October 15, 2020
If you are a true follower of Jesus Christ, God has given you a spiritual gift(s) at the moment of your salvation. A spiritual gift is a "God-given, supernatural ability for service." It is different from a natural talent, but talents can be the vehicle through which some gifts operate at times. Spiritual gifts are designed by God to shape and empower our role in the Kingdom of God.
It may be teaching, service, leadership, or administration. It could be the wonderful gift of exhortation or faith ... there are many gifts and the lists given in Scripture are often representative, not conclusive it seems. In 1 Corinthians, Chapter 12, Paul devotes a whole chapter (in fact, the next three chapters) to clearing up some confusion about the gifts. He opens with a foundational statement.
VARIETY OF GIFTS
There are many different kinds of gifts that are given, but God is the One who gives them all. Therefore, we should not compare gifts, boast of our gifts over another’s, or take credit when only God should receive the glory. There’s a reason these are called “gifts.” They are something received from another, higher source.
VARIETY OF MINISTRIES
There are many different ministries, i.e., an area of service through which a gift can be used. Let’s say three men may have the gift of administration. One may exercise that gift as the key administrator in a church, another administrating in a small group, another administrating through His business in ways that manifest God, another administrating in a ministry to children.
Therefore, a believer’s use of his/her gifting is not confined to just one arena. This can be seen through a passion for a certain area of ministry, but our role in that ministry will be driven and enhanced by our gifting.
VARIETY OF EFFECTS
An ”effect” indicates the results of the use of a spiritual gift. God is in charge of the effect. In other words, one man with the gift of teaching may teach and thousands fall on their knees and repent. Another may teach and not as many are affected, but God is accomplishing what He desires, when He desires, and where He desires, through whom He desires. These results are God’s business, not ours.
Therefore, no one should boast about the effects of their ministry and gifts. It is God who is in charge of the results.
A MANIFESTATION TO EACH ONE
The word “manifestation” comes from the root word to shine or be visible. Every believer has a gift; it is an outworking of the Spirit within him and through him and is given to help others. It is not designed to be spent on ourselves, but on others for the "common good." It is one of the means by which the Spirit shines through us to bring light to others. It is given to make God visible, not us.
We must discover and use our gift(s); we must find the ministries where God wants to use them; we must humbly leave the results to God; we must do it for the common good, and we must realize it is in God, through God, and for God that the gifts are given and used.
Father, thank You for the wonderful, unique gifting you give to Your children ... for this supernatural ability, empowered by Your Spirit to do that which you have called each of us—personally and uniquely—to do. Help us discover our calling for your kingdom and grow into the full maturity of our gifting. And may we remember that everything we have is a gift and give all the glory to the Giver!
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October 28, 2020
Tozer said that "What you know about God is the most important thing about you." Right behind that knowledge, though, is what you know about yourself.
Do you know who you are? Paul did. Often in the opening lines of his letters to the churches he would give a one-sentence description that summed up his life. To the Romans, he summed it up in 17 words.
October 27, 2020
October 26, 2020