In this study, we discuss why people get spiritual gifts and what determines who gets them.
- 1 Cor 13:13 - 14:25
- 1 Peter 4:10-11
- Acts 8:14-24
- Romans 12: 4-8
- Exodus 35:30-35
- Mark 9:38-41
Last week we looked at what the spiritual gifts are. This week we look at who gets these gifts and why they get them.
Review of the lesson on Spiritual Gifts
- Gifts are different from talents or skills because gifts are supernatural they come from the Holy Spirit
- We can't make up our own doctrine based upon what we see in our lives or in our church
- We explained the gifts of:
- Words of Wisdom
The ability to know the mind of the Holy Spirit and to receive insight into how given knowledge may best be applied to specific situation
- Words of Knowledge
The ability to declare knowledge which could only be revealed supernaturally...usually in reference to another person.
The gift of faith is the unique ability to trust God against all circumstances
The ability to heal the human body
- Working of Miracles
When the Holy Spirit chooses to "over-ride" the laws of nature, working in or through an available person
The ability to speak words directly from God or know things that will happen in the future.
The ability to understand deeper meanings especially as pertaining to the Word of God allowing the person to bring out new insights, perspectives or life applications from scripture.
- Discerning of Spirits
The gift that enables people to clearly recognize and distinguish between the influence of God, Satan, the world, and the flesh in a given situation
- Speaking in Tongues
The ability for a person to communicate beyond their limits of knowledge and understanding either to God or to others
- Interpretation of Tongues
The ability for someone to understand a person speaking in tongues even though they don't know the language in which the person is speaking
The ability to start new churches and ministries
The ability to clearly and effectively communicate the Gospel of Jesus Christ to non-believers causing them to believe
The ability to strengthen and encourage people
The ability to organize, direct, and implement plans to lead others
The ability that communicate through writing that transcends your own writing ability
They have a heart devoted to Jesus in any way needed and don't desire recognition or being in the spotlight
The ability to clearly and effectively communicate the truths of the Bible to others.
Why We Get Spiritual Gifts
1 Cor 13:13 - 14:25
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
14:1 Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. 2 For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. 3 But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. 4 He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. 5 I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed he interprets, that the church may receive edification.
- Why is the gift of prophesy greater than the gift of speaking in tongues?
- because it edifies the church
- we should measure the gifting by how much it helps the church
- Why does he say unless the speaker of tongues can also interpret?
- Because then they can communicate what the Holy Spirit is saying in a way that can be understood
6 But now, brethren, if I come to you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you unless I speak to you either by revelation, by knowledge, by prophesying, or by teaching? 7 Even things without life, whether flute or harp, when they make a sound, unless they make a distinction in the sounds, how will it be known what is piped or played? 8 For if the trumpet makes an uncertain sound, who will prepare himself for battle? 9 So likewise you, unless you utter by the tongue words easy to understand, how will it be known what is spoken? For you will be speaking into the air. 10 There are, it may be, so many kinds of languages in the world, and none of them is without significance. 11 Therefore, if I do not know the meaning of the language, I shall be a foreigner to him who speaks, and he who speaks will be a foreigner to me. 12 Even so you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel.
- What does it mean that they were zealous for spiritual gifts?
- the Corinthians were hoping to be filled with spiritual gifts
- For what reasons should we seek spiritual gifts?
- to edify the church not to edify ourselves
- So how should we measure how great of a gift is?
- By how it edifies the church; not by how supernatural it is
- Which gifts did he say edify the church?
13 For this reason the one who speaks in a tongue should pray that they may interpret what they say. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful.
15 So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my understanding; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my understanding. 16 Otherwise when you are praising God in the Spirit, how can someone else, who is now put in the position of an inquirer, say “Amen” to your thanksgiving, since they do not know what you are saying? 17 You are giving thanks well enough, but no one else is edified.
- What is praying in the Spirit?
- letting the Holy Spirit direct what you are praying and not coming up with it yourself
- Does Paul say that the problem is that God is not edified?
- no he says that the problem is that no one else is edified
- meaning that the goal was to also edify the believers who are present
18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you.
- Paul spoke in tongues
19 But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.
20 Brothers and sisters, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults. 21 In the Law it is written:
“With other tongues
and through the lips of foreigners
I will speak to this people,
but even then they will not listen to me,
says the Lord.”[e]
22 Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is not for unbelievers but for believers. 23 So if the whole church comes together and everyone speaks in tongues, and inquirers or unbelievers come in, will they not say that you are out of your mind? 24 But if an unbeliever or an inquirer comes in while everyone is prophesying, they are convicted of sin and are brought under judgment by all, 25 as the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, “God is really among you!”
