Read Introduction to 1 Corinthians
4 “There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.”
WHAT IS A SPIRITUAL GIFT?
I. WHAT SPIRITUAL GIFTS ARE NOT:
1. A spiritual gift is not natural talent, ability, or aptitude.
· Talents such as speaking and music may be avenues through which the Holy Spirit will use a gift.
· We should develop our talents because the Holy Spirit may choose to use them through our gift.
· A person may possess a great natural talent but the Holy Spirit will not bless the church because this person does not have a spiritual gift. For example, a person may have a great and pleasing voice but cannot edify people spiritually.
· A person without natural talent may have a spiritual gift and greatly bless others.
· Spiritual gifts work in the spiritual realm and natural talent works in the natural realm.
· Only Christians possess spiritual gifts (1 Co 14:16, 23, 24).
· Spiritual gifts can be counterfeited by Satan.
2. A spiritual gift is not a ministry role.
3. A spiritual gift is not the same as “fruit” of the Spirit.
o Purpose: Fellowship with God
o All believers can be filled with the Spirit and produce fruit
o The end
o Edify believers
o All believers cannot have the same gift
o Sovereign bestowal by the Holy Spirit
o The means
4. A spiritual gift is not a call to a given kind of ministry.
5. A spiritual gift is not an office of ministry.
· Offices pertain more to the person but a gift is an endowment upon the person.
· A person with an office should have a gift that corresponds to the office.
· It is possible to have a gift without the office.
6. A spiritual gift is not a ministry.
· A ministry is a sphere in which we exercise our gift. It is an outlet for employment of our gift, an area of service.
· The gift remains the same but ministries may change.
7. A spiritual gift is not a place of service.
II. WE DO NOT OBTAIN SPIRITUAL GIFTS BY:
2. Acquired abilities (it does take cooperation on our part)
III. WHAT SPIRITUAL GIFTS ARE:
1. Definition: A spiritual gift is a special, supernatural capacity or enablement given by the Holy Spirit to do the work of God in edifying the body of Christ.
Source: God the Holy Spirit
Essence: capacity to do the work of God
Purpose: to build up the body of Christ and reach the lost
Recipients: everyone in the body of Christ
2. “Spiritual gift” is from two Greek words:
· Pneumatikos = literally spiritualities; the source of a gift is divine.
· Charisma =
o charis part of the word means grace and the ma part of the word is passive meaning “something received”
o this is not a person with a charming or magnetic personality
o used 17 times in the New Testament with three separate uses:
§ Initial salvation (Ro 5:15,16; 6:23)
§ General gift of grace or love (Ro 1:11; 1 Co 1:11; 7:7)
§ A special endowment of spiritual capacity for service (Ro 11:13; 12:6; 1 Co 1:7; 12:4,9,28,30,31; 1 Ti 4:14; 2 Ti 1:6; 1 Pe 4:10).
3. A spiritual gift is a “manifestation of the Spirit” (1 Co 12:7).
4. It is given sovereignly by the Holy Spirit (1 Co 12:4,5,7,8,9,11,18,28; He 12:4).
5. Every believer has at least one gift (1 Co 12:7; 1 Pe 4:10).
6. God gives the spiritual gift by grace and not by any merit or effort on our part (1 Co 12:6).
7. A spiritual gift is not a ready-made ability to perform but a capacity that must be developed.
God gives every believer at least one and probably more spiritual gifts.
Have you identified your spiritual gift? In following lessons we will help you identify your gift/gifts.