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Understanding Spiritual Gifts 2

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Understanding Spiritual Gifts

Pastor Keith Hassell



Foundation Scriptures:  John 14:15-17; Acts 1:4-8; 2:1-4, 14-21, 38-39; 1 Corinthians 12

I.          The Church at Corinth

A.      They came behind in no good gift (l Corinthians 1:4-7)

B.        They were also a very carnal church (1 Corinthians 3:1-3)


1.       Spiritual gifts do not show spiritual maturity

2.       Spiritual gifts and carnality can operate in the same church

3.       Spiritual gifts can be abused and misused

4.       The solution that Paul takes is not to throw out the gifts but to speak correction to their usage and to address carnality

II.         "Now concerning spiritual gifts"

A.      1 Corinthians 12:1 "gifts" is italicized to show that it does not appear in the original Greek. The literal interpretation should read, "Now concerning spirituals” (or spiritual things)

B.        Paul does not want us to be ignorant (verses 2-3)

1.       Paul takes three complete chapters to address this issue of spiritual gifts. We should take notice.

2.       The converts in Corinth were converted pagans who worshipped idols and operated under the inspiration of demons. Now they are in the church and must be educated to distinguish what is of the Spirit of God and what is not as well as how to flow in the gifts in the church without causing confusion.

3.       A genuine inspiration and manifestation of the Holy Spirit will not degrade Jesus but will seek to magnify Him as Lord.

III.     The Unity and Functions of the Godhead in the Church (Trinity) 1 Corinthians 12:4-6

A.      There are diversities of Gifts but the same Holy Spirit

1.       Gifts - Greek "charisma" meaning "graces"

2.       Gifts are called "manifestations of the Spirit" (Verse 7)

3.       Diversities: allotments, various kinds

B.      There are differences of administrations but the same Lord (Jesus)

1.       Administations: Ministries or Callings or Offices

2.       Jesus gives the office gifts (Ephesians 4:7-16)

a.       Apostle

b.       Prophet

c.       Evangelist

d.       Pastor

e.       Teacher

3.       Other ministries Jesus calls His people into:(Romans12:3-8)

a.       Prophecy

b.       Service

c.       Teaching

d.       Exhortation

e.       Giving

f.       Leadership

g.       Mercy

h.       Government (1 Corinthians 12:28)

i.        Helps (1 Corinthians 12:28)

C.      There are diversities of Operations but the same God who works all in all

1.       Operations: Effects or Results

2.       God controls the effects and results each gift or ministry has in each situation (Example: Healing - some healed immediately and others over a period of time - God decides)

3.       God knows His eternal plans and purposes and works all things accordingly


1.       God knows and controls the eternal plan

2.       Jesus has called men and women into offices and ministries to lead, equip, train, minister, and serve God's people, the Church. 3. The Holy Spirit gives gifts or manifestations through members of the church as He wills in order to aid our deficiencies in ministry

IV.     The Manifestations of the Spirit (l Corinthians 12:7-11)

A.      They are given to EVERY man

B.      They are not for personal glory but for the profit of the whole body

1.       Spiritual gifts are not spiritual "merit badges"

2.       The Holy Spirit manifests the gifts because He desires to meet a special need in His body that otherwise would go undetected or unmet.

C.        There are nine gifts (manifestations) of the Holy Spirit in His Body

1.       Word of wisdom    

2.       Word of knowledge

3.       Faith

4.       Gifts of Healings

5.       Working of miracles

6.       Prophecy

7.       Discerning of spirits

8.       Different kinds of tongues

9.       Interpretation of tongues

D.      Grouping the Spiritual Gifts

1.       The Inspiration Gifts

a.       Prophecy

b.       Tongues

c.         Interpretation of tongues

2.       The Power Gifts

a.       Faith

b.       Gifts of healings

c.       Working of miracles

3.       The Revelation Gifts

a.       Word of wisdom

b.       Word of knowledge

c.       Discerning of spirits

E.      The SAME Holy Spirit is at work in ALL of these nine gifts (verse 11)

F.      The Holy Spirit Himself chooses and distributes the gifts as HE WlLLS (verse 11)

1.       The Holy Spirit Chooses:

a.       The gift

b.       The person for the gift

c.       The timing of the gift

V.      The Difference between the Gifts of the Spirit and the Fruit of the Spirit

A.      The Gifts of the Spirit reveals the power of Christ in us

B.      The Fruit of the Spirit reveals the character of Christ in us

C.        Gifts without Fruit is of no lasting profit to us or others

1.       Matthew 7:20-23 Jesus doesn't know us by gifts but by fruit

2.       1 Corinthians 13 Gifts without love are irritating, self-glorifying, and unprofitable

VI.     What should be our attitude towards Spiritual Gifts?

A.      We should not forbid their practice Corinthians 14:39)

B.      We should covet them earnestly (1 Corinthians 12:31)

C.      We should desire Spiritual Gifts (1 Corinthians 14:1)

VII.    The Gifts of the Spirit are Supernatural

A.      Some have tried to make the Gifts of the Spirit common human traits (Human wisdom, knowledge, medical healing, etc.)

B.        If one of the Gifts is supernatural, then they all are.

C.        They are not gained through normal human effort and learning

D.      They are of DIVINE origin——imparted by the Holy Spirit.

VIII.  What about Satan’s Counterfeits?

A.      One of the BIGGEST fears most Christians have about Spiritual Gifts is of becoming involved in demonic activity rather that Holy Spirit gifting. This is a legitimate concern. However it is not to be an obsessive fear. God is able to protect His children if they seek Him properly.

