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            Spiritual Gifts Part I( A work always in progress...) 



Spiritual gifts were an indispensable part of the early church’s life and ministry.  God intends  for these gifts to continue until Christ returns (1Cor.1:7).  The Holy Spirit continues to show himself through various manifestations (phanerosis) in the local church.  These various manifestations are listed in the scriptures as gifts (charismata), ministries (diakonia), and operations (energemata) (1Cor.12).  All believers do not have the same gift(s) or office (Rom.12:3-8). The Holy Spirit allocates spiritual gifts to every believer as He determines best (1Cor.12:8-11), yet believers are encouraged to earnestly desire the “greater gifts” (1Cor.12:31)

Though given to individual believers, spiritual gift(s) are to be employed for the common good of all (1Cor.12:7). Even the greatest gifts, when employed without love, are considered as nothing in God’s economy (1Cor.13:1-3).

The Gifts of the Spirit…

A spiritual gift (pneumatika, charismata) is a special attribute or ability given by the Holy Spirit to every member of the Body of Christ, according to God’s grace, for use in the context of ministering first to the saints and secondly to the world, in order to bring glory to God.  A person’s individual calling and his or her gifts are closely related.

The key Bible passages dealing with the subject of spiritual gifts are Romans 12:6-8, 1Cor.12:8-10, 28; and Ephesians 4:11.  In addition to these three passages there are a  number of other verses which speak of spiritual gifts as well.    From all these taken together we may discern at least 21 different spiritual gifts and 4 distinct church offices.  (Different traditions number these gifts and offices differently.  Some treat the gifts and offices as a single entity).

    Romans 12:6-8   (7)

Prophecy  (inspired utterance, possibly anointed preaching)
Service  (different forms of ministry)
Teaching  (imparting knowledge and experience to others in a variety of ways)
Exhortation  (encouragement, stimulating faith)
Giving  (generosity, sharing)
Leadership  (spiritual authority and decision making ability)
Mercy  (extending sympathy, comfort, kindness)

    1Cor.12   (10)

           Wisdom  (wise advice or wise use of knowledge)
           Knowledge  (information or insight gleaned from study or observation)
           Miracles  (ability to perform mighty deeds)
           Discerning of spirits  (spiritual discernment or discrimination)
           Interpretation of Tongues  (ability to understand and/or translate the utterances
                                                       or spoken language of someone who speaks in tongues


    Ephesians 4:11


    Miscellaneous Passages 

           In addition, 5 other New Testament passages mention 4 spiritual gifts and 1 additional
          office not listed in the key passages above:

          Celibacy (1Cor.7:7)
Voluntary Poverty (1Cor. 13:3)
Martyrdom (1Cor.13:3)
Hospitality (1Pet.4:9)
Missionary* (Eph.3:6-8)

To Be Continued...

This Page Under Construction!



Spiritual Gifts in General...

Decision Making and the Will of God, A Biblical Alternative to the Traditional View,
Garry Friesen and J. Robin Maxwell, Multnomah Press, © 1982, Revised 2002
Understanding Spiritual Gifts
, Robert L. Thomas, Kregel Publications, © 1978, Revised 1999
Your Spiritual Gifts Can Help Your Church Grow
, C. Peter Wagner, Regal Books, © 1979
Discover Your God-Given Gifts
, Don & Katie Fortune, Chosen Books, © 1987
Discover Your Spiritual Gifts
, C. Peter Wagner, Regal, © 2002
The Gift of Prophecy
, In the New Testament and Today, Wayne Grudem, Crossway Books, © 1988
Sacred Cows Make Gourmet Burgers, Ministry Anytime, Anywhere, by Anyone, William M. Easum, Abingdon Press, © 1995


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