JULY- AUGUST 2016: Receiving and Understanding the Gifts of the Spirit

Gift can be defined to be a thing that is willingly given to someone without any perquisite for payment or a need for services to be rendered. You can have an ability to carry out a task effortlessly, that is termed a natural gift but in the Spiritual realm it is a Supernatural ability to do something that is supernatural. Both can be associated to God the Father.

The Giver
Spiritual gifts are given by the Holy Spirit, Jesus departed the world assuring us that He would send the Holy Spirit in His likeness to us as our counsellor, comforter and teacher. He is to bring us into remembrance of all things he taught and also to bring us closer to God, which is to help us in our intimate relationship with the Father.

***1 Corinthians 12:11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit and he gives them to each one, just as he determines***

Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.

From the Father, these gifts are freely given to us through the Holy Spirit according to what He purposed for us to do within the body of Christ.

• 1 Corinthians 12: 12-14; Acts 2:38
• 1 Corinthians 2:2 Now, we have received not the Spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.
• 1 Corinthians 12: 4-6 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit…….
• Romans 12:6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us……..

***For all good gifts comes from our Father, whom there is no variation***

To Whom

To all Believers- For those that will receive from God must first believe that He exists and He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. There must be a relationship to benefit from the kingdom’s gifts. From the time of the first apostles when they tarried at the upper room at Jerusalem and received the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We as believers and disciples are being baptised into the Holy Spirit and this helps with our walk with God.

The chosen and elects of God, those that are called according to His purpose and are willing and obedient to the Calling. Those that are aware of their royal calling and are willing to align to the purpose of bringing the kingdom to earth. (See 1 Corinthians 1:26; Romans 8: 14-17, 28-29; 1 Timothy 1:9)

Ephesians 1:4 Just as he chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.

Romans 8:30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. (Read also 1 Peter 2: 9-10; 1 John 4:13, 15)

What is required of us to Receive the Gifts?
Even as parents, we sometimes give gifts based on Occasional criteria such as birthdays, anniversaries, and special reasons or how impressed we are concerning our children’s behaviour or individuals’ attitude to us. We might give also as a way of motivation or encouragement. There is a stirring in us to do something for that person without a request put forward by them.

When we begin our walk with God, the Holy Spirit can also be stirred up to give gifts by us presenting our body holy and as an acceptable sacrifice to the living God. This we do by daily seeking to know Him and walking in His commandments through prayers and fasting. Also when we are rightly dividing the word according to the leading of the Spirit, mediating and studying the word day and night.

Joshua 1:8 This book of law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall mediate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your ways prosperous and then you will have good success. (Read also 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Psalm 1:1-3)

Obedience is essential to receiving the gifts and it is paramount that we strive to emulate our Lord Jesus Christ in all our deeds and in doing this, we will experience a great manifestation of the gifts. For our character will make us flourish better when we receive the gifts. (See 1 Peter 2:12; 1 Peter 4:1-3)

• Romans 12:11 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.
• 1 Corinthians 3: Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit dwells in you…
• Obedience is key- Acts 5: 29; 1 John 1:5-6; 1 John 3:12-14; 1 Peter 1: 14-16; 22-23
• There must be a desire to know God- Acts 2: 37-39; Acts 16: 29-33
• Renewal of the mind- Romans 12:2
• Humbleness- Romans 12: 3,16; 1 Peter 5:6
• Do not be puffed up- 1 Corinthians 4:6
• Saying no to ungodliness- Titus 2: 11-13
• Love never fails- 1 Corinthians 13: 8-13
• A need to strive in the fruit of the Spirit- Galatians 5: 22-23

***Love is key***

Ephesians 3: 17-19 So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge- that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. (See Ephesians 5: 1-2; Philippians 1:27)
Galatians 6:8 For he who sows to his flesh will of flesh will of the flesh corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.

Purpose of the Gift
Most of us have a wrong conception of these spiritual gifts in us and so we tend to personalise and profit from them without fulfilling God’s original purpose for these gifts in us. Sometimes we abuse these gifts because we are not appreciative that it is solely for the benefit of the body of Christ which is the Church.
In the great Commission in Mark 16: 15-18, Our Lord Jesus Christ made mention that it is to help with our calling in doing the work of the kingdom. To demonstrate the power of God to the unbelievers so that they may come to the knowledge of Him and it is also to help the Church function as a full body of Christ.

***1 Corinthians 12:7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all***

• This is also for our service to the Father- Romans 12: 11-13; 1 Corinthians 1: 29-31
• Blessing others even those we consider our enemies- Roman 12:14, 17-18
• To know the mind of God spiritually- 1 Corinthians 2:10, 16
• To help with teaching the word of God and presenting the gospel without change- 1 Corinthians 2: 13; 1 Corinthians 9: 1, 8
• To help with our conduct with the brethren and shun evil- Romans 12: 9-10

***To deliver us from the way of evil***

1 Corinthians 14: 12 Even so you, since you are zealous for the Spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the Church that you seek to excel.

