The Holy Spirit

Parts of this teaching on the Holy Spirit are not embraced by all of orthodox Protestant Christianity. However, it should be noted that at least 50% of orthodox Protestant Christianity does agree fundamentally with the teachings of this lesson. Examine both sides of any argument in the light of God’s Word.  Mix faith with the teachings of scripture, exercise faith in God and in God’s word, and enjoy a blessed life.  Be not confused, but be diligent. This teaching explores what can be termed as the Pentecostal, Full Gospel, or Charismatic viewpoint. The single largest Christian denomination that holds to this teaching is the Assemblies of God. Many persons in the Christian community are unaware of the teachings contained herein. On the subject of spiritual gifts, Paul says, Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant (1 Corinthians 12:1).

 

Be like the Berean Christians and check out any teaching by the word of God.  Even still, opposite views can be reached by persons reading the same Bible, loving the same Jesus, and serving the same God. It is the view of the majority of Baptists and Fundamentalists that this teaching is not biblical.  It is acknowledged that different views do exist regarding the present day ministry of the Holy Spirit, but all of orthodox Protestant Christianity, Eastern Orthodox, and Catholic Christian, affirm the deity of the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Holy Trinity. Seek God and draw your own conclusions from a position of understanding.

This three-part teaching on the Holy Spirit is not exhaustive.  It is intended to briefly present the subject of the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the nine Gifts of the Spirit.  The teaching concludes with a brief account of my own personal experiences regarding the Holy Spirit’s ministry.

PART 1 – THE DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

Doctrinal Statement God the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Holy Trinity. He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ and convicts of sin, of righteousness and of judgment and calls men to the Savior. His presence in the Christian is the assurance of God to bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ.

Importance of This Doctrine The Holy Sprit of God participates in the redemptive work of man by drawing lost man to the Savior.  Further, the Holy Spirit was given to the believer to be the indwelling power of God in the life of the believer, thus allowing the Christian to have constant communion and fellowship with God, and to be directed and led as the believer yields himself to the will of God.

Comment on This Doctrine  It has been said that God’s gift to the world is Jesus Christ and that God’s gift to the church is the Holy Spirit.

Genesis 1:1-3  In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

Acts 5:3-4 But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? 4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.

The above teaching is held by all of Orthodox Christianity. The following two teachings are in some circles controversial, even divisive, within the Christian community. Each Christian should study the matter out and draw his own conclusions. The next two parts have the pro-Pentecostal viewpoint described. The infilling of the Holy Spirit, and the Gifts of the Spirit are, in the pro-Pentecostal viewpoint, available to the individual believer, and are also used to strengthen and edify the individual and the local church and to advance the kingdom of God. 

PART 2 – THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT 

An Experience Subsequent To Salvation

The following passage of Philip’s ministry in Samaria describes how people believed on Christ and were baptized.  Earlier in the chapter Philip was casting out devils and ministering healings.  There was great joy.  Yet though these Samaritans had been saved and had been baptized in water, no one had as yet received the Holy Spirit.

Acts 8:12-17 But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13 Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done. 14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: 15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: 16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.

The Samaritans here were saved.  They were water baptized.  There is a work of the Holy Spirit in the new birth, but that is not called receiving the Holy Spirit.  That is called being born again.

There is an experience, which follows salvation that is called receiving, or being filled with, the Holy Spirit.  It is also referred to as being Baptized with the Holy Spirit.  Though technically, in some circles, there is a preferred expression, the infilling of, baptism in, or receiving the Holy Spirit, in this teaching will be used synonymously.

 John 20:20-22  And when he had so said, he showed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. 21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. 

The Promise Of The Holy Spirit

Jesus promised the Holy Spirit in John 14.  In Acts 2 we read of the fulfillment of that promise.

John 14:16-17  And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. 

Acts 2:32-33 This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. 33 Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.

Jesus prayed that the Father would send another Comforter to abide forever.  On the day of Pentecost He shed forth the Holy Spirit, who has been here ever since.  It is not now a matter of the Father’s giving anyone the Holy Spirit.  It is a matter of our receiving the Holy Ghost.

Sinners can receive Christ, but not the Holy Spirit.  Receiving the Holy Spirit is for the Church, the Body of Christ, those that are born again.

Regeneration By The Holy Spirit And The Infilling Of The Holy Spirit

John 4:13-14 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: 14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.

John 7:37-39 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. 38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 39 (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

The water referred to in both passages above is a type (example) of the Holy Spirit.  Two different experiences are spoken of.

First, to the woman at the well, Jesus said “But the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”  Here, Jesus is referring to the Holy Spirit in the act of regeneration.  The Holy Spirit is represented as a “well of water springing up into everlasting life.”

The second passage speaks of “rivers of living water,” and speaks of the promise of the infilling of the Holy Spirit.  “Out of his belly (innermost being) shall flow rivers of living water.”

Jesus invites us to come and drink and get full.  How do you know when you are full?  Acts 2:4 says “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”  If you are a believer, it is just as simple as Jesus said it is.  Come and drink, and keep drinking until you get full. When you get full, you will start speaking with other tongues.  This is the initial sign or evidence that you are filled. 

The Evidence Of The Holy Spirit’s Indwelling

Let us consider an example from scripture of tongues being the convincing proof that believers had received the Holy Spirit.

