Discovering Your Spiritual Gifts
In my last post, we looked at what God wants you to be by addressing seven questions to help us lay a foundation for discovering our spiritual gifts. In this post, I will attempt to clear away any confusion that you might have about this subject of spiritual gifts.
Don’t Confuse Spiritual Gifts with Natural Talents
All of us, Believers and non-Believers, have been made in the image of God and therefore possess certain natural talents. Some of us excel at art, medicine, literature, athletics, gourmet cooking, telling jokes, fixing mechanical devices, etc. Spiritual gifts, however, are reserved exclusively for Believers. No non-believer has one and every true Believer in Yeshua does. While God frequently transforms a natural talent into a spiritual gift, at the same time many spiritual gifts have nothing to do with a person’s natural talent. For example, from a very early age, I knew that I had a ‘talent’ for geographical navigation (at least on land). Take me some place once or give me a map to that place and I will always know where I am and how to get back to where I started from. I know of no spiritual gift that comes close to giving me a supernatural ability at navigation.
Don’t Confuse Spiritual Gifts with the Fruit of the Rauch
The fruit of the Spirit is listed in Galatians. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23 HCSB) The fruit of the Ruach is the normal, expected outcome of a Believer’s growth, maturity, holiness, and fullness of the Ruach. The fruit of the Ruach are not discovered as are the gifts, they are developed through the Believer’s walk with God and through yielding to the Ruach. Although Spiritual gifts help define what a Believer does, the fruit of the Ruach help define what a Believer is. The fruit is the indispensable foundation for the effective exercise of the gifts. The gifts without the fruit are like an automobile tire without air – the ingredients may all be together, but they are worthless and they will not do what they are intended to do. Gifts are task oriented, while the fruit is God-oriented.
Don’t Confuse Spiritual Gifts with Messianic Roles
When we look at the list of 28 gifts in Part 8-B, it becomes obvious that many of them describe activities expected of every Believer, whether they have gifts or not. For example, very few Believers have the gift of evangelism, but we are all called to share the Besorah with our family, friends and enemies. At this point, it is necessary to distinguish between spiritual gifts and Messianic roles. Roles are slightly different from the fruit in that they involve more doing than being. But they are similar to the fruit in that they are characteristic of every conscientious Believer.
The most obvious spiritual gift that relates directly to a Messianic role is faith. Just becoming a Believer takes faith. No one can be a Believer without faith. But according to Ephesians, “You are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift – not from works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9 HCSB) The later we are told that faith is a fruit of the Ruach (see above) and that “without faith it is impossible to please God.” (Hebrews 11:6 HCSB) The lifestyle of every Believer, without exception, is to be characterized by day-in, day-out faith. This is our “role” of faith. But some also have a spiritual gift of faith. This gift of faith is much more than the fruit of faith or the role of faith, both of which we expect to see in every Believer.
Don’t Confuse Spiritual Gifts with Counterfeit Gifts
I have no doubt that Satan can and does counterfeit every gift on our list of 28 spiritual gifts. He is a supernatural being and has supernatural powers. His power was clearly shown in a spectacular way in Egypt when Pharaoh’s magicians could publicly imitate the miracles of God through the hand of Moshe (Moses). (see Exodus 7-8) However, we know that “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) We receive spiritual gifts directly from God Himself as He fills us with the Ruach. He will overrule all the efforts of the enemy to confuse us about our true, bona fide spiritual gifts. God is determined that you, and every member of the Body of Messiah – the Kehilah – will fulfill the destiny that He has for your through fruitful ministry with your spiritual gifts.
In my next post, I will expand on my teaching in Part 5 on how we are filled by the Ruach and discuss five steps to discovering your own spiritual gifts.
Again, if you have any questions or comments, you can post them at the bottom of this blog or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Please see my earlier posts in Part 8 for an explanation.
 See Discovering Your Spiritual Gifts Part 8-B.