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Spiritual Gifts

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Falling backwards, rolling around on the floor, and laughing incessantly are not the signs or manifestations of the Holy Spirit operating in the individual. As I mentioned in the past: those who experienced the true power of God the Holy Spirit fell FORWARD "on their faces" instead of falling BACKWARDS (Num.20:6; 1 Chron.29:20; 1 Sam.5:3; Lev.9:24; Ezek.1:28; Matt.26:39; Rev.1:17; 7:11). Jesus Himself  (in His humanity) fell on His face before His heavenly Father. The dumb idol and the demon (Dagon) behind it fell on its face because of the power of the LORD (1 Sam.5:3). This is one of those passages in scripture which clearly shows that God has a great sense of humor (even in the midst of His stern commands); as well as Jonah being vomited out by a big fish. Some Charismatics may argue that the soldiers fell backwards when Jesus responded to them by saying, "I Am". The problem with that explanation is that the soldiers who fell backwards were "unbelievers" (Jn.18:6).

How do we know what genuine spiritual gifts that God has given us? If we are "operating" in accordance with, e.g., faith, giving and discernment, then it really is a moot point, a "it'd be nice to know but isn't necessary to know" point; however, if we are convinced by the Spirit and have had it confirmed by much personal experience that we have gifts A, B, C (cf. Rom.12:3-8; 1 Cor.12:7-11), well then . . .  The main thing is that if a person has a gift -- or thinks they have a gift -- which would involve timely preparation (beyond the spiritual growth to maturity we all need in order to have our gifts function properly; 1 Cor.14:9,20; 1 Pet.4:10) -- then such a person does need to "figure it out": there's no point in going to seminary or graduate school to prepare for a teaching ministry if one has not been gifted to be a teacher, e.g., but if that IS one's gift, the sooner the preparation begins the better (Eph.4:11-16). Tongues is not operational today (cf. 2Cor.12:12; Heb.2:3-4). I don't weigh in on anyone else' experience. God does miracles all the time. And people exaggerate all the time. The hyper-miraculous gifts mentioned by Paul in 1st Corinthians chapter thirteen are not being given today. So God may heal miraculously (He often does, in my experience), but no one today has the ability to say, "Arise and walk!" to a crippled person and have that come true because of a spiritual gift, e.g.  Also, it is abundantly clear that some of the spiritual gifts mentioned were specifically given to the "Apostles" (which there are none today) to confirm the message of the Gospel being preached and spread to the Gentile world.

God Bless!

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