Gifts of the Holy Spirit Gifts of the Holy Spirit

The gifts of the Holy Spirit are a very important and weighty part of the Christian community, because through them we serve one another.

How we are to use these gifts

The Holy Spirit decides who is to receive which gifts and we decide how we are to use them. There are Christians who use their gifts to manipulate or control others.

God demands that we always act in love and empathy. If we are not able to do this, we have to stop.

Paul writes about the nine gifts of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians, chapter 12.
He writes to the Christians in Corinth about them in his letter, because they are not using the gifts of the Holy Spirit correctly.

All these gifts serve to edify, encourage or warn, and to console other Christians.

Only the gift of speaking in tongues is for the edification of oneself – a wonderful spiritual gift of God, in order to change in spirit and so as not to allow oneself to be dominated by circumstances.

Nine gifts

Insights into God’s wisdom:
The ability of passing on insights into God’s wisdom to a person or in certain circumstances advice that is generated from supernatural wisdom (1 Corinthians 12:8a).

Knowledge:
The supernatural ability to recognize things and to say what is to be done in a certain situation.
Thus, recognizing what is otherwise humanly impossible and passing it on (1 Corinthians 12:8b).

Special measure of faith:

This person has a “special measure of faith” (1 Corinthians 12:9a).
Faith that goes well beyond that which every believer receives as a gift upon being born again in order to believe for others in special situations.

The gifts of healing:
Paul purposely put this in the plural. All Christians can heal in God’s name.
But as a special gift, it is for a special calling to exercise a healing service.
An example of healing: Luke 22:50-51.

The gift of miracles:
Miracles are a supernatural phenomenon, mainly in order to receive immediate solutions from God in special situations.
In John 2:1-10 Jesus turned water into wine. With this miracle, he revealed his glory for the first time.

Prophecy:
The gift of prophecy is not to be confused with the calling to be a prophet, who passes on instructions or detailed teachings.
It is to be thought of as edification. 1 Corinthians 14:3b: “But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.”

Discerning spirits:
With this gift, someone can discern whether something is being done by the Spirit of God or not (1 Corinthians 12:10a), and reliably tell others.

Speaking in tongues:
Someone is given the skill “of speaking in the languages of men and of angels” (1 Corinthians 13:1).
This language is directed to God and not to man.
Therefore one should only use it in the congregation if someone is there who can interpret it (1 Corinthians 14:4-5 & 27-28). It also serves as self-fortification.

Interpreting tongues:
This gift interprets the message that was said in the foreign language (1 Corinthians 12:10c).
It is not a literal translation, but a translation according to meaning, and allows that which was spoken in the generally not understandable foreign language to be made accessible to oneself and to others through interpretation.

What now?

Would you like to learn more about spiritual gifts? Here you will find the brochure Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

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