Frequently Asked Questions about Spiritual Gifts:

What is a Spiritual Gift?

Spiritual gifts are supernatural abilities given by grace to Christians by the Holy Spirit to strengthen the church and reveal Jesus Christ to the world.

Are Spiritual Gifts really for today?

Here are three reasons the Spiritual gifts are for today.

  1. Because there are strong commands to desire them! 1 Cor. 12:31; 14:1
  2. Because they are to continue until the second coming of Jesus! 1 Cor. 1:7; 13:8-12
  3. Because there is no specific command or reason they are to stop!

How many Spiritual Gifts are there?

There is no exhaustive list in the Bible of spiritual gifts but the primary passages that speak of spiritual gifts are found in the following verses: Ephesians 4:11-12; Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12:4-10; and 1 Peter 4:10-11.

Does anyone have all of the Spiritual Gifts?

No! 1 Corinthians 12:14 teaches us that each Christian is uniquely designed by God and is created to be interdependent on other Christians.

How many Spiritual Gifts do I have?

You definitely have at least have one! But most likely you have many spiritual gifts. It has been our experience that a person typically has a dominant gift and then a few other gifts that function in their life to lesser degrees than their primary gift.

Do all Spiritual Gifts look the same?

No! God is the creator of everything so we should not be surprised that when it comes to spiritual gifts there is no “one size fits all.” Every Christian not only has a spiritual gift but also a unique expression of that spiritual gift. Paul the apostle put it this way when speaking to the Church of Corinth: 1 Corinthians 12:4-6 “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.”

There are three key phrases that Paul the apostle uses in this text:

  1. Varieties of gifts “types of gifts”
  2. Varieties of service “the way the gift operates”
  3. Varieties of activities “the outcome from the gift operating”

What this text shows us is that the same spiritual gift can be expressed in a variety of ways resulting in a variety of different outcomes.

Here is a quick illustration that might help:

Varieties of gifts “types of spiritual gifts”

For example, a person who teaches in front of a church on Sunday morning and a person who teaches a bible study in their house on Sunday night both exercise the same spiritual gift of teaching.

Varieties of service “the way the spiritual gift operates”

The teachers may have drastically different styles of communication and preparation one than is better suited for large crowds and the other for a small group of people but both operate in the same spiritual gift of teaching.

Varieties of activities “the outcome from the spiritual gift operating”

The person who teaches on Sunday mornings may be effective at teaching large groups of people while the person teaching the Bible study in their home may effectively disciple only a few people at a time.

As you can see, there is no one size fits all for spiritual gifts. The same gift can be used in a variety of ways and bring about a variety of different outcomes, because each person has their own unique expression. This is vital to keep in mind so that you do not become discouraged when you seek to discover and develop your spiritual gifts. There is no reason that you need to make the gift that God specifically gave you look like the one that he gave your brother or sister in Christ. You have been given a unique spiritual gift, and your responsibility is to steward what God has placed inside of you.

What is the purpose of Spiritual Gifts?

Spiritual gifts are given for three reasons:

  1. To Equip Christians (Ephesians 4:11-12)
  2. To Edify the Church (Acts 15:32)
  3. To Evidence the message (Acts 14:3) (Hebrews 2:4) (1 Corinthians 14:25)

How do I receive Spiritual Gifts?

The Scripture seems to indicate three different ways that Christians receive spiritual gifts.

1. When a person places faith in Christ (Romans 12:3-8)
2. When we seek God in prayer (1 Corinthians 14:1)
3. When someone who is spiritually gifted prays for us to receive (1 Timothy 4:14; Romans 1:11)

How can I pursue Spiritual Gifts?

The best place to start is in prayer. Because these gifts are truly spiritual there is nothing we can do in our own strength. In fact the Scripture commands us that before we pursue spiritual gifts we should search our hearts and motives to be used by the Holy Spirit in the way that will best build up the Church (1 Corinthians 12:31).

If I operate in Spiritual Gifts does that mean I am Spiritually mature?

No!!! The entire book of 1 Corinthians shows us that spiritual giftedness and spiritual maturity are not the same thing. Spiritual Gifts are given to us by God’s grace not because of our maturity. (See 1 Corinthians 13)

What is the most important Spiritual Gift?

The most important spiritual gift is the one that is most needed in the moment, not the one that brings the most attention to the person operating in the spiritual gift. (See 1 Corinthians 14:12)

Finding your Spiritual Gifts:

Finding your spiritual gifts should not be a wild goose chase but simply a discovery of what God has already placed inside of you. To help you we have created a Free Spiritual Gift Test that will aid in helping you recognize what God has placed inside of you. To achieve this we have taken the four primary passages in the New Testament that speak about spiritual gifts: Ephesians 4:11-12; Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 and 28-30; and 1 Peter 4:10-11 and formulated a questionnaire that will help reveal some of the spiritual gifts that God has placed inside of you.



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