Operation – Gift of Faith Session #7

Introduction: 1 Corinthians 12:7-10 

  1. Three Different Kinds of Faith 
    Saving Faith – (Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 10:17) = Gift Certificate 
    The Fruit of Faith/Faithfulness (Galatians 5:22 KJV) = Pineapple
    The Gift of Faith (1 Corinthians 12:9) = A small, boxed gift w/ mustard seed inside

Romans 12:3 – A Measure of Faith! Paul is not thinking of saving faith in this passage.
Throughout scripture, salvation comes by grace through faith. This “saving faith” is so central to the gospel that we may automatically assume that every biblical mention of faith means “saving faith.” In Romans 12:3 however, saving faith is not what Paul has in mind. We can be confident of this because he applies the concept of quantity (measure) to this particular use of “faith”. 

If there were different measures of saving faith then there would necessarily be different degrees of salvation. But scripture is clear: there is one flock (John 10:16) and “there is neither Jew nor Greek…slave nor free…male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28)  You are either born again or you are not. No believer can be more or less born again than any other believer, and likewise cannot be more or less saved than any other believer. As such, saving faith cannot be what Paul has in mind in this verse.

So, if Paul is not talking about saving faith, what does he mean by talking about a “measure of faith” assigned by God? In the context of Romans 12:3-8; Paul introduces the idea of a “measure of faith” in the context of God equipping every believer with:

Unique gifts with which to build up the body of Christ!

The amount of faith required to use their gifts effectively!

God Fully Equips You for Effective Service!

  • The Gift of Faith (Little Gift Box with Mustard Seed) – (Matthew 17:20; Luke 17:5-6; 1 Corinthians 13:2)

 The faith which we are talking about is — special faith — it’s something other than general faith or saving faith. It is a supernatural manifestation of the Holy Spirit whereby a believer is empowered with special faith, or wonder-working faith, and it is beyond simple saving faith.

The gift of faith is the greatest of the three power gifts. And this gift is miraculous just as the rest of the gifts of the Spirit are miraculous.

The gift of faith is a gift of the Spirit to the believer in order that he might receive miracles. The working of miracles, on the other hand, is a gift of the Spirit given to the believer that he might work miracles. One gift receives, the other does something.

The working of miracles is active; it actively works a miracle. The gift of faith doesn’t work a miracle, but passively receives a miracle. In other words, the difference between the working of miracles and the gift of faith is that the gift of working of miracles actively does, and the gift of special faith passively receives.”

Daniel in the Lions Den (Daniel 6:23) He received a miracle.

Jesus exercised this gift in Mark 4:38 – sleeping the raging storm. 

Daniel wasn’t bothered by the Lions in the Den. 

Jesus wasn’t bothered by the storm. 

Three Hebrews weren’t terrified by the furnace. 

Throughout the Bible we see how the gift of faith worked primarily for people who were in danger. And through this gift of the Spirit, they possessed a calmness and quiet assurance that was supernatural.

Wigglesworth = “if you will take a step of ordinary faith, when you come to the end of that faith, very often this supernatural gift of special faith will take over.”

We often don’t receive/operate the gift of faith because we haven’t even exercised the faith we already have. 

The Purpose of the Gift of Faith. 

To Raise the Dead. 

The three power gifts, or the three gifts that do something — the gift of faith, the gifts of healings, and the working of miracles — will very often work together. In the case of raising the dead, all three of these power gifts — the gift of faith, the gifts of healings, and the working of miracles — operate together.

To raise the dead, it takes supernatural faith — the gift of special faith — to call a person’s spirit back after it has left the body. 

Then it takes the working of miracles because the body would have started to deteriorate, as in the case of Lazarus (John 11:39).

Raising the dead also takes gifts of healings because if the person who was raised from the dead wasn’t healed, whatever he died from would still affect his body and he would die again. So, the person would have to be healed too.

 Therefore, all three of the power gifts are in manifestation when someone is raised from the dead.

  • To Cast out Demons

In casting out demons, the gift of discerning of spirits and/or the gift of the word of knowledge, as well as the gift of faith, are in operation. If you don’t discern or see the spirit, very often the presence of the evil spirit is revealed through the word of knowledge. But the gift of faith still has to be exercised in casting out the spirit.

