1. One of the greatest revelations
in my life was when I realized I didn’t have to earn my salvation
by works. IT WAS A FREE GIFT OF GOD! (1976 born again)
(Relate story of Russ - If I die I KNOW I will be in His presence
for eternity - chip on shoulder)
2. The second greatest revelation in my life was when I discovered
that God had a purpose for my life. You see I read...
Eph 2:8-10 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through
faith —and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not
by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship,
created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in
advance for us to do.
3. Did you hear that - let me read it again - our purpose has not
been left to chance - He has a plan!
I feel it is significant that immediately after being told that
our salvation is a free gift we are reminded in verse 10 that “
... we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good
works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
In 1984 I knew I was called.
(Relate NARD – Not A Real Doctor story) - slides and miles from
home and you are an expert.
John 12:1-3 Six days before the Passover, Jesus arrived at
Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.
Here a dinner was given in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while
Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him. Then Mary
took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured
it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house
was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
4. BY GRACE WE HAVE BEEN SAVED! A FREE GIFT OF GOD! AND FOR A
FOR THOSE OF US IN CHRIST - No longer is our relationship with God
a guess-so, hope-so, think-so matter. If someone asks me today,
“Do you have eternal life?”, I can say with confidence - YES and
if I were to die right now I would be in the presence of Jesus for
eternity! AND I DON’T HAVE ANY CHIP ON MY SHOULDER - GOD SAID IT
AND IT IS SO! I remember a bumper sticker that said, “God said it;
I believe it; that settles it!”
And you know what it’s true!
Ps: 115:3 says, “ Our God sits in the heavens and does whatever He
Our salvation has been purchased by the blood of Jesus and sealed
by the Holy Spirit. We have been redeemed, justified, and
sanctified - for a purpose which God determined beforehand.
The GREATEST Gift of God was the Gift of His son – “For God do
loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever
believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
He has not given us what we deserve but what we need and want
- He has - FORGIVEN OUR SIN
- He has - FREED US FROM GUILT
- He has - GIVEN US A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH HIMSELF
- He has given us - A DIVINE PURPOSE
- and he has - EQUIPPED US TO SERVE HIM IN THE BODY OF CHRIST
If we had no purpose here - God would have taken us to heaven
immediately after our conversion.
A pastor was reviewing the church
membership roles with his official board. The Pastor had scribbled
after several of the names the initials FBPO. One of the board
“Pastor, explain the meaning of these letters.” Replied the
pastor, “They mean - For Burial Purposes Only. You see - these are
our inactive members!”
When I told this to Gloria she suggested PWs instead of FBPOs. -
And she didn’t mean Prisoners of War, she meant Pew Warmers!
I KNOW that our God did not create us For Burial Purposes Only! or
to Warm Pews
He created us for a purpose!! Which He determined beforehand for
us to do!!
Is it possible we have been equipped in a supernatural way to
Is it possible that we have been saved to equip others for
Is it possible that God made each of us so unique that we would be
needed in the Body of Christ?
I would propose to you, this evening, that the answer to each of
these questions is a RESOUNDING YES! YES! YES! There will never be
I want you to know right now -No child of God should ever have an
Brothers and Sisters the Scriptures teach that each of us is a
unique creation - created, equipped and endowed with Spiritual
Gifts - that we might serve Him according to His purpose.
And you know what - HE HAS NEVER MADE A MISTAKE! NOT ONCE
HAS HE HAD TO SAY “OOPS”.
“Let us reason together- sayeth the Lord” Have you ever done it –
(relate couch story)
Ps. 139:13-16 says, “For you created my inmost being; you knit me
together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your
works are wonderful, I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret
place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your
eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.”
Brothers and sisters ---
“ WHAT YOU ARE IS GOD’S GIFT TO YOU. WHAT YOU MAKE OF YOURSELF IS
YOUR GIFT TO GOD.”
Oh! How I long to serve Him according to His purpose and one day
to stand in His presence and hear the words, “‘Well done, good and
faithful servant! (Sigrid story)
Today I want to remind you that an acceptance and understanding of
1.Will Unleash reservoirs of Godly manpower here at Calvary Temple
2.Will thaw out our frozen assets - the frozen chosen
3.Will eliminate unemployment in the Body of Christ
4.Will demonstrate to all who enter here that we are a chosen
people; a royal priesthood of believers - and
5.Will edify the Body of Christ
6.Will bring Unity to this Body
Imagine - a time when all who enter here might say - “See how they
love one another.”
Imagine for a moment a church where the Right People are in the
Right Places for the Right Reasons. Where leaders are leading,
where teachers who love
children are teaching children, where administrators are
administering, where those with gifts of hospitality and
shepherding are overseeing small home groups, where intercessors
interceding, where those with a gift of helps and a passion
for young children are serving in the nursery -
I just know that God, in His infinite wisdom and in His economy
has provided Calvary Temple with all the Gifts that are necessary
to accomplish His purpose - none of you
are here by accident each of you is here by Divine Appointment.
