Holy Spirit Gifts and Power

by Paul Walker


Without a doubt, the Pentecostal revival of the early 1900s, the Charismatic renewal, which had its beginning in the late 1950s and the Renewal Movement called the Toronto Blessing beginning January 20th 1994[1], together constitute one of the most innovative and impactive spiritual renovations in history. But when we investigate this phenomenon we must ask:

1) Why has this happened?

2) What is this doing? and

3) How can spiritual integrity be maintained? a,


Why Has This Happened?

The first reason has been an evident need for renewal of mission and purpose throughout the church and among its individual members.

Second, in view of this need for renewal, there has been a definite movement on the part of sincere believers to recover the dynamic power of the Holy Spirit, which transformed and empowered the early Christians. Emerging from this movement has been an inbreaking of the Holy Spirit, accompanied by speaking in tongues, among believers in every major denomination, demonstrating that the baptism in the Holy Spirit is not a denomination or a movement but an experience that brings enduement of spiritual power for intensified service.

Third, this inbreaking of the Holy Spirit has linked both the mainline Protestant and the traditional Pentecostal movement to the worship practices of the first century through what has appropriately been referred to as the Charismatic movement (derived from charismata, the Greek word used, for example, in I Cor. 12:4, 30 for the gift of the Holy Spirit).


What Is This Doing?

Renewal then raises the question, What really happens when the gifts go to church? In attempting to answer, attention must be given to the scriptural foundation, the traditional context, and the contemporary witness.


The Scripture Is Being Fulfilled

First, the Bible unequivocally declares, "Be filled with the Spirit" (Eph. 5:18). An analysis of the Greek verb translated "be filled" shows that it is in the present tense, indicating that this blessing is one that we may experience and enjoy now. The fact that the verb is a command (imperative mood) does not leave the responsive disciple an option in the matter. However, since the verb is in the passive voice, it is clear that being filled with the Spirit is not something the Christian achieves through his own efforts, but is something that is done for him and to which he submits. Hence, the Scriptures depict a theocentric view of the Holy Spirit’s filling, in which the Higher reaches down to gather up the lower into ultimate communion. Clarity on this point dismisses the criticism or misunderstanding of some who seem to see this experience as something merely conjured up by human suggestion, proposition, or excitement.


The Person of the Holy Spirit Is at Work

Second, the Bible reveals that the Person of the Holy Spirit has been the primary agent in all of the ministry of the Word throughout the centuries. The Scripture states clearly that the triune Godhead operates coequally, coeternally, coexistently, as one unit. But it also has been suggested, and with validity, that we might view this unity of activity with an eye toward the special function of each member of the Trinity: the executive is the Father, the architect is the Son, and the contractor is the Holy Spirit.

Thus, the Scriptures show the Holy Spirit uniquely and distinctly at work in these roles: 1) He is the Author of the Old Testament (2 Sam. 23:2, Is. 59:21; Jer. 1:9 2 Tim. 3:1517; 2 Pet. 1:21) and the New Testament (John 14:25, 26; I Cor. 2:13; I Thess. 4:15; Rev. 1:10, 11; 2:7). 2) He is the Old Testament Anointer. The Scriptures name no less than sixteen Old Testament leaders in Israel who received this anointing: Joseph (Gen. 41:38); Moses (Num. 11:17); Joshua (Num. 27:18); Othniel (Judy. 3:10); Gideon (Judy. 6:34); Jephthah (Judy. 11:29); Samson (Judy. 14:6, 19; 15:14, 15); Saul (I Sam. 10:10; 11:6); David (I Sam. 16:13); Elijah (I Imp. 8:12, 2 Kin. 2:16); Elisha (2 Kin. 2:15) Azariah (2 Chr. 15:1); Zechariah (2 Chr. 24:20); Ezekiel (Ezek. 2:2); Daniel (Dan. 4:9, 5:11; 6:3); Micah (Mic. 3:8).

