Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. (1 Corinthians 12: 1)
The reason I make this separate from Gods Tool Box, is because here we have to be careful. This is the realm where many false prophets prey on- Charismatics, Health and Wealth Gospel pastors, Faith Healers, Televangelists, Christian Mysticism, and so many deceivers within the church Love this section and so it deserves time to itself. However, it’s not all false prophets- truly the gifts of the holy spirit are everywhere- and I think the trouble most people have with seeing them is, they are not very “Flashy” (for lack of better word). Additionally, you can not buy these gifts they are given by god, and yet with some you can learn it on your own. All of these gifts require faith, and even with a small amount of faith all things are possible. Jesus tells us:
And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. (Matthew 17:20)
So without further ado lets get into it.
Spiritual Gift of Discernment
Of all the gifts of the Holy Spirit this is the most precious one. Here is the ability to hear a person, read something, watch a video, witness an action or miracle and determine whether this person is an agent for Satan or for God or if its something random and distinctly just human. The gift also includes being able to see if someone is possessed by a demon and even ‘knowing’ that demon by its name.
well ok that’s nice but why would this be the most precious it sounds boring?
Listen, you and I live in a world where the most common place thing is deception. The gift of discernment is here to curb that deception so you, and any who follow you, are not lead astray. Indeed in the end times the bible goes on and on about how deception will increase, and to get things moving along, God tells us he will take this gift away so that if possible even in the elect can be deceived. The good news about this gift it does not have to come from god parse’, you can learn it. In affect, anyone following this series a good deal of it involves learning this gift. It is in the ability god allows us to learn this gift, without him giving it. in a way is such a blessing in itself. Knowing he will not be handing it out in the end times he gives us the ability to figure out whats going on even to the very end. (Yet another testament on how transparent and benevolent our father is!!) Knowing what comes from Satan and what comes from God will play a big role in your walk with Christ.
Not sold on this gift?
Again listen, if you dont know the difference between god and satan the whole world looks grey to you. There’s no Black there’s no White- you watch a Ke$sha video and shrug your shoulders with complete indifference. We can easily point to a Secularist world view. For Adolf Hitler the view was this: “Germans are the superior race because for 900 years we have lead Europe in every field of Science, Art, Music, Culinary arts, Medicine and literature. Bringing the world into all of it’s highest achievements, It has always been a German who paved the way or made an Irreplaceable improvement to something a French or English man came up with.” Indeed he is correct you dont have to look very far to see Germans invented nearly everything. The fields of Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Natural Science, Etc. clearly all the credit of these goes to a German. the best Classical composers and Artist have always been German. Even today German Medicine is the best in the world just as much now as it was while the rest of Europe was ravaged by the Black Death. In the secular world view, anyone with eyes or half a brain can see it very plainly. Hitler had by the very definition of ‘Evolution’ Germans are indeed the superior race, and he uses a very good bases as scientific proof. Now I ask you to put yourself into 1940 Germany, as a 1940 German listening to this speech. Do you support Hitlers theory or Don’t you, and why? You don’t know about the concentration camps its a closely guarded secret. You don’t know about the propaganda ministry, all your entertainment just seems to randomly be presented to the public. You don’t even know about the eugenics program, where doctors kill disabled people by means of a innocent ‘Flu Shot’. What you do know is Hitler gave you a good job, he saved Germany from communism somehow, He made Germany a better place to live, and all he wants to do is continue with ‘His Struggle‘ to make a better world. Now tell me this how valuable was the gift of discernment to groups like ‘Edelwiess Pirates‘ who was a youth group opposing both Fascism and Communism? These young kids lived in a world between both extremes and with unwaveringly faith in Christ they choose to not succumb to either idea or propaganda presented by either evil. Yet of 60 million Germans this was only a group of about 200 or so whom refused to sell their souls to deception. Indeed they themselves did not have all the facts, but they knew in their hearts something was wrong. Even today the Edelwiess Pirates get together now and then as 80 year old men and woman. So in summary beloved, you can see how precious this gift is.
Spiritual Gift of Wisdom
“For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it.” -Ecclesiastes 7:12
A kind of run off on Discernment is Wisdom, you might be tempted to say the 2 are fairly interchangeable. The difference is this- Where discernment lets us see whats going on, Wisdom tells us how to deal with it. Not long ago I read a couple articles from Christmas Child, I believe I could not put it into any better words myself. I refer you to these 2 links. Definition of a Fool and The Wise Man.
Most of the spiritual gift of wisdom comes a great deal from Self Control and Willingness to learn. I particularly like the song ‘The Gambler’ by Kenny Rodgers as a parable for this. “You have to know how to hold them, Know when to fold them…” In fact lets take a short break in our study and sing a song a bit.
