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The word from 1 Corinthians 12:1-13 discusses the importance of spiritual gifts and urges believers not to be ignorant about them. It emphasizes the diversity of gifts among believers. The word mentions that there are different gifts given by the same Spirit. It further explains that there are gifts given by the spirit and gifts given by the Lord, and it is important to be aware of this distinction in order to move in the gifts of the spirit effectively. God does not use people by mistake in this process. The passage describes how different operations are performed by the same God. There are different types of gifts bestowed by the spirit, Jesus, and God the Father. There are certain gifts that can only be given by Jesus, while others can only be given by the Holy Spirit. Even if someone is in Jesus, they may not receive these gifts if they have not received the Holy Spirit. God gives special gifts that can only be received by those who are connected with Him. The text explains that God gives gifts to individuals, which are referred to as operations in Romans 12:7, these gifts include giving, prophecy, and leadership.

There are administration gifts given by the Lord Jesus, which are considered essential callings. These gifts are mentioned in Ephesians 4:11 which include the Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, and teachers, referring this to the fivefold ministry.  Paul’s discussion of the nine major gifts of the spirit in 1 Corinthians 12:10, is emphasizing the importance of discernment as one of these gifts., which the gift of discernment is only referred to one time in the New Testament.

9 gifts that are categorized into three groups.

  • The first category is the gifts of power, which includes gifts of healing, working out of miracles, and the gift of faith.
  • The second category is known as gifts of revelation, which includes the gifts of prophecy, discernment, and interpretation of tongues.
  • The third category of gifts is the gift of utterance or vocal gifts, which includes the word of wisdom, word of knowledge, and diverse kinds of tongues.

This shows that it is very dangerous as a believer to depend on what you feel because what you feel in the physical might not be what the spirit is picking up. A lot of Christians have been taught to do spiritual investigation rather than moving in the gift of discernment.

The gift of discernment of spirits is more than just a gut feeling or spiritual investigation. Discernment is distinct from intuition or instincts. The gift of discernment of spirits is not solely based on emotions but involves a deeper understanding and insight into spiritual matters. 1 Thessalonians 5:23 emphasizes that humans are composed of a spirit, soul, and body therefore discernment is not about relying on your basic five physical senses, but instead involves a deeper level of perception and insight. In Ezekiel 3 the Bible tells us that prophet Ezekiel mentions receiving a scroll that was sweet to taste but turned bitter in his stomach. The scripture explains that a man tasted something sweet in his mouth but it turned bitter in his stomach because his physical senses interpreted it differently than his spirit did. The discrepancy between the two reactions to the same thing caused the conflicting sensations. This word emphasizes the importance of not relying on feelings as a believer, as what is felt physically may not align with what is sensed spiritually. Many Christians have been encouraged to focus on spiritual investigation rather than utilizing the gift of discernment. People tend to be suspicious rather than having a discerning spirit in their interactions with others.

Not every believer in Christ has the gift of discernment, every believer who has the Holy Spirit can operate in this gift, because Holy Spirit is the source of this gift. Simply believing in Jesus does not automatically mean that a person has the Holy Spirit within them. In other words, it is possible to have faith in Jesus without having the Holy Spirit. Paul asked a group of people in Acts 19 which baptism they had received, and responded they had received water baptism. He then asked them about the baptism of the Holy Spirit, but they had never heard of such a baptism before. Paul laid his hand and they received the gift of the Holy Spirit. As a result, they began to prophecy and speak in other tongues.

It is important to understand the gift of discernment of spirits in order to effectively operate within it. According to the book of Proverbs 11, it states that the just will be delivered through knowledge.

What is discernment of spirits?

  • This is the ability to distinguish what is genuinely from God or simply from human emotion or reasoning.
  • The ability of being able to discern and judge spiritual matters, as they cannot be accurately evaluated using physical or worldly standards.
  • The ability of being able to discern what influence the spiritual realm is having on the physical realm, as not all spiritual influences are necessarily divine in nature.

The majority of the information about Jesus Christ during the completion of the New Testament was passed down orally, as there was no written text about him at that time. What they had was the Torah, which is also known as the Old Testament. Christians needed to be able to discern and differentiate between true teachings and false beliefs in order to maintain their faith. 1 Thessalonians 5:19-20 reminds believers not to suppress the Holy Spirit and not to reject prophetic messages. Many Christians today do not have the ability to discern or test prophecies, leading them to despise them.

The gift of discernment was given for the purpose to know if a person or a message is from God or not and to distinguish between the Holy spirit and the evil spirits in order to discern the source of spiritual influences. It is important to have an active prayer life in order to have a discerning spirit. It is within the spirit of discernment that one understands spiritual warfare. Without it, one will struggle to comprehend the complexities of spiritual warfare.

In order to activate the gift, one must grow in their understanding of righteousness and move beyond the level of being a spiritual “baby” who only consumes milk, because it is possible to have knowledge of the law but lack proficiency in applying or utilizing that knowledge effectively. One needs to mature or grow in the spirit and exercise spiritual senses through dwelling in the word. This suggests that spiritual growth and development come from engaging with scriptures and cultivating a deeper connection to the divine. Hebrews 4:12 teaches us that the word of God is a discerning force. Prayer is the quickest way to unlock the gift.


Apostle Miz

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