Acts 10:44-46  While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. 45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. 46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.

When Peter took the gospel to the Gentiles, the Jewish brothers were highly critical (Acts 11:3).  Peter explained the following, showing that the salvation of the Gentiles was genuine and therefore to be recognized by the Jews.

Acts 11:15-18  And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning. 16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost. 17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Note that it was the speaking in tongues that finally convinced the Jewish Christians that these Gentiles had received the gift of salvation. Another revealing passage regarding the infilling of the Holy Spirit being an experience subsequent to salvation, and it’s initial evidence being speaking in other tongues is found in Acts 19:1-6.

Acts 19:1-6 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, 2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. 3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. 4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. 5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. 

Thirteen Reasons Why Every Believer Should Speak In Tongues 

#1  Tongues Is The Initial Sign Of The Believer Being Filled With The Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. 

#2  Tongues For Spiritual Edification.

1 Corinthians 14:4 He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself.

#3  Tongues Remind Us Of The Spirit’s Indwelling Presence.

John 14:16-17  And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

#4  Praying In Tongues Will Keep Our Prayers In Line With God’s Will.

Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

#5  Praying In Tongues Stimulates Faith.

Jude 1:20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost. 

#6  You Are To Pray — Sing In Your Prayer Language.

1 Corinthians 14:14-15 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. 15 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.

Ephesians 5:19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 

Colossians 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

#7  Praying In Tongues Keeps Us Free From Worldly Contamination.

1 Corinthians 14:28  But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God. 

#8  Praying In Tongues Enables Us To Pray For The Unknown.

Romans 8:26-27 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

#9  Praying In Tongues Gives Spiritual Refreshing.

Isaiah 28:11-12 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. 12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.

#10 Tongues For Giving Thanks.

1 Corinthians 14:15-17 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also. 16 Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? 17 For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified.

#11 Speaking In Tongues Brings The Tongue Under Subjection.

James 3:8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 

#12 You Speak To God.

1 Corinthians 14:2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. 

#13 You May Be Used In The Gifts Of The Spirit.

1 Corinthians 12 and 14

Seven Steps To Receiving The Holy Spirit

Step #1            Understand Intellectually That The Gift Has Already Been Given.

Step #2            Salvation Is The Only Prerequisite.

Step #3            Laying On Of Hands.

Step #4            Expect To Speak In Tongues.

                        (Acts 2:4; Acts 10:46; Acts 19:6; 1 Cor. 14:4, 4-5, 14-15, 18, 27) 

Step #5            The Believer Need Not Fear Receiving Something False.

                        (Luke 11:9-13) 

Step #6            Receive The Holy Spirit And Speak The Language He Gives.

                        (Job 29:21-23; James 5:7; Hosea 6:3; Zechariah 10:1 Note: Every Bible student knows that the latter rain refers to the Holy Spirit.)

Step #7            No Confusion Should Gather Around the Candidate.  (More than one person can be laying on hands, but only one ministering believer should be giving the candidate instructions.)

Pray the prayer of faith:  Dear Lord Jesus: I thank you that you shed your blood on Calvary’s cross for my sins.  I ask for forgiveness for my sins and I do acknowledge you as my Lord and Savior. I ask you to baptize me in the Holy Spirit.  I claim by faith the baptism in the Holy Spirit right now.  Thank you Jesus, Amen.

Now, begin to praise Jesus, but not in your language.  You will be using your vocal chords and lips and you will be speaking as on the day of Pentecost, but the Holy Spirit will be giving you a new language to praise God.  You will have another hot line to heaven with which to pray and praise the Lord.

Start reading the book of Acts and 1 Corinthians, chapters 12, 13, and 14.  The Word and Jesus will become more real in the coming weeks.  When the enemy comes with thoughts in your mind, resist him with the Word of God and pray in the Spirit.

Lest anyone fall into spiritual pride at receiving the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues, remember that the Great Love Chapter, 1 Corinthians 13, is sandwiched between the two Great Spiritual Gifts chapters.  And lest we forget the purpose of the Gifts, remember that the Great Resurrection Chapter, 1 Corinthians 15 immediately follows the Gifts chapter.  The purpose of the Gifts include power to live the resurrected life we have in Christ. 

Luke 11:9-14 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 10 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. 11 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? 12 Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? 14 And he was casting out a devil, and it was dumb. And it came to pass, when the devil was gone out, the dumb spake; and the people wondered. 

In my experience there are three camps in the Christian community regarding the infilling of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. They are:

  • The infilling is available to every believer. These are the Christians who actually pursue the infilling of the Holy Spirit and by faith have a prayer language known only to God.
  • The infilling of the Holy Spirit with the evidence in speaking with other tongues is a valid, present-day gift, but it’s not for all Christians. These are the Christians who acknowledge the speaking in other tongues, but they themselves do not.
  • The infilling of the Holy Spirit with the evidence in speaking in other tongues is not for today. The need for it went away when the apostles died and the canon of scripture was completed.

Determine which camp you are in. Know what you believe and why you believe it. Rest in Christ. The objective is to be conformed into the image of Christ, to love the Lord, to draw near to Him. Whichever camp you are in, respect the views of others, and don’t cause them to stumble. We should not be ignorant of the subject matter, but once we’ve settled it our heart we move forward. Should more light come on the subject in our own lives, then let that cause us to study the scriptures more deeply to know what is the will of the Lord. Amen. 

