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Spiritual Gifts and You

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Let’s pray before beginning this lesson:


The greatest need facing Your Church today is to receive Your Holy Spirit.

To receive Him will do two things for the Church: it will produce the fruit of the Spirit, and it will empower the Church through the gifts of the Spirit.

We need the Spirit’s fruit and gifts. This is why we insistently ask You to show us the truth about these important subjects.

We thank You in advance for answering our prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.


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1 Corinthians 12:1

Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers, I would not have you ignorant.


To Christians in the city of Corinth, Paul wrote these words to correct the problem of ignorance in connection with spiritual gifts.

Assuming that such ignorance is still an undesirable condition for Christians, let’s begin what hopefully will be an informative, exciting, and life-changing study on this important subject.

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Matthew 28:19,20

[Jesus said,]

«Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you.

And, see, I am with you always, even to the end of the world.»


2 Corinthians 5:20

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ.


While waiting for Jesus’ return, each one of us must work for Him, teaching the people around us the way to salvation in Jesus Christ.

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John 14:16

[Jesus said,] «I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever.»


Acts 1:8

[Jesus said,] «You shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come on you: and you shall be witnesses to Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and to the uttermost part of the earth.»


To accomplish Jesus’ great commission, we need the presence of the Holy Spirit.

Shortly before returning to His Father, Jesus announced to His disciples that they would receive the Holy Spirit, so that God’s Church might be born, and then grow by proclaiming the gospel to all nations.

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Acts 2:1-4,16,17

And when the Day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

And there appeared to them cloven tongues, as of fire, and it sat on each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost. (...)

«This is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; “And it shall come to pass in the last days, said God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh.”»


The first outpouring of the Holy Spirit took place on the Day of Pentecost.

This outpouring made the Church sprout and grow.

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Acts 4:31

And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.


Acts 10:44

While Peter yet spoke these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.


Since this Pentecost, the Holy Spirit has been working continuously, bringing souls to the cross of the Savior, Jesus Christ.

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1 Corinthians 6:11

But you are washed, but you are sanctified, but you are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.


2 Thessalonians 2:13

God has from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.


After having led us to salvation, the Holy Spirit plays an important part in our sanctification, that is, our continuous spiritual growth.

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1 Samuel 10:6

And the Spirit of the Lord will come on you, and you shall prophesy with them, and shall be turned into another man.


John 14:17

The Spirit of truth (...) dwells with you, and shall be in you.


Galatians 2:20

Nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me.


This spiritual growth can happen only by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Working within us, He will transform us day after day into the image of Jesus Christ.

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Galatians 5:16,17

Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that you cannot do the things that you would.


Galatians 5:25

If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.


The sinner has a natural tendency to go against the will of God.

Only the Holy Spirit can give us the power to obey God.

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1 Thessalonians 4:1

We beseech you, brothers, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as you have received of us how you ought to walk and to please God, so you would abound more and more.


Being justified in Jesus Christ, we are now called to increasingly understand the will of God.

But even more, through the transforming work of the Holy Spirit within us, God calls us to obey His will, so that we «abound more and more».

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Galatians 5:19-23

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, contentions, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.


To transform us day after day into the image of our Savior Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit produces His «fruit» in the heart of every sincere believer.

What a transformation the fruit of the Holy Spirit can carry out in each one of us, if we let Him do so!

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John 14:15,16

[Jesus said,] «If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever.»


Acts 5:32

And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God has given to them that obey Him.


The Holy Spirit also causes us to grow and increase spiritually, as we obey the truth He reveals to us day after day.

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1 Peter 4:10,11

As every man has received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God gives: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever.


Moreover, each one of us has been given special abilities for the building of God’s Church.

The Holy Spirit bestows these spiritual gifts, and they are employed in God’s service, not to glorify the owner of the gifts, not to uplift man, but to uplift the world’s Redeemer, Jesus Christ.

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Why does God impart spiritual gifts to each one of us?

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1 Corinthians 12:4-7 [NKJV]

There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all.


The Bible lists many different spiritual gifts. Our spiritual gifts assessment covers twenty-six of them, named or alluded to in the New Testament.

