There are nine gifts of the Spirit enlisted by Paul in 1 Cor. 12:1-11, and diverse gifts of the same Spirit. The nine gifts can be divided into three distinctive categories. First are the REVELATION GIFTS of the word of knowledge, the word of wisdom, and the discerning of spirits. Next we have the POWER GIFTS which are the gifts of faith, gifts of healings, and the working of miracles. The third group is the UTTERANCE GIFTS, which include the gift of prophecy, the gift of divers kinds of tongues, and the interpretation of tongues. Keep mind that ALL the gifts of the Spirit are given for edification, exhortation, and comfort and NOT for self gain or promotion. There is no gift greater than another, and the best gift is the one needed at the moment. That is, a dead person doesn’t need a word of knowledge. The Holy Spirit gives each believer the ability to walk in these gifts and as needed on a daily basis and can manifest any one of these nine gifts through any believer anytime that He wills. Many believers have operated in the gifts without knowing it.
I. REVELATION GIFTS: These give ALWAYS ‘Reveal’ something and are all inclusive to the word of knowledge, the word of wisdom, and the discerning of spirits. These gifts always see life from God’s perspective.
a. The WORD OF KNOWLEDGE will reveal the mind of Christ down in you knower (Spirit of Truth), something that only the Lord knows about a situation, person, place, and etc. This gift will cause you to see what others don’t see, hear what others don’t hear, and know what others don’t know. The Lord will reveal knowledge to you in diverse ways such as dreams, visions, audible voice, and etc. One example of this is found in Acts 9:11-16; when the Lord spoke to Ananias and he knew the name of a man and the house where the man was staying.
b. The WORD OF WISDOM operates by the same revelation, mind of God. There is no natural wisdom involved, whereas we must keep ourselves lined up with the Word of God because everything we do comes down to motive and intent. This gift cannot be gained through studying or natural knowledge. The wisdom of God is the supernatural impartation of unlearned facts received from God alone (Ephesians 1:17). God says to “lean not on your own understanding” (Prov. 3:5), and “woe to those who are wise in their own eyes…” (Is. 5:21). Here are a couple of demonstrations of the word of wisdom operating in the Bible: Paul going before the council (Acts 23:6), Jesus answering the question regarding taxes (Matt. 22:15-22), and when Jesus was tempted (Luke 4:1-14).
c. The DISCERNING OF SPIRITS reveals false doctrine, recognizes the source of all spiritual manifestations, makes known false & real prophets, exposes the motive of people’s hearts, discerns demons, and more. You must maintain a relationship with the Lord and know Jesus (The Word) to fully walk in and appropriate the gifts of the Spirit. How will you know the spirit? Well, a great way of knowing if something is real or fake is given in the way that banks train their employees to know how to detect counterfeit money. They are trained to know by studying the real. As a result, when a counterfeit bill passes their hands they know it immediately. We know the anointing and DISCERN SPIRITS by spending time with the One and only Holy Spirit. Touching Him, smelling Him, hearing Him, tasting Him, and etc… We should, ‘prove (test) the spirits to discover whether they proceed from God’ (1 John 4), and “study to show ourselves approved unto Him” (2 Tim 2:15). Know the REAL THING! And no posers and/or counterfeits will get over on you. Amen!
II. POWER GIFTS: The gift of faith, the gifts of healings, and the working of miracles. Each of these gifts do something.
a. The GIFT OF FAITH will manifest on the behalf of the believer to perform something unattainable by natural human efforts. God injects His supernatural sovereignty and glory, and He works a miracle for us. The gift of faith is the ability to believe for the miraculous (II Thess. 1:3). This kind of faith operates in the realm of the impossible. A couple of examples include the healing of a man afflicted with leprosy (Matt. 8:1-3) and the healing of the crippled man by the Pool of Bethesda (Jn. 9:1-7). These were impossible situations, but God imparted the gift of faith. The results are always miraculous!
b. The WORKING OF MIRACLES is a power gift that is includes natural and supernatural events in God’s timing, and gives all the glory to Him alone. If you want the gift of miracles to operate in your life/ministry, make sure that the Word of God is in you and that you are being influenced by the right people. Miracles are the by-product of the spoken Word of God, because the Word of God and God are the same (Psalm 33:6). One of the most predominant and best examples of the working of miracles is when Moses parted the Red Sea in Exodus 14. The word miracles comes from the Greek word dunamis (dynamite) which means “power and might that multiplies itself.” The gift of miracles operates closely with the power gifts of faith and healings to bring authority over Satan, sickness, sin, and the binding demonic forces of this age.