PART 3 – UNDERSTANDING SPIRITUAL GIFTS

Spiritual Gifts are those special abilities given by Christ through the Holy Spirit which God intends Christians to use in fulfilling His Purpose in the Earth. Major teaching chapters on this subject are 1 Corinthians 12 and 14.

CONCERNING SPIRITUAL GIFTS:

1.   They are received, not achieved.

2.   They are given to fulfill Christ’s purpose in the earth (Acts 1:8).

3.   They differ from natural talents; they are completely supernatural.

4.   They are different from the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).

5.   A Believer can be given more than one gift; we are to seek the best gifts (plural) (1 Corinthians 12:31).

6.   They are given to us by “measure” (Ephesians 4:7; Romans 12:3), and just like faith, can be increased.

7.   There are at least three things to consider concerning the measure of your gifts.

  • We each must relate to our gifts honestly and realistically (Romans 12:3; 1 Peter 4:10-11).
  • The measure of our gifts can increase (Luke 19:26).
  • Be careful not to step beyond your measure of the gift (2 Corinthians 10:13, Romans 12:3).

8.   We must be careful of the enemy’s (Satan’s) attempt to confuse us with counterfeit gifts (Acts 16:16-18).

9.   They are meant to be permanent and to be used throughout our lives (Romans 11:29).

10. The Gifts of the Spirit are distributed throughout the Body of Christ. Jesus had the fullness of the Holy Spirit “without measure.” (John 3:34). Collectively the Body of Christ can be likewise, though no other individual alone has the fullness of the Holy Spirit “without measure.”

 John 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him [Jesus].

The Nine Gifts Of The Holy Spirit

1.   Word of Wisdom

2.   Word of Knowledge

3.   Discerning Of Spirits

4.   Faith

5.   Working of Miracles

6.   Gifts of Healings

7.   Prophecy

8.   Various Kinds of Tongues

9.   Interpretation of Tongues

They are arranged in groups of threes as follows:

1.   The Revelation Gifts

[The Word of Wisdom; the Word of Knowledge; Discerning of Spirits]

2.   The Power Gifts

[Faith; Working of Miracles; Gifts of Healings]

3.   The Inspiration (Vocal) Gifts

[Prophecy; Diverse (Various) Kinds of Tongues; Interpretation of Tongues]

The Most Important Gift:  Within each category there is an order of importance, or priority.  The more distributed a gift, the lesser the gift.  This is not to say that any gift is unimportant.  Whatever gift is needed by the Church and is manifest by the Holy Sprit, is at that time the most important gift.  However, all things being equal, the Gift of the Word of Wisdom is the most important of the nine gifts, it reveals the mind of God for a situation.  Note this as you read through the following explanation of the nine Gifts of the Spirit. 

1 Corinthians 12:1-13, 31 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. 2 Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led. 3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. 4 Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 8 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing[s] by the same Spirit; 10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. 12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. 13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 31 But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet show I unto you a more excellent way.

 The Three Revelation Gifts

 #1 The Gift Of The Word Of Wisdom

The Word of Wisdom is a supernatural revelation by the Spirit of God concerning the divine purpose in the mind and will of God. The supernatural ability in the Spirit to impart special and specific information, insight, guidance or counsel, which brings life changing illumination. 

The gift of the Word of Wisdom is just that, the Word of Wisdom and not Wisdom itself, spoken of for example in 1 Corinthians 2:6-7; Ephesians 1:17-18; The Book of Proverbs; Daniel 1:4.

There are two types of Wisdom, one is earthly, James 3:14; 1 Corinthians 2:4 and the other, is divine, James 3:17; 1 Corinthians 2:6-7.

Biblical (Divine) wisdom comes from God and His written Word through research and studying but does not automatically qualify one’s ability to operate in the gift of the Word of Wisdom. Conversely, operating in the gift of the Word of Wisdom does not mean that an individual has “great wisdom.” You can be spiritual (manifest spiritual gifts) but very immature (lacking Christ-like character) or you can be very mature but not very spiritual. Of course the preference is to be both spiritual and mature!

Why the “Word” of Wisdom?  A word is a “part” of a sentence.  We do not receive all of the wisdom of God, but only a partial amount. So, just as a word is a part of a sentence, the Word of Wisdom is a part of the wisdom of God manifested in the life of a believer, for an occasion, as the Holy Spirit wills. 

Biblical References For The Gift Of The Word Of Wisdom

  • Daniel 2
  • Acts 27:21-25
  • 1 Kings 3:16-28
  • Acts 8:26-29
  • Acts 11:28-30
  • Acts 21:10-11 

Acts 27:21-25 But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss. 22 And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship. 23 For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, 24 Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. 25 Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.

#2 The Gift Of The Word Of Knowledge

Through the Word of Knowledge the discouraged can be comforted, the saints gladdened, lost property recovered, the enemy defeated, and the Lord Jesus Christ glorified.  The God-given ability to receive a spontaneous knowledge of facts or details about a person or situation that has not been discovered through natural inquiry – a supernatural revelation by the Holy Ghost.

