Romans 12:1-8 ~ Do You Know Where You Are Going? The Spiritual Gifts of Leadership and Faith ~ Pastor Bill Slabaugh
A Great Example of the Spiritual Gift of Faith:
Dr. Howard Hendricks gave an excellent example of the gift of faith working in the life of Dr. Harry Ironside. Shortly after the seminary (Dallas Theological Seminary) was founded in 1924, it almost capitulated. It came to the point of bankruptcy. All the creditors were going to foreclose at 12 noon on a particular day. That morning, the founders of the School met in the President’s office to pray that God would provide and in that prayer meeting was Harry Ironside.
When it was his turn to pray, he prayed in his characteristically refreshing manner, “Lord, we know that the cattle on a thousand hills are thine. Please sell some of them, and send us the money.”
While they were praying, a tall Texan with boots on and an open collar came into the business office and said, “I just sold two car-loads of cattle in Fort Worth. I have been trying to make a business deal go through and it won’t work and I feel God is compelling me to give this money to the seminary. I don’t know if you need it or not, but here is the check.”
A secretary took the check and knowing the criticalness of the hour financially, went to the door of the prayer meeting and timidly tapped. When she finally got a response, Dr. Chafer took the check out of her hand and it was for the exact amount of the debt. When he looked at the signature of the check, he recognized the name of the cattleman from Fort Worth. Turning to Dr. Ironside, he said, “Harry, God sold the cattle.”
Dr. Ironside was a man gifted with faith. He knew God’s Word and claimed its age-old promises for current needs while the other men possessed faith and hoped God would do something. Dr. Ironside expected God to provide the need.
1 Corinthians 2:4-11 ~ Seeing It as It Is: The Spiritual Gifts of the Word of Knowledge, Word of Wisdom, and Discernment ~ Pastor Bill Slabaugh
If you have ever driven your car when the fog is thick, you know how dangerous it can be when you can’t see clearly. Maybe you have even had a close call or two. Now God gave certain spiritual gifts to believers in Jesus Christ to help the Church penetrate the fog of the deceit and delusion of the age in which we live; as well as our natural inability to “see it as it is.” To see things as they really are, the Holy Spirit provides the gifts of the Word of Knowledge, the Word of Wisdom, and Discernment.
1 Peter 4:10-11 ~ Making It Clear: The Spiritual Gifts of Prophecy, Teaching, and Exhortation ~ Pastor Bill Slabaugh
Think about this before your next post on Face Book:
When talking about spiritual gifts, the Apostle Peter writes, “Whoever speaks is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God (1 Peter 4:11). Here we see the absolute importance of the Word of God, the Bible, in all that we say or write. This doesn’t just apply to those who are gifted speakers and writers, but it applies to all of us who name the name of Christ. In that we should never give counsel, advice, or an opinion apart from God’s Word. When we speak, we shouldn’t be voicing our own opinions and philosophies about life. We should be speaking the utterances of God.
When you speak for Christ and about Christ, base your words on Scripture not on your own opinions. You will be forever relevant if you do. And you will never lack for a message, whether it’s in teaching a Sunday School class, or coming along side to give encouragement to someone who is hurting or struggling, or even posting on Face Book. And who wouldn't want to be relevant on Face Book?
Some months after Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Mary and Joseph are settled into a home there. And some visitors arrive, Magi from the East, and they came bearing gifts for the child. I wonder what Mary and Joseph thought as they opened each treasure. The Magi gave Gold, a gift fitting for a king. The parents had never seen such a gift, but on behalf of the Child, they receive it anyway, almost embarrassed. It seems too much. Then the Magi give them frankincense. And Mary and Joseph understand that it is a gift fitting for the Son of God come in the flesh. But then the Magi pull out the last gift and Mary doesn’t know what to say, “Oh myrrh. Embalming fluid.” And she feels a pang in her heart as she knows this is a gift fitting for a sacrifice.
When the Magi saw the Christ Child, they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh (Matthew 2:11). Frankincense is a gift fit for God. In the Bible, the burning of frankincense pictures our prayers as going up to God as a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to Him. Frankincense pictures the worship of God. It pictures that unique gift—that fragrance that rises out of the human heart to the living and glorious God.