You have been saved and called for a purpose!
Now with Paul I PROCLAIM, “ Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I
do not want you to be ignorant.”
Tonight, I am going to preach to you - not teach you.
Someone once told me that preaching is proclaiming the Word of God
and teaching is explaining the Word of God. Tonight I am going to
proclaim to you the word of God.
First let’s answer the question - What are Spiritual gifts?
Spiritual Gifts are Spirit given
skills, abilities and talents freely given to the Body of Christ
for Christian Service.
How can we hope to fully understand the concept of Spiritual
Gifts? TRANSITIONAL SENTENCE:
We can begin to know and fully understand the concept of Spiritual
Gifts by studying the Word of God - the Manufacturer’s Handbook.
And the Bible tells us
that we con only understand if the Holy Spirit reveals to us
the truth -- only then can we know the truth and be set free!
MAIN DIVISIONS AND SUBDIVISIONS
I.Spiritual Gifts are “grace gifts” - grace means unmerited favor
- given to us freely
In 1Cor. 12:1 Paul writes, “ Now about spiritual gifts, brothers,
I do not want you to be ignorant.”
a. The Greek word used here by Paul for “spiritual gifts”
literally means “spirituals” referring to the source of the gifts
as the Holy Spirit.
b. Throughout the rest of 1st Corinthians 12 the Greek word
translated “spiritual gifts” is “charismata” derived from the work
“charis” which means grace.
c. Thus scripture clearly tells us that Spiritual Gifts are “Grace
Gifts” or Grace Endowments” given to us not because we deserve
them - but as free, unmerited gifts.
A man died, entered heaven and was escorted to the mansion
prepared for him. When he entered the mansion he was surprised to
see a room filled with many beautifully
wrapped gifts. He asked the angel escorting him, “Are these
all mine?!” The angel replied sadly, “They were all intended for
you while you were on earth but you never
accepted them. They are no longer yours.”
d.Brothers and sisters apprehend today all that you have been
apprehended for. God has given each of you Gifts - reach out and
take them and use them that He might be
glorified; that one day you will be able to stand in His
presence and hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Consider that all the treasure you lay up in heaven will have to
be obtained while you are down here.
We have seen that Spiritual Gifts are freely given to us. Now
let’s examine what they are and where they come from.
II. Spiritual Gifts are Spirit given skills, abilities and talents
There are six listings of the various “spiritual gifts” - skills,
talents and abilities - in the New Testament. I am not going to
cover each of these today. However,You may
find these lists in 1st Corinthians 12: verses7-10; 28; and
29-30; Romans 12:6-8; Ephesians 4:11; and 1 Peter 4:9-11. (Please
refer to your handout) (read them from the handout)
1 Corinthians 12:11
All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives
them to each one, just as he determines.
a. As I meditated and prayed about this message I realized in my
spirit that “Spiritual Gifts” can only be obtained from the Holy
Spirit. You can’t earn them, you can’t
buy them, you can’t get them anywhere else and you can’t
even determine which ones you will get.
This scripture says, “...and He (the Holy Spirit) gives them to
each one, just as He determines.”
Isn’t if great - - we are only responsible for what He has given
b.We may have natural talents and abilities through God’s common
grace - BUT - these are “God given” not “God Devoted”. When we are
filled with the Holy Spirit
we are changed. Paul, says in Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore,
if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone,
the new has come!”
c.When Jesus becomes our Lord and our savior - our abilities and
talents that once were “natural and carnal” are transformed - they
become,“ spiritual and holy”.
“The old has gone, the new has come!”
When I consider the conversion of Paul - I see a talented,
committed, zealous man with tremendous “God given” talents and
abilities being used to persecute those who followed
Christ and He even thought he was doing the right thing - after
his conversion he made a 180 degree turn and used these same
talents and abilities - now “God devoted” to glorify
Christ. He repented!! and was saved!! He was blessed and the world
We have seen that Spiritual Gifts are freely given to us. They are
Spirit given skills, abilities and talents. Now let’s determine to
whom they are given.
III.Spiritual Gifts are given to the Body of Christ.
a.Many times in the New Testament the Church is referred to as the
BODY OF CHRIST.
All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives
them to each one, just as he determines. The body is a unit,
though it is made up of many parts; and though all its
parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we
were all baptized by one Spirit into one body —whether Jews or
Greeks, slave or free —and we were all given the one Spirit to
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of
Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these
members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are
many form one body,
and each member belongs to all the others.
b.When you are in Christ Jesus - You became a “member” of the Body
Ponder that thought! Let it sink in! You are part of the Body of
Christ. You are not your own, you have been purchased with a price
- the blood of Jesus! When you accept
Jesus as Lord and Saviour - you DO NOT proclaim your dependence -
YOU PROCLAIM your interdependence.