This supernatural gift is different from being knowledgeable:

1.   The Word of Knowledge can reveal the cause of sickness or demonic oppression in an individual.

2.   It can reveal root problems when counseling.

3.   It reveals secrets of the heart for repentance.

4.   It gives insight for intercessory prayer.

Many gifts can work closely with other gifts.  The Word of Wisdom can work with the Word of Knowledge, just as the Gift of Faith can work with the Working of Miracles and Gifts of Healings, and the Gift of Divers Tongues can work with the Gift of the Interpretation of Tongues.  Let us not limit God!

Biblical References For The Gift Of The Word Of Knowledge

  • 1 Kings 4:2-3
  • 2 Kings 5:20-27
  • 2 Kings 6:8-12
  • John 4:18, 29
  • John 1:47-48
  • Acts 5:1-18
  • 1 Kings 19:4, 14, 18
  • 1 Samuel 9:3-4, 6, 19-20
  • 1 Samuel 10:21-23
  • Acts 9:10-12
  • Acts 10:9-20

1 Kings 19:4, 14, 18 But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers. 14 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away. 18 Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. 

Acts 9:10-12 And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord. 11 And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth, 12 And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight. 

#3 The Gift Of Discerning Of Spirits 

The God-given ability to know whether the spiritual source behind certain behavior is divine, human or satanic. The Discerning of Spirits gives insight into the spirit world. 

This is one area in which people tend to become very “spooky.” This gift is not intended for one to go around trying to discern everything people say or do. The Discerning of Spirits is not “discerning of devils” nor is it the “discerning of evil spirits.”  The Discerning of Spirits is not limited to demonology.  It has to do with spirits, both good and bad.  It is supernatural insight into the realm of spirits.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Discerning Of Spirits

  • Mark 9:25
  • Matthew 16:15-23
  • Acts 8:23
  • Acts 13:9-12
  • Acts 16:16-18
  • Isaiah 6

The three REVELATION GIFTS reveal something.  Listed in order of importance, they are:

1.   The Word of Wisdom – a revelation of the mind of God

2.   The Word of Knowledge – a revelation of things in the present or past

3.   Discerning of Spirits – giving insight into the spirit world, but limited to a single class of object – spirits

Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Acts 16:16-18 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: 17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation. 18 And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.

Wouldn’t these Revelation Gifts be useful in your personal life and in the local church? How excellent for the God of the universe to be sharing a specific word to you for your benefit, your family’s benefit, and to benefit the Christian community? Would a Word of Wisdom from God be a good thing? Of course it would. Don’t discount these Revelation Gifts, rather, seek after the gifts, and ask God to impart them unto you, and see what the Holy Ghost will do in you and through you.

The Three Power Gifts

#4 The Gift Of Faith

The Gift of Faith is a supernatural endowment by the Spirit whereby that which is uttered or desired by man or spoken by God shall eventually come to pass.  The God-given ability to believe for the extraordinary or impossible within the will of God in a particular situation, both short and long term.

There are different kinds of faith in the scriptures.  There is saving faith that comes before salvation.  There is the faith that God has given to every person, and general faith that all believers have.  There is faith (or faithfulness) associated with the Fruit of the Spirit which concerns a persons character.  The manifestation of the Gift of Faith comes after the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, and is not specific to salvation or character, but to power.

The great Faith Chapter, Hebrews 11, describes the faith of many of the saints of old.  The majority of the chapter deals with what might be called “successful” faith experiences.  But all of the saints in this chapter had the Gift of Faith.  Even those at the end, those who were destitute, wanderers, persecuted and died, they too endured and looked forward to the promise of God, by faith, by the Gift of Faith.  Through good times and bad times, the saints of God, through faith, lived successfully, loving God and receiving the Spirit’s Gift of Faith.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Faith 

  • Acts 16:16-18
  • Genesis 6: Noah
  • Genesis 22: Abraham
  • Matthew 14:23-31
  • Daniel 6:16-17, 19-23
  • 1 Kings 17:2-6
  • Galatians 3:5
  • Hebrews 11
The Gift of Faith (power)

1 Corinthians 12:9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit. 

Faith All Possess

Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. 

The Fruit of Faith (character)

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith [faithfulness], 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Saving Faith

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

General Faith

Mark 11:24 Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

#5 The Gift Of Working Of Miracles 

The supernatural ability to serve as a human channel through which God can perform acts which transcend the laws of nature. A miracle is a supernatural intervention in the ordinary course of nature, a temporary suspension of the accustomed order through the Spirit of God. 

The word “miracle” is applied to many things, from passing a school test, to consumer products (e.g. miracle fabrics) to a beautiful sunrise.  Yet in the context of the Working of Miracles we come back to the “ground rules” of the Gifts of the Spirit, and that is that they are all supernatural.  The Working of Miracles is a supernatural event, an intervention in the ordinary course of nature.  For example, when Moses parted the Red Sea, or when Jesus fed the multitudes with a few loaves and fish, those were examples of the working of miracles.  When Jesus calmed the storm by the spoken word, that was the working of a miracle, and it was an intervention into the normal course of nature (the storm would have stopped eventually, as all storms do – yet this one stopped immediately at Jesus’ word.  Jesus worked a miracle). 

