Archive for the 'Spiritual Gifts' Category

We Have Something For Which They Longed . . .

Monday, June 15th, 2009

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. . . the Indwelling Holy Spirit.

Trinity Sunday, June 7th, I preached the sermon, “We Have Something For Which They Longed.” This message had been burning in my heart for some time and many of you resonated with the biblical truths that I shared. As requested, the outline, notes, and text of my message is now posted for your spiritual encouragement. If you have any problems downloading the entire sermon in Google Documents, please email me and I forward the text to you in Word format.

We Have Something (or Someone) For Which They Longed

Pentecost Year B 2009

[Preached Trinity Sunday Year B 2009]

Rev. Canon Glenn E. Davis

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (emphasis mine)

Gal. 3:13-14 (NKJV).

Overview: The Old Testament people of God yearned for intimacy with God: conscience-cleansing forgiveness of sin, power to obey the law, and life-changing experiences of His presence. The finished work of Christ on the Cross performed the work needed for us to experience all these truths and much more. What Old Testament men and women of faith hoped for and desired, we as New Covenant believers now know. We must not take these precious truths for granted. This sermon is about these great doctrinal truths and how we can fully experience their power and purpose.

Read or download the entire sermon on Google Documents.

To believe fully in the Holy Spirit as the present and abiding and all-comprehensive gift of the New Covenant has been to many an entrance into its fullness of blessing.

Andrew Murray, The Believer’s New Covenant (Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House, 1984), 49.

The Rest of the Charismata

Friday, June 12th, 2009

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Charismata: The Spiritual Gifts as Weapons of Spiritual Warfare

To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit,to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit,who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

1 Cor 12:7-11 (ESV)

Over the last several weeks, I have been posting my definitions of key Christian terms related to the Charismatic stream of historic Christianity. With our fourth session of the Ps-501, Life in the Spirit course meeting tomorrow, I thought it would be helpful to post the entire list. This list covers all the charismata, spiritual gifts, found in 1 Cor. 12:8-11 and Eph. 4:11. Below are a couple of definitions to wet your whistle and the remaining definitions are listed in the attached Word document file.

FAITH, GIFT of -Supernatural ability given by the Holy Spirit to believe for a major victory in a power encounter with the Enemy. An other-worldly conviction that God will reveal his power and mercy in a special way for a specific instance (Acts 3:6, 1 Sam. 17:26).

HEALING(S), GIFTS of -The everyday expectation/faith that the Holy Spirit can heal any disease at any anytime. The plural endings on both Greek nouns indicate various kinds of healing for numerous and different types of diseases (1 Cor. 12:9, Acts 3:1-10).

INTERPRETATION of TONGUES, GIFT of -An enablement from the Holy Spirit to explain meaning of an unknown human language or heavenly tongue (1 Cor. 14:5).

MIRACULOUS POWERS, GIFT of -An extraordinary display of God’s power bringing individual deliverance from sin, death, and the devil. Supernatural power that goes beyond the regular healing of the sick (Acts 5:15, 9:36-43; Acts 8:6-7; 1 Cor. 12:10).

POWER EVANGELISM is a presentation of the gospel which breaks down resistance to the gospel through powerful displays of God’s presence by the manifestation of the spiritual gifts. Through the church’s use of the spiritual gifts: words of knowledge, prophecies, healings, and deliverance from demons, the lost are draw to the Word of God by the power of God.

SIGNS and WONDERS-A special inbreaking of the kingdom which brings deliverance to those bound by sin, sickness, and Satan. This release includes the spiritual gifts manifesting breaking down barriers to the gospel. Synonymous with miracles and the word, “works,” as used in the Gospel of John for displays of God’s power (Acts 2:22, John 14:12). The entire list of definitions can be found on the Scribd page linked below:

Charismata Definitions document file

The Mind of God for a Perplexing Situation

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

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The Word of Wisdom

Then the Pharisees went and plotted how to entangle him in his words. And they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are true and teach the way of God truthfully, and you do not care about anyone’s opinion, for you are not swayed by appearances. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, “Why put me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin for the tax.” And they brought him a denarius. And Jesus said to them, “Whose likeness and inscription is this?” They said, “Caesar’s.” Then he said to them,”Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” When they heard it, they marveled. And they left him and went away.

Matt. 22:15-22 (ESV)

The spiritual gift of a word of wisdom is insight given by the Holy Spirit into a present situation for the purpose of solving a perplexing dilemma. When caught in-between a proverbial rock and a hard place caused by either people or circumstances, the Holy Spirit gives understanding showing the way out of the predicament (1 Cor. 12:8, Dan. 2:21-22, Luke 21:15).

The word of wisdom is a spiritual utterance at a given moment through the Spirit supernaturally disclosing the mind, purpose, and way of God as applied to a specific situation.

Jack Hayford, NKJV Spirit-Filled Bible (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1991), 1736.

