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Exercising Our Spiritual Gift(s) - Administration Gifts

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Just as the early church misunderstood and misused the spiritual gifts that God extends to believers, we have seen that same problem today. They have been used to divide us when the tragedy and truth is that they are meant to encourage, support, and unite the church. The problem stems from our fallen nature filled with pride. When we look at another's gift and "covet" that gift, we do so out of pride and jealousy. Indeed, there are denominations today that consider you less a Christian if you do not at least speak in tongues - a clear outward sign that you have had the baptism of the Holy Spirit (or baptism in the Holy Spirit). These phrases don't exist in the Bible, and the Holy Spirit does not baptize us. Within a church, the pressure to manifest some gift is so strong that Paul had to deal with false gifts and correct the Corinthians in the proper use of gifts.
May God bless you all!
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Maranatha Emanuel!
References
We have examined in the last few articles the motivation and the deed/work aspects of spiritual gifts. Today I wish to look at the administrations aspect of the gifts. Recall the following list in 1 Corinthians 12:4-6:
1 Corinthians 12:4-6 (emphasis added):
Now there are
diversities
of gifts, but the same Spirit.
And there are differences of
administrations
, but the same Lord.
And there are diversities of
operations
, but it is the same God which worketh all
Gift diversities
can be applied to motivational gift list.
Operations
(or power) relates directly to the manifestation gifts.
Administrations
(or offices in the church) is what we are looking at today.
God's Spiritual Gifts Administration List in Romans 12
Greek word for administrations is
diakanion
(
Gilbrant
, The Complete Biblical Library
Interlinear Bible) - from which we get the English word
deacon
. Interestingly enough,
this word and its various uses breaks down as follows: ministry 16, ministrations 6, ministering 3, miscellaneous other words 9 times, (Wordsearch's Strong's G1248).
Diakanion
is transliterated deacon only twice (Wordsearch's Strong's G1248) and
those both in 1 Timothy 3:10, 13. This word relates to the ministries and outreach of the local church.
Therefore, this third aspect of spiritual gifts relates to the various ministries of a church body.
Administrations
fits as we have divided such ministries into offices or "jobs"
within the church. These can be found in the following two locations:
1 Corinthians 12:27-31 (bold added):
Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first
apostles
, secondarily
prophets
, thirdly
teachers
, after that
miracles
, then gifts of
healings
,
helps
,
governments
, diversities of
tongues
Are
all apostles?
are
all prophets?
are
all teachers?
are
all workers of miracles?
Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all
interpret
? But
covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.
Ephesians 4:11-13 (bold added):
And he gave some,
apostles
, and some,
prophets
; and some,
evangelists
some,
pastors
and
teachers
; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the
ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:
". . . God hath set some in the church . . ." (1 Corinthians 12:38)
Since the ministry gifts are to function within the local church, it is obvious that this list should be classified as ministry gifts.
Ministry gifts appear to be confirmed by ordination, if formal, or by at least the laying on of hands, as when Paul said to Timothy, "
Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was
given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery
"
(1 Timothy 4:14).
Let's Look at These Gifts in Summary Form:
Apostles:
apostolos
; a delegate, a messenger, ambassador, he that is sent, an official
commissioner of Christ. It is translated apostle 78 times (Wordsearch's Strong's G652) in the New Testament. Many scholars believe this office/administration is no longer in use in the church. Those same people have added the fact that only those who have seen Christ were ever called apostles. Paul "saw" Christ on the road to Damascus when he was struck down and blinded by a heavenly light. In New Testament days, the apostles referred to the Twelve and to Paul. The meaning of the Greek word for apostle is "one sent forth." Paul was an apostle to the Gentiles and was sent forth from Antioch along with Barnabas, and later, Silas. Today we tend to assign the gift to missionaries.
Prophets:
prophetes
; a compound Greek word that comes from
pro
and
phemi
.
