Lesso taught at South Bay Church's UNPLUGGED College Group
The Holy Spirit - from beginning to now:
Humans were originally made as “temples” of God’s Spirit
Genesis 2:7 “God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.”
When we sinned, the Holy Spirit could no longer live in us.
He was often "upon” or “on” people, but not “living in” them.
Prophets of the OT foretold of a day where God promised to make a way again for His Holy Spirit to live in us. Which would require for the problem of SIN to be dealt with.
Joel 2:28 Then in those days I will pour My Spirit to all humanity; your children will boldly and prophetically speak the word of God. Your elders will dream dreams; your young warriors will see visions. No one will be left out. In those days I will offer My spirit to all servants, both male and female.
Isaiah 44:3 (see John 7:37) For I will pour out water to quench your thirst and to irrigate your parched fields. And I will pour out my Spirit on your descendants, and my blessing on your children.
Ezekiel 36:26 And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations.
John the Baptist, who came to prepare the way for Jesus, also reminded the people of this promise:
Luke 3:16 “I baptize you with water; but someone is coming soon who is greater than I am—so much greater that I’m not even worthy to be his slave and untie the straps of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.”
Jesus also reassured His followers that a time is coming where the Holy Spirit would be poured out again. He would live in us. Read John 16
After the resurrection, Jesus told His followers to wait until the promise is fulfilled before they begin their ministry.
Luke 24:49 “And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fill you with power from Heaven.”
Acts 1:4 Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. 5 John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.
Then it came, the day when the Holy Spirit was poured out and the promise fulfilled: (Acts 2)
Acts 2:38 Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentiles—all who have been called by the Lord our God.”
Those who turn from their sins and believe in Jesus receive the Holy Spirit, who then gives the followers of Jesus spiritual gifts – spirit enabled abilities – that we can use as we serve others and build God’s Kingdom.
DEFINITION: A Spiritual Gift is a special divine empowerment given freely to each believer by the Holy Spirit to accomplish a given ministry according to His grace and discernment to be used within the context of the Body of Christ.
The term "spiritual gifts" comes from the Greek words charismata (gifts) and pneumatika (spirits). They are the plural forms of charisma, meaning "expression of grace," and pneumatikon meaning "expression of Spirit." While there are different kinds of gifts (1 Corinthians 12:4), generally speaking, spiritual gifts are God-given graces (special abilities, offices, or manifestations) meant for works of service, to benefit and build up the body of Christ as a whole.
1 Corinthians 12-14
Three Common Ways to Category Spiritual Gifts:
1. Motivational Gifts
This gift of God’s grace shapes how the believer views life, relates to others, and impacts the Body of Christ. A motivational gift can be compared to a set of eyeglasses from God, given so that the believer can see people and circumstances through that particular set of “lenses.”
- Prophecy: Reveals truth by exposing sin, so that fellowship with God can be restored and/or maintained
- Serving: Demonstrates love by meeting practical needs, usually through tangible work
- Teaching: Discovers and validates truth so that the Church maintains accuracy
- Exhorting: Encourages Christians to grow spiritually by teaching, discipling, and counseling others
- Giving: Conserves and shares resources in order to meet needs
- Organizing: Carries out projects by recruiting workers, organizing tasks, or delegating responsibilities
- Mercy: Demonstrates God’s love and compassion by responding to hurt
2. Ministry Gifts - Those called and gifted to equip others:
Ephesians 4:11-13: “He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” (See also I Corinthians 12:27–31.)
3. The Manifestation Gifts - demonstrations of God’s supernatural power
These gifts represent the work God does through the life of a believer in a given situation to demonstrate His supernatural power.
Nine manifestation gifts are listed in I Corinthians 12:7–11:
- Word of wisdom
- Word of knowledge
- Gifts of healing
- Working of miracles
- Discerning of spirits
- Divers kinds of tongues
- Interpretation of tongues
1 Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.
THE VOICE: Use whatever gift you’ve received for the good of one another so that you can show yourselves to be good stewards of God’s grace in all its varieties.
Natural talent comes from your physical birth.
Spiritual gifts come from your spiritual birth.
Both are giving to us for ministry.
BASIC TRUTHS ABOUT SPIRITUAL GIFTS:
- Take risks with serving - trial and error is how you find your spiritual gift.
- Look at what annoys you most - what frustrates you? That might be what God wants you to work on, since someone with your gift is not fixing the problem.
- You can have a mixture of gifts. They are a tool always at your disposal that you can carry on your belt, but God can add one to your belt when needed.
- Exercise your gifts. There are different levels of giftedness. You have to cultivate and exercise your gifts.
- You often have to serve outside your area of gift, based on need. Don’t just say, that’s not my gift...
- Gifts cannot be a source of pride – if you had worked for them, they wouldn’t be gifts.
- The closer you are to Jesus (the source, the vine) the more power will be behind your gift.