The Above verse (Ecclesiastes 7:12) Tells us There are 2 great things in this world to have, Money and Wisdom. However, once you have Acquired Wisdom it can never be taken from you. Making wisdom of the most precious gifts. Under the Spiritual gift of Wisdom there are many sub categories including Discernment, they are as follows:
- Leadership- Knowing how to lead people. the word literally means ‘Guide’. You know they are from god by judging their fruits, a bad leader (:coughs: Obama) is often not as productive as someone like say George Washington, or John F. Kennedy. It’s easy to pin a King or President, but this is not always the people blessed with this gift. More often then not it’s someone in a smaller group like a Pastor, Student, a group of Friends, a Writer, etc…
- Teaching- Let me tell you a secret many find hard to understand. It’s one thing to know something, its another to try and teach it to others. Not everyone can do both- I remember my 6th grade algebra teacher told me once, that she didn’t understand algebra anymore then I did. She just writes down what the text book says and looks at the answer. Yup you dont have to know something to be a teacher, I suppose one can cheat- but the same is vice verse. How many times have you heard someone say “I know what I’m doing I just don’t know how to explain it”. The gifted teacher is one who can clearly demonstrate both AND reach a mass of people to convey the information, in a way they can easily understand.
The Spiritual Gift of Prophecy
Here is a tricky gift it has 2 versions. First, is telling the word of God. Second, Is to see the future.
Telling the word of god means to have the ability to receive a message from god and tell it to people. We can see this work in a lot of ways from either hearing the voice of god, or a certain sense of urgency to just ‘pour out your spirit’ about something. I say ‘pour out your spirit’ because its like an inner volcano- there’s no right way to put it. You just feel it boiling inside you and open your mouth and start going. The Apostle Paul is nd a good example of this. Here we see paul proclaiming every abomination to the Lord in the streets of Rome during his ministry. Things never mentioned in the bible so specifically as Pederisty, the Colloseum, putting orphans in the city dump, sex slavery, etc… He describes the people of Rome as “Inventing new ways of sinning”. Jeremiah was another who before he predicted what would happen to Israel would go around proclaiming that Israel has turned their back on god. We see the same with Amos, and Jonah, as well as many others. This is such a valuable aspect of Prophecy because more often then not, the future is irrelevant. As a general rule, people are much more blind to the present moment. I have already written a bit about hearing the voice of god in “Gods Toolbox” though to be honest I think i just might write a more detailed blog on it in the future.
Predicting the future is surprisingly not as hard to do as you might think. Simply put, pray for a vision and usually god is happy to send one. The key word with this is “Criteria”. In prophecy of the future every thing must match up to scripture or events to come or it did not:
A. come from God or
B. it is not the fulfillment of prophecy.
For Example a popular idea is that Obama is the Antichrist in Revelation. OK alright I’ll get a lot of headache for this, however according to revelation the criteria for “The Antichrist” is:
- He will be the worlds greatest peacemaker (Obama does not by any means fit this, though I’m sure he’d be flattered to hear it)
- He will be killed in his 4th year then resurrected by the Beast of the Earth- in someway, or at least his image presumably will be resurrected back to life, possibly Hologram or TV or a Literal Resurrection. ( Obama has not been killed and brought back to life in any kind of way)
- He will be a false prophet (So far this is about all Obama has going for him as far as bible prophecy)
It’s a short list, Indeed I did not go into a whole checklist, I think you see my point. Nope Obama is just a bad president, by biblical definition yes hes “A Antichrist” but he isn’t “The Antichrist”- as the only definition the bible gives is “Anyone who does not confess Christ is the Savior is an Anti Christ” (I John 2:22) also Jesus tells us “There have been many antichrists before him and many to come after him” (II John 1:7)
So that said Lets continue. Some have had Prophecy given to them as a flash of images and voices. Perhaps it may come as simply a whisper in the back of your head. The trick with it really is just pray to god and ask, then allow yourself to be open to whatever happens. Sometimes it will hit you as the time calls for it. The thing about this gift is you either have it or you don’t, and you can always ask for it. Make sure before announcing it try to make sure it came from God and not Satan.
The Spiritual Gift of Mercy
Here’s a nice and simple one, that should be self explanatory. The ability to be sensitive and bring comfort to someone suffering. I confess this is not me but indeed there are many out there who are very good at this gift. That person that’s easy to talk to, That person who can go to sick people and make them feel better just being there for them. Think Mother Teresa- That’s Mercy, and Truth be told I envy the person with this gift.
Speaking in Tongues
This was another one of those gifts I mentioned where we have to be careful. The reason is so much of it is Hijacked by the Charismatic Movement. It is particularly noticeable in Evangelic and Pentecostal churches they use this in the form of ‘Jibber’ and employ the spirit of Kundalini to do it. So with that said how do we know its from god and if it’s from satan?
