The Gifts Part 6
The Words of Wisdom and the Words of Knowledge continued...
The gift of the words of wisdom differs from the gift of the words of knowledge in that it anchors itself in future time. The gift of the words of wisdom, are divine messages, delivered via the Holy Spirit concerning the future, whether immediate or far off.
Via the gift of the words of wisdom, there are two important things that the Holy Spirit transmits to the faithful, those two things being the plan of God, and the purpose of God in any given situation.
Although there are many scriptures within the Bible that show us the working of the gift of the words of wisdom and the gift of the words of knowledge individually, there is one particular passage that combines the two, and shows us these two gifts working simultaneously. There is nothing in the Word that even alludes to or insinuates that more than one gift of the Holy Spirit cannot be in operation at the same time, and as we discover in the Word of God, the gifts working in tandem or simultaneously are biblical.
Acts 9:10-12, “Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and to him the Lord said in a vision, ‘Ananias.’ And he said, ‘here I am, Lord.’ So the Lord said to him, ‘arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus for behold, he is praying. And in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him, so that he might receive his sight.’”
As I said, this is a fascinating passage, because we see the operation of the gift of the word of knowledge, wherein the Lord is telling Ananias what Saul of Tarsus was doing at that exact moment, namely praying, as well as the gift of the word of wisdom, wherein the selfsame Saul is seeing something that will occur at some point in the future.
There was no way that Ananias could have known that on the street called Straight, in the house of Judas, Saul of Tarsus was at that moment praying. No, there were no webcams, there were no cell phones, there were no instant messages, Ananias was unaware of Saul, of his presence in Damascus, or what Saul was doing at that particular moment. Saul was praying, God knew that Saul was praying, and via the gift of the words of knowledge, the Holy Spirit revealed this to Ananias.
The same gift was operating in Saul, who had been converted on the road to Damascus, and at the moment that the Lord was revealing Saul’s location, as well as what he was doing to Ananias, Saul was seeing this selfsame man named Ananias, who would come in and put his hand on him that he might receive his sight.
Acts 9:13-16, “Then Ananias answered, ‘Lord I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem. And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name. But the Lord said to him, ‘Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.’”
At first, as any man would be, Ananias was reluctant to go and meet with Saul of Tarsus, because he had heard many things about Saul, he knew him by reputation alone, and by the fact that he had caused much harm to the saints of Jerusalem.
It’s as if Ananias was asking ‘are you sure Lord? Are you certain that this is the man I’m supposed to go see, are you certain that this is the man that You want to heal by my hand? He’s not a nice guy; in fact he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name. Maybe you can pick someone else?’
It is at this moment that the gift of the words of wisdom begins to manifest, and God begins to reveal His future plans for Saul of Tarsus, informing Ananias that indeed, this persecutor of the brethren, this man who hunted the followers of Christ even as far as Damascus, was indeed a chosen vessel, one who would bear God’s name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.
None of this these had as yet occurred, at that moment Saul was nothing more than a blind man sitting in the house of Judas on the street called Straight praying, but the gift of the words of wisdom revealed what the future held for Saul, and via the Holy Spirit, God revealed the reality of what Saul would become to Ananias.
The gift of the words of wisdom is a practical gift, one that gives much comfort and encouragement, especially when God sets us on a course, or directs us toward a path that seems counterintuitive and even illogical to human reasoning. It is in such times, and in such circumstances that the gift of the words of wisdom is best utilized, because although we might not see the plan of God in its totality today, God knows the end from the beginning and He knows our destination long before we’ve taken the first step. In His goodness, He oftentimes reveals the reality of what the future holds for us if we remain in obedience, just as He revealed to Ananias what the future held for Saul of Tarsus, who we now know as Paul the Apostle of Christ.
Everything that God foretold concerning Saul came to pass, he truly bore the name of God and the saving grace of Christ to the Gentiles, to kings as well as to the children of Israel, and if we read all that he endured throughout his life, we also come to realize that truly he suffered many things for God’s sake.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.