Thus, the Holy Spirit, as contractor, anointed the Old Testament prophets Isaiah and Joel to write—to prophesy of the day when He would be outpoured and when His gifts would be exercised in the church, throughout the whole church age (Joel 2:28–32; Acts 2:1721). In Isaiah 28:11, 12, God used Isaiah to tell Judah that He would teach them in a manner they did not like and that He would give them knowledge through the language of foreigners as a sign of their unbelief. Centuries later the apostle Paul expands the intent of this passage, referring it to the gift of speaking in tongues in the church as a manifestation or sign to unbelievers (I Cor. 14:21, 22). This sign could be in languages either known or unknown to human beings (compare I Cor. 14 with Acts 2:111; 10:45, 46).

In all these respects, we see the Holy Spirit as one who operates in the church as a definite personality—a Person given as a gift to the church to assure that the continued ministry of the resurrected Christ is expressed and verified. The Holy Spirit, then, has all the characteristics of a person:

1. He possesses the attributes of mind (Rom. 8:27), will (I Cor. 12:11), and feeling (Eph. 4:30).

2. He engages in such activities as revealing (2 Pet. 1:21), teaching (John 14:26), witnessing (Heb. 10:15), interceding (Rom. 8:26), speaking (Rev. 2:7), commanding (Acts 16:6, 7), and testifying (John 15:26).

3. He has a relationship with human persons: He can be grieved (Eph. 4:30), lied to (Acts 5:3), and blasphemed (Matt. 12:31, 32).

4. The Holy Spirit possesses the divine attributes of the Godhead: He is eternal (Heb. 9:14), omnipresent (Ps. 139:710), omnipotent (Luke 1:35), and omniscient (I Cor. 2:10, 11).

5. He is referred to by such names as the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Christ, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit of promise, the Spirit of truth, the Spirit of grace, the Spirit of life, the Spirit of adoption, and the Spirit of holiness.

6. He is illustrated with such symbols as fire (Acts 2:1, 2), wind (Acts 2:1, 2), water (John 7:3739), a seal (Eph. 1:13), oil (Acts 10:38), and a dove (John 1:32).

All this unfolds something of the vast realm or sphere of the operation of the Holy Spirit in the Old and New Testament and in the contemporary church.


Accounts in Acts Are Being Rediscovered and Applied

Third, the Book of Acts provides five accounts of people receiving the fullness or infilling or baptism in the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4; 8:1425; 9:1720; 10:4448; 19:1–7). In these accounts five factors are manifest: 1) There was an overwhelming inbreaking of God’s presence experienced by all who were present. 2) There was an evident transformation in the lives and witness of the disciples who were filled. 3) That which was experienced became the impetus for the growth of the church, as "daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ" (Acts 5:42). 4) The immediate evidence in three of the five accounts was glossolalia: For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God" (Acts 10:46). [Glossolalia is a coined term derived from the Greek glossa ("tongue") and laleo ("to speak").] 5) The ultimate purpose of this experience was empowered witnessing (Acts 1:8) and a deeper dimension of Christian commitment for the achievement of happiness (Eph. 5:19), gratitude (Eph. 5:20), humility (Eph. 5:21), and fruitfulness (Gal. 5:22, 23).

Together, the above facts demonstrate what the present Pentecostal/Charismatic renewal is experiencing through the Holy Spirit at work in the church. The problem is that too frequently the elements of this renewal are misunderstood or misapplied for lack of a biblical understanding of "tongues" and the function of the rifts of the Spirit. Although there are varying theological and ethical viewpoints among some in the Neo–Pentecostal/Charismatic movement, a common bond of unity in the Spiritfilled renewal is the practice of "speaking with tongues" in prayer and worship, together with an acceptance and welcoming of the operation of the Holy Spirit’s gifts in their midst. Thus, to fully understand this phenomenon, it is necessary to see the Pentecostal/Charismatic view as they have learned to implement the Book of Acts’ manifestations of the Holy Spirit’s power–workings, applying the controls taught in 1 Corinthians 12—14.


How Can Spiritual Integrity Be Maintained?