We can’t deal with the devil in our own strength. But God has given us His Word, His power, His authority, and all the spiritual equipment necessary to enforce Satan’s defeat in our own lives. And a part of that spiritual equipment God has given us is this supernatural gift of faith.

  • To Sustain You in unusual circumstances. (1 Kings 17:3-6)
  • To Protect You (Daniel 6)
  • To Confer Blessing (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob) 
  • To lay hands on others to receive the Holy Spirit (Galatians 3:5) 

He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he itby the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

The Gift of Faith 

Elijah – controlling fire (I kings 18:38)

Elijah – fed and sustained (1 Kings 19:4,6)

Daniel – protected (Daniel 5:22)

Peter – inward calm – (Acts 12:6-11)

Closing: Hebrews 11:1-39 & Hebrews 12:1-2 NKJV

Operation – Session #6 “Prophecy”


Introduction: 1 Corinthians 12:7-10; 1 Corinthians 14:3 NKJV;

The Gift of Prophecy. 

The simple gift of prophecy is given for edification, exhortation, and comfort. In the office of the prophet, however, we very often find that revelation or fore-telling does come forth, even utilizing the vehicle of prophecy.

It is also interesting to note the difference between prophecy in the Old Testament and prophecy in the New Testament. In the Old Testament, prophecy was essentially foretelling, but in the New Testament, we see that the gift of prophecy shifts strongly to forth-telling.”

Fore-telling = to predict the future

Forth-telling – to make known or to make public. 

“Some people think that “to prophesy” means to preach. Of course, all inspired utterance is prophecy in some form or another, but the spiritual gift of prophecy isn’t preaching. Although, of course, there is an element of prophecy in preaching. For example, a person anointed by the Spirit becomes inspired to say things spontaneously from his Spirit rather than his head. But that is only one phase of the operation of the gift of prophecy.

Maybe you’ve been speaking to someone about the Lord and said things to them that were in line with the Word, but that was beyond your thinking. You didn’t think it, and it didn’t come out of your mind. Instead, the Holy Spirit inspired you to say it. 

That is a part of the operation of this gift of prophecy because prophecy is an inspired utterance. Therefore, the gift of prophecy goes “beyond speaking by our reasoning processes and intellect.

“To preach” means to proclaim, to announce, to cry, or to tell. The scriptural purpose of the gift of prophecy is different from the purpose of preaching.

Jesus didn’t say that the foolishness of prophesying would save men, but by the foolishness of preaching (1 Cor. 1:21). 

The supernatural gifts of the Spirit are given to get people’s attention, not to save them. On the Day of Pentecost when people were speaking in tongues, none of those standing by listening got saved until Peter got up and preached to them (Acts 2:14-41).”

The gift of prophecy should not be confused with the prophetic office. The simple gift of prophecy has no revelation in it. Instead, it speaks unto men for their edification, exhortation, and comfort (1 Cor. 14:3); it is to edify the Church (1 Cor. 14:4).

May you be lifted up. (2 Corinthians 13:10; Ephesians 4:12,16; 1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Edify – to build up, lift up, and construct. 

We desire to give you a word from the Lord that will build up your life, lift your Spirit, and construct you into the Christian that Christ has called you to be.

As believers, it is our responsibility to build one another up. (Romans 14:19; Romans 15:2; 2 Corinthians 12:19)

You can build yourself up – 4 He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the Church. 

The gift is to build up the whole Church. Can you imagine a church that is built up, lifted, and constructed in power and the authority of Jesus Christ? (Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 2:20-22; Mathew 5:14) 

May you be encouraged! (Hebrews 10:25; 2 Timothy 4:2; 

Exhortation – to embolden you in your belief and to encourage you. Romans 8:38-39

When you are in a place where you feel unworthy. (Romans 8:1; Isaiah 43:25-26; 1 John 1:9)

When I long for the way that it used to be. (Isaiah 43:18-19; Psalm 37:23-25; 2 Timothy 1:7)

When I need God to provide. (Psalm 37:25; 3rd John 2; Psalm 23:1; Malachi 3:10-12; Mark 10:28-31; Philippians 4:19)

When I need healing. (3rd John 2; Luke 6:19: James 5:14-16; Isaiah 53:5; 1 Peter 2:24; Psalm 103:3; Psalm 118:17)

When I need to be lifted and encouraged. (Psalm 42:1-11; Psalm 34:18-22; Psalm 27:4-5; Psalm 27:11-14.