Well it’s easy. A satanic Speaker of Tongues will have very a distinct sign- that is Twitching, almost like a seizure. Another tell tale sign is delirium, the person will not be very coherent to their surroundings. Lastly indecipherable Jibberish.
So here is how this works. Speaking in Tongues will be employed in 3 ways. First the person will speak and can speak to multiple languages simultaneously. This is written about in the book of acts when the apostles spoke to a crowed of mixed languages and all the crowd heard and understood what they were saying. Think of it a bit like Star Trek where the Universal Translator allows someone to speak Japanese, Vulcan, Klingon, Chinese, Spanish, etc… Yet seemingly they only speak English. Second, is also in a language no one in the area can understand. That is, Not that you can not translate it it’s supposed to be done in a foreign language or dead language not Jibberish. Granted, You and I are not going to walk around with google translate all the time, in which case the bible tells us to be silent and look it up later if we do not understand. However, in theory you should always be able to pin point and decipher the language the person is speaking. Remember God is always transparent with information, Satan is the only one who likes to keep secrets. The last aspect of this is understanding someone in another language- with no prior knowledge of the language before hand.
This is not a very common place gift, actually one of the rarest. Which Is why it’s worth spelling out the false prophet aspect of it with good detail.
The Spiritual Gift of Healing
Although God does still heal today, the ability of men to produce miraculous healings belonged to the apostles of the first century church to affirm that their message was from God. Yet we find ourselves in yet another tricky area where false prophets love to prey on. For many Christians it is easier to just say “Faith Healers are all false prophets” indeed too many are. However, I don’t want our faith to have any barriers here, so I will tell of some very miraculous examples of this actually working. Once again I find myself telling you to pray to heal either yourself or someone else. A popular thing amoung Christian circles is to do Prayer Circles, Where a group get a list of prayer requests and they all pray for it. Most common of these prayer requests is always healing. Anything from paralysis to migraines, to coma. The idea of prayer circles is simple, 2 heads are better then one – get 5-100 together well it just makes sense. While i throw prayer circles out there as just an idea on how to do this I’d also like to remind you God isnt about popularity contests. It may be just as well you pray for it on your own.
I remember a story once of a kid that was riding his bike, when a semi truck lost control and turned into the sidewalk- stright into the kid. All things considered the kid wasn’t in too bad of shape except for internal bleeding. His mother came into the E.R. where the doctor told her he might not be alive tomorrow morning. The mother told the doctor “You don’t know my god”. All night she sat by his side Praying her heart out until her son woke up. The next morning, they checked out of the hospital with just a few bruises.
The point of it is this, Prayer does have enormous power. I think the Spiritual gift of Healing is where people pray for it the most, consequently its where it shines best. Be like the mother who prayed for her son, and don’t be afraid to tell the doctor piss off.
The Spiritual Gift of Miracles
Here is where we come to yet another false prophet favorite, and yet again Do not put a barrier on your faith because of it. Yes there can be miracles, Jesus tells us
“And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.” (Luke 17:6)
I will tell you a true story of how my brother in law saved his kids after a serious car accident.
Erick was driving along the Bay Bridge in Maryland, bringing my nephews over to my vacation house in Delaware. Me and my sister were hanging out in Rehobath waiting for him scratching our heads thinking he’s awfully late… about 5 hours late. The phone rang it was a nurse at the hospital she told us to come in right away. We came in to hear the police tell the whole story of what happened and what he saw. A car next to Erick had slide into his car, and rammed him straight into the cement wall. The car was crushed and crumbled so much none of the doors would open. The police tried keeping erick and the kids calm until the jaws of life could come in. They tried over and over to yank the doors open but they would’nt. The Bridge was completely backed up because of the accident, there was no way the jaws of life could get there. Erick prayed for a second, grabed the door an like the incredible hulk, Pushed the door open and lifted it above his head- tossed it over the side of the bridge. He then went to the back seat and riped open that door in like manner. He grabed his 2 kids and walked away from the car (Erick would later tell us he heard a voice telling him to get far away from the car). Suddenly the car exploded. Here is the kicker to this tale, Erick broke both his legs in the car accident and his left arm, the same arm he pulled the car doors open with.
Indeed God has this ability and it seems to come at just the right moment. Now this story happened years ago when cars were still made out of tin (1980’s). If it wasn’t the police telling us we probably would not have believed him. I think the thing about Miracles is you can not just conjure it up, for Erick he said, he just knew what to do and did it, it was very autonomous.