Establishing Our Perspective

First, the Pentecostal or Charismatic sees the baptism or infilling of the Holy Spirit as an experience subsequent to Christian conversion: one that comes about through a process of yielding the complete person into the guidance and indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We agree that the Holy Spirit is operative in every believer and in the varied ministries of the church. Still every believer must answer the question of Acts 19:2, "Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed?"

Two expressions should be qualified here:

1. It should be understood that by "baptism in the Holy Spirit" the traditional Pentecostal/Charismatic does not refer to that baptism of the Holy Spirit accomplished at conversion, whereby the believer is placed into the body of Christ by faith in His redeeming work on the Cross (1 Cor. 12:13). Thus, no biblically oriented Charismatic ever views a non–Charismatic as "less saved" or less spiritual than himself. The baptism in or with the Holy Spirit (John 1:33; Acts 1:5) was and is directed by the Lord Jesus to be "received" (John 20:22; Acts 1:8) as a "gift" given following His ascension (John 7:39; Acts 2:38, 39). However, should any prefer to dismiss this terminology, we contend that to experience the Holy Spirit’s fullness in the spirit of unity is more important than to separate company or diminish our passion for His fullness over differences in theological wording or practice.

2. By "a process of yielding the complete person" the Pentecostal/Charismatic does not mean either (a) a passivity of mind or (b) a self–hypnotic or trancelike state. Rather, this terminology refers to an assertive prayerful, heartfelt quest for God. The mind is active, worshiping Jesus Christ, the Baptizer with the Holy Spirit (John 1:33). The emotions are warmed, as the love of God is poured forth into our hearts (Rom. 5:5). One’s physical being participates, as worship is spoken and expressed, with upraised voice in prayer (Acts 4:24) or upraised hands of adoration (Ps. 63:15).


The Twofold Function of the Gift of Tongues

In regard to those who have "received," the Bible describes two basic functions of "tongues": it is for personal edification and for public exhortation.

In the experience of the baptism in or infilling of the Holy Spirit, "tongues" functions as a sign of the Holy Spirit’s presence. Jesus prophesied it as a sign (Mark 16:17), Paul referred to it as a sign (1 Cor. 14:22), and Peter noted its uniformity as a sign–gift in confirming the validity of the Gentiles’ experience in the Holy Spirit. (Compare Acts 10:4446 with 11:16, 17 and 15:79). Thus, speaking with tongues is a properly expected sign, affirming the Holy Spirit’s abiding presence and assuring the believer of an invigorated living witness. It is not viewed as a qualification for fullness of the Holy Spirit, but as one indication of that fullness.


Tongues for Personal Edification

First, "speaking in tongues" is a private affair for self–edification (1 Cor. 14:24). Thus, glossolalia is practiced devotionally by the believer in his most intimate and intercessory moments of communication with God as he is moved upon by the Holy Spirit. This "devotional" application may– also be practiced by corporate agreement, in group gatherings where no Unbelievers or uninformed people are present (1 Cor. 14:23). In line with this understanding, the following reasons are propounded for speaking with tongues:

1. Speaking with tongues as the Holy Spirit gives utterance is the unique spiritual gift identified with the church of Jesus Christ. All other gifts, miracles, and spiritual manifestations were in evidence during Old Testament times, before the Day of Pentecost. This new phenomenon came into evidence and became uniquely identified with the church and was ordained by God for the church (1 Cor. 12:28; 14:21).

2. Speaking with tongues is a specific fulfillment of prophecies by Isaiah and Jesus. Compare Isaiah 28:11 with I Corinthians 14:21, and Mark 16:17 with Acts 2:4; 10:46; 19:6; and 1 Corinthians 14:5, 1418, 39.

3. Speaking with tongues is a proof of the resurrection and glorification of Jesus Christ (John 16:7; Acts 2:26).

4. Speaking with tongues is an evidence of the baptism in or infilling of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4; 10:45, 46; 19:6).

5. Speaking with tongues is a spiritual gift for self–edification (1 Cor. 14:4; Jude 20).

6. Speaking with tongues is a spiritual gift for spiritual edification of the church when accompanied by interpretation (1 Cor. 14:5).

