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The Holy Spirit’s Miraculous Gifts, by Charles Carrin

There was no lukewarmness about spiritual gifts on the part of Paul or the Corinthians.

The argument immediately arises, “These gifts passed away. They are no longer valid.” Paul did not believe that. Nor does the New Testament teach it. In the introduction of his Corinthian letters (29 chapters and longest of all New Testament writings) Paul exhorted believers to ” … Come short in no gift, eagerly waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 1:7). In that brief statement, Paul equated the duration of spiritual gifts to be the same length as the Church’s waiting for Jesus’ return. Examine it for yourself. This is precisely what the Apostle said. Today, however, there is probably no greater ignorance in the Church than of spiritual gifts and Jesus’ offer of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. You may ask, “Why do I need the baptism in the Spirit and the imparting of spiritual gifts?” Here are a few of the many reasons:

  1. Jesus said you needed it.
  2. Without it, you are an incomplete disciple.
  3. Good as you presently are, you will be better with it.
  4. You need to be moved out of “soulish” effort into spiritual effort.
  5. The baptism in the Spirit releases power in your life which can be had no other way.
  6. Once you and others recover from the personal change the baptism brings to your life, everyone will recognize you are a better person.
  7. The Bible teaches it. Early Christians depended on it. History confirms it.

On the Day of Ascension, Jesus told the disciples at the Mount of Olives, “John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now … You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you” (Acts 1:5,6). In a single statement, Jesus connected baptism in the Spirit to the imparting of His power. That wonderful event occurred on the day of Pentecost when 120 disciples in the Upper Room received the blessing. Scripture carefully explains that others who were not present at Pentecost experienced the same empowering later. That included the Samaritans, Acts 8:14-17, Saul of Tarsus, Acts 9:17, the household of Cornelius, Acts 10:44, and the Ephesians, Acts 19:1-7. Young Timothy followed the example. II Timothy 1:6. Identically, today, multiplied millions around the world have stepped into the Spirit’s wondrous baptism.

Why is Christianity at large ignorant about spiritual gifts?

We are told seven times in the New Testament to “be not ignorant.” The same Greek word for “ignorance,” agnoeo, is used in all seven references though the King James version is probably the only one that translates it consistently. If you listen carefully you can detect the similarity between agnoeo and ignore (agno/igno). It simply means “not to know;” that ignorance can come from lack of information, inadequate intelligence, or willful rejection of truths. These seven topics are fundamental to the Church. Notice they are in pairs. Two concern Israel, two concern the gospel, two foretell the end of the earth, and the final topic, #7, the Church’s spiritual gifts. Sincere Christians cannot deny the value of any. In all probability, there is no one topic about which Christianity at large is more ignorant than spiritual gifts. Quoting from the King James Version, the seven are:

  1. Israel’s rejection and restoration; Gentile fullness: “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits, that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in” (Romans 11:25).
  1. Israel’s dual baptism in the cloud and sea: “Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea” (1 Corinthians 10:1). Israel’s baptism unto Moses in the cloud and sea portrays Christian baptism unto Christ in the Spirit and water. The parallel is exact.
  1. Opposition to the gospel in Asia: “For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life” (2 Corinthians 1:8).
  1. Opposition to the Gospel in Europe: “Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you (but was let hitherto), that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles” (Romans 1:13).
  1. Jesus’ Second Coming; Resurrection of the saints: “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13).
  1. The “thief in the night” destruction of the earth: “But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day … But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night …” (2 Peter 3:8,10). 2 Peter 3:3-5: “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water.”
  1. The Holy Spirit’s miraculous gifts to the Church: “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant” (1 Corinthians 12:1).
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Category: Fall 2018, Spirit

About the Author: Charles Carrin, D.D., has served the body of Christ for over 65 years. Educated at University of Georgia and Columbia Theological Seminary, he denied, in belief and practice, the contemporary ministry of the Holy Spirit until a personal crisis opened his eyes to what he had been missing. He is the author of Spirit-Empowered Theology (Chosen, 2017), The Edge Of Glory: Receiving the Power of the Holy Spirit (Creation House, 2002), Sunrise of David Sunset of Saul: A Message to the Church in the End-time (1985, 2014), On Whose Authority?: The Removal of Unwanted Scriptures (Burkhart Books, 2014), a revival novel with Dorothy Easley: Island in the Sun (Xulon, 2010), and a contributor to Word Spirit Power: What Happens When You Seek All God Has to Offer (Chosen, 2012) with R.T. Kendall and Jack Taylor. Today his ministry centers upon the visible demonstration of the Spirit and imparting of His gifts. Read his biography at www.charlescarrinministries.com/about-charles.php.

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