May you be comforted. (Isaiah 40:1;1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Hebrews 9:27; 1 Corinthians 15:51-58; Revelation 4:1-2; 2 Corinthians 4:8-9; 

Comfort = the origin means to come alongside, to summon for assistance. It’s to bring encouragement and cheer or to console. You could say it like this; it’s the dispelling of grief by the imparting of strength. 

Isaiah 40:1 Comfort Ye my people

Operation – Session #5 Discerning of Spirits.

Key Verse: 1 Corinthians 12:10 NKJV

Discerning of Spirits!

Do I have the gift of discernment?

Five things that the discerning of spirits is not…

  1. It is not discernment. (it is the discerning of spirits)
  2. It is not spiritual telepathy.
  3. It is not discerning of people
  4. It is not discerning just discernment of devil’s and demons.
  5. It is not discerning faults of others.

What most call discernment is a word of knowledge in operation.

The gift of the Holy Spirit came to destroy this “gift” of discerning faults in others, which is nothing more than criticism. Then the Holy Spirit will replace your gift of criticism and fault-finding with the sweet blessing of gentle forbearance and the ministry of reconciliation. The power and ability to fault find and criticize is a “gift” that non-believers and believers can possess.

Is it a spirit or is it flesh? Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 8:13; Colossians 3:5

How do we distinguish a good spirit from a bad one? This is difficult to explain, but I suppose it would be just as difficult to explain how the lamb knows the bleat of its mother. Jesus said, My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me! The gift carries with it the power to judge whether it be from God or another source. 

We need to be careful about these things. We need to be scriptural and believe the truth of God’s Word and practice it! We need to be careful to follow what the Word says if we are to receive lasting results. It is just like any other Bible doctrine. If you overemphasize any one Bible doctrine to the exclusion of others, you can go to the extreme and get out of balance.

Balance =stability

Imbalanced = instability (unstable) James 1:5-8; James 4:8;

Paul encouraged us to pursue Love; God is love, pursue God! Paul also instructed us to desire spiritual gifts, but the pursuit is love. If we pursue love (God), gifts will be given. In our seeking God, miracles, signs, and wonders follow those who believe. We aren’t pursuing the gifts. Nor are we chasing the miracles, signs, or wonders; the pursuit is God. Many pursue the signs, miracles, wonders, as an act of pursuing God, but it’s the pursuit of self-promotion!

How do I know that I am operating in the gift of discerning of spirits?

To discern means to perceive or recognize by seeing or hearing. The discerning of spirits is the same as seeing or hearing in the realm of spirits. The discerning of spirits gives us supernatural insight only into the spiritual realm. It reveals to us what kind of spirit is in operation behind a supernatural manifestation or sign! 

Three domains can be discerned. 

  1. Heavenly (Godly) 
  2. Satanic (ungodly)  
  3. Human (humanity) 

Word of Knowledge compared to discerning of spirits.

A fact can be revealed to you about a spirit and its actions regarding an individual by the gift of the word of knowledge, but you wouldn’t have a vision of the spirit; you would not discern the evil spirit.

If you discern a spirit, you would see the spirit because the discerning of spirits sees into the spirit realm. If the word of knowledge is in operation, you may know that a spirit is present or is involved in a particular situation, but you wouldn’t see the spirit. A word of knowledge is a revelation by the Holy Spirit of certain facts in the mind of God.

The Spirit of God may impart a word of knowledge to us to let us know if someone is operating by another spirit and not by the Spirit of God.

Howard Carter: “If one were informed about a spirit but had no vision of the spirit, he would not discern it. By discerning spirits, we see beyond the sphere for which we have been created since we are natural beings. It is only by the revelation of the Holy Spirit that we can perceive the beings that live in the spirit world.”

Remember, that discerning of spirits does not just see evil spirits! We can also and should desire to see godly spirits. 

Biblical Examples of the discerning of spirits:

Heavenly (Godly) 

Exodus 33:20-33 – Moses saw into the spiritual realm.

Isaiah 6:1 – Isaiah saw into the spiritual realm. (similitude) (No one has seen God (John 1:18; 1 John 4:12)

Ezekiel 1:1 – Ezekiel saw visions of God!