7. Speaking with tongues is a spiritual gift for communication with God in private worship (I Cor. 14:15).

8. Speaking with tongues is a means by which the Holy Spirit intercedes through us in prayer (Rom. 8:26; 1 Cor. 14:14; Eph. 6:18).

9. Speaking with tongues is a spiritual means for rejoicing (1 Cor. 14:15; Eph. 5:18, 19).

10. Paul’s application of Isaiah’s prophecy seems to indicate that speaking with tongues is also intended as a means of "rest" or "refreshing" (Is. 28:12; 1 Cor. 14:21).

11. Tongues follow as one confirmation of the Word of God when it is preached (Mark 16:17, 20; 1 Cor. 14:22).


Tongues for Public Exhortation

Turning to the second function of "tongues"—public exhortation—I Corinthians 14 bases the gifts of the Spirit on the one sure foundation of love (1 Cor. 14:1). Public "tongues" also calls for integrity in practice as the key for the preservation of order in our fellowship and the worship services. Conceding that there have been those who have abused the gift as an occasion for fleshly pride, we must recognize that it can be a vital and valuable part of worship when placed in its proper setting for the edification of the body (1 Cor. 14:12, 13).

However, the sincere Spirit–filled believer will not be preoccupied with this gift alone, for he sees it as only one of many gifts given for the "wholeness" of the church; therefore, he does not worship or meet with others just to speak in tongues for the mere sake of the practice itself. Such motivation would be immature, vain, and idolatrous. Rather, sincere believers gather to worship God and to be thoroughly equipped for every good work through the teaching of His Word (2 Tim. 3:16, 17). Consequently, the scripturally sensitive believer recognizes the following New Testament direction regarding spiritual gifts:


1. Speaking in "tongues" only edifies public worship when it is interpreted; thus, the worshiper is to pray for the interpretation and if it is withheld, he keeps silent, unless someone who functions in the gift of interpretation is known to be present (1 Cor. 14:5, 28).

2. The Spirit works only to edify; thus, whenever He is truly present all things are in order and devoid of embarrassment or uneasiness (I Cor. 14:26, 40).

3. The "spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets" (I Cor. 14:32). That is, each truly Spirit–filled person can exercise self–control; thus, confusion can and should be avoided so that decency with unity may prevail (1 Cor. 14:40).

4. The basis of all gifts is love. Love, not the experience of a gift, is the qualifying factor for those who would exercise spiritual gifts. Thus, in the administration of spiritual authority in the local congregation, the Word demands that we "judge" (I Cor. 14:29) to confirm that those who exercise gifts actually do "pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts" (1 Cor. 13:113; 14:1).

5. The Author and Dispenser of the gifts is the Holy Spirit, who divides them as He wills; thus, no gift becomes the exclusive possession of any believer for his personal edification and pride. Rather, the gifts are placed in the church to be exercised by the body for the mutual edification of the believers (1 Cor. 12:111) and as a means for expanded ministry.

6. The exercise of tongues is to be limited to sequences of two or three at the most (I Cor. 14:27). While many hold this to be a rigid number, others understand it to be a guideline to keep the worship service in balance. In actuality, the Holy Spirit rarely moves beyond these limitations; however, on occasions, for special reasons to meet special needs, there may be more than one sequence of two or three appropriately spaced apart in a given service. The overarching guideline is, "Let all things be done decently and in order" (I Cor. 14:40).


The Contemporary Witness

Moving beyond one’s fullness in the Holy Spirit, it is important to understand the impact of the Spirit’s full operation of gifts in and through the life and witness of the church.

The Spirit–filled experience is more than just "speaking in tongues." In reality it is coming into the fullness of the gifts and fruit of the Spirit as outlined in the New Testament (I Cor. 12:711; Gal. 5:22, 23). It also encompasses the broader scope of exercising God’s gifts of spiritual enablement described in Romans 12:38 and Ephesians 4:712.