When a miracle is worked, the believer gets the victory, God gets the glory, the unsaved are astonished, the unbelief of this world is confused, and the devil gets a mouthful of dust.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Working Of Miracles 

  • Acts 4:22
  • Acts 3:1-10
  • Matthew 14:15-27
  • John 4:43-54
  • John 2:1-11
  • Acts 19:11
  • Acts 20:7-12
  • Acts 9:36-41
  • Luke 7:11-17
  • 1 Kings 17:12-16
  • Acts 5:1-5

1 Kings 17:12-16 And she said, As the LORD thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die. 13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. 14 For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth. 15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. 16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Elijah.

 Acts 4:22 For the man was above forty years old, on whom this miracle of healing was showed.

#6 The Gifts Of Healings

The supernatural ability to serve as a human channel in ministering divine healing and restoration of health apart from natural means. The purpose of the gifts of healings is to deliver the sick and to destroy the works of the devil in the human body.

Jesus had a healing ministry.  He also gave his disciples authority to heal the sick (Matthew 10:8).  While any reasonably intelligent Christian or ChristianMinistry is not opposed to medical science, surgeons, or physicians, the spiritual gifts of healings are entirely separate from medicine.  Christians thank God for skilled persons in the medical community who strive for knowledge and understanding, and seek to improve the quality of life of mankind.  But let us not confuse the diligent application of those associated with the healing sciences with the spiritual gifts of healings.  Supernatural healing comes not by diagnosis or by prescribing treatment, but by the laying on of hands, anointing with oil or sometimes just by speaking the Word.

We believe in natural healing and thank God for it.  But we also believe in supernatural healing. One person administers gifts of healings to another.  When we exercise faith and believe God, on our own, and we are healed, it is a blessing from God, but not necessarily the gifts of healings being manifested.  All of the nine gifts are supernatural, spiritual, and manifested through one person to another (or others).

Biblical References For The Gifts Of Healings 

  • Acts 10:38
  • 1 Corinthians 12:28-30
  • The ministry of Jesus as recorded in the Gospels
  • Matthew 4:24
  • Matthew chapters 8 and 12
  • Mark 1
  • Luke 4:40
  • Acts 28:8

The POWER GIFTS all do something.  In order of priority, they are: 

1.   The Gift of Faith – The gift to receive miracles; a process

2.   The Gift of Working of Miracles – The gift to work miracles; an event 

3.   The Gifts of Healings – The gift to work miracles – but limited to one area – physical healings

Matthew 10:8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. 

1 Corinthians 12:28-30 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? 30 Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? 

Acts 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

Would you or your church benefit from the operation of the Power Gifts? Many times when someone is sick, or we’re facing a giant issue where great faith is needed, or if we could receive a miracle, what a joy that would be! Well, dig into the Gifts of the Spirit, explore them, understand them, and one day you may well participate in them, making that difference in your life and the lives of others which comes through the operation of the Power Gifts.

The Three Gifts Of Inspiration  (The Three Vocal Gifts) 

#7 The Gift Of Prophecy

The Gift of Prophecy is supernatural utterance in a known tongue.  It is the God-given ability to sense the mind and will of God, either past, present or futuristic, for a person, group or situation and to communicate it accurately through divinely anointed speaking. 

Having the Gift of Prophecy is not the same as being a Prophet, as recorded in Ephesians chapter four. The Gift of Prophecy in the local Church is limited to exhortation, edification and comfort. Also it is the only gift out of the nine that has such wide scope for ministering to and blessing the Body of Christ: Paul encourages everyone to prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:1, 31).

There are three methods of Prophesying:

1.   The Office of the Prophet: Ephesians 2:30; 4:11; 1 Corinthians 12:28; Acts 13:1.

2.   Prophetic Preaching: 1 Peter 4:11.

3.   Prophetic Presbytery:1 Timothy 4:14; Hebrews 6:1-2; Acts 13:1-3 as used in:

a)      Prophetic revelation and confirmation of those called into leadership ministry in the Church.

b)      Ordination to the five-fold ministry (see Ephesians 4:11).

c)      Confirmation and activation of membership ministries in the Body of Christ.

d)     Progress in Christian Maturity.

e)      The Spirit of Prophecy: This is an anointing arising from Christ within the believer, which takes place on occasions of special anointing: Rev. 19:10.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Prophecy 

  • Acts 21:8-11
  • 1 Corinthians 12:10; 14:1, 3, 4, 6, 22, 24, 31, 39
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21
  • Romans 12:6
  • Joel 2:28

 Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.

1 Corinthians 14:1-5 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy. 2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. 3 But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. 4 He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church. 5 I would that ye all spake with tongues, but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying. 

1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 Quench not the Spirit. 20 Despise not prophesyings. 21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

#8 The Gift Of Divers (Various) Kinds Of Tongues

Divers kinds of tongues is supernatural utterance by the Holy Spirit in languages never learned by the speaker, not understood by the mind of the speaker nor necessarily always understood by the hearer.  It is a God-given ability to communicate in an unfamiliar language (either human or divine) and is used in the public assembly. 

Every believer can speak in tongues, since every believer can receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  But not every believer will have the gift of divers tongues to give an utterance in the public assembly.  Thus there is a difference between being filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in other tongues, and giving utterance in the public assembly – the gift of divers (various) tongues.

