In this epistle, Peter is writing to offer encouragement to the Christians that are suffering and facing persecution during Emperor Nero’s reign.
Certain individuals that are very much aware of their capacities accept that they reserve the privilege to involve them however they see fit. Others feel that they have no extraordinary abilities by any means.
What Is a Spiritual Gift?
To these two groups of people, Peter utilizes these two verses. Everybody has a few capacities (“gifts”). We are to figure out what our own are and use them. Each of our abilities should be utilized in serving others.
To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines (1 Corinthians 12:8-11).
So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up (Ephesians 4:11-12).
When we see this rundown of gifts, envision the sorts of individuals who might have each gift. Prophets are articulate and are regularly strong. Ministers (servers) are loyal and faithful. Teachers are people who think clearly.
Preachers know how to inspire others. Givers are trusting and generous. Leaders are great coordinators and supervisors. Comforters are caring individuals who are glad to give other people their time.
It would be hard for one individual to encapsulate this multitude of gifts. A confident prophet would not generally make a decent counselor. A liberal giver could fizzle as a leader.
At the point when we distinguish our own gifts (and this rundown is a long way from complete), we should ask how we can utilize them to develop God's loved ones.
Simultaneously, we should try to understand that our gifts cannot accomplish the work of the congregation by themselves.
We should be appreciative of individuals whose gifts are totally unique in relation to our own, allow our assets to adjust their shortcomings, and be appreciative that their capacities compensate for our deficiencies. Together we can assemble God's congregation.
A spiritual gift is a God-given ability that is distributed by the Holy Spirit to enable a person to work through their lives to help the church. We are responsible for them, but we cannot take credit for what God has given to us.
Natural gifts are physical abilities. Sometimes the spiritual gifts will work through the natural, such as a Christian who sings and is able to evangelize.
Do All Christians Have a Gift?
All believers have at least one gift:
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good (1 Corinthians 12:4-7).
There are many questions that we could ask ourselves to help us determine what our spiritual gifts are. So, what did God give us? How do we identify what we have been given by God? As we study the scriptures, do any gifts stand out within us?
What do we enjoy doing in the church or for the Lord? Can we recognize what the Holy Spirit is directing us to? Do others see any gifts working in our lives? What ministry could God be blessing us with?
Whatever God has given us, be sure that he did not give it to us for us to hide it. Look back at 1 Peter 4:11, “If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God.”
One person’s way of teaching or preaching may appeal to some, and yet another person’s way appeals to others. We are to present God’s Word so that it brings glory to God, not to ourselves.
How is glory given to God when we utilize our abilities or gifts? Whenever we use them as he guides us to help other people, they will see Jesus in us and recognize Him for the assistance that they with have obtained. Peter might have been thinking about Jesus' words,
You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven (Matthew 5:14-16).
There are other scriptures that refer to us being a light:
“No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light” (Luke 8:16).
“No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light” (Luke 11:33)
John 1:7-9 refers to John the Baptist, and like John, we are not God’s source of light. We reflect the Light of Jesus; we shine the light of Christ to a dark world. We are to point others to the Light, Jesus Christ.
Spiritual Gifts Are for the Service of Others
We really must see the reason for the gifts. As indicated by the Apostle Paul, the motivation behind the gifts of the Spirit is to develop and support different believers.
They are not for personal glory or pride (1 Corinthians 12:7). God gives the gifts as he sees fit, and we have nothing to do with what he gives. There is another vital point which we should understand. The gifts are given by God's will, not our own.
God Provides Gifts That Are Best Suited for Us
Since God is omniscient, he would give gifts that would best fit us. Thus, nobody has any premise wherein to grumble about the specific gift they have been given. Rather, every Christian ought to be appreciative and content with the gift that Jesus has given to them.
Then again, there ought not to be any misleading modesty by the individuals who have been given gifts. It is similarly off-base to deny that God has given a spiritual gift as it is to gloat about that gift.
Balance is required. Subsequently, an experienced Christian should be worried only about how the whole assemblage of Christ is working, not what specific spiritual gift they might have (Romans 12:3).
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Chris Swanson answered the call into the ministry over 20 years ago. He has served as a Sunday School teacher, a youth director along with his wife, a music director, an associate pastor, and an interim pastor. He is a retired Navy Chief Hospital Corpsman with over 30 years of combined active and reserve service. You can check out his work here.
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