John the Revelator Revelation 1:9-20; Revelation 4:5 He had a vision of the Spirit of God)

Daniel 10:4-6 Daniel had a vision of pre-incarnate Jesus Christ.

Jacob (Genesis 28:10-16) dreamed of angels ascending and descending.

Satanic (Ungodly) 

Acts 16:17 – Paul spoke to the spirit of divination; he spoke directly to the spirit and not the person.

Micaiah (I Kings 22:19-22) saw an evil spirit come before the throne of God.

The ability to cast out demons and evil spirits is not listed as a spiritual gift or a ministerial duty. However, the whole bible is a message about deliverance. Jesus practiced and operated in the ministry of deliverance. 

The bible gives us the different levels of organization that our enemy, the devil, is running. There are seven categories of demons in Scripture: thrones, lordships, rulers, authorities, principalities and powers, rulers of the darkness, and evil and unclean spirits. Regardless of what level they are, they can be cast out in Jesus’ name. They have no choice but to leave when you cast them out in Jesus’s name. (Ephesians 6; Revelation 2:13; Revelation 13:3; 16:10; 2 Kings 1:2-3, 6, 16 Baal –“lord”)

Human (earthly) 

Jesus judged the heart of Judas and the other 11 Disciples (John 6:70-71)

Jesus judged the heart of Nathaniel (John 1:47-48)

Acts 6:3 – seek out men that are full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, good reputation. 

Who better to know the heart of a man than the Holy Spirit!

We often associate the discerning of spirits with evil, but the reality is that it can bring comfort, revelation, and direction to your soul. 

Closing: 2 Kings 6:8-22 ‘open his eyes that he might see” 

Operations Session #4 – Wisdom

Key Verse: I Corinthians 12:7-11 NKJV

Introduction:

All gifts work by one and the same spirit. (1 Corinthians 12:11)

We are to desire that these gifts be made manifest among us, and we are to leave it up to the Holy Spirit to use whomever He wills. He will not use everyone the same way.

Scripture states that the Holy Spirit distributes the gifts of the Spirit to every man severally as He wills. Some desire to be used in a particular gift; however, this may not be what God wills for him. Therefore, we must stay open to God and let His will be done, even in spiritual gifts. There is trouble when we want to do something ourselves and go for it instead of what God wants. 

God is always looking out for our best interest; we should trust Him.

What is the gift of the word of wisdom?

  1. It’s the gift of the word of wisdom, not the gift of wisdom.
    1. General knowledge – vs- supernatural knowledge
  1. Joshua 1:8 = Joshua was to meditate on the word to obtain wisdom in conducting his daily life; that’s general wisdom. He gained wisdom through knowledge of God’s word.
  2. James 1:5 – James said that if any lack wisdom, let him ask God for it. So we see that this general wisdom gives us the ability to deal wisely in the affairs of life; this wisdom will be given to anyone who asks for it. The wisdom that James is talking about is wisdom to deal wisely in the affairs of life. It’s also wisdom to know how to conduct yourself as a Christian.

A word of wisdom is the supernatural revelation by the Spirit of God concerning God’s divine purpose and plan. 

The word of knowledge deals with the past and present. A word of wisdom will pertain to the future.

We break the gifts apart for understanding and teaching. However, the gifts often operate together. Tongues and interpretation work together, but a word of knowledge and a word of wisdom often work together.

Old Testament prophets not only prophesied about the present, which is the word of knowledge in operation, but they also prophesied about things in the future, which is the word of wisdom in operation. 

The office of prophet and the gift of prophecy is different.

 An individual who operates in the prophet’s office (A gift according to Ephesians 4:11) should have the gift of the word of wisdom operating in his life consistently.

Kenneth Hagin said that for a person to stand in the office of the prophet, a person needs to have at least two of the revelation gifts operating continually in his life and ministry, plus the gift of prophecy.

In other words, for a person to stand in the office of the prophet, he would need to be called to the fivefold ministry as a preacher, teacher of the Word, or another office. (Eph. 4:11,12). Also, have two of the three revelation gifts — the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, or the discerning of spirits — plus prophecy operating consistently in his ministry.

The gift of prophecy should not be confused with the prophetic office. The simple gift of prophecy has no revelation in it. Instead, it speaks unto men for their edification, exhortation, and comfort (1 Cor. 14:3); it encourages the Church (1 Cor. 14:4).

