The Gifts Part 39
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a man on the outs. Although I believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit I’m not a charismatic, and I believe that much shame has been brought to the household of faith because men manifest in their flesh rather than through the Spirit. Although I believe God blesses His children, I’m not a word-faith proponent, nor do I believe that we are entitled to anything material when we come to Jesus. I don’t belong to any camp per se, nor can I be easily labeled and this is frustrating to a great number of people. I believe in the word of God, I believe in rightly dividing the word of God, I believe in diligently studying the word of God, and I believe that the blinders of denominational thinking are dangerous most of the time if not all the time when it comes to understanding the deeper mysteries of God.
Our journey is one of truth, not one of denominational formulae, and if anyone has disagreement with what I write, prove it out Biblically, and I’ll be more than happy to listen. We set a dangerous precedent when we allow personal opinion to countermand the word of God, and superimpose itself upon scripture. We are beholden to God, we are beholden to His word, and we are constrained by the truth we discover therein. When we teach, it must be the word of God that we teach, when we preach, it must be the word of God that we preach, and when we stray from the word of God in the furtive fields of our own imagining, we come away confused, divided, doubtful and uncertain.
We began discussing Paul’s exhortation that we ought to pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, especially that we might prophecy, but before we can get into why it is that we should desire to prophecy we must establish, and biblically so what prophecy is.
There has been much confusion concerning the gift of prophecy throughout the years, and due to lack of understanding or an unwillingness to dig deeper into the word of God to discover the truth that waits beneath the surface, we’ve mislabeled what the gift of prophecy is, what it does, and how it operates within the congregation of God.
The gift of prophecy, just like the gift of speaking in other tongues, and the gift of interpretation of tongues is a gift that is predominately subject to verbal communication. It can readily be said, that all three of the gifts that make up the gifts of inspiration, are gifts which manifest through verbal communication. Although the other six gifts are not necessarily gifts of verbal communication, the gifts of inspiration are. These three gifts in particular are also more difficult to prove or verify, due to their nature. With something like the gifts of healings, it is easy to prove or verify its veracity, because if a man who was once lame now walks, then the gift is proven out by the man’s ability to walk. If however, he who was lame remains lame, then it is evident that the gift was not operating. When it comes to prophecy, tongues, and the interpretation of tongues, there is rarely visible, palpable, or immediate evidence of their veracity, unless the gift of discerning of spirits is also operating within the body of believers.
I will be the first to admit that I have witnessed false tongues within the church, I have also witnessed false interpretation of tongues, wherein the tongues were of divine origin, but the interpretation was of purely human origin, and I have witnessed false prophecy within the house of God as well. It is something we ought to expect, something we ought to prepare for, and something we ought to be on guard against, because wherever the presence of the Holy Spirit is evident, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit are operating, the enemy attempts to counterfeit, forge and fabricate the true gifts and he does this for two reasons.
The first reason the enemy counterfeits the gifts of the Holy Spirit, is to later expose them as counterfeits and by so doing sow seeds of doubt within the hearts of believers as to the existence of the true gifts, and he second reason is to attempt and sway individuals from the path of righteousness by inserting new teaching and new doctrine within the fellowship, passing them off as truth.
With that having been said, I have also seen true tongues, true interpretation of tongues, and true prophecy within the church.
Yes it is possible to know whether an interpretation or a prophecy is of God or not, even without operating in the gift of discerning of spirits. One of the most consistent signs that an interpretation of tongues, or a prophecy is not from God but rather from the individual’s belly, is when the prophecy or interpretation praises a certain individual or attempts to exalt them.
‘I have sent my servant among you, him you shall obey, him you shall follow, and him you shall submit to.’
Uh, yeah, not so much. True prophecy always exalts Christ, always points the way to Christ, and always magnifies the Son of God. A true word from God, will not contradict the word of God, so if someone with ‘a word from the Lord’ tells you that you’re supposed to follow after them, or obey them rather than Jesus, that is a red flag, a blaring horn, an alarm bell, and a dire warning all rolled up into one.
It is the testimony of Jesus that is the spirit of prophecy, and if the spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus, then all true prophecy will be anchored in Christ, glorifying Him, and raising Him up.
Revelation 19:10, “And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, ‘See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.