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Gifts, Ministries, and Operations Part 01- Introduction

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March 15th, 2013 | Filed Under: Author, Gifts Ministries and Operations, Larry Groenewald, Mitch Kuhn, Topical Studies0 Comments | Author:

This an introduction to a group discussion on Larry Groenewald’s study about Gifts, Ministries, and Operations in the body of Christ. Spiritual gifts and the roles within the body of Christ are often misunderstood and abused. This study will expose the lies and reveal the truth on this topic.

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Gifts, Ministries and Operations in the body of Christ
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Introduction

We know that all things written are ‘for our teaching’ – those on whom ‘the last days (of carnality) have come’:

1Co 10:11 (BBE) Now these things were done as an example; and were put down in writing for our teaching, on whom the last days have come.

Despite the abuse with the false applications of the gifts, ministries and operations in the apostate Christendom throughout the centuries since the book of Acts, these principles are still just as important to the functioning of the spiritual body of Jesus Christ until all will be in God. Even as the ‘testimony of Christ was confirmed’ in the Corinthian church, the carnal babes in Christ there did not see the spiritual application of these principles:

1Co 1:6 even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you [Corinthians];

1Co 1:7 so that you come behind in no gift, waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

All scriptures are ‘dark sayings’ to the flesh, meaning even the spiritual gifts God gives to the church are open for abuse and perversion. The apostle Paul, for example, just mentions these gifts and ministries in the letters he wrote, but do not explain their operation in detail. This led to the many diverse interpretations which we came to see and experience in spiritual Babel (Babylon):

Gen 11:9 Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.

Spiritual Babylon in her various forms will never have consensus on spiritual things because the natural man cannot even discern ‘the things of the spirit of God’:

1Co 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

All spiritual gifts and ministries are still necessary to build up the spiritual body of Christ today when we see the deeper application behind the veil of the letter. God’s gifts are still beneficial for the spiritual maturing purposes and are really without variableness (no change of His mind – His original reason) and turning (recalling the gift):

Jas 1:17 Every good [beneficial] gift and every perfect [for maturity] gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning

God knows the end from the beginning and He has planned every minute detail of our lives so nothing we do can change his mind about the gift he has given us:

Isa 46:10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:

God knows that the emphasis is not on the receiver’s abilities or lack thereof, but for the objectives the gift will achieve as determined by God alone. The end goal of everything is to reveal the glory of God. God does not ‘change His mind’ although to the natural mind it appears that He does repent and change His mind:

Num 23:19 ESV God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?

Psa 110:4 ESV The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind, “You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”

Heb 7:21 ESV but this one was made a priest with an oath by the one who said to him: “The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind, ‘You are a priest forever.'”

To read more on how God uses the scriptures to appear as contradictory to the natural mind, please use this link:
How Can God Repent

Psa 18:25 With the merciful, You will show Yourself merciful; with an upright man You will show Yourself upright;

Psa 18:26 with the pure You will show Yourself pure; and with the crooked You will show Yourself perverse.]

We know that all carnal spirited ‘babes’, like those in Corinth, apply all the gifts in a twisted and perverted way:

1Co 3:1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.

The same word of God is for some with a carnal understanding different as to those with a more spiritually mature understanding, like the same cloud in the wilderness was darkness for the Egyptians, but light to Israel:

1Co 2:6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:

Exo 14:20 And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these: so that the one came not near the other all the night.

If we are given this true spiritual light in our understanding, we will see how the gifts and ministries are to operate in us and in His body:

Eph 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

All these gifts and ministries are necessary in the one body as they interlink with each other as a unit to knit even the members into the one mind and purpose – the health and proper function of The Christ to the glory of the Father:

Rom 15:6 That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.


The motivation for a deeper understanding

A few important spiritual principles will be highlighted by which the body of Christ is to be seen through each member’s place and participation in it!