How does this gift make itself known in my life? 

  1. Your own prayer life. (John 16:13-14) “show you things to come.”
  2. Through individuals called to the fivefold ministry. (Ephesians 4:11)
  3. Through the gift of tongues and interpretation of tongues. (1 Corinthians 12)
  4. Through a vision or a dream (Joseph received a dream that declared the plans and purposes of God) (Genesis 37)
  5. Prophecy is a vehicle that God uses to bring revelation of his intents and purposes.
  6. By an angel (Acts 8:26)
  1. Examples of the word of wisdom in operation…
  1. John on the Isle of Patmos was receiving a word of knowledge and a word of wisdom simultaneously.
  2. Ananias (Acts 9:10-16) received a word of knowledge and wisdom together.
  3. Philip (Acts 8:26-29)

Operation in the Old Testament:

  1. A word of wisdom to Noah (Genesis 6:13-18)
  2. A word of wisdom to Joseph (Genesis 37:6-11)

Operation in the New Testament:

  1. A Word of wisdom through Agabus (Acts 11:28; Acts 21:10-13)
  2. A Word of Wisdom to Paul (Acts 27:10; Acts 27:23-24)

A word of Wisdom with a condition. (Jonah 3:4)

Further Study: Acts 16:9-10; Matthew 10:18-20; Jeremiah 18:7-10; Deuteronomy 18:22) 

Operations Session #3 Word of Knowledge

Key Verse: 1 Corinthians 12:8

  1. Is it natural?

A word of knowledge is a supernatural manifestation of the Holy Spirit. All the gifts of the spirit are supernatural. Not one of them is natural. If one of them were, then they would all have to be natural. However, since one is supernatural, then they all must be supernatural.

It’s also not knowledge of or about the bible. (2 Timothy 2:15 – Study)

It’s not indicative of how close your relationship is with God. (Eli and Samuel)

A word of knowledge brings revelation, and that revelation is not about future events — it’s present or past related. The word of wisdom, on the other hand, reveals plans and purposes concerning the future.

  1. The word of knowledge operated throughout the Old Testament.

i. Samuel received a word of Knowledge about Saul’s donkeys (1 Samuel 9:3-20). This word brought about the recovery of lost or stolen property.        

ii. Samuel received a word of knowledge about where Saul was hiding. (1 Samuel 10:22) God revealed where to discover an individual. 

iii. Elijah received a word of knowledge during his depression. (1 Kings 19:18) This word brought enlightenment and encouragement to Elijah. 

iv. Elisha received a word of knowledge about his servant Gehazi. (2 Kings 5:21-26) The word of knowledge was used to expose hypocrisy, theft, and lies. 

v. Elisha received a word of knowledge about the enemies’ plans. (2 Kings 8:12) This word of knowledge was given to warn a king and expose the enemy’s plan of destruction. 

  1. The Word of knowledge operated throughout the New Testament.
  1. Jesus gave a word of knowledge to the Woman at the Well. (John 4:7-26). He used it to convince her of her need for salvation. 
  2. Peter was given a word of knowledge regarding Ananias and Sapphira. (Acts 5:1-4) This word was given to expose corruption and hypocrisy. 
  3. John received a word of knowledge on the Isle of Patmos. (Revelation 1:10-20) God revealed the condition of the churches to John. 
  4. Ananias received a word of knowledge about Saul. (Acts 9:11-12) 
  5. Peter received a word of knowledge about three men. (Acts 10:9-19)
  1. The word of knowledge still operates in the modern church.
    1. The gifts operate as He wills, not as we will. (1 Corinthians 12:11)
    2. The gift of knowledge operates through inward revelation, dreams, visions, a message from angels, and through a word of prophecy.
    3. The gifts operated in the Old Testament (except tongues and interpretation of tongues) then through the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. After the Day of Pentecost, where tongues and interpretation of tongues were manifested, the believers were then empowered to operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  

6 ways the Word of Knowledge blesses the church.

  1. The church is cleansed (sanitized)
  2. The church is comforted
  3. The church is cheered up.
  4. The church recoups lost possessions.
  5. The church claims victory over the enemy.
  6. The church champions Jesus!

God’s people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.

If we ask God for knowledge we will give it.