An example of a word of wisdom:

Richard Cunningham, leader of University and Colleges Christian Fellowship, in response to the question whether the gathering New Word Alive is “narrow, schismatic, conservative.”

‘It’s only as narrow theologically as the gospel demands, but as culturally broad and generous as the gospel permits.’

HT: Desiring God Blog



How Did You Know That?

Monday, May 18th, 2009

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The Spiritual Gift of the Word of Knowledge

But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit;

1 Cor 12:7-8 (NASU)

A word of knowledge is insight given to a believer into another person’s past which ministers God’s present love into their current problems and struggles. A word of knowledge reveals heart-felt secrets that only our omniscient God could know for the purpose of displaying God’s care and concern for that individual’s needs.

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.”

“I have no husband,” she replied.

Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.”

“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet.

John 4:13-19 (NIV)

Gift of Different Languages

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

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Glossolalia

I [Paul] thank God that I speak in tongues more than any of you.

1 Cor 14:18 (NLT)

A special ability from the Holy Spirit to speak in a language never learned: earthly or angelic. Unintelligible speech directed in praise and prayer toward God for the edification of the speaker and for the building up of the people of God. Speaking in tongues is normal, but not normative. That is to say, do not be surprised to experience the gift of tongues upon being renewed in the Holy Spirit. However, the experience of this blessed gift is not a requirement, but a grace-gift from God to assist us in praying when we do not know how to pray.

(1 Cor. 13:1, Gen. 11:1-9, Acts 2:1-11).

Tongues is “a way of responding to the inexpressibility of God, a way of crying to God from the depths and expressing the too-deep-for-words sighings of the heart.”

The gift of tongues cuts at our pride. Receiving this gift surrenders our speech to the Lord and makes us like little children: humble, dependent and trusting.

The gift places us in unfamiliar territory and requires us to be childlike in prayer. But this may be why tongues are important. It is a means God uses to challenge strategies of control. It is a humble but also a humbling gift to which we should be open.

Clark H. Pinnock, Flame of Love: A Theology of the Holy Spirit (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1996), 172-173.

Discernment of Spirits (Part Two)

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

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Evaluate, Discern, Distinguish, Weigh the Use of the Spiritual Gifts

Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world

1 John 4:1

It is the responsibility of the congregation to judge, weigh, discern, evaluate all prophetic words and teaching to discern whether the gift, ministry, or miracle is from God, demonic, or self -generated (i.e., the flesh) (1 Thes. 5:19-22). A prophetic minister should welcome evaluation and accountability for a Jesus-saturated ministry is a submitted ministry.

False teaching can be judged by comparing it with Scripture, but false spirits can be judged only by the true Spirit’s gift of discernment. That gift may be called the Spirit’s gift on gifts, because God uses it to reveal to His church whether or not a manifestation of the other gifts is of Him. All imitation of the gifts is not demonic. Much of it is simply the work of the flesh, carnal Christians trying to serve the Lord in their own power and for their own benefit and glory. Summarizing, it can be said that the gift of discernment is given to tell if the other gifts are of the Holy Spirit, if they are merely natural imitations, or if they are demonic counterfeits. I believe God still empowers some of His people to unmask false prophets and carnal hypocrites. He gives them insight to expose imitations and deceptions that most Christians would take as genuine.

The gift of discernment, however, can easily deteriorate into a critical, proud, and self-righteous spirit. It can be judgmental instead of corrective when it is imitated in the flesh. But rightly used it is a great protection to God’s people.

John MacArthur, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: First Corinthians [CD-Rom] (Chicago: Moody Press, 1984).

Discernment of Spirits (Part One)

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

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How Do We Know If a Prophecy/Teaching/Ministry Is From God?

A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other….He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit.

1 Cor 12:7,10 (NLT)

Distinguishing/Discerning of Spirits is the spiritual gift of insight from the Holy Spirit which enables a believer and/or parish to know whether a practice, teaching, or gifting is from God, Satan, or a manifestation of the flesh (i.e., self-generated).

Satan and his spirits can be discerned in appearance. Satan invades the Christian community with teachers and leaders who counterfeit the truth. These people will always introduce teaching that is foreign to Scripture. In Acts 16, Paul and Silas are met by a slave girl possessed by a spirit of divination. Men and women with the gift of discernment are specially gifted in distinguishing between those words, deeds and appearances that are true and those that are false. For many days she followed the apostles crying out “These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to you the way of salvation” (Acts 16:17). Though her words were true, the spirit behind them was false and sought to lure people with a little bit of truth so that the opportunity could be used to heap reproach upon the gospel. Paul judged her words to be true, but knew by appearance that the spirits guiding her were insincere. He was not fooled by what might have been an appearance of godliness. And so appearances must also be carefully weighed against the Scriptures.

Men and women with the gift of discernment are specially gifted in distinguishing between those words, deeds and appearances that are true and those that are false.

Tim Challies, “The Gift of Spiritual Discernment”