Choosing Gifts

Loutzenhiser's picture

1Co 14:11 But if I don't understand the language that someone is using, we will be like foreigners to each other.
1Co 14:12 If you really want spiritual gifts, choose the ones that will be most helpful to the church.
1Co 14:13 When we speak languages that others don't know, we should pray for the power to explain what we mean.

The word choose is G2212
ζητέω
zēteō
dzay-teh'-o
Of uncertain affinity; to seek (literally or figuratively); specifically (by Hebraism) to worship (God), or (in a bad sense) to plot (against life): - be (go) about, desire, endeavour, enquire (for), require, (X will) seek (after, for, means). Compare G4441.

As I understand this verse I can choose the spiritul gifts I want and since i see no exclusion that would include tongues. so then if I can choose my gifts what does that say for tongues being a sign of salvation? How then do we respond to the brother that says he has no spiritual gift from God? Can we choose to be healers? what spiritual gift did you choose?

Tobie's picture

Spiritual Gifts

Skills and abilities that God gives through His Spirit to all Christians, which equip Christians to serve God in the Christian community.

In the Old Testament, the Spirit of the Lord was given to selected leaders rather than to all of God's people. The Spirit brought with Him one or more gifts which equipped the individual to serve God by serving Israel craftsmanship (Ex.31:2-3) Judge (3:9-10) Military Skills (Judges 6:34 Physical strength (Judges 14:6 and 19) Political skills (1 Samuel 10:6 and Prophetic Gifts (Micah 3:8)

The Christain view of spiritual gifts begins with Jesus, the unique bearer of the Spirit (Mark 1:10) The Spirit directed and empowered Him for His ministry (Luke 4:14-18). Jesus promised His disciples that they, too, would receive the Spirit one day and that the Spirit would guide them. These promises were fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-47) The Spirit was given to all Christians, not just selected leaders ( Acts 2: 3-4 and 17-18), and would continue to be given to all who accepted the Christian faith (v.38; compare Romans 8:9) When the Spirit came into a person's life, He brought with Him a gift or gifts, which that person could use to serve God (1 Peter 4:10- 1 Cor. 12:4-7) All Christians are given gifts. Paul spoke of gifts in terms of the whole church, the body of Christ, not in terms of individuals only. This leaves no room for arrogance or shame concerning our gifts.

The Bible makes no distinction between Spiritual Gifts and Natural Abilities (See Romans 12:6-8) His assumption seems to have been that whatever skills a Christian has are given to him by God and are to be used in God's Service. What matters, then, is that Christians discover what their gifts are and then develop them.

The one gift all Christians should have is Love or Charity (1Cor. 12:31- 13:1), the ultimate spiritual gift. If we have all other gifts and lack love, we have nothing; if we have love and nothing else, we have everything. Love fulfills the entire law (Romans 13:10) Love makes possible the fellowship of the church and guarantees that gifts will be used unselfishly.

Sorry that this is long. I did a class on this years ago.

In Christ, Tobie




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