In the hierarchy of the Gifts of the Spirit, the vocal gifts are the least of the gifts.  This is not to say that they are useless, but that they are the most widely distributed and most frequently used.  It is also a gift that requires another gift to “complete” it, that being the gift of the interpretation of tongues.  Every message in tongues in the public assembly requires an interpretation, either by someone other than the one who spoke in tongues, or, if no one interprets, the one who spoke the message in tongues is to seek God for the interpretation.  It must be interpreted.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Divers (Various) Kinds Of Tongues 

  • 1 Corinthians 14:18, 39b
  • Acts 2:4; Acts 10:46
  • Acts 19:6 9:
  • Mark 16:15-18 

Mark 16:15-18 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. 

(Observe that every single sign mentioned in Mark 16:15-18 is indeed supernatural.)

#9 The Gift Of Interpretation Of Tongues 

The supernatural ability to interpret an unknown language either divine (angelic) or natural (human) to a person or group of people into a language they understand without any natural aids.  The interpretation of tongues is the supernatural showing forth by the Holy Spirit of the meaning of an utterance in other tongues. 

This gift requires another gift in order to operate, that being the gift of divers tongues.  As such, it is the least of the gifts.  The purpose of this gift is to render the gift of tongues intelligible to the hearers so that the church as well as the possessor of the gift may know what has been said and may be edified thereby. 

Interpretation of tongues is just that, an interpretation.  It is not a translation.  Interpretations can be short when the utterance in tongues was long, and vice versa.  It is an interpretation of the utterance.

It is noted that of the nine Gifts of the Spirit, seven are found in both the Old and New Testaments.  The two gifts specific to the New Testament are the gift of divers tongues and the gift of interpretation of tongues.  These two New Testament gifts are for the Christian filled with the Holy Spirit.  In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit came on certain people for a limited time.  In the New Testament the Holy Spirit is a permanent resident with the Christian, and the ability to speak in tongues for the believer is specific to the New Testament Christian, and thus the gifts of the Spirit specific to tongues is also unique to the New Testament.  Again, it is supernatural and specific to the New Testament believer.

Biblical References For The Gift Of Interpretation Of Tongues

  • 1 Corinthians 14:1-9, 27-28, 40

The INSPIRATION GIFTS (VOCAL GIFTS) all say something.  Their order of importance is as follows: 

1.   Prophecy – Does not depend on another gift to operate 

2.   Divers Kinds of Tongues – Must be followed by another gift, but is the first gift of the two to operate 

3.   Interpretation of Tongues – Depends on another gift to operate; is subservient to the gift of divers tongues 

1 Corinthians 14:5 I would that ye all spake with tongues, but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying. 

1 Corinthians 14:13-15, 27-28, 40 Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret. 14 For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. 15 What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also. 27 If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret. 28 But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God. 40 Let all things be done decently and in order. 

In my life I have enjoyed being a part of conservative Pentecostal churches, full-tilt Spirit-led assemblies, Baptist, Christian and Missionary Alliance, Methodist, and Independent churches. The full-tilt Spirit-led churches exercise the Gifts of the Spirit at nearly every gathering of the saints, be it church or chapel services. All others either have no evidence at all of operating in any of the nine Gifts of the Spirit in the church service, or at best, very infrequently. Conclusion? Examine the people and the fruit of the ministry. Is the church flourishing, are people being won to Christ? Are members maturing in their walk? Christ is the head of the Church, and we seek to serve Him in spirit and in truth. When the Vocal Gifts are in operation the church congregation is blessed, very blessed. I’ve seen it hundreds and hundreds of times. Let us challenge ourselves to be conformed into Christ’s image first and not look down upon anyone who is exercising or is not exercising these nine Gifts of the Spirit. 

My Experience   As a boy the occasional times I went to church I did not observe anything supernatural going on. Everything was predictable. When I came to Christ and enjoyed the forgiveness of sin I immediately set out to understand the faith I now embraced, as well as the faith of other organizations I didn’t agree with – but needed to know why I didn’t. These included the Mormons, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Christian Scientists, etc. I discovered that their founders were in the grave, their doctrines opposed orthodox Christianity and Christ, in their teachings, was a created being, and not God Almighty, the second person of the Holy Trinity. The uniqueness of Christianity was that Christ didn’t come with some new teaching, but he came to show us God and be the savior of men. And by his death, burial, and resurrection God showed his approval of the sinless man Christ Jesus, God in the flesh. This was exciting to me! It was not just a mental choice to believe something, rather, it was evidenced that Christ was God and that God was real by what was done. I was a Bible believer pursing God, and I wasn’t going to get short-changed in any area.

After a series of meetings in the Christian and Missionary Alliance church I attended, a visiting evangelist, Ravi Zacharias, came and after a week of his preaching I was energized to pursue Christ all the more. This led me and a friend, Steve, to meet weekly to memorize Bible verses and listen to tapes on the Holy Spirit. Over the following weeks we both memorized over 100 scriptures each, word for word, with references, and also concluded that the Baptism in the Holy Spirit was for us. Steve worked with a man, Randy, who attended a Pentecostal church, and he invited Steve to church and Steve then invited me.

