Have the "gifts of the spirit" ceased?

Discussion in 'Free-For-All Archives' started by Rosell, May 13, 2004.

  1. Rosell

    Rosell
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    Actually, I see several discussions here on related issues, but I'll start this thread to begin on a question that was raised in the politics forum.

    The way the question was posed to me was, "I take it that you don't believe the gifts of the spirit have ceased."

    My response to that is, "Yes, I do not believe the gifts of the spirit have ceased." Meaning that I believe the Holy Spirit still gives spiritual gifts to Christians. I'm the recipient of some of them.

    As to the "miraculous gifts," had you asked me that question several years ago, I'd probably say that there was a distinction between the "miraculous" or "signs" gifts, and the ministry gifts. However, I've experienced a couple of the miraculous gifts, or at least have been in the presence of them, and I believe that a sovereign God is capable of using the Holy Spirit in his church in this way.

    I've never spoken in tongues, but have been present when tongues were scripturally practiced, with an interpreter, and the prophetic word that was given blessed the recipient. The test of a prophet is his accuracy. God doesn't make mistakes, all things are possible with him, and there are no coincidences. If this had been a single occurrence, I still would probably have my doubts, but I've seen this repeatedly. I have to conclude that God is in the results.

    I have witnessed miraculous healing through the laying on of hands on more than one occasion. I could relate several stories about that. I have also experienced what I can only call "fullness" of the spirit in prayer gatherings. This would include visions of answered prayer, and then they are answered, and while it is not an emotional "feeling", there is certainly a spiritual transformation that takes place. Others in the group have a similar experience.

    I can't find any clear teaching of scripture that specifically states that the miraculous gifts will cease, or that there was a specific time they would cease. Since these types of experience are common to every era of Christian existence, I have to believe they are of the Lord, especially since they are clearly mentioned in scripture.
     
  2. MEE

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    The "gifts" haven't ceased. God gave them to "The Church" until the end of the Gentile despensation.
    "...that which is perfect/complete ends with the rapture of the church."

    1Cor.13

    10) But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.

    MEE [​IMG]
     
  3. tamborine lady

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    [​IMG]

    Rosell,

    Good to see there is another here that can rightly divide the Word of God!

    No, the gifts have not ceased, they are still here and will be until the end.

    But brace youself, there are those on the board that will argue UNTIL the end that the gifts are gone.

    But praise God, Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

    Working for Jesus,

    Tam,

    [​IMG]
     
  4. music4Him

    music4Him
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    [​IMG] Rosell
    I believe the 9 gifts of the Spirit are still here too.
    1st gift- the word of wisdom
    2nd gift- the word of knowledge
    3rd gift- faith
    4th gift- the "gifts" of healing
    5th gift- the working of miracles
    6th gift- prophecy
    7th gift- discerning of spirits
    8th gift- divers "kinds" of tongues
    9th gift- the interpretation of tongues

    Music4Him :D
     
  5. Marcia

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    Some believe that "that which is perfect" can mean the canon of scripture, since perfect here means complete. They believe that now we have God's word -- the sign gifts were to show who the early believers were before the canon of scripture was complete.

    As to healings, I would want medical verification. And let's see healings like the apostles and Jesus did -- people who are known to be unable to walk and have it verified medically, be made to walk. Blind people be able to see. Deaf people, medically verified, being able to hear. Those are healings. I know of cases where people have been claimed to be healed but later died or got sick again.

    I have yet to hear of a church where tongues are spoken one at a time while someone interpets. Do you all know of one where this is done according to 1 Cor. 14:27-28? Also, only 2 or 3 people are supposed to do this, not many. So is there a church you know of where, on a regular basis, only 2 or 3 speak in tongues and it is all interpreted? [​IMG]
     
  6. tamborine lady

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    [​IMG]

    It used to happen in the Assembly of God churches, but I'm not sure if it still does or not.

    Perhaps someone from that church could tell us.

    Tam
     
  7. MEE

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    Hello Marcia! I see that you are new to the BB.

    As far as churches that speak in tongues, as the Spirit of God gives the utterance, there are many.

    As a matter of fact, I've never been in one that the "gift of tongues/divers kinds of tongues" followed by the "gift of interepration" was done out of order.

    The church that my family and I attend is always doing the things that be of God decently and in order. We have a pastor that is very well educated, when it comes to the knowledge of the Word of God, as well as our assistant pastors.