It is for the body of Christ, making it complete, to strengthen it, to feed it, exhortation, encouragement, to have the body of Christ empowered to do the work of Christ, and it is for the purpose of adding to the Church. (See Acts 2:37-39, 46-47, Acts 5:14)

• To bring into remembrance all things of God- 1 Peter 4:10-11
• It is not for vengeance- Romans 12: 19-21
• It does not give automatic rights to the office of the Apostle, Prophet, Pastor, Teacher or Evangelist.

The Gifts
1 Corinthians 2:16 For “who has known the mind of the Lord. That he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.
There are various gifts from the Holy Spirit but most notably of these can be found in 1 Corinthians 12: 4-11, where Apostle Paul listed nine, which is treated below and these nine gifts can be classified into three categories mainly prophecy, exhortation and ministration. Some of these gifts can be identified in Romans 12:4-13.

1. Wisdom
This is the ability to make decision and give guidance according to the will of God, it can be classify as the application of knowledge and giving directions accordingly. The bible makes us understand that the beginning of wisdom is to fear God, this simply mean we have reverence and stand in awe of Him, loving his words and adhering to it. It states that all who follow His precepts have good understanding.

***wisdom is the principal thing, in all your getting, get wisdom***

James 1: 5 if any lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach and it will be given

James 3:17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy

• God gives wisdom- Proverbs 2: 6,7
• Wisdom is desirable- James 3: 13-17
• Wisdom is the principal thing- Acts 6:3
• Solomon reigned in peace through wisdom- 1 Kings 3:12
• Wisdom gives discretion to the heart- Proverbs 2:10-11

2. Word of Knowledge
This is the ability to have an in-depth information of spiritual matter, the ability to have information of ways of God through the scripture or information concerning the intent of God or situation. Having information concerning a thing and not making use of it makes the information useless.
• Spiritual Information concerning a situation- Acts 5:4; Acts 10:44
• Jesus at the well – John 4: 16-19
• Words- Acts 2:14, 22-23

3. Spirit of Faith
This is a strong conviction in God, ability to trust God and encourage others to trust God. People are said to have faith when they stand strong on their word and they don’t weaver on this no matter the situation. Jesus commended on the centurion’s faith because he believed and accepted that the word of Jesus was enough to heal. It must be noted that Christ is always looking out for the believer’s faith in carrying out any healing. In the book of Daniel, we can also observe such faith in Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in Chapter 3.

• Faith definition- Hebrew 11: 1
• Faith has no respect for challenges- Acts 6:5, 8
• There is a measure of faith- Romans 12:3
• Even prophecy is according to faith- Romans 12:6
• Strong conviction- Romans 4:21

4. Gift of Healing
This is miraculous ability to use God’s healing power to restore a person who is sick, injured or suffering, this could be through prayers or the power, God deposited into a person to touch or command healing. Jesus had that ability and promised that through the Holy Spirit we are able to do the same. Some examples of healing can be found in Mark 1: 29-31; Luke 5: 12-14


• God is the healer and all attributes must be accorded to Him- Acts 4:30
• Jesus healing- Luke 7:7-10; Mark 5: 25-29; Luke 5: 19-22; Mark 5:2-13, 3:5; Luke 8:2; Matthew 4:23
• Peter’s shadow was able to heal- Act 5: 15-16
• Paul demonstrated the power of healing through handkerchiefs- Act 19: 11-12
• Healing through prayers- James 5:16

5. Works of Miracle
This is the ability to perform sign and wonders that gives authenticity to God’s word and the message of the gospel. In the great commission, our Lord Jesus said that signs and wonders shall accompany the believers to do the work of the Father so that unbelievers may see and believe in the gospel and this is to confirm that they were truly sent by Him.
Miracle is an unusual event or an impossible change to a circumstances or an unexplainable situation which defiles all logical/reasonable or rational thinking which is prompted to happen to us or someone else but the visual transformation can be seen but remains a mystery to the mind. As the saying goes “it can only be by God’s intervention”

• The parting of the Rea Sea- Exodus 14: 21-22
• The parting of river Jordan- Joshua 3: 15-16
• Raising of the dead- 1 Kings 17: 21-24; Mark 5: 35-42; John 11: 40-44
• Jesus raised from death-Mark 16: 1-8
• The birth of Isaac- Genesis 21: 1-4
• The birth of Samuel- 1 Samuel 1: 11-20
• Miraculous provision- Exodus 16 ; 1 kings 17:6, 13-16
• Various Miracles concerning nature- 1 kings 17: 1; 1 kings 18: 38-39; James 5: 17; Joshua 10: 12-14
• Water into wine- John 2: 7-9
• Stopping the wind- Mark 4: 39
• The feeding of Multitude- Mark 8: 1-9
• Special Strength- 1 Kings 18: 45-46
• Miraculous success- Luke 5: 4-9

***Joshua 3: 5 And Joshua said to the people “Sanctify yourself, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you*** (See also Acts 19: 11-12; Acts 4:30)

6. Prophecy
Joel 2: 28 And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and daughters shall prophesy….
This is the ability to proclaim a message from God, this is saying the heart of God concerning a nation, Church, Cooperate body, family or person.

