 are formulated in the Greek in such a way that each expects a self-evidently negative answer Hays Paul reminds the people of Corinth that they are the body of Christ and that each one of them is a part of it.

Verse 27 goes back and reflects upon what was said in verse In verse 12 it reflects upon what a body is and what a body should look like. Then in verse 27 it tells us that we are the body of Christ and each one of us is a part of it. Paul made it clear in 1 Corinthians 13 that spiritual gifts without spiritual fruit are worthless. Fruit is eternal, but gifts are temporal 1 Cor.

Spiritual gifts are not the same as natural talents. Unlike the natural abilities which everyone has from birth, spiritual gifts belong exclusively to believers in Christ. In some cases, the gifts of the Spirit coincide with natural endowments, but they transcend these natural abilities by adding a supernatural quality. Both are given by God Jas. All Christians are called to a ministry, but not all are called to an office. Ministry is determined by divinely given gifts and opportunities Eph. Offices e. Some spiritual gifts are more desirable in the church than others because they result in greater edification of the body.

Paul exhorted the Corinthian church to be eager for the greater gifts 1 Cor. Charismata literally means grace-gifts--they are sovereignly and undeservedly given by the Holy Spirit. There is no basis for boasting or envy. Every member of the body has a special place and purpose.

Whether more or less prominent in the eyes of men, the same standard applies to all: it is required of stewards that one be found faithful 1 Cor. Work with what God has given to you 2 Tim. Gifts are God's spiritual equipment for effective service and edification of the body. Gifts were given so that in everything God will be glorified through Jesus Christ 1 Pet.

High mobilization of spiritual gifts was the key to the rapid multiplication of the church in the New Testament cf. It is important that every Christian discover and develop the spiritual gifts that have been bestowed on him or her by God. These gifts are desirable for three basic reasons:. Knowing and using your gifts will give you an understanding of the unique and indispensable ministry you have been called to accomplish in the body of Christ. You will discover a significant part of your purpose for being on this planet and realize that God has made you competent to produce something that will last for eternity.

You will have a sense of fulfillment and joy in the service of others as you become an available instrument through which the Holy Spirit can work. In addition, knowledge of your spiritual gifts will greatly assist you in discerning and affirming the will of God at various points in your life.

God will not call you to accomplish anything without giving you the power and enablement to do it. You will be able to make more intelligent decisions about possible involvement in specific opportunities and training in light of your God-given function in the body Rom. You will also use your time more effectively by focusing on the things you have been equipped to do well rather than expending your energy in areas of minimum potential.

Knowing and using your gifts will lead to the edification of other members of the body of Christ. As you exercise your spiritual gifts, you will play a substantial role in building up other Christians and leading them into maturity Eph. If you fail to develop your gifts or let them decline through disuse, your brothers and sisters in Christ will actually be hurt because they will be deprived of the unique ministry that only you could perform in their lives.

According to 1 Peter , your spiritual gifts are ultimately designed to bring glory to God. This is your highest calling, and it relates to all three Persons of the Godhead. As you use your spiritual gifts in conjunction with the power and fruit especially love of the Holy Spirit and in the name and Lordship of Jesus Christ, the Father receives the glory. Romans 12, 1 Corinthians , and Ephesians 4 are the three primary biblical passages on spiritual gifts. Before moving to the next section, use this chart to list the gifts you find in these passages. Then ask yourself these questions:.

A spiritual gift is a manifestation of the Spirit … given for the benefit of all 1 Cor. As a supernatural endowment, its source is always the Holy Spirit, and its purpose is the building up of others to the glory of God. Prophecy Rom. This could involve the foretelling of future events, though its primary purpose as seen in 1 Corinthians is forthtelling: one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouragement, and consolation.

This gift provides a word from God to a specific group, not the normative Word of God to all believers. Some maintain that prophecy is still operative in this sense today, while others say that the nearest current equivalent is Spirit-empowered preaching.

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Service Rom. The Greek word for this gift is the same as that for ministry or deacon, but the gift should not be confused with the office. Teaching Rom. This requires the capacity to accurately interpret Scripture, engage in necessary research, and organize the results in a way that is easily communicated. Exhortation Rom. When this gift is exercised, believers are challenged to stimulate their faith by putting God's truth to the test in their lives. Giving Rom. Christians with this spiritual gift need not be wealthy. Leadership Rom. A person with this gift is effective at delegating tasks to followers without manipulation or coercion.