Let me add that shortly before these events I had been prayed for to receive the infilling of the Holy Spirit but nothing happened. This left me somewhat discouraged. (This is the reason at Prisoners For Christ that we don’t preach on the infilling of the Holy Spirit to men behind bars. The short time we’re with them does not allow for an expanded teaching on the subject, and the results are discouragement and disillusionment for the men. We consider this graduate-level subject matter, and we only undertake its teaching in those instances where we can minister to a smaller group of men over a period of time, which due to the nature of jail and prison work doesn’t happen often at all. So in prison we focus on bringing men to Christ and discipleship, and leave it to the church after their release to pursue the infilling of the Holy Spirit.) So we went to Randy’s church. In my heart I just knew that if the men would lay hands on me and pray I’d receive the Holy Spirit. We arrived early and made ourselves known. The leader of the assembly, Gene, told us tonight we’d be filled with the Holy Spirit. He didn’t know me from a load of hay, but he had such conviction and confidence that I took note! The church service got underway. I don’t remember what was sung and I don’t remember the teaching that night. I had my mind on one thing, the Holy Ghost!

At the end of the service Gene announced we were all going to pray for the two couples to receive the Holy Spirit, and that we’d do it where we were, standing at our seats. No one was going to lay hands on me! I was bummed, but regrouped and entered into a season of prayer. Nothing. Nothing happened. I felt the discouragement coming over me again. After a short visit at the end I got my coat and was preparing to leave. One of the brothers, Ernie, walked over to me. He looked at me and said “start praising the Lord!” I thought to myself “what’s this all about? The service is over, God is gone, it’s time to go…” Then I thought “I’ll look like a fool.” Then the Lord prompted me and asked if I’d be a fool for Christ, and I figured I was willing to do about anything now so let’s go! I lifted my hands and began to pray out loud in English. Ernie said to pray in tongues and I said I didn’t know how. Then I felt the hands of the brothers as they came around and began to pray with the laying on of hands. In my spirit I knew this was it!!! I kept praying in English, the brothers were all laying hands on me, and Ernie said “don’t speak in English, don’t think in English…” This was where one person was giving instruction and the others were supporting me in prayer. So I received a vision of Heaven and started speaking in another language and I was off and running! The brothers were rejoicing, I must have rattled off 10 minutes straight of speaking in tongues. I had all the teaching, I knew what was going on and why, and by faith and with proper ministry I entered in. Oh happy day!

Next I remember wanting to participate in the Gifts of the Spirit. My small neighborhood church was the perfect place to begin. Many men and women had the vocal gifts, and following their example I entered in. There were times early out where I just knew God was moving on me to bring a prophecy, but I bottled it up, only to have the pastor preach a message that fit perfectly with the word the Lord had shared with me (meaning if I had shared the word from the Lord the assembly would have been blessed and the message from the pulpit confirmed). When I’d talk with him about it later he’d smile and put his finger up to my face while saying “next time let the Lord have his way!” So with solid teaching, example, and with the patient counsel of mature men of God in an environment of affirmation and encouragement, in a smaller church service setting, I gradually became capable in the vocal gifts. Before this infilling I wanted to raise my hands during the worship service, but couldn’t. After the infilling, I couldn’t keep my hands down! That continues to this day, amen! Twice at this church we had the ministry of the Presbytery, when prophetic words were spoken over us from men well-seasoned in the things of the Holy Ghost. We fasted and prayed three days before these meetings, and the mature men of God laid hands on us, one by one, and spoke over us the words of the Lord, which were unto edification, exhortation, and comfort. What a holy time!

Since this first Pentecostal church experience I have attended two other Pentecostal churches. The first of these was a new church plant started in the north end of the city where I lived. This was pretty much a repeat of my first church experience, where a small band of men pressing into the things of God came together to study, pray, fellowship, and watch God move. The pastor here said he fully expected a moving of the Holy Spirit in every meeting we had, and that’s pretty much what happened! We were all excited, were moving forward, and had a deep love one for another.

Presently I’m at an Assemblies of God church, and have been for over half of my Christian life. This is a very large church that embraces as well the teachings of this lesson. The services, being large, are more structured and conservative than the first two Pentecostal churches I was a member of, yet the opportunity is there as well to enter into the ministry of the Holy Spirit and at this church the Holy Spirit’s ministry is welcome.

For all these years I’ve used my heavenly prayer language, and have moved in many of the Gifts of the Spirit. The gifts are there for the asking. We ask and we receive. Sometimes we have to press in harder, but we receive. We use these same gifts on the foreign mission field, where situations call for prayer. We pray in the Spirit and with understanding, to the glory of God. This is an experience and an understanding that I thank God for on a regular basis. To God be the honor and the praise, great things he has done!

My Belief  From the scriptures I believe that all Christians can and should enter into the infilling of the Holy Spirit and have the joy of speaking to God in a heavenly prayer language to their edification and to the glory of God. I also believe that a person can be filled with the Holy Spirit and be a dynamo for the cause of Christ without exercising the faith to receive a prayer language. God is mighty. There are documented cases of seasoned Christians who have for years prayed in a heavenly prayer language only to shipwreck and ruin their testimony. Thus to declare that the Baptism in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues is a guarantee against falling into sin would simply be disproved by known experiences within the Christian community. But how much better, how much more power, how much more joy, how much more drawing close to Christ the Lord and participating in the Gifts of the Spirit would it be for the believer than to not have this joy? Pastor, Teacher, Leader – be very careful how you approach the subject of The Holy Spirit. Let’s get it right, let’s mix faith with it, let’s understand and not be ignorant, and let’s lead those entrusted to our oversight in the glorious ways of the blessed God of Heaven, His Son, and the Holy Ghost.

