- Preaching the Living WORD through the Written WORD - 2 Tim 4:2 -
(TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL GIFTS)
(1Co 12:8-10, 28-30; Rom 12:6-8; Eph 4:11; 1Pe 4:10-11)
I. DEFINITION OF TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL GIFTS
A. A spiritual gift is a divine and supernatural enabling, given by the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation, to be exercised in the building up of the body of Christ (1Co 12:7, 11; Eph 1:13).
B. Permanent gifts are particular divine enablements that edify the church and continue throughout the Church Age.
C. Temporary gifts were particular divine enablements that confirmed revelation from God and authenticated the apostolic ministry during the apostolic period in the 1st Cent. When the canon of Scripture was completed, Scripture itself became self-authenticating.
II. DESIGN OF TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL GIFTS
1. Some of the gifts of the Spirit were temporary because they were revelatory and foundational in order to establish the early church in the absence of the New Testament (apostles, prophets, knowledge, etc.).
2. Some spiritual gifts were revelatory and gave divine disclosure of divine truths (Eph 3:5; Joh 12:16; 14:26).
1. Some of the gifts of the Spirit were temporary because they were given to the Church in order to confirm God's message, messengers and mission (healing, miracles, tongues & interpretation of tongues, etc.).
2. Some spiritual gifts were confirmatory and gave divine signs to validate a divine message or messenger (Heb 2:4; 2Co 12:12; Act 8:6-7).
1. Some of the gifts of the Spirit were temporary because they were given to the Church for a limited period of time. Speaking in tongues has not been the norm from a historical viewpoint since the end of the first century A.D.
2. Some spiritual gifts were transitory and came with a divinely limited duration (1Co 13:8; 1Co 1:22).
1. Some of the gifts of the Spirit were temporary because they were given to the Church until the completion of the New Testament.
2. Some spiritual gifts were abrogatory when they were replaced with the divine truth and confirmation of the Scriptures (Rev 22:18; Deu 4:2: Pr 30:6).
III. DESIGNATED TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL GIFTS
A. Apostleship (1Co 12:28; Eph 4:11)
1. The office of apostleship was commissioned by the resurrected Christ (Act 1:21-22).
2. The spiritual gift of apostleship was revelatory (Gal 1:1, 12), confirmatory (2Co 12:12), and declaratory (Eph 2:20; Ro 16:25; Act 2:42; 2Pe 3:2; Jud 1:17).
3. There was no succession of the office and spiritual gift of apostleship after the death of the last apostle at the end of the 1st Cent.
B. Prophecy (1Co 12:10, 28; Rom 12:6; Eph 4:11)
1. Like apostles, prophets also laid the foundation of the church (Eph 2:20).
2. They received their message through special revelation and were 100% accurate (Deu 18:20-22). Revelation was declared in both fore-telling and forth-telling (Act 11:27-28; 2Pe 1:20-21). The gift of prophecy probably has ceased due to the completion of canon.
3. Some who agree that gifts are both temporary and permanent see the gift of prophecy for today in the sense of forth-telling and not fore-telling. The problem with this view is that nowhere in the Scriptures are we taught that some spiritual gifts diminish in capacity.
C. Word Of Wisdom And Of Knowledge (1Co 12:8)
1. The word of wisdom was the revelation of divine doctrine whereas the word of knowledge was the revelation of divine truth applied in practical ways (2Pe 3:15).
2. It is erroneous to view them as intuitive knowledge of diseases or sickness, or to view them mystically as a personal revelation beyond universal biblical principles (i.e. “received a word from the Lord” cp. 2Tim 3:16-17).
D. Distinguishing Of Spirits (1Co 12:10)
1. Distinguishing of spirits was the ability to discern the validity of supernatural revelation in oral form (i.e. true prophet vs. false prophet cp. Act 13:10).
2. Today all believers are given discernment by the Holy Spirit through the Scriptures (1Jo 2:27). Scripture provides its own test through which believers can “test the spirits” (1Jo 4:1-3; 2Co 11:14-15; 1Th 5:21).
E. Gifts Of Healing (1Co 12:9, 28)
1. Healing was a spiritual gift that enabled a person to heal another with physical infirmities in order to authenticate the messenger and message (Mat 10:1; Act 3:6-8).
2. God still heals, and he heals through the prayers of his people (Jam 5:14-15). However, he does not heal anymore in this dispensation through the spiritual gift of healing.
F. Effecting Of Miracles (1Co 12:10)
1. The effecting of miracles was a spiritual gift of working supernatural signs and wonders. Jesus and the apostles performed miracles to confirm that God was working though him (Act 2:22; 6:8; Heb 2:3-4).
2. God still performs miracles, but not through miracle workers.
G. Various Kinds Of Tongues And Interpretation Of Tongues (1Co 12:10, 28, 30)
1. Tongues was another sign gift that has ceased (1Co 13:8). The true gift of tongues was speaking in a foreign language unknown to the speaker (Act 2:6-11 - dialektos).
a) The Greek word for “cease” comes from pauō and means to cease from an activity or state, bring to an end, (Lk 8:24 “stopped”; Lk 11:1 “finished”; Ac 20:1 “ceased”)
b) The verb “cease” (paúsontai) is in the middle voice and means it will act upon itself to cease without some other agent causing it to cease, i.e. tongues would cease when they accomplished their purpose in the 1st Cent.
c) …in general, in the middle voice, the subject performs or experiences the action expressed by the verb in such a way that emphasizes the subject’s participation. ….if there are tongues, they will cease [on their own] (Wallace, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics 414, 422).
In his commentary on 1
2. Tongues confirmed: 1) The message of salvation (Act 2:14ff); 2) Salvation to Gentiles (Act 11:15-18); 3) Judgment to unbelieving Jews (1Co 14:21-22).
3. Interpretation was the ability to translate an unlearned, common language expressed in the assembly (1Co 14:27).