- Who is the gift of tongues for and why?
- It’s for unbelievers so as verse 21 explains they could spread the gospel to those who speak languages other those that the apostles speak
- Who is the gift of prophecy for and why?
- Prophecy is for believers because there is no clear immediate evidence that it’s true since it will happen in the future
- It requires faith
So a big reason for the existence of spiritual gifts is that the church will be edified either by aiding other believers or aiding to convert non-believers
1 Peter 4:10-11
10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
- Why does Paul say that gifts should be used?
- So that God will be praised (through Jesus Christ)
Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, 15 who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. 16 For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
18 And when Simon saw that through the laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, 19 saying, "Give me this power also, that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit."
20 But Peter said to him, "Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money! 21 You have neither part nor portion in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God. 22 Repent therefore of this your wickedness, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you. 23 For I see that you are poisoned by bitterness and bound by iniquity."
- What was wrong with Simon wanting to attain the ability to infuse the Holy Spirit into someone
- Because it was for his own benefit
- When did people receive the Holy Spirit at the time?
- either immediately when they were baptised or when someone prayed for them
Some people receive their gifts when they accept Christ. Some receive when they get prayed over.
Why Gifts Are Given:
- To edify the church
- To edify God or achieve God’s plan
- Not to amaze or confuse
- Not to benefit the gifted person or for them to use it to impress others of themselves
Who Gets Spiritual Gifts?
Romans 12: 4-8
4 For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.
- What does it mean: “We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us”?
- God gives the gifts to whom he please based on grace
- It’s not something that you earn or deserve
- Gifting is not a sign of spiritual maturity or closeness to God
- If you have a gift what should you be doing with it?
- using it for God and the church
30 Then Moses said to the Israelites, “See, the Lord has chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 31 and he has filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 32 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, 33 to cut and set stones, to work in wood and to engage in all kinds of artistic crafts. 34 And he has given both him and Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, the ability to teach others. 35 He has filled them with skill to do all kinds of work as engravers, designers, embroiderers in blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen, and weavers—all of them skilled workers and designers.
- Did these men already have these talents?
- the fact that everyone knew these men and Moses felt it necessary to tell everyone what talents/gifts they had implies that it was recently given to them
- How did God choose who to give the gifts to?
- we don’t know
God distributes His gifts according to His plans in His timing. Just because you aren’t fully equipped to do something now doesn’t mean that it’s not your calling. God will prepare you when you need it.
38 “Teacher,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.”
- What does it mean he was not one of us?
- He was not a follower of Jesus
39 “Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “For no one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, 40 for whoever is not against us is for us. 41 Truly I tell you, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah will certainly not lose their reward.
- How was the man healing people?
- using the name of Jesus
- What does it mean to heal in the name of Jesus?
- it literally means by use of saying and having faith in the name “Jesus”
- Can people heal in the name of Jesus even if they aren’t a follower of Jesus?
- apparently yes
He could only heal in the name of Jesus if he had complete faith that the name of Jesus heals
Some people get spiritual gifts at birth and others get them when God needs them to use the gift. Some people receive their spiritual gifts when they accept Christ and others receive them when prayed for by another believer. If God gives you the gift when He needs to use you, it will be after you become a Christian. If you get the gift at birth you may be able to walk in the gift before you become a Christian. Your gifting will get stronger when you are using it for God’s purpose.
- Having gifts without having the fear of the Lord can be dangerous
- We shouldn't delight in the gifts more than the giver
- You shouldn't focus on the gift. Meaning that you shouldn't put faith or value in the gift instead of the giver of the gift.
- Two of the major reasons that gifts are given are to edify the church and to praise God
- The measure of how well you’re using your gift should be by well they serve these purposes not by how miraculous they are
- Gifts are given to us to help us aid God in accomplishing His plan
- Gifts are not given to amaze or to confuse
- Gifts are not given to benefit the gifted person or for them to use it to impress others of themselves
- We shouldn’t assume that giftings are a sign that the person is spiritually mature or close to God
- God can grant anyone spiritual giftings for the moment He chooses to accomplish his purpose
- If you have had a gift since birth your giftings will get stronger as you are walking in God’s will for your life
- We need to make sure we don’t value the gift more than the giver of the