Humbly We Work Within our Gifting - Romans 12:3

Current Blog Series : Biblical Vision Explanation

“The right word needed today is preaching, the right accent is the anointed tongue. With such a lever and fulcrum we can move the church to reach the world!” – Dr. Stephen Olford

            We Protestants struggle with a healthy understanding of how to use giftedness within our congregations. We are encouraging people to work in areas that are outside of their gifting. I believe had we kept the parish ideal we would be able to permit each minister to work within their gifting, rather than encouraging them all to become a “head pastor” or Preaching elder. To correct this mis-use of our giftedness we must first determine our gift, and second yield ourselves to working within our gifting with a spirit of humility.

            As we consider Romans 12 we get a good glimpse that all are gifted, but not with the same gifts. (1 Cor. 12:4; 1 Pet. 4:10, Romans 12:3-8) There’s two different types of gifts in scripture Speaking gifts, and Serving gifts. Throughout the whole of Scripture there are 22 noted gifts of the spirit for believers. These gifts are for two purposes, glorification of the Father, and edification of the saints.

[Prophecy (preaching), Serving, Teaching, Exhortation (encouraging),Contributing, Leadership, Mercy, Apostle, Miracles, Kinds of healings, Helping, Administration, Tongues, Word of wisdom, Word of knowledge, Faith, Distinguishing between spirits, Interpretation of tongues, Evangelist, Pastor, Marriage, Celibacy]

            Personally I’m grateful that I don’t have the gift of Celibacy, for I got married June 2nd this year. Why are there so many, and why do we not have all of them? This is a very simple question to handle when considering all these passages. We don’t have all the gifts, because we are to be dependent upon each other. For an arm to work it needs an elbow, hand, fingers, for the fingers to work it needs ligaments and so on…If we think through Paul’s analogy of the body, how can we operate outside of our specific task? I don’t care how good of a doctor someone may be, they can’t replace a knee with an elbow. It just won’t work. So, how can we depend on each other, if we take each other’s job?

            How can a person know what their gift is? I have three points from Landon that I have taken to heart. 1. Do you possess Joy in exercising that gift. I personally can’t stand administration work, therefore I know right off the bat that I’m not gifted with administration. 2. Do you see fruit when you exercise that particular gift? Many preachers love preaching and have Joy in sharing, but there is no fruit from their delivery. When I think of gifted preachers I hear the voice of Dr. Stephen Olford ring in my ears. He was so gifted that he helped teach numerous men the art of preaching, (Billy Graham, Charles Stanley, Adrian Rogers…etc [that’s fruit!!]). 3. The last and hardest pill to swallow in determining your gift, is if there is Confirmation from others. I loved going through my ordination council 3 years ago, because these men of faith that I loved and trusted asked me a plethora of questions for several hours. After their questioning and reflection upon my internships they determine I was gifted for the pastorate and they wanted to ordain me. May we encourage and speak truth to one another in the area of gifts. It is not wrong to tell a brother that he isn’t gifted in an area if it is not helpful to the body. In fact this may bring about greater health for the whole church body.

            A healthy Gospel community will be led, and filled with believers who work according to their gifting. May we not be so prideful that we won’t recognize what God has created us to do. And, may we humbly work within our giftedness for the Glory of the King and edification of our fellow believers. 

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