But all those gifts share a common goal: they are «given to each one for the profit of all».

Therefore, the spiritual gifts help us glorify God and edify each other.

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Here are the twenty-six spiritual gifts included in our assessment

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Matthew 25:14,15

For the kingdom of heaven is as a man traveling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered to them his goods.

And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability.


Aren’t spiritual gifts merely amplifications or applications of natural talents and abilities?

In fact, the Holy Spirit may decide to amplify a natural talent and give it a twist that makes it applicable to the advancement of the Kingdom.

He may, on the other hand, decide to assign a person a gift that has little or nothing to do with natural talents or abilities.

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Colossians 1:9,10

[We] desire that you might be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you might walk worthy of the Lord to all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God.


Also, let’s not mix up spiritual gifts with spiritual disciplines.

Spiritual disciplines include personal Bible study, prayer, fasting, tithing, and other practices that help us grow in faith, control our sinful desires, and develop character.

While spiritual gifts help us serve in the body of Christ, spiritual disciplines help us grow in our relationship to God.

The following table illustrates the distinction between spiritual gifts and spiritual disciplines.

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Distinction between spiritual gifts and spiritual disciplines

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1 Corinthians 12:12

For as the body is one, and has many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.


The apostle Paul uses the analogy of the cooperative functions of human anatomy as an illustration of how spiritual gifts produce unity within the Church body.

Therefore, all spiritual gifts are important, and operating together in harmony, each contributes to the whole.

There is no such thing as an insignificant gift!

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Romans 12:6-8

Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching; or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that gives, let him do it with simplicity; he that rules, with diligence; he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness.


Using our spiritual gifts is an important part of the larger picture of Christian service. It implies that active service on behalf of God’s Church is an integral part of the new-birth experience.

Thus, being born again is more than a personal experience. It turns each one of us into a Christian soldier, ready to fight on behalf of the Kingdom of God.

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1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profits me nothing.


A proper attitude of love underlying the use of our spiritual gifts is the essential ingredient that makes the entire system workable.

Love is the glue that bonds the unity and makes it effective through right attitudes and personality traits.

Through love, we acknowledge that all our spiritual gifts are interdependant and have no hierarchy of value, even though some carry a more visible profile than others.

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1 Timothy 4:14

Neglect not the gift that is in you, which was given you by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.


Our spiritual gifts assessment will help you recognize your gifts. Then you can take steps to develop them to maximum efficiency and usefulness, and set priorities for your service to God’s Kingdom.

You will be much more satisfied and less frustrated knowing that you are doing exactly what God has called you to do on behalf of His Church.

And you will know you are contributing to the overall work of the body of Christ in precisely the way you were meant to contribute.

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1 Peter 4:7,10

The end of all things is at hand: be you therefore sober, and watch to prayer. (...)

As every man has received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.


Romans 13:12

The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.


And, of course, an awareness of the urgency of the times in which we live should cause us to give priority to the exercise of our spiritual gifts.

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We all have spiritual gifts, and it is important for us to use them:

«And [Christ] gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ: that we from now on be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: from whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplies, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, makes increase of the body to the edifying of itself in love.» (Ephesians 4:11-16)

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Luke 11:13

[Jesus said,] «If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?»


Acts 2:38,39

Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

For the promise is to you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.


If we have not yet responded to God’s call to repentance, and if we have not yet received the Holy Spirit, there is still time to act.

If we sincerely desire that the Holy Spirit work within our hearts to transform us, teach us, and guide us, the promise is plain: God will fill us with the Holy Spirit, and we will receive His spiritual gifts.

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Let’s thank God:


Before He ascended, Your Son Jesus Christ gave His Church its marching orders: to take the Good News to the whole world. This job requires that every Christian be involved in some form of ministry.

Fortunately, Your Holy Spirit provides special spiritual gifts to each Christian for use in different ministries.

Which gifts has the Spirit bestowed on us? Please help us discover our gifts and learn how to use them to help finish the work Jesus has given to His disciples to do before His soon return.

In His precious name we pray.


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