Mercy Rom. Those with this gift manifest concern and kindness to people who are often overlooked. Wisdom 1 Cor. The exercise of this gift skillfully distills insight and discernment into excellent advice. Knowledge 1 Cor. With this gift, one speaks with understanding and penetration. Some also associate supernatural perception with this gift. Faith 1 Cor. The gift of faith transforms vision into reality.

Healing 1 Cor. The possessor of this gift is not the source of power, but a vessel who can only heal those diseases the Lord chooses to heal. Inner healing, or healing of memories is sometimes associated as another manifestation of this gift.

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Miracles 1 Cor. Miracles bear witness to the presence of God and the truth of His proclaimed Word, and appear to occur most frequently in association with missionary activity. Distinguishing of spirits 1 Cor. With this gift, one can distinguish reality versus counterfeits, the divine versus the demonic, true versus false teaching, and in some cases, spiritual versus carnal motives. Tongues 1 Cor. For other members of the body to be edified, this message must be interpreted either by the recipient 1 Cor.

Because of the controversial nature of this gift, here are several observations:.

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Paul qualified the public use of this gift, stating that in a meeting of the church, two or at. There are a number of differences between the manifestation of tongues at Pentecost. Acts and its use in Corinth 1 Cor. In his list of spiritual gifts in 1 Corinthians , Paul spoke of kinds of tongues. This, coupled with the statements in 1 Corinthians , 4, , 28 has led many to. Paul wrote that if there is no. Let him speak to himself and to God 1. This gift is easily counterfeited and often abused. It can be a source of spiritual pride,. Contrary to some teaching, tongues are not the only sign of the filling of the Spirit, and.

Interpretation of tongues 1 Cor. This gift may be combined with the gift of tongues 1 Cor. Apostleship 1 Cor. If the requirement for the office of apostle includes having seen the resurrected Jesus Acts ; 1 Cor. However, many believe that the gift of apostleship continues to be given. Helps 1 Cor. This is the only usage of this word in the New Testament, and it appears to be distinct from the gift of service.

Some suggest that while the gift of service is more group-oriented, the gift of helps is more person-oriented. Administration 1 Cor. This suggests that the spiritual gift of administration is the ability to steer a church or Christian organization toward the fulfillment of its goals by managing its affairs and implementing necessary plans. A person may have the gift of leadership without the gift of administration.

Evangelism Eph. Some with this gift are most effective in personal evangelism, while others may be used by God in group evangelism or cross-cultural evangelism. Shepherd or pastor Eph. Acts A person with this spiritual gift has the ability to personally lead, nourish, protect, and care for the needs of a flock of believers. Not all people with the office of pastor elder, overseer have or need the gift of pastoring or shepherding, and many with this gift do not have or need the office. None of the lists in Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, and Ephesians 4 is complete, and it is evident that there are other spiritual gifts apart from those listed above.

Peter Wagner in Your Spiritual Gifts suggests seven others: celibacy the ability to enjoy being single and maintain sexual self-control; 1 Cor. Other spiritual gifts e. Many if not all believers have combinations of two or more spiritual gifts. Some combinations are unusual, while others are commonly combined. Gifts that work together include shepherd pastor -teaching, leadership-administration, evangelism-teaching, tongues-interpretation, and discernment-exorcism.

In addition, Paul distinguishes three parameters in 1 Corinthians gifts charismaton , ministries diakonion , and effects energematon. In Body Life pp. There are not only variations in the gifts and gift-combinations, but also in the spheres and manifestations of gifts. For example, there are many variations in the spiritual gift of teaching. Some are more effective with small groups, others with large groups; some can effectively communicate with youth, while others are best at teaching adults.

Perhaps the best classification of spiritual gifts emerges from 1 Peter Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve one another as good stewards of the varied grace of God.

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Whoever serves, do so with the strength that God supplies, so that in everything God will be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. These verses imply a twofold classification: 1 speaking gifts ministry of the Word , and 2 serving gifts ministry of practical service. Exercise: Classify all the gifts listed above according to this distinction. Do any of them overlap? Before looking ahead, can you think of other ways of classifying the gifts? Some of the gifts like prophecy, miracles, healing, tongues, and interpretation are the subject of considerable controversy.