    1Cor.14
    40) Let all things be done decently and in order.

    If you would like to view our church, click the link below!

    www.christtemplechurch.net

    MEE [​IMG]
     
  8. Marcia

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    Hello, Mee!

    Thanks for the welcome! [​IMG]

    So you are saying that in your church, only 2 or 3 speak in tongues, one at a time, and there is interpretation for each? If that is so, then that is the first time I've heard of this happening. People I know who have been in churches where people have spoken in tongues have told me that they did not see this, so I was sincerely wondering. Thanks for your reply!

    I read the Statement of Faith on your church's site and it seems to say (correct me if I'm wrong):

    1. A believer will speak in tongues
    2. The office of apostle is for today
    3. That Christ's death provided for healing of the body as well as spiritual healing

    Of course, I would disagree with all 3 of these things. I do not think there are apostles today, that a believer has to speak in tongues (the Bible even says this), nor that we are necessarily going to have physical healing (some of the apostles even didn't have that).

    Am I correct in the way I read the statement of faith?
     
  9. Johnv

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    Have the "gifts of the spirit" ceased?

    No. I have been given certain Spiritual Gifts, among them being discernment. If I don't use a Spiritual gift, I might find it taken from me and given to someone else who will use it.
     
  10. MEE

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    Ummm...yes, that's what it says! Macia, you will see that not everyone agrees all the time. This is a 'debate' forum.

    MEE [​IMG]
     
  11. Marcia

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    I was under no illusion that we would all agree! [​IMG] That's pretty clear here! I'm used to disagreement; after all, I have been involved in apologetics. I'm attacked and challenged all the time through my website, too.

    I just wanted to clarify what I read and make sure I did not misunderstand.

    Even Paul says that not all believers speak in tongues, so I am at a loss as to why any church would expect all believers to speak in tongues. According to your church, then I would not be a believer, right?

    The apostle issue -- well I believe the original apostles were it. But I sure don't have the time or inclination to go into that.

    As far as healing of the body, do you believe tha all Christians should be never be sick, or that if they are sick it is because of a lack of faith?
     
  12. LadyEagle

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    It does. The last time I was at an AOG church, decently and in order, a "word of knowledge" which edified the Body of Christ.
     
  13. DHK

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    I agree with Marcia.
    If the gifts of the Spirit were still for today they would operate in a Biblical way. They don't because they have ceased. The Charismatics can provide no Biblical evidence of the operation of the sign gift of the Spirit. I would like to see evidence, in particular of the GIFT of healing.
    DHK
     
  14. just-want-peace

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    I've yet to see a "valid proof scripturally" that the gifts have ceased today. Personally, I think that the biggest reason we don't see them practiced today is that we as a body have become too self-sufficient to allow God free rein in our lives.

    There are too many stories from misionaries of the miraculous happening in third world countries for them (gifts) to have been valid only in apostolic times.

    Most of these people (third worlders) don't have the IRA's, 401's, Cancer Centers, Specialized Physicians etc, etc so they are more open to intervention from God for Him to accomplish that which would otherwise not be accomplished.

    While we, as Christians, certainly believe God can still work miracles via the "GIFTS", we at the same time limit Him by our lack of faith AND our self-sufficiency.

    Anyway, this applys to me, if not to you; but I will always maintain that the gifts are still valid, we just aren't dependent on God enough to access them!
     
  15. BobRyan

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    According to the list of spiritual gifts in 1Cor 12 - "Speaking in tongues" is not the only one in the list. Though in some groups today - you get that idea.

    In 1Cor 14 Paul says "desire Earnestly Spiritual Gifts but Especially that you may..." What?

    Anyway - the point is that there is more than one spiritual gift.

    Another point from 1Cor 12 is that ALL do not have the SAME gift. (Another thing you would not guess from the populare ideas about this subject). For many today "the whole body is a tongue".

    And finally - in Eph 4:1-10 we find that Spiritual Gifts were to continue to build up the church until the 2nd coming.

    In Christ,

    Bob
     
  16. music4Him

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    [​IMG] to ~just-want-peace~ I think you are hitting it pretty close to the mark there. Sometimes we get down to the bare essentials agian.

    Bro.Bob, [​IMG]
    That is true we don't all have the same gift or work in all of the gifts at one time all the time. But one gift of the Spirit is (or should be, if its not wrong for me saying) constant in every Christian and thats the gift of faith. 1Cor.12:9. We've gotta have faith. [​IMG]

    BTW, EPH.4 was such good reading, I had to read on up to verse 16.

