Sunday, August 12, 2018

Gifts that Enrich!

Hello everyone,

Lately we’ve been diving into the truth of God’s Word concerning the powerful, enriching grace of God that is available to every born-again believer!  The more I study and look into the truth concerning it, the more excited I get and I’m even more excited to bring you along with me!

The chief scripture we’ve been discussing is 1 Corinthians 1:4-5, where Paul speaks about the grace (charis) of God being poured out, or bestowed on us, in Christ Jesus. He was, at the time, addressing the Corinthian church, explaining how grateful he was to see how they had embraced the teaching of the truth of God’s grace, believed in it, opened their lives to it and experienced it in their lives. Then he speaks of the visible results that grace had on their lives. He said they were in every respect enriched by it.  

God’s Grace is Multi-faceted 

We have discovered that Paul explains the charis grace of God as the manifest presence of God, touching our lives in a significant way, to empower and equip and transform us, to do what naturally and normally we could not do on our own.

Then, when we go over to 1Peter 4:10-11, we see this same charis grace of God, that every believer has received, as being multi-faceted, or many-sided, and it includes the extremely diverse spiritual powers and gifts.  Now I know that a large portion of the church shies away from these spiritual powers and gifts for various reasons; mostly due to incorrect teaching or understanding of them, or misconceptions of their purpose and how they are meant to function.  Either way, we cannot ignore that God has dedicated much of the New Testament to teaching on these gifts and powers, which means He expects us to educate ourselves concerning them, open our lives to them and allow them to work in and through us, as He dictates.

In this letter, without going into an in-depth study of the individual gifts found in 1 Corinthians 12, I want to emphasis how their operating in our lives, enriches us greatly, and why the Bible says they are extremely necessary and vitally important for the church today.  

ALL Spiritual Gifts are for EVERY Believer

To begin with, we must understand that the 9 gifts of the Spirit are the supernatural MANIFESTATION of the works of God, and are given and made available to every born-again child of God.  1 Corinthians 12:7 says, “But to each one is given the MANIFESTATION of the [Holy] Spirit [the evidence, the spiritual illumination of the Spirit] for good and profit.”  

What’s important to note is that in 1 Corinthians 1:7, Paul urges that we ALL LACK NO GIFT, until Jesus returns!  In other words we should all be open and yielded to the Holy Spirit to operate in each spiritual gift, as He wills, until the day Jesus comes back for us.  In fact, 1 Corinthians 14:1 says we are to follow after love and DESIRE SPIRITUAL GIFTS.  

In 1 Corinthians 14:26, we are given the primary benefit of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. It says they are all to edify the church. There are no restrictions on which gifts are able to be accessed or operated in, all are actively available, at the discretion of the Holy Spirit; and that their purpose is to profit and edify the church.  No only that, they are very powerful witnessing tools to unbelievers.  The first hand experience of seeing the working of miracles and gifts of healing will without doubt have a life transforming effect on anyone’s heart.   

Having said that, 1Corinthians 1:6-9 share 3 specific ways these spiritual gifts enrich our lives.  These are by no means the only benefits, and I know that as I briefly share them, they will be a blessing and encouragement to you.

Benefit 1: The Gifts Make Christ Real to Us

1 Corinthians 1:6 says, “In this way [our] witnessing concerning Christ (the Messiah) was so confirmed and established and made sure in you,”  I find this verse particularly meaningful.  When Jesus walked on this earth, He constantly operated, by the Holy Spirit, in the supernatural gifts of God.  He was always motivated by His deep love and compassion for people, wanting to see them free from the bondage of the curse of sin and it’s terrible affect on their lives.  That compassion for people is still the same today as it was then, only now what Jesus said would happen is being fulfilled!  He said that when He goes to be with the Father, His Holy Spirit would come and live in us, and through Him, we would be empowered to do the very same works He did.  In fact, He said even greater works would be done.  That doesn’t necessarily mean greater in quality, but rather greater in quantity.  It’s a comparison where compared to just one man (Jesus), there would be millions of Spirit filled people operating in those same gifts!  Hallelujah!  The church of God has the power to change the world by God’s manifest love and power operating in and through us!

Now, when those gifts manifest through us, they operate by the unction of the Holy Spirit. We move in obedience to Him, and get to see and be a vessel through which the Spirit of Jesus visibly touches and heals and restores people.  Instead of just hearing or reading about miracles and healings and prophecy and all those wonderful gifts of the Spirit that took place in the Bible; we don’t have to imagine them, we are able to see and experience Jesus touching people the same way, right in front of our eyes.  The image of the Person of Jesus being our healer, prophet, and miracle worker leaves the mental realm, and comes into our reality.  He is confirmed, established, and made sure in us!

Benefit 2: The Gifts Mature Us

1 Corinthians 1:8 says, “And He will establish you to the end [keep you steadfast, give you strength, and guarantee your vindication; He will be your warrant against all accusation or indictment so that you will be] guiltless and irreproachable in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah).”  When we embrace the grace of God and yield to the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, operating in the gifts of the Spirit, we are kept steadfast in our faith. Whether the gifts of revelation, power or inspiration operate, they bring an establishing maturity into our lives.  Since we are experiencing the voice and work of God, by the Spirit of God and not our own intellect, we are significantly strengthened in our spiritual walk with the Lord.  That’s because the active, tangible role of the Holy Spirit influences us to keep our lives free from sin and a lukewarm relationship with God.  Seeing the gifts operating in and around us stirs up a Holy reverence for the Lord and a deep passion and desire to live pure, clean and wholeheartedly for Him, until He returns for us.

Benefit 3: The Gifts Make us Partners with Christ

1 Corinthians 1:9 says, “God is faithful (reliable, trustworthy, and therefore ever true to His promise, and He can be depended on); by Him you were called into companionship and participation with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”  

Sometimes the pressures and demands of life can be overwhelming. But with the Spirit of God and His gifts operating in the church, we don’t have to navigate through life alone.  The Holy Spirit has made our partnership with Jesus a concrete reality through the supernatural Presence and power of God operating in our lives through these gifts!  

Let me explain, according to verse 5 of 1 Corinthians 1, we are enriched in Christ.  The prefix en means in and by.  In other words, God’s supernatural presence has secured us in Jesus, at the point of our salvation, and keeps us being enriched by Him. Today and every day, we can intimately know and experience the Person of Jesus as our healer, our prophet, our wisdom, our miracle worker, our comforter, and everything we need Him to be.  And as we follow His lead, He will partner with us to demonstrate  His nature to whomever He leads us to.  As He works His spiritual gifts through our lives, we are able to form a dynamic partnership of love and power with the Spirit of Christ!  He gives us a word of wisdom, or knowledge or prophecy to encourage someone and confirm He is a very real and personal presence in their lives.  As our Partner, He works through us to bring whatever He deems necessary to touch the lives of the people around us.  Whether it’s healing or a miracle, even a tongue or interpretation of a tongue, whichever gift He sees as necessary at the time, He prompts our spirits to step out with Him in faith and flow in His supernatural power, as one, inseparable partnership.

There is no denying the enriching and empowering grace of God that’s available to every believer, demonstrated through the manifestation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  There is such an exciting partnership for us to walk in with the Holy Spirit, but unless we educate ourselves concerning them, we will never have the confidence to open our lives to them and live in this glorious partnership.

Remember the gifts of the Spirit are for the benefit and profit of the church.  As we embrace them and learn to operate in them, they will enrich us by making Jesus real to us; by bringing us to a place of spiritual maturity; and by causing us to work in a divine partnership with the Lord, where we touch the lives of others, just as He did when He walked on this earth. 

All my love,


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