c. The GIFTS OF HEALINGS is a gift that removes diseases from the spirit, soul, and body. A wonderful picture and true account of this gift is when Elisha told Naaman the Syrian to dip seven times in the water to rid himself of leprosy found in the second book of Kings. Gifts of healings comes by the touch of faith (James 5:14-15); by the spoken Word of faith (Luke 7:1-10); or by the presence of God showing up (Mark 6:56; Acts 19:11-12). It is called the ‘gifts’ (plural) of healings because there are more than one types of healing: physical (diabetes, blindness, cancer, and etc.); emotional healing from jealousy, worry, and many other destructive attitudes; and spiritual healings from bitterness, greed, guilt, and etc.
III. The UTTERANCE GIFTS: Each of these gifts will always say something (inspirational/vocal gifts). The utterance gifts include the gift of prophecy, the gift of diverse kinds of tongues, and the interpretation of tongues.
a. The GIFT OF PROPHECY brings to light the secrets and/or motives of a person’s heart. It will speak life, vision, edification, exhortation, comfort, revival, restoration, and guidance. The gift of prophecy (1 Cor. 12) and the office of the prophet (Eph. 4:11) are NOT the same thing. The gift of prophecy is a divinely anointed & inspired expression directly from God; a Holy declaration in a recognized (known) tongue. It is an expression from the Spirit of God. It is not from man’s intelligence (I Cor.12:7), and any who have the in-filling of the Holy Spirit can function in this gift (I Cor. 14:31). Remember, all prophecy must glorify Christ (John 16:14; I Cor. 12:3; and I John 4:1-2) and agree with the Bible (Is.8:20).
b. The gift of DIVERSE KINDS OF TONGUES glorifies God through spoken language and/or music. In Acts 2 the church received the gift to communicate the gospel in foreign languages. Diverse kinds of tongues are the most misunderstood yet the most dynamic gift. It is NOT your prayer language. This spiritual gift gives us the capability to speak in language(s) not learned. This is a tongue that is understood through interpretation and edifies the church (I Cor.14:15). The gift of tongues and our prayer language are both combinations of God and man. The Spirit gives you utterance and you do the talking. Every believer can speak in tongues, but the gift of these diverse kinds of tongues is a different kind of tongue.
c. The INTERPRETATION OF TONGUES is a supernatural interpretation of the diverse tongue. The interpretation of tongues is not the same thing as translation of tongues. Definition of Interpret: To paraphrase the meaning of; to give the sum and substance of; or to bring out the gist of what is being said. Again, this can only come from the mind of God. When interpretation of tongues is combined with the gift of diverse tongues, the supernatural phenomenon of prophecy is manifested. The Bible says, “Let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret” (1 Cor.14:13). Interpretation of tongues is the only one of the nine gifts of the Spirit that is dependent upon another gift in order to operate. It operates after the gift of tongues has been spoken. As with all the other gifts of the Spirit, this gift is intended for edification (1 Cor.14:12).
One of the most important steps to flowing in the gifts of the Holy Spirit is to earnestly desire them. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 12:31, “…covet earnestly the best gifts.” He repeated that in 1 Cor. 14:1 when he said, “Desire spiritual gifts.” You have to seek these gifts with all your heart (Jer. 29:13). The Bible emphasizes this by saying to stir up these gifts. Here are some scriptures that tell us to not be afraid to stir these gifts up: 1. “…earnestly desire to prophesy” (1 Cor. 14:39). 2. “…desire spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy” (1 Cor. 14:1). 3. “…do not despise prophecies” (1 Thess. 5:19). 4. “Do not neglect the gift that is in you, that your progress may be evident to all” (1 Tim. 4:14). 5. “…stir up the gift of God which is in you…” (2 Tim 1:6). We must simply offer ourselves to God as willing vessels for manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit, making ourselves availability to be used by the Lord. The nine gifts are wondrous aids in building up the Body of Christ and great help to others. Whereas, the conclusion in verse 1 Corinthians 12:7 says that the nine gifts are given to “profit all.” So what are you waiting for?