My Warning  Paul the apostle had to bring some major correction to the church at Corinth because of their mishandling of the Gifts of the Spirit (see 1 Corinthians 12 and 14). The Gifts of the Spirit are given for the benefit of the church, and they have boundaries. There is right way to enter into these Gifts, and there are wrong ways. There can be excesses; there can be “showtime” and pride that rises up as one considers themselves “spiritual.” Further, Paul says to judge prophesy, and mature men and women of God are to do just that. Persons can make mistakes in participating in the Gifts of the Spirit. If that happens, pick up and move forward and learn! Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater!

Let me articulate another reality. We live in the New Testament age. Christ is risen. The Holy Spirit has been given. The plan of salvation is revealed. The objective is before us – to Go Into All The World and Preach the Gospel to Every Creature. The precious ministry of the Holy Spirit is desperately needed in the church today, but let us be mindful that these Gifts are provided to help us to live holy, to minister in word and in power, and to advance the cause of Christ. The ministry of the Holy Spirit need not be a mystery. To move the heart of God doesn’t require digging into 2 Chronicles to find some obscure scripture (I say that with hesitation but I trust you understand what I mean) and then try to draw out some spiritual application and pronounce that the Spirit of the Lord is saying thus and so… We’re in the New Testament beloved! The tools are the Gifts of the Spirit. You need some heavenly wisdom to make an important decision? Well, there’s the Word of Wisdom right in plain sight! Seek that, not some hocus-pocus fabrication. Don’t seek your answer in one of the prophets, but seek it in the Christ the Lord, and the New Testament gift to the church, the Holy Ghost! Be careful about concluding that only a few special people at some special church have the corner on the spirituality market. Heaven forbid! God has an army worldwide that is being led and guided by the Holy Ghost because that was God’s plan and way long before you or I or your church ever showed up on the scene! Let us not make this harder than it needs to be! Pursue Christ and his kingdom, live holy, receive the infilling of the Holy Ghost and fully expect that God will bless you with His Gifts as you seek after them, remain open to them, and have the faith for them.

Tongues are a sign to the unbeliever (1 Corinthians 14:22), but when out of control these same unbelievers think you’ve lost your marbles! (1 Corinthians 14:23) It’s when we get it right, and operate as mature believers (1 Corinthians 14:20), that the unredeemed has the secrets of his heart revealed (sounds like the Word of Knowledge working together with the Gift of Prophesy) then he knows that God is present and he falls on his face and gets saved! (1 Corinthians 14:24-25) So if you think these gifts aren’t needed any longer, perhaps you should reconsider that viewpoint! When people stop needing to be saved, then we’ll leave off needing the Gifts of the Spirit! Who says church is boring??? Not when this happens!

Acknowledgements: Numerous teaching and preaching (live or on tape) sermons and publications from the following ministers: Ben Torres, Pat Robertson, Philip Gaines, Roland Capes, Kenneth Hagin, Dick Benjamin, Don Lee, Randy Siers, Joe Fuiten, Francis Anfuso, Gary Beasley. Also referenced in this lesson was Assemblies of God brochure #739189, The Gifts and Fruit of the Holy Spirit.

About the author: Bob Jordan has been a Christian since the late 70s.  He was Baptized in the Holy Spirit on March 1, 1981.  He has been used in various of the Gifts of the Spirit, including all the vocal gifts, and some of the power and revelation gifts.  He has attended numerous seminars and teaching sessions on the Holy Spirit and His Gifts and has been a member of Pentecostal churches for 29 years.  He has been ministering in jails and prisons since 1979 and is a prison team group leader for Prisoners For Christ Outreach Ministries, Woodinville, WA. He serves as an international missions group leader to Africa and India, and is newly elected chairman of its Board of Directors. Twice annually he teaches seminars on Christian Doctrine, and Preaching and Teaching Workshops. He holds a Certification of Ministry from Cedar Park Assembly of God. He and his wife Leslie have been married 31 years and have eight children. Bob is a licensed professional mechanical engineer and is VP, research & development, at a manufacturing company. He freely admits that before Christ he was one of the devil’s nobodies, but with Christ he has become one of God’s some bodies. How else would a person heading for hell on a downhill run be able to enjoy so much of life for such a long period of time? It’s because he was apprehended by the Spirit of God, received Christ for the remission of sins, and then joined himself to assemblies that cared for him, trained him, showed him a good example, and gave him opportunity to participate in the work of the kingdom of God. How can I ever thank my Jesus enough? In humility I honor Him who died for me and sent his Spirit to live within me.

Author’s note: Whereas the teaching presented herein is the product of years of personal study, observation, and experience, any errors, omissions, or misrepresentations are the author’s own, and not the responsibility of any referenced persons or publication listed herein. Further, citing anyone or any organization above is not necessarily an endorsement of all that that person or organization may promote, teach, or even in how they conduct ministry or behave. They are cited because during the preparation of this teaching some materials they presented specific to this teaching were useful to the author. The author wishes to again stress that his testimony is not your testimony, nor should it be. This teaching is presented to build faith in the reader, to not only come to Christ for the remission of sins, but to enter into all that God has for his children. The end goal is to be conformed into the image of Christ, having the power to live the Christian life in a manner well-pleasing to God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen and amen.

copyright 2013 Dr. Robert F. Jordan
May be used freely for the edification of the Christian community. Not to be sold.

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