Gifts of the Spirit (Romans #24)

Text: Romans 12:4-8

The value of a Local Church

  • Supply the need of the flock
    • Holy spirit used a pastor to say just what needed to be said to help you
    • Member help at your house
    • Flock to the weaker member to help, but people who are proud and “elite spiritual” gawk and judge.
    • You need a local church.  I need a local church.
    • Complimentary difference
    • Bound together in charity
    • You can’t sit at home and be an obedient Christian.
      • No man lives to himself.
      • Who prays for you?  Who do you pray for?
      • Who benefits from your faith?
      • People don’t like accountability or spiritual responsibility.
      • Men don’t want to be failures.
  • In Christ, you serve a purpose bigger than yourself
    • This is God’s ministry and it is bigger than you or I
    • It is eternal
  • Some churches are not churches at all
    • Businesses set up as churches and operated with spirituality as the product and the congregation as the customers
    • most attending are not saved as is the motto of the group – always trying to reach the unchurched

The gifts to the Local Church

  • These gifts that accompany the holy spirit of God are not talents and they are not things that someone without the holy spirit of God can do.  1 Corinthians 12:3… and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.
  • Along with that gift is going to be the grace and equipping to handle the troubles that will come with that gift.
  • There are seven gifts listed here.

The gifts of the Spirit

  • Prophecy
    • 1 Corinthians 13:2 understand all mysteries and all knowledge
    • 1 Corinthians 14:1-3 it is a speaking gift that edifies the flock.
    • Prophet speaks for God – Deuteronomy 18:18-20, but we have the scriptures now, so whatever is said will have to line up with the scriptures.
    • according to the proportion of faith – Faith is born out of the words of God (Romans 10:17).  So prophecy will come from an understanding of the scriptures by the grace of God.
    • temptation to be proud of what you know – Paul was given a thorn in the flesh lest he be exalted above measure and God said my grace is sufficient for thee.
  • Ministry
    • help as the first time the word shows up in the Bible in Exodus 24:13
    • Service, wait as in waiting tables
    • you’ll find deacons had this gift – Acts 6:1 … daily ministration (ministry)
    • “support staff”, when a burden began to encroach on the apostles in Jerusalem so that they could not do the work God called them to, these ministers provided the support so the apostles could do what they were called to do.  In that way it was a gift that was largely logistical, but the men had to be spiritually qualified for the job (Acts 6:3)
  • Teaching
    • Ability to pass on sound doctrine (1 Timothy 1:3)
    • Exodus 18:20 And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.
    • Jesus Christ scolded Nicodemus one time saying aren’t you a master in Israel and you don’t know what I’m saying?
    • Paul said he became a teacher of the Gentiles and he passed on sound doctrine in all of his epistles
  • Exhortation
    • More akin to preaching
    • Luke 3:18 John the baptist exhortation means getting someone to make a decision and change their course of action.
    • exhorters in the old days
  •  Giving
    • Simplicity means simple as opposed to duplicity. To give without expectation or ulterior motives.
    • To give to be a blessing.
    • First gave of themselves.
  • Ruling
    • with diligence
    • Proverbs 12:24 The hand of the diligent shall bear rule: but the slothful shall be under tribute.
    • Diligent is a careful accounting of something.  The gift of ruling is someone who carefully accounts for your soul – Hebrews 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
    • Cares about your soul
    • Consistent and continual attention
    • Opposite of diligent is negligent.  Something I’m afraid of as a pastor is missing something that I should be seeing.
  • Mercy
    • with cheerfulness
    • grace to be merciful without being bitter against them

You have one or more of these gifts.  If you can’t tell which ones you have then the problem lies in the first three verses of this chapter.  You aren’t a living sacrifice, you are conformed to this world and therefore confused about the will of God or blind to it and you think more highly of yourself than you ought to think and therefore exercise little to no faith in your walk with the Lord.

But if you will do the first three verses of this chapter, then verses 4-8 will become clear as to what your contribution to the body of Christ is.  And that edification will be greater or smaller depending on whatever faith you exercise – your measure of faith.