The Greek word charisma (singular) or charismata (plural) is used to designate spiritual gifts, and in the most technical sense mean "gifts of holy grace." In Ephesians 4:1113 the words dotes and coma are also used to designate "gifts," referring to these gifts as "enablers" or "equippers" for personal service in the kingdom of God. Also the word pneumatika employed in I Corinthians 12:1 is used to describe the gifts as "things belonging to the Spirit." The point is that each of these words gives a contemporary meaning to the supernatural work of the Spirit in our lives as He prepares us for kingdom service and growth in grace. For this to happen we are called upon to "earnestly desire the best gifts" (1 Cor. 12:31). Thus removing the cloak of passivity and ardently seeking to understand the operation of and appropriate response to all spiritual gifts is biblically proper.

In speaking of the gifts, however, exclusivism is never implied. The gifts are placed tin the church as resources to be utilized at the point of need for ministry in the body. This means that not every believer will have the same gifts as every other believer. Rather, the Holy Spirit is the Author and Dispenser of the gifts to bring about integrity in worship and kingdom expression.


The Gifts of the Godhead

For many, clarification of the distinct role each member of the Godhead plays in giving gifts to mankind is helpful. Foundationally, of course, our existence—human life—is given by the Father (Gen. 2:7; Heb. 12:9), who also gave His only begotten Son as the Redeemer for mankind (John 3:16). Redemptively, Jesus is the giver of eternal life (John 5:38–40; 10:27, 28): He gave His life and shed His blood to gain that privilege (John 10:17, 18; Eph. 5:2527). Further, the Father and Son have jointly sent the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:17, 33) to advance the work of redemption through the church’s ministry Of worship, growth, and evangelism.

In sequence, then, we find Romans 12:38 describing gifts given by God as Father. They seem to characterize basic "motivations," that is, inherent tendencies that characterize each different person by reason of the Creator’s unique workmanship in their initial gifting. While only seven categories are listed, observation indicates that few people are fully described by only one. More commonly a mix is found, with different traits of each gift present to some degree, while usually one will be the dominant trait of that person. It would be a mistake to suppose that an individual’s learning to respond to the Creator’s gifting of them in one or more of these categories fulfills the Bible’s call to "earnestly desire the best gifts" (I Cor. 12:31). These gifts of our place in God’s created order are foundational.

Second, in 1 Corinthians 12:711, the nine gifts of the Holy Spirit are listed. Their purpose is specific—to "profit" the body of the church. ("Profit," Greek sumphero, means "to bring together, to benefit, to be advantageous," which is experienced as the body is strengthened in its life together and expanded through its ministry of evangelism.) These nine gifts are specifically available to every believer as the Holy Spirit distributes them (I Cor. 12:11). They are not to be merely acknowledged in a passive way, but rather are to be actively welcomed and expected (I Cor. 13:1; 14:1).

Third, the gifts which the Son of God has given are pivotal in assuring that the first two categories of gifts are applied in the body of the church. Ephesians 4:7–16 not only indicates the "office gifts" Christ has placed in the church along with their purpose. The ministry of these leaders is to "equip" the body by assisting each person: 1) to perceive the place the Creator has made him to fill, by His creative workmanship in him, and the possibilities that salvation now opens to his realization of what he was made to be; and 2) to receive the power of the Holy Spirit, and begin to respond to His gifts, which are given to expand each believer’s capabilities beyond the created order and toward the redemptive dimension of ministry, for edifying the church and evangelizing the world.

In this light, we examine these clearly designated categories of Siftings: the Father’s (Rom. 12:68), the Son’s (Eph. 4:11) and the Holy Spirit’s (I Cor. 12:8–10). While the study expands beyond those listings and beyond the above outlined structure of the gifts of the Godhead, this general outline will help in two ways. First, it assists us by noting the distinct interest and work of each member of the Trinity in providing for our unique purpose and fulfillment. Second, it prevents us from confusing our foundational motivation in life and service for God with our purposeful quest for and openness to His Holy Spirit’s full resources and power for service and ministry.


