The last two weeks we pick up Paul’s journey back to Jerusalem in Acts 21: Several days later a man named Agabus, who also had the gift of prophecy, arrived from Judea. He came over, took Paul's belt, and bound his own feet and hands with it. Then he said, "The Holy Spirit declares, 'So shall the owner of this belt be bound by the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem and turned over to the Gentiles.'" When we heard this, we and the local believers all begged Paul not to go on to Jerusalem.
We have been discussing how the Gifts of the Holy Spirit were important to the early church and how we need the nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit personally and corporately more so today. It’s so important that I want to continue looking at the nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit before we continue in Acts 21: The Nine Gifts are divided into three categories of three: First week we discussed the Gifts to Say (Speak). Last week we studied the Gifts to Know Gifts or Revelation Gifts and how they can often work together. This week let’s look at the Gifts to Do! A lot of the material comes from the great teacher Kenneth Hagin who is now with the Lord.
The Gift of Faith is not... 1. Saving faith. (Ephesians 2:8) 2. General (ordinary) faith: faith in God's Word, faith for believing God for your needs, etc. The gifts of the Spirit operate by faith - general (ordinary) faith on the part of the believer through which the gift is being
manifested. A person must step out in faith and yield to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. (Mark 9:23) 3. Faithfulness - the fruit of the Spirit which is for character. Faith, or faithfulness, is a fruit that grows in the life of a Christian to establish him in godly spiritual character. I realize we have taken a whole week to discuss this gift but once again we need to understand how each gift operates.
Prayer Points: Today, let’s commune with the Holy Spirit asking Him to lead us into all truth concerning the Gifts of the Spirit. We don’t need to be ignorant concerning the supernatural manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit because they were given to the church to profit spiritually, mentally & physically. Let the Holy Spirit know you are a willing vessel!
Last week we picked up Paul’s journey back to Jerusalem in Acts 21: Several days later a man named Agabus, who also had the gift of prophecy, arrived from Judea. He came over, took Paul's belt, and bound his own feet and hands with it. Then he said, "The Holy Spirit declares, 'So shall the owner of this belt be bound by the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem and turned over to the Gentiles.'" When we heard this, we and the local believers all begged Paul not to go on to Jerusalem.
We discussed how the Gifts of the Holy Spirit were important to the early church and how we need the nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit personally and corporately. I want to continue looking at the nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit before we continue in Acts 21: The nine Gifts are divided into three categories of three: Last week we discussed the Gifts to Say (Speak). This week we study the Gifts to Know or Revelation Gifts and they can often work together.
2. Gifts to Know (Reveal or Revelations Gifts):
The Word of Wisdom (1 Corinthians 12:8): The supernatural revelation by the Holy Spirit concerning the divine purpose and plan of God. It is a divine communication, a message to the Church or believer from God, conveyed by the Holy Spirit to the believer speaking. A word of wisdom is only a fragment of the wisdom of God, given for a specific purpose. The word of wisdom tells about something that is going to happen - certain facts about the future to man. The word of wisdom is always FUTURE TENSE - that which is yet unborn: hidden things we would not normally or naturally know. A word of God's wisdom makes you wise to the future and you know what is going to take place rather than to worry about it or using your own strength to make it come to pass - it will happen exactly as the Lord told you it would. A word of wisdom might be accompanied by a word of knowledge, as spiritual gifts often work together. A believer who consistently speaks out, foretelling the future, is speaking by the word of wisdom. He sees into the future and possesses the gift of the word of wisdom (God's wisdom) to tell the future. This gift is foremost in a Prophet's (Seer's) ministry but can also manifest in the life of a believer for a certain purpose and time even if that believer doesn’t have the call of a Prophet.
The Word of Knowledge (1 Cor. 12:8) The supernatural revelation by the Holy Ghost of certain facts in the mind of God. God is all knowing and possesses all knowledge. A word of knowledge then is a fragmentary part of the entire knowledge or counsel of God. He imparts to us what he wants us to know at a specific time and for a specific reason (such as to meet a need or emergency). Someone working in the gift of the Word of Knowledge at times can see things in a person’s past as the Holy Spirit wills to demonstrate to a person of the omniscience of Father God. Many times a word of knowledge might be accompanied by a word of wisdom, as spiritual gifts often work together. A manifestation of a word of knowledge might be used to reveal sickness or an evil spirit (as opposed to the Gift of Discerning of Spirits where you would actually see the (evil) spirit with your eyes). The revelation that the word of knowledge brings is NEVER future tense, it is either present or past tense. The gift of a word of knowledge deals with that which exists, either past or present – something that a servant could not discern in the natural.
The Gift of the Discerning of Spirits (1 Cor. 12:10): The discerning of spirits gives supernatural insight into the spirit world. "To discern" means to perceive by seeing or hearing. Therefore, the discerning of spirits is the same as seeing or hearing in the realm of the spirits. The discerning of spirits gives members of the Body of Christ insight into the spirit world, a realm which their five senses, feeling, hearing, seeing, smelling, tasting cannot reason. It takes this gift to penetrate the dividing of soul and spirit within a person. The discerning of spirits has to do with an entire class of spirits: good spirits (discerning the similitude of God, the risen Christ, the Holy Spirit, or angelic beings/angelic activity), bad spirits (devils, demons, Satan himself), or human spirits (good and evil tendencies). "Familiar spirits" are included in this class of spirits. God talks about these spirits in the Old Testament where he forbids the people of God to have anything to do with them. Familiar spirits are familiar with people and they pass on information about one person to another. Familiar spirits, I believe, are used by psychics and spiritualists.
Prayer Points: Father we need all the gifts working in us personally and as a church corporately. Allow the Holy Spirit to begin to use us as He will in the gifts. We empty ourselves so you can pour into us!