Spiritual gifts for biblical church growth

The vast majority of Christians are charismatics in the sense that they believe in the exercise of spiritual gifts charismata. But in another sense, not all believers are charismatics; those who describe themselves by this term believe that all the gifts are still given today, while non-charismatics believe that the controversial gifts mentioned above have ceased.

The latter generally make a distinction between sign gifts and edification gifts. Sign gifts, they say, served their purpose in the first century by attesting to the authority of the apostles and their divinely-inspired message. Once the New Testament canon was complete, miraculous gifts were no longer necessary, and they gradually disappeared from the church.

Hebrews , for example, is used by non-charismatics to imply that signs and wonders had already ceased by the time of the second generation of Christians. Some also build a case for the cessation of sign gifts from 1 Corinthians Charismatics generally maintain that while these gifts declined in the early church, they did not disappear.

They also contend that the non-charismatic argument from 1 Corinthians is not conclusive, because the perfect may refer to the second advent of Christ rather than the completion of the canon of Scripture. In addition, they say that the gifts of prophecy, miracles, healing, tongues, and interpretation are not merely for signs, but also for edification. There are also differences of opinion even within the charismatic and the non-charismatic camps. Charismatics, for example, do not all agree on the role of tongues and the filling of the Spirit. Exercise: Study 1 Corinthians and develop your own perspective on the meaning of this passage.

What do you think is the primary purpose of 1 Corinthians 13 in the broader context of chapters ? As you seek to discover your spiritual gift or gifts, ask yourself these questions:. Have I received Christ as my Savior? Unlike natural talents, spiritual gifts are bestowed only on. Am I walking in fellowship with the Lord? To be effective, spiritual gifts must be manifested in the.

This fruit is impeded by unconfessed sin and a failure to abide. Do I really want to develop my gift s? A prerequisite to knowing your gifts is a willingness to go. Begin to ask God to show you your gifts cf. God wants you to. Expose yourself to the biblical teaching on spiritual gifts by studying Romans 12, 1 Corinthians. Expose yourself to other Christians who clearly know and use their spiritual gifts.

Ask them about. God is commited to your joy, not your misery. Then you will take delight in the Lord,. As you pray and learn about the various gifts, ask. For it is God who is at work in you both to will and to. Your feelings should not be the only test, but they may. For example, Paul told Timothy, If someone aspires to the. Just as we discover our natural talents by trying our hand at numerous things, in the same.

If we. This requires availability and a willingness to learn our weaknesses. Activity eventually points to ability. Don't be premature in your personal evaluation,. Be sensitive to areas of improvement. Look for opportunities. Christians who are familiar with your activities. Because of the danger of self-deception, spiritual. The final affirmation of a spiritual gift is the blessing that should result from its. As you use your gift or gift-combination in the power of the Spirit, God will confirm and.

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It has been said that desire may indicate it, ability will confirm it, and blessing will. Having discovered your gift or combination of gifts, you are accountable to yourself, others, and God to develop and cultivate that which the Spirit has implanted within you. By exercise. Like natural talents, spiritual gifts are developed by practice, not just by desire. Without regular exercise, they will suffer from atrophy. Continue to pursue opportunities and. By evaluation. Be open to the evaluation and counsel of other believers. Periodically ask godly.

By education. More educational and developmental materials are available today than ever before. Take advantage of the best books, classes, tapes, and seminars that can help you improve your God-. The mobilization of spiritual gifts is critical to the qualitative and quantitative growth of the body of Christ.

For this reason, we must be careful to avoid the many pitfalls associated with this crucial subject. Here are ten:. Spiritual gifts are not merely for personal use. They are designed for the edification of others. Others should benefit primarily; the user should benefit secondarily. Spiritual gifts are not gained by merit or by begging. The very term charismata tells us that they are given solely by the grace of God see Eph.

The Holy Spirit distributes them as he decides to each person …. Spiritual gifts can be abused by being exercised in the power of the flesh. If they are not being used in the power of the Spirit and through the love of Christ, they are of no value 1 Cor. The discovery and use of spiritual gifts is not a game or an option. Your gifts will determine your ministry, and your ministry can have eternal consequences.

God has called us to be committed and faithful to Him, and this is reflected in part by our stewardship of the abilities and opportunities He has given to us.