B.      God is a Spirit and works supernaturally in people's lives. Many have the idea that anything supernatural must be of the devil. These people fail to realize that God is Spirit. Therefore He operates in the same realm as evil spirits. There are two spiritual Kingdoms: The Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Darkness. These are opposed to the other. To recognize one and not the other in practice is deceptive.

C.      Biblical references show that God has always been a God who has intervened supernaturally into the lives of His people.

D.      Satan is a counterfeiter. He can only counterfeit what is real.  If everything supernatural was of the devil, why would God's people be tempted to believe the devil's counterfeit? (Matthew 24:24) Satan's counterfeit is designed to appeal to the supernatural aware­ness of our lives in such a way that keeps us away from God. The counterfeit is built on unrighteousness and the real is built upon repentance and holiness toward God

E.      Examples from the Bible of the true and the counterfeit operating at the same time

1.         The magicians of Egypt could not interpret Pharaoh's dream, Joseph operating by the Spirit of God could (Genesis 41)

2.       Moses" rod turned into a serpent; Pharaoh's wise men, sorcerers, and magicians responded by doing the same (Exodus 7:10-12). Moses' serpent swallowed the other serpents.

3.       Moses turns all of the waters of Egypt to blood; the Pharaoh’s magicians did the same by using their enchantments (Exodus 7:19-22)

4.       Moses calls forth a plague of frogs: Pharaoh’s magicians did the same with their enchantments (Exodus 8:1-7)

5.       The magicians of Pharaoh could not duplicate the remaining miracles of Moses (Exodus 8:18; 9:11)

6.       Book of Job: Satan's power demonstrated in control over a. Tribes or nations (1:15,17) b. Lightning (1:16) c. Great wind (whirlwind?) (1:19)

7.       Prophets of Ahab prophesy success in battle; God's prophet Micaiah prophesies Ahab's death in battled Kings 22)

8.       Nebuchadnezzar calls for magicians, sorcerers, and astrologers of Babylon to tell and interpret his dream. They could not. Daniel, however, by the Spirit of God tells and interprets the dream (Daniel 2)

9.       Jesus casts out devils; the sons of the Pharisees cast out devils through incantations (Matthew 12:27-28)

10.     The true Christ Jesus and true prophets perform signs and wonders as a sign of the kingdom of God (John 14:11) whereas false christs and false prophets show signs and wonders in order to deceive (Matthew 24:24; 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10)

NOTE:  2 Thessalonians 9:9-10 describes the anti-Christ as coming in ALL power, and L¥1NG wonders

11.     Simon, the sorcerer, at one time bewitched the people through his sorceries but is convinced of the power of Jesus through the message and miracles of Philip (Acts 8:1-13)

12.     The power of the Two Witnesses of God vs. the power of the beast (Revelation 11:3-6; 13:5,13-14)

F.      Satan has a counterfeit for everything good that God has provided for us. He is the father of lies and deceptions. It should not worry us and frighten us away from what God has provided. We should pursue the real while being sure we pursue them according to God's design.

G.      How to recognize the real from the counterfeit

1.       Does it glorify Jesus as Lord? (l Corinthians 12:3)

2.       Does it agree with the Word of God? (l John 4:6)

3.       Is it done in the right spirit or Spirit? (1 Corinthians 11:4)

a.       Luke 9:54-56 "Shall we call fire to come down out of heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he (Jesus) turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of."

b.       1 John 4:1 Try the spirits to see whether they are of God or not

4.       Is it motivated by the love of God and the love for God?

5.       Which source of the gift is being sought?

a.       If you seek for the supernatural gifting through questionable methods and cultic literature, through psychic methods or spiritism, you can be guaranteed the involvement of evil spirits and deception. God forbids this (Deuteronomy 18:10-12).

b.       If you ask, seek, and knock at the door of your Heavenly Father, with the right motives of love and service, you can be CONFIDENT that what you receive WILL BE OF THE SPIRIT OF GOD. The point of the teaching in Matthew 7:7-11 and Luke 11:9-13 is that if we ask for bread we will not get something evil in return. God will give us what we ASK for. We must begin to trust in the God who is able to give us the good and protect us from the evil one when we come to Him.

6.       Is the message consistent with the New Testament Gospel message? (11 Corinthians 11:4)

7.       Is the Jesus being promoted the same Jesus as described in the New Testament? (11 Corinthians 11:4)

8.       Does the message deny that Jesus is the Son of God or that he has come in the flesh? (Matthew 16:13-17; 1 John 4:2)

9.       Does the character of the one who operates in the gift show a character bent upon doing unrighteousness? (Luke 7:20-23)

IX.     How long will the Gifts of the Spirit be in operation on earth?

A.      Until the last day (Acts 2:16-21)

B.      Until the last one to be called of God (Acts 2:38-39)

C.      Until the perfect shall come (1Corinthians 13:8-13)——Our final state

1.       “Now we know in part and prophesy in part but when that which is perfect shall come, that which is part shall be done away.”

2.       “When I was a child 1 understood, spoke, and thought as a child; but when 1 became a man I put away childish things”

3.       “Now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face”

4.       “Now I know in part; but then shall 1 know even as also 1 am known”

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