We pick up Paul’s journey back to Jerusalem in Acts 21: Several days later a man named Agabus, who also had the gift of prophecy, arrived from Judea. He came over, took Paul's belt, and bound his own feet and hands with it. Then he said, "The Holy Spirit declares, 'So shall the owner of this belt be bound by the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem and turned over to the Gentiles.'" When we heard this, we and the local believers all begged Paul not to go on to Jerusalem.
It was not uncommon for the early church to be operating in the Gifts of the Holy Spirit and I know the Gifts of the Holy Spirit will become more and more active in the lives of believers in these last days. We need more of the supernatural manifestation of the Holy Spirit personally and corporately than ever before. Let’s take a quick look at the nine manifestations of the Holy Spirit:
The nine gifts are divided into three categories of three:
A. THE GIFT OF PROPHECY (1 Corinthians 12:10) Definition: "The Gift of Prophecy is the special ability that God gives to members of the Body of Christ to hear & speak an immediate message of God to His people whether the message is for a group gathered together, or any one of His people individually, through a divinely anointed utterance . The Greek word for prophecy, "propheteia," implies that one is speaking for another; speaking on behalf of God. We are exhorted to specifically desire to prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:1, 31)
Prophecy is designed by God to:
B. MANY KINDS OF TONGUES (1 Corinthians 12:10): Definition: The Gift of Tongues is the supernatural ability imparted by the Holy Spirit to speak to others and/or to God in a language or utterance never learned by the speaker.
There are two reasons for speaking in tongues:
C. THE GIFT OF INTERPRETATION OF TONGUES (1 Cor. 12:10):
Definition: The Gift by which God made understandable the mystery which was spoken/prayed in the Gifts of Tongues.
The word "interpretation" here is from the Greek "harmeneia" meaning "explanation" or "full interpretation". It is the ability through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to bring understandable meaning to an inspired public message in tongues. Interpretation can occur in congregational meetings or even in private prayer where you pray in tongues and the Holy Spirit gives you the meaning of what your prayed which gives you clear direction. We can pray and interpret the will of the Father for our lives.
I think this subject is so important and critical right now that we will continue it next week.
Prayer Points: Father in Jesus Name I want everything you have for me & I want to be used in your Kingdom, so allow your gifts to be manifested in my life!
We continue our study about the early church in the book of Acts this week as we get into Acts 21. I love Acts because the latter church will see more, do more and accomplish more than the former church. We continue to follow Paul’s missionary journey as he journeys back to Jerusalem where his life will be in danger.
Acts 21 After saying farewell to the Ephesian elders, we sailed straight to the island of Cos. The next day we reached Rhodes and then went to Patara. There we boarded a ship sailing for Phoenicia. We sighted the island of Cyprus, passed it on our left, and landed at the harbor of Tyre, in Syria, where the ship was to unload its cargo. We went ashore, found the local believers, and stayed with them a week. These believers prophesied through the Holy Spirit that Paul should not go on to Jerusalem. When we returned to the ship at the end of the week, the entire congregation, including wives and children, left the city and came down to the shore with us. There we knelt, prayed, 6 and said our farewells. Then we went aboard, and they returned home.
It’s amazing how quickly the gospel was spreading throughout the known world since the day of Pentecost. Christians were popping up seemingly everywhere Paul went. The same should be true today as we help gather the harvest that is so ripe (never has there been so many lost and hurting people as today). The gospel message is powerful and a real relationship with Jesus is contagious. Sometimes the greatest message is preached without a single word being spoken. When our family and friends see the difference salvation has made in our lives they will want to know the secret and the secret is Jesus. We are saved by grace to allow others the opportunity to be saved and it becomes a domino effect. One tells one and then they tell one and they tell one and soon everyone is hearing the good news.
Our focus must remain on the lost. There are so many who have never had an opportunity to even hear the truth about the gospel or about salvation. We must continue to Reach One More!
So Paul ran into a group of new believers in Tyre Syria and he had the opportunity to stay with them and teach them for a week. This week formed a special bond between them and in one of the prayer meetings the Holy Spirit once again warned Paul about going to Jerusalem, that his life would be at risk but Paul continued the journey because he knew this was his lot in life.
After the week was over, the whole group of believers including women and children went down to the ship dock to see Paul off, even kneeling in front of everyone to have a word of prayer for his journey.
The next stop after leaving Tyre was Ptolemais, where we greeted the brothers and sisters and stayed for one day. The next day we went on to Caesarea and stayed at the home of Philip the Evangelist, one of the seven men who had been chosen to distribute food. He had four unmarried daughters who had the gift of prophecy.
Again we see the spread of the gospel with Paul finding other brothers and sisters in the Lord at Ptolemais. I would have loved to hear some of the conversations of the early Christians with so many of them risking their lives to serve and follow Jesus.
Then after traveling another day by boat, they were in Caesarea and here we see where Philip, who was one of the first seven leaders in the early church, had settled and he had become an evangelist, going from place to place telling everyone about Jesus.
Notice this truth which is such a testimony to the Christian lifestyle of Philip; all four of his unmarried daughters were serving the Lord and being used in the gift of prophecy. I love it when whole families are serving the Lord together.
Our promise is that not only would the Lord save us but He would save our whole household. Pray it, believe it, confess it and watch the Holy Spirit begin to change households.
Revival with Pastor Wendell is coming up in a few weeks so take the next few weeks to seriously fast and pray for your lost loved ones as well as friends and this region. We are believing for a mighty move of the Holy Spirit to change some things.
Prayer Points: Father God in Jesus Name we pray that you would save our whole household and that we would serve the Lord as a family on fire for your Kingdom. Use us as vessels in the harvest field to bring many into your Kingdom in these last days!