The two earliest Hebrew words for the prophet are hozeh and to’eh which simply means seer. Nabi is also another word used which means “one called”

It is also the revelation of the secret of the heart of an unbeliever that might come to fellowship with the church as explained by Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 14: 24-25 but if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he is convicted by all, and thus the secrets of his heart are revealed: and so falling on his face, he will worship God and report that God is truly among you. (See also 1 Corinthians 14: 1-4)

Preaching and teaching which are associated with speaking the word with a passion for the lost and believers, prophesy tends to flow from the preacher or the teacher while under the influence of the Holy Spirit even when they do not hold the office of the prophet.
1 Corinthians 2:16 For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.

• Jesus operated in the ministry as a prophet- John 4: 16-19
• There is a need for orderliness- 1 Corinthians 14: 29-33
• Prophetic evangelism- Acts 13: 1-3; Acts 16: 6-10
• Various prophetic ministration- Acts 21: 10-11;

1 Corinthians 14: 3 But he who prophesies speaks deification and exhortation and comforts men.

Some Prophets in the Bible- Abraham, Moses, Samuel, Elijah, Elisha, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos,, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Zechariah, Malachi, John the Baptist, Apostle John, Apostle Paul, Stephen the Martyr

7. Discerning of Spirit
This is the ability to identify what the scripture is saying, knowing the spirit of the word. Ability to determine whether or not a message, person or event is truly of God.
It is also an ability to distinguish between two things through the Holy Spirit, being able to identify and label something correctly without foreknowledge.

• Jesus discernment of the Samarian woman relationship- John 4: 16-19
• Peter was able to discern a situation- Acts 5: 1-10
• Paul’s discernment of a spirit- Acts 16: 16-19


Be Aware: Evil spirit can also discern and can parade as an angel light that is while Jesus warned that we should be alert at all time and be on guard to be able to know the wolves in sheep’s clothing. (See Mark 13:21; Matthew 7: 15-23; 2Corinthians 11: 14-15)

8. Different types of Tongues
Ability to speak languages other than one’s native tongue by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. This can be divided into explicable and inexplicable tongues or languages. “glossa” is the Greek word for tongues while “dialektos” means dialects.

Explicable tongues are audible languages (dialects) which can easily be understood by another person that the message is being directed to- Acts 2:1-4; Acts 10:45-46; Acts 2:11

The inexplicable tongues is where the utterances of the voice is unknown to the speaker or anyone near him/her, this is a spiritual communication between man and God. This can be classify as a gift for exhortation which the mystery of words are known only to the Holy Spirit within the speaker and the Almighty Father. It is totally dependent on Holy Spirit- Romans 8: 26-29

9. Interpretation of Tongues
An inspiration through the Holy Spirit to interpret/reply to a language or to a tongue that is not of one’s own native language. Having an understanding and accurate knowledge of the language under the influence of the Holy Spirit.

This applies to both the explicable and inexplicable tongues.

Other Gifts
There are other gifts which were not directly listed above but nevertheless they are gifts from the Holy Spirit such as the Spirit of Giving,- Acts 15:26, Spirit of Mercy, Spirit of Serving, Spirit of patience, Spirit of Administration, Spirit of Encouragement, -Acts 4:36, Spirit of Leadership, Spirit of Diligence ……..

Note: Romans 8:14 For as many are led by the Spirit of God, these are the Children of God.
Sometimes, we might not be able to distinguish our gifts or calling but if we let the Holy Spirit lead us always we will know it or others might be directed by the Holy Spirit to make it known to us. It is advisable that when we are choosing a profession or course that we seek the face of the Lord through the Holy Spirit concerning this, as He will be able to guide us into a position that we will best flourish and make the best possible impact.

Desire the Gifts and Stir it up.
We can desire and pray for these gifts and through the grace of the Holy Spirit we can receive such if we do not already have them.
• Desire Spiritual gifts- 1 Corinthians 14: 1
• Desire earnestly to prophesy- 1 Corinthians 14: 39
• Do not quench the Spirit- 1 Thessalonians 5: 19
• Do not neglect the gifts that is you- 1 Timothy 4:14
• Stir up the gifts that is you- 2 Timothy 1: 6,
• Go to places where the word of God is spoken- Acts 10: 44-46; Acts 20:32
• Pray for it- Acts 4: 29-31

Now: May the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do his will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen

Remain highly blessed and highly favoured as you fulfil you call to minister.

Yomi and Bola Olowo
Serving under the grace, guidance, love and peace of God
New Victorious Living Ministry
Prayer and counselling Line: +44 (0) 7803813247