Romans 12.38: Gifts of the Father (Basic Life Purpose and Motivation)




a. To speak with forthrightness and insight, especially when enabled by the Spirit of God (Joel 2:28).

b. To demonstrate moral boldness and uncompromising commitment to worthy values.

c. To influence others in one’s arena of influence with a positive spirit of social or spiritual righteousness.

NOTE: Because all three categories of gifts—the Father’s, the Holy Spirit’s, involve some expression of "prophecy," it is helpful to differentiate. In this category (Rom. 12) the focus is general, characterized by that level of the prophetic gift which would belong to every believer—"all flesh." The Holy Spirit’s "gift of prophecy" (I Cor. 12) refers to supernatural prompting, so much so that tongues with interpretation is equated with its operation (I Cor. 14:5). The office–gift of the prophet, which Christ gives to His church through individual ministries, is yet another expression of prophecy: those holding this of flee must meet both the Old Testament requirements of a prophet’s accuracy in his message, and the New Testament standards of life and character required of spiritual leadership.



a. To minister and render loving, general service to meet the needs of others.

b. Illustrated in the work and office of the deacon (Matt. 20:26).



a. The supernatural ability to explain and apply the truths received from God for the church.

b. Presupposes study and the Spirit’s illumination providing the ability to make divine truth clear to the people of God.

c. Considered distinct from the work of the prophet who speaks as the direct mouthp~ece of God.



a. Literally means to call aside for the purpose of making an appeal.

b. In a broader sense it means to entreat, comfort, or instruct (Acts 4:36; Heb. 10:25).



a. The essential meaning is to give out of a spirit of generosity.

b. In a more technical sense it refers to those with resources aiding those without such resources (2 Cor. 8:2; 9:1113).

c. This gift is to be exercised without outward show or pride and with liberality. (2 Cor. 1:12; 8:2; 9:11, 13)



a. Refers to the one "standing in front."

b. Involves the exercise of the Holy Spirit in modeling, superintending, and developing the body of Christ.

c. Leadership is to be exercised with diligence.



a. To feel sympathy with the misery of another.

b. To relate to others in empathy, respect, and honesty.

c. To be effective, this gift is to be exercised with kindness and cheerfulness—not as a matter of duty.


1 Corinthians 12:810, 28: Gifts of the Holy Spirit



a. Supernatural perspective to ascertain the divine means for accomplishing God’s will in given situations.

b. Divinely given power to appropriate spiritual intuition in problem solving.

c. Sense of divine direction.

d. Being led by the Holy Spirit to act appropriately in a given set of circumstances.

e. Knowledge rightly applied: wisdom works interactively with knowledge and discernment.



a. Supernatural revelation of the divine will and plan.

b. Supernatural insight or understanding of circumstances or a body of facts by revelation: that is, without assistance of any human resource but solely by dome aid.

c. Implies a deeper and more advanced understanding of the communicated acts of God.

d. Involves moral wisdom for right living and relationships.

e. Requires objective understanding concerning divine things in human duties.

f. May also refer to knowledge of God or of the things that belong to God, as related in the gospel.



a. Supernatural ability to believe God without doubt.

b. Supernatural ability to combat unbelief.

c. Supernatural ability to meet adverse circumstances with trust in God’s messages and words.

d. Inner conviction impelled by an urgent and higher calling.



a. Refers to supernatural healing without human aid.

b. May include divinely assisted application of human instrumentation and medical means of treatment.

c. Does not discount the use of God’s creative gifts.



a. Supernatural power to intervene and counteract earthly and evil forces.

b. Literally means a display of power giving the ability to go beyond the natural.

c. Operates closely with the gifts of faith and healings to bring authority over sin, Satan, sickness and the binding forces of this age.



a. Divinely inspired and anointed utterance.

b. Supernatural proclamation in a known language.

c. Manifestation of the Spirit of God—not of intellect (1 Cor. 12:7).

d. May be possessed and operated by all who have the infilling of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 14:31).

