What are the gifts of the Holy Spirit?
“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit, and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as He wills.”
1 Corinthians 12:4-11 ESV
There is something so beautiful about this scripture and what we learn of the Holy Spirit. He discerns, He decides, and He gives. It is the Holy Spirt, in His omniscience who determines who will receive which gift. Each gift is given with the same objective, to edify the church. Each church will have unique people, but not unique needs and the Holy Spirit will exercise His authority to manifest the gifts in the people of God for that church and for that season. Each gift is a powerful display of the God’s authority and power on earth today. As believers we have access to all 9 and the ability to stir up these gifts with the Lord.
The 9 gifts are:
- The Word of Knowledge: Supernatural knowledge and insight into things we would not naturally can know.
- The Word of Wisdom: Supernatural ability to properly apply knowledge to a situation.
- Prophecy: Receiving a direct word from the Lord, usually to give to someone else.
- Faith: Supernatural measure of faith.
- Healing: The supernatural ability to pray for someone to receive healing.
- Working of Miracles: The supernatural ability to perform a divine act by which God reveals Himself to people. (ex. Parting of the Red Seas)
- Discerning of spirts: Supernatural insight and knowledge involving other spirits. (ex. angelic or demonic)
- Different Kinds of Tongues: Supernatural ability to speak in natural foreign language and / or heavenly language
- Interpretation of Tongues: Supernatural ability to interpret the heavenly language
When praying for and seeking out the gifts of the Spirt, we must ask ourselves, why am I pursuing these gifts in my life? Are we akin to Simon the magician who after witnessing the power of the Holy Spirt in Peter and John offered them money to have the same authority in the Spirit (Acts 8:4-24). He was seeking the gifts out of a place of jealously, for personal benefits and advantages.
Do we desire to manifest the gifts to make our name known or do we so deeply love the church, that we want to be a part of the growth of the body of Christ?
Paul concludes 1 Corinthians chapter 12 with the importance of working in unity to glorify God. The church members are not competing or attempting to outdo each other, but instead are moving in unison to reach the lost for salvation and to God be the glory. Paul further clarifies that we should search our hearts and our motives when exercises the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all of the faith, so as to remove mountains, but I have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.”
1 Corinthians 13:1-3 ESV
I found it interesting that there are 9 fruits of the Holy Spirt and 9 gifts of the Holy Spirit. The number 9, in the bible symbolizes divine completeness and conveys the meaning of finality. Where the 9 fruits show God’s impartation of His divine nature into us, the 9 gifts are a manifestation of His power working through our lives. Allowing the Holy Spirit to impart and manifest in our life is one of the greatest gifts from the Father and Jesus.
“But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor – Counselor, Strengthener, Standby) will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him (the Holy Spirit) to you [to be in close fellowship with you].”
John 16:7 AMP
In conclusion, the Holy Spirit is our life-long companion. We should strive to develop a relationship with Him. We should want to see the evidence of His fruits in our lives as we grow and seek to make our heart a home for the Father and the Son. It is a blessing to partner with the Holy Spirit and receive gifts that will edify and empower other believers and lead others to Jesus. Our salvation is a gift from God and a life partnered with the Holy Spirit activated in love is our greatest contribution to this world.
May we learn to walk in all the authority, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit have granted to each of those He call His own.
Continue here for Who is the Holy Spirit
Continue here for Gifts of the Holy Spirit