The Gifts of the Holy Spirit
A Sermon on Spiritual Gifts
What are spiritual gifts and how does a Christian determine their spiritual gift? In this sermon on spiritual gifts, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones takes the listener through this topic as he preaches on Scripture’s teachings regarding spiritual gifts. These are extraordinary powers that separate Christians from one another and enable them to serve effectively in different ways across the church. Spiritual gifts are not a blessing that some Christians receive— they are promised to all believers. One myth is that the ability of one’s gift is related to its possessor’s spiritual maturity. Dr. Lloyd-Jones takes great pains to dispel this myth and to show that not only do the gifts differ widely from each other, but that they are not determined by the level of one’s spirituality. Theologians for centuries have argued over which gifts were only for the early church, which gifts exist in the church across its existence, and even if any spiritual gifts are still in existence today. Dr. Lloyd-Jones provides a helpful commentary and discussion on these questions, showing the difference between natural gifts and supernatural gifts. What about the unforgivable sin of blaspheming the Holy Spirit? Listen carefully as he unwraps this and more in this sermon on the Holy Spirit and His spiritual gifts to the church.
- Spiritual gifts are given by the Holy Spirit and are distinct from natural gifts. They are not a heightening of natural gifts.
- Spiritual gifts are given sovereignly by the Holy Spirit according to His will. He decides who receives which gifts and when.
- Every Christian is given at least one spiritual gift.
- Spiritual gifts differ in value. Some are more important than others.
- All spiritual gifts must be used in love. Gifts alone do not determine a person's spirituality.
- No one gift must be possessed by all Christians or is evidence of the Holy Spirit.
- Some spiritual gifts like apostleship, prophecy, healing, miracles, discerning spirits, and tongues were temporary for the early church.
- The early church lost these temporary gifts after the apostles died. This was not due to decreased spirituality. Spirituality and gifts do not always correspond.
- God can still work miracles and answer prayer supernaturally even without the temporary gifts.
- The gift of apostleship was foundational and not meant to continue. Apostles are not repeated.
- The gift of prophecy provided revelation before the New Testament was written. It is no longer needed now that Scripture is complete.
- The gift of healing allowed people to directly heal others instantly. This gift ended with the apostles though God still heals in answer to prayer.
- The gift of miracles allowed people to perform miracles directly. This gift ended with the apostles though God still performs miracles.
- The gift of discerning spirits allowed people to discern the spirits influencing others. This gift ended with the apostles.
- The gift of tongues allowed people to speak in unlearned human languages or in ecstatic utterance. This gift ended with the apostles. Not all Christians spoke in tongues. Tongues were meant to be interpreted and used orderly.
- Permanent spiritual gifts include wisdom, knowledge, teaching, serving, administration, evangelism, pastoring, exhortation, and faith.
- The gift of faith is a special ability to trust God in extraordinary ways, as seen in George Muller and Hudson Taylor. It is not the same as saving faith which all Christians have.
- Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is attributing the work of the Spirit to Satan and rejecting Christ with no desire for repentance. Those worried they have committed this sin clearly have not.
Great Biblical Doctrines
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.