1 Corinthians 12:7, “Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”
I find it disappointing when I hear well-intentioned Christians teach that the gifts of the Holy Spirit were only for the first disciples or, that today, only a certain chosen few are given the gifts. The Bible teaches the exact opposite. Paul said, in the above verse, that the manifestation or appearance of the Spirit is given to each one and is for the common good.
Paul also went on to teach, in 1 Corinthians 12:11, after naming the nine gifts of the Spirit that, “All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.” Notice that each one (or “every person”) is distributed a gift from the Holy Spirit as the Holy Spirit chooses.
Peter preached, on Pentecost, when the baptism of the Holy Spirit was given for the first time, with the evidence of speaking in other tongues, “The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call” (Acts 2:29). No one is left out- we all can receive God’s spiritual gifts for gospel service.
You and I have a promise, today, to be given not only the baptism of the Holy Spirit, but also all the gifts of the Spirit as the Holy Spirit chooses.
On one hand, Paul taught that the Holy Spirit determines, at any particular church service or time, who is given the following nine spiritual gifts, (1) the message of wisdom, (2) the message of knowledge, (3) the gift of faith, (4) the gifts of healing, (5) the gift of miraculous powers, (6) the gift of prophecy, (7) the gift of distinguishing between spirits, (8) the gift of speaking in different kinds of tongues and (9) the gift of interpretation of tongues.
On the other hand, every Holy Ghost-filled believer is eligible to use all the gifts of the Holy Spirit, for the common good, whenever the Spirit wills it. For example, in a church service everyone may not be given the gift of prophecy, but everyone is eligible for the gift. Also, everyone may not have a message of wisdom for a lost person, but everyone can be given it.
A.W. Tozer wrote, “The Spirit-filled life is not a special, deluxe edition of Christianity. It is part and parcel of the total plan of God for His people.” Our responsibility is to be filled with the Holy Spirit (with the evidence of speaking in other tongues) and desire to be used in all nine of the spiritual gifts. Paul said, in 1 Corinthians 14:1, “Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy.”
Do you eagerly desire to be used in the gifts of the Spirit?
- Ask God to remove any doubt or false teaching concerning the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
- If you have yet to receive it, pray and ask God for you to be baptized with the Holy Spirit, with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. If you have received it, pray in tongues and build up your inner man.
- Eagerly desire for the Holy Spirit to use you in all nine of the spiritual gifts as often as He wills it. When you sense God has given you a gift, use it for His glory and be open to it being tested by godly leadership (1 Corinthians 14:29).