1Corinthians 6:19-20 says, “Do you not know that your body is a
temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received
from God? You are not your own; you were bought
at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”
This means that you are loved, you are an important part of the
Body of Christ! Ohhhhh - if only we could comprehend the love that
that Father has for us!
You must use your spiritual gifts! If the other members of the
Body are to function rightly and be blessed.
On the other hand, if you are to function rightly and be blessed
then you must allow the other parts of the body to use their
spiritual gifts to serve and minister to you.
(Let me repeat that)
You are part of an “organism” not part of an “organization”!
Turn to the person next to you and say, “ You are needed in the
Body of Christ!”
We have seen that Spiritual Gifts are free gifts given by the Holy
Spirit as He determines to the Body of Christ. Now let’s examine
why they are given.
IV.Spiritual Gifts are given for Christian Service.
Ephesians 4:11-13 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to
be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and
teachers, to prepare God’s people for works
of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we
all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of
God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the
fullness of Christ.
a. Note that these ministry gifts were given to -PREPARE GOD’S
PEOPLE FOR THE WORKS OF SERVICE.
Apostles, prophets, pastors and teachers ought to see themselves
primarily as “lamp lighters” rather than torch bearers”. They are
called to prepare, equip and release.
To prepare God’s people for works of service.
b.Friends, every believer is a “minister” of Christ. The call to
salvation is also a call to ... “the ministry”.
1Peter 4:10-11 Each one should use whatever gift he has received
to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its
One church in Connecticut has recognized the beauty and power of
viewing each member as a “minister”. On the sign outside the
church, beneath the usual
information, are these striking words:
OUR MINISTERS: THE ENTIRE CONGREGATION
Oh ,that God would allow us to see each other as ministers -
equally important, equally necessary and dependent on one another
In closing -
1. Spiritual Gifts are “GRACE GIFTS” - they are a free gift from
God to you.
2. Spiritual Gifts are skills, abilities and talents given by the
Holy Spirit as He determines. To whom they are given and how many
are given are His sovereign choice.
3. Spiritual Gifts are given to the Body of Christ - if you are a
believer that’s you. You are not independent - you are
4. Spiritual Gifts are given for Christian Service - we are all
called to a ministry. You have been blessed in order that you may
be a blessing. Jesus said to His disciples in Matt 10:8-
“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy,
drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
Brothers and sisters let us begin to bless one another in LOVE
that we might be blessed!
(wash feet – John 13:13-17 – “….Now that you know these things you
will be blessed if you do them.”
There is a poem by an unknown author:
There’s nothing this fellow can’t do.
He’s busy from morning ‘til way late at night
Just substituting for you.
“When asked to do this or asked to do that
So often you're set to reply:
“Get Somebody Else, Pastor -
He’ll do it much better than I.”
“There’s so much to do in our church;
So much, and the workers are few.
And somebody Else gets weary and worn
Just substituting for you.
“So next time you’re asked to do something worthwhile
Come up with this honest reply:
“If Somebody Else can give time and support,
It’s obviously true, so can I.”
You are a Minister ---SERVE!
You are Called --- ANSWER!
You are Empowered --- BE STRONG!
Your are Loved --- BE SECURE!
You are Led --- BE CONFIDENT!
You are Protected --- BE COURAGEOUS!
You are a Steward --- BE FAITHFUL!
You are Gifted --- USE YOUR GIFTS!
Brothers and sisters - tonight I have proclaimed to you the Word
of God concerning Spiritual Gifts - Now you have heard - now you
are responsible! Today you must choose to serve God or to serve
Bow your head and close your eyes -
If you were asked tonight, “if you were to die would you go to
heaven?’ Would your answer be I guess so - I hope so - or I think
so? If you can’t say with total confidence -
YES then you need to repent - you need to agree with god’s word
and accept Jesus as your Lord and saviour. He said, I am the way
the truth and the life no one comes to the Father but by me
. Apprehend tonight all that you have been apprehended for. If you
don’t know that you know that you know then raise your hand. If
you what to stand before Him one day and hear - Well done,
good and faithful servant - if you what to know your
spiritual gifts - if you want to know your purpose - then make a
decision tonight to make Jesus Christ the Lord of your life. Put
your hand up right
now - brothers and sisters in eternity there are only two
dwelling places - in the presence of the Lord or in the pits of
hell. Today is the day of salvation -
Would everyone stand - if you raised your hand come up to these
altars now and let me pray with you
If you are here tonight and realize that god has given you
Spiritual Gifts that you have not used for His glory, than you
need to repent - you need to come before Him and ask His
Come up to these altars and ask His forgiveness - ask Him to use
you - ask Him to reveal to you His purpose. .....
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