Casting Out Demons
While traditionally this is not considered a Gift of The Holy Spirit It is a gift we as Christians by default all have. All you have to do is go up to someone and tell the demon “I cast you out in the name of Jesus” and that’s it. Jesus himself gave us authority over demons. While having little experience with this myself I’ve heard it said sometimes they can be stubborn and you have to say it over and over, Speak with great authority, and it helps if you know the demons name. I have also heard it said there were reports of UFO abductions where the people being probed Called out to Jesus to stop the experience, suddenly it was over. While I think most Christians don’t particularly ascribe to UFO’s, understanding these as demonic entities – suddenly makes a bit more sense of them in my opinion. Again It’s not traditionally a Holy Spirit Gift, I believe because it comes as default, everyone can do this. However it is none the less a powerful tool to know and keep.
The thing about evangelism some people are better at it then others, but the bible tells us all Christians need to evangelize. So what is Evangelism, some might ask. Simply spreading the word of god and getting souls to bring to Christ. The Bible describes evangelism as the Pulse of The Holy Spirit. Think about a heart beat it pumps like a drum each beat the Holy Spirits heart is saying Souls… Souls… Souls… The spirit need souls to pump and wants as many as it can get. You can do this a number of ways. First by your actions deeds and things you say. Oh thats stupid right? Oh honey no it isnt. People who live in filth and sin will always look up to someone that is good natured and has a happy life. By your actions the sinners of the world will judge you, eventually they say to themselves “Whats he doing that im not doing, I wish I can live like that” and so this person will learn about a christian lifestyle and convert. This is the simplest way to spread the word of god, indeed Jesus tells us this simple thing plays a big role, You are the light in the world, and much of the world is darkness. When you shine people cant help at notice.
Another way to evangelize is Ministry work, going to another country or some random nook in the world preaching the gospel. I remember reading about the history of an island nation called Tonga. Its a very small Island chain in the south pacific. It began as natives farming humans for cannibalism. In the 1800’s missionaries went to Tonga to find the they were surrounded by Cannibals. The missionaries wrote back to the church that they were showing the people how to farm so they can stop cannibalism and needed supplies and more bibles to teach the natives how to read. Soon the missionaries stoped writing back, the church thought the cannibals ate them- indeed they did eat the missionaries. 50 years later another group of missionaries came back to the island thinking they were going to a death trap. To their surprise the natives were farming now, discussing the bible with each other, they even had a hut set up as a church on sundays. For what ever reason the natives ate the first group, their work was not in vain- Tonga today is still a christian country thanks to them. Praise be to God!!! In alot of 1800 missionary work we hear tales of cannibalism in natives in virtually every corner of the world. It is because of so many missionary work then today cannibalism is very rare, AND the word of god has spread all over.
Now there is more ways of Evangelizing. The internet, TV, Telling other kids at school about Jesus, Writing books, YouTube, street pasturing, passing out bibles. Truly be creative anyway you can. There is a church nearby that has free breakfast every morning at 9 am- anyone can come but its a popular stop for homeless people, squatter kids, drug addicts and prostitutes. Before they feed people the pastor gives a short sermon and while people are eating, he continues his sermon. The idea with this plan is simple, bring in the cities drug addicts, and prostitutes. offer them something they want, and MAKE them hear the word of god before giving them food. I know it sounds like a christian trap when I spell it out like that- in a way yes it is. The church purposely placed its free breakfast in the ghetto so it can target these very types of sinners who need christ more then anyone. The turn out is incredible, a whore told me once she never actually heard the word of god she never really had the incentive.A time came she was so hungry she had to go to that church breakfast. Shes been going ever since and got a decent job at the bank. Praise be to God!!!
The point of evangelism is this, in some way shape or form spread the message of Christ. You can also do this by donating to a ministry who is evangelizing, sharing posts of an evangelist online, or any work that promotes another evangelist – if say you find yourself not so good at it yourself. By helping an evangelist you are doing the work of an evangelist. I say shar the heck out of every piece of christian material on Facebook and twitter- never mind if you piss some people off.
So then there is the internet, Indeed every christian blogger (Myself included) loves writing about god- all of us want the world to hear it. Every so often I look at my stats here on Angel Fish blog, and see Places like India, Kuwait, or even Pakistan. I have no idea what the person was reading, but my heart gets so filled for these people reading something about our lord and savior. It was the internet that lead me a good bit to Christ, as well as many others so yes indeed use the internet to spread the word. Litter and Splatter your blog or youtube with tags and send them all over the Google search algorithm. Share with friends on Facebook, twitter, Pintrest… Praise be to God for this unique way to receive souls!!!
And so we find ourselves at the end of this segment of Christian Warrior Boot Camp. Be advised there are many gifts of the holy spirit I simply wanted to highlight some of the more controversial ones as part of our training. For the next segment we come to Part 4 where I alk about none other then Satans Dirty bag of tricks.