e. Intellect, faith, and will are operative in this gift, but its exercise is not intellectually based. It is calling forth words from the Spirit of God.



a. Supernatural power to detect the realm of the spirits and their activities

b. Implies the power of spiritual insight—supernatural revelation of plans and purposes of the Enemy and his forces.



a. Supernatural utterance in languages not known to the speaker: these languages may be existent in the world, revived from some~past culture, or "unknown" in the sense that they are a means of communication inspired by the Holy Spirit (Is. 28:11; Mark 16:17; Acts 2:4; 10:44–48; 19:17; 1 Cor. 12:10, 2831; 13:13; 14:2, 422, 2632).

b. Serve as an evidence and sign of the indwelling and working of the Holy Spirit.



a. Supernatural power to reveal the meaning of tongues.

b. Functions not as an operation of the mind of man but as the mind of the Spirit.

c. Does not serve as a translation (interpreter never understands the tongue he is interpreting), but rather is a declaration of meaning.

d. Is exercised as a miraculous and supernatural phenomenon as are the gift of speaking in tongues and the gift of prophecy.


Ephesians 4:11 (Also I Cor. 12:28): Gifts of the Son (fib Facilitate and Equip the Body of the Church)



a. In apostolic days referred to a select group chosen to carry out directly the ministry of Christ; included the assigned task given to a few to complete the sacred canon of the Holy Scriptures.

b. Implies the exercise of a distinct representative role of broader leadership given by Christ.

c. Functions as a messenger or spokesman of God.

d. In contemporary times refers to those who have the spirit of apostleship in remarkably extending the work of the church, opening fields to the gospel, and overseeing larger sections of the body of Jesus Christ.



a. A spiritually mature spokesman/proclaimer with a special, divinely focused message to the church or the world.

b. A person uniquely gifted at times with insight into future events.



a. Refers primarily to a special gift of preaching or witnessing in a way that brings unbelievers into the experience of salvation.

b. Functionally, the gift of evangelist operates for the establishment of new works, while pastors and teachers follow up to organize and sustain.

c. Essentially, the gift of evangelist operates to establish converts and to gather them spiritually and literally into the body of Christ.



a. The word "pastor" comes from a root meaning "to protect," from which we–get the word "shepherd."

b. Implies the function of a shepherd/leader to nurture, teach, and care for the spiritual needs of the body.


5. MISSIONARY (some see "apostle" or "evangelist" in this light)

a. Implies the unfolding of a plan for making the gospel known to all the world (Rom. 1:16).

b. Illustrates an attitude of humility necessary for receiving a call to remote areas and unknown situations (Is. 6:1–13).

c. Connotes an inner compulsion to lead the whole world to an understanding of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 5:1420).


Special Graces



a. Literally means to love, to do, or to do with pleasure.

b. Illustrates Peter’s notion of one of the two categories of gifts: 1) teaching, I) practical service (1 Pet. 4:10, 11).

c. Was utilized in caring for believers and workers who visited to worship, work, and become involved in the body of Christ.

d. Illustrated in the teaching of Jesus concerning judgment (Matt. 25:35, 40).


2. CELIBACY (Matt. 19:10; 1 Cor. 7:7–9, 27; I Tim. 4:3; Rev. 14:4).

a. The Bible considers marriage to be honorable, ordained of God, and a need for every person.

b. Implies a special gift of celibacy, which frees the individual from the duties, pressures, and preoccupations of family life, allowing undivided attention to the Lord’s work.


3. MARTYRDOM (1 Pet. 4:12, 13)

a. Illustrated in the spirit of Stephen (Acts 7:59, 60).

b. Fulfilled in the attitude of Paul (2 Tim. 4:6–8).

Spirit filled life study Bible. 1997, c1991 (electronic ed.) (Re 22:18). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

"Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible®

Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973,
1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission." (www.Lockman.org)

[1] The Renewal movement called the “Toronto Blessing” broke out on January 20th 1994 at the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship in Toronto Canada. The movement was ongoing for several years and its impact was felt worldwide in the church’s of the earth.