1Co 12:12 For, even as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of the one body, being many, are one body, so also is the Christ,

The body has a Head, Jesus Christ. He is invisible, but His body is visible:

Eph 5:30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

The Head, Jesus, determines each member’s position and function:

Col 1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.

1Co 12:18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.

The Head, Jesus nourishes each member and is the only One worshipped with God:

Col 2:18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,

Col 2:19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.

We are members one of another in the one Truth, sharing the mind of Christ, putting away the lies of the false church in Babylon:

Eph 4:25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

In the Babylonian church system we see hundreds and thousands of denominations who functions separately, yet they are joined by all their false doctrines. We know the body of Christ is not schizophrenic:

1Co 12:25 That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.

We are closely being knit together in love – His true doctrines that our hearts might be comforted as we grow individually and collectively:

Col 2:2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;

Each member is important to the Head:

1Co 12:7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

1Pe 4:8 And above all things have fervent love to yourselves, for love will cover a multitude of sins.

1Pe 4:9 Be hospitable to one another, without grudging;
1Pe 4:10 each one as he received a gift, ministering it to yourselves as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
1Pe 4:11 If anyone speaks, let it be as the words of God. If anyone ministers [attend to others], let him do it as of the ability which God gives, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ, to whom is the glory, and the might forever and ever. Amen.

Col 2:19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.

1Co 12:26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.
1Co 12:27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.

1Co 12:23 And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness.

God has placed different gifts and ministries within the ‘members in the body’ to show all members/people are needed, and God placed the gifts/ministries in different people to force people to come together regularly to get nourishment from one another:

Heb 10:24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
Heb 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

A few misconceptions also needs to be addressed

Throughout this discussion we will try to give the perversion against the real application to assist in our understanding on these matters.

1Co 12:1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.

1Co 14:1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.

The word “gifts” are not in the original Greek text in these two verses when Paul discusses these aspects concerning the body of Christ. Paul is discussing the most important spiritual application of all the gifts and ministries and operations he mentions in Chapters 12 to 14 of 1Corinthians not just the “gifts” as a part of the holy spirit’s work in the body.

Spiritual gifts are not the same as ‘the gift of the holy spirit’. The spirit that God gives is called the ‘Comforter’ [G3875: paraklētos] and that is Jesus Christ in spirit, who is the Head of the body and this Head gives the gifts, ministries and operations to make His body function the way He wants it:

Joh 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter [G3875: paraklētos], so that He may be with you forever,

1Jn 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate [G3875: paraklētos] with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

Act 2:38 Then Peter said to them, Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ to remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Act 11:16 Then remembered I (Peter) the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.
Act 11:17 Forasmuch then as God gave them (the gentiles) the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?
Act 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Spiritual gifts are not the same as the fruit of the Spirit:

Fruit relates to God’s character;

Fruit is eternal;

Fruit reflects spiritual maturity.

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Gal 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Gifts relate to service;

Gifts, like prophecy, and tongues will come to an end when the ‘perfect’ (the mature spiritual fullness) has come.

1Co 13:8 Charity never fails. But if there are prophecies, they will be abolished; if tongues, they shall cease; if knowledge, it will be abolished.
1Co 13:9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
1Co 13:10 But when the perfect thing comes, then that which is in part will be caused to cease.

Without love all gifts are perverted and empty:

1Co 13:1 EMTV Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become as sounding brass or a clashing cymbal.
1Co 13:2 EMTV And though I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
1Co 13:3 EMTV And though I give away all my possessions to feed the poor, and though I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
1Co 13:4 EMTV Love is patient, love is kind; love does not envy; love does not boast, is not puffed up;
1Co 13:5 EMTV does not behave disgracefully, does not seek its own, is not provoked to anger, thinks no evil;
1Co 13:6 EMTV does not rejoice over unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
1Co 13:7 EMTV bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Spiritual gifts are exclusively for the Body of Christ:

Eph 4:11 And He [the Head] gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting [maturing] of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

1Co 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

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