    Music4Him
     
  17. Walguy

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    It's important to differentiate between miraculous occurences and miraculous Spiritual Gifts. God can do whatever he wants, and He does sometimes heal miraculously in response to prayer. What we DON'T see anymore are people who can instantaneously heal ANYONE of ANY ailment at ANY time. That's the 'Gift of Healing.' I don't doubt that there are also occasions when a person is empowered by God in a specific situation to be able to speak in an unknown real language. But you DON'T see people who can speak in the language of ANY person present ANY time they want to. That's the 'Gift of Tongues.' Please don't mistake occurrences for gifts. They are two very different things.
    As for the modern Charismatic 'tongues,' Paul clearly taught that not everyone is able to speak in tongues (in fact most would not), and that ALL Spiritual Gifts are for the edification of the Church, i.e. to benefit others. Tongues is not an exception, and the hijacking of Tongues to be a private prayer language to edify yourself is not only not Biblical, it directly contradicts Scripture. No other criteria are needed to conclude that this is something that is NOT from God.
    Finally, the 'valid proof Scripturally' is found in I Corinthians 13. In verse 8 Paul uses two different verbs in different voices, one for prophesies and knowledge, and another for tongues. The former indicates outside action upon the subject, which means that something will cause prophecy and knowledge to cease. In the case of tongues, however, the verb indicates action by the subject upon itself, meaning that the Gift of Tongues would die out on its own. That's exactly what happened. When those in the early Church who had the true Gift died, the Gift died with them. The fact that tongues are mentioned with prophecy and knowledge in verse 8, but NOT in verse 9, also indicates that tongues will end BEFORE prophecy and knowledge. Since all three of these are Gifts, this is clear Scriptural proof that different Gifts have different life-spans. Combined with close to 2000 years of inactivity of the miraculous Gifts (since the passage does NOT say that tongues will die out and then reappear later), this can only mean that the miraculous gifts were temporary and are not for today.
    The best practical argument against the idea that all the Gifts are still present today is the obvious absence of the Gift of Healing. As I mentioned earlier, there are clearly no people around today who are able to heal anyone of anything at any time, which is what the Gift of Healing was. Since at least one Gift is indisputably gone, the idea that all the Gifts are still active is a logical impossibility. Thus, each Gift must be evaluated individually to determine if it is still active or not. The evidence for tongues having ceased long ago is clear for any who are willing to see it.
    As a postscript, some believe that ALL the gifts ceased when the Bible was completed, but the I Corinthians 13 passage which they use as the proof text actually contradicts that idea too, as we have seen. In addition, 'the perfect' cannot refer merely to the completion of the Bible, because Paul goes on to tie our own understanding of God's truth to 'the perfect' in this context. The Bible is indeed perfect in itself, but obviously our understanding of it isn't, or we wouldn't be having all these theological arguments. We would all perfectly understand, and perfectly agree on everything. Unfortunately, even with a perfect Bible we are FAR from the perfect understanding Paul wrote of in verse 12. We are still seeing in a mirror dimly, and knowing only in part. Only when God's perfect eternal Kingdom finally arrives, and all believers have been given their eternal perfect bodies, will this passage be fulfilled.
    I hope this will help enlighten those who have open minds about this subject and are genuinely looking for the truth on the subject of Spiritual Gifts.
     
  18. Walguy

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    Your heart is in the right place, but you are making the common error of not understanding what a Spiritual Gift is. All of us have faith, but we do NOT all have the Gift of Faith. Spiritual Gifts are special empowerments given to individual believers to aid in their specific ministries to the Church and the world. We receive these when we are first saved and receive the Holy Spirit (which is NOT evidenced by speaking in Tongues, btw, but that's another topic). The Gift of Faith is a special ability to keep oneself and others around him/her focused on and trusting in God, even in very hard times. It's something beyond the general faith we all have, and as is the case with each individual gift, only a small percentage of all believers have it.
    I don't mean to pick on you, but it's pointless to have a discussion on Spiritual Gifts if we don't all understand exactly what they are and are not.
    God's peace be with you! [​IMG]
     
  19. atestring

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    Those that believe that tongues have ceased because the canon is complete need to remember that Tongues are in the Bible and therefore part of the Canon.
     
  20. LadyEagle

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    Just-want-peace, agreed! [​IMG]
     

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