Spiritual Gifts - Prophecy
1 Peter 4:10 gives us a clear purpose of spiritual gifts. "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms."
Gifts are not toys to play with, or trophies to show off, but tools to serve with.
"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully." (Rom. 12:6-8 NIV)
Just as you were given certain talents and gifts at your birth, so you were given spiritual gifts at your new birth. These are gifts according to the grace given to each of us. This list of seven deals with seven different desires and drives that compel us to serve in seven unique ways and from seven different perspectives. As you read through a description of these gifts these next couple of days ask yourself, "is this my particular motivation in serving?". We begin with the first in the list, prophecy.
The ability to publicly communicate God's Word in an inspired way that convinces unbelievers and challenges and comforts believers. The ability to persuasively declare God's will. People with this gift are obvious. It's a very public gift. 1 Cor. 14:3 says prophecy does three things: "But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort". A prophet does three things in the church. He builds up, fires up and holds up.
Prophets are bold, direct, uncompromising, clear, and blunt. They deeply desire to see people strengthened, encouraged, and comforted by truth. I have noticed that prophets have the ability to discern and reveal the true motives of others through their preaching. 1 Cor. 14:25-26 says this: "...the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, “God is really among you!”
A prophet will stand alone for truth if needed. They are absolutely willing to stand up and say, "this is the right thing to do, whether anybody agrees or not".
Do you think you might have this gift? If so, the body of Christ needs you. Paul warned, "do not despise prophecies" (1 Thess. 5:20)
See you mañana as we talk about the rest of these seven motivational gifts.
In his grip of grace,