Pro
in front of, fore, above, etc. (Wordsearch's Strong's G4253), and
phemi
: to make
known, to speak, to say, to share one's thoughts (Wordsearch's Strong's G5346). When brought together, it means a foreteller (Wordsearch's Strong's G4396). Therefore, today we see it as proclaimers of truth, God's truth, and those who confront or speak to Christians. A pastor today who proclaims God's truth in the pulpit is fulfilling the ministry of a prophet (not just that of a pastor).
Teacher:
didaskalos
; translated master 40 times in connection with Jesus, teacher 10,
master 7, doctor 1, and means instructor, or one who teaches a truth (Wordsearch's Strong's G1320). The ministry of a pastor will also involve teaching. In fact, a qualification for an elder is that he be "apt to teach." All parents are to be teachers of their children, and older women are to be teachers of younger women. We assign teachers to our different groups within the church to impart instruction of some truth, and we expect it to be a certified message (that is, confirmed in the Scriptures). A teacher needs to be as qualified as those who meet elder/bishop qualifications if we are trying to meet the biblical examples as close as we can. Our tendency to use anyone to teach without qualifying them as we would a pastor is a dangerous practice.
Miracles:
dynamis
; from [
dunamai
];
force
(literal or figurative); specially miraculous
power
(usually by implication a
miracle
itself):- ability, abundance, meaning, might (-ily,
-y, -y deed), (worker of) miracles (-s), power, strength, violence, might (wonderful) work. English Words used in KJV include: power 77, mighty works 11, strength 7, miracle 7, might 4, virtue 3, mighty 2
miscellaneous translations
9.
It refers to supernatural deeds and an active faith. This seems to be a ministry gift that grows out of believing prayer. As we exercise faith in prayer, God is able to accomplish natural or supernatural events with precise timing in order to bring glory to Himself. Although we don't see this as an "office", God calls it an administration in the church.
Helps:
antilempsis
; only used once (Wordsearch Strong's G484) in the New Testament.
Definition is "
relief
, help" (Wordsearch's Strong's G484). Implies one who assists
leadership and aids the needy. The scriptural scope of the responsibility of the local church includes taking care of the fatherless, the widow, and also the poor. Here is a "silent" office. One who provides help to others without having to hold an actual position in the church like a pastor, teacher, deacon, secretary, or treasurer. In fact, the many folks who do different services within the church (nursery worker, church cleaner, etc.) are exercising the administrative gifts of helps.
Healings:
iama
; occurs 3 times and means a cure, the effect of a cure, a healing
(Wordsearch's Strong's G2386). Can refer to a spiritual, mental, or physical healing assisted by a member of the church exercising the healing gift. Healing was a part of Christ's earthly ministry which He extended to His disciples. So it should continue to be an outreach of the local church. Bringing healing to the spirit and the soul is often a prerequisite to physical healing. We have been blessed here at EBC with several very special healings that have been the result of God honoring our prayers and anointing of oil.
Governments:
kybernesis
; this occurs only once (Wordsearch's Strong's G2941)
and is closely related to the gift of the organizer found in Romans 12. It means to steer as a pilot does of a ship, pilotage, directorship and one who provides direction (Wordsearch's Strong's G2941). It is one (or those) who oversee and guide the local church. The ministry of governments involves those in official capacities who guide the local church. It is significant that this ministry gift is included near the end of the list. Organization which is most effective is least visible. I can see the various special "offices" like treasurer, office manager, etc. as those fulfilling this gift.
Tongues (and Interpreting Tongues):
glossa
(Interpret is
diermeneuo
(Wordsearch's
Strong's G1329)) and in Greek means tongue (used 50 times) but by implication refers to languages that the tongues speaks (Wordsearch's Strong's G1100). Because this sign gift has been so badly misused within the church, Paul demands that it must be interpreted (in effect tested). The miracle of tongues example provided for us in Acts when Peter preached to many thousands in the temple square was not his ability to speak multiple language, but that everyone heard the message in their own language all at the same time. Here is a desired gift that must be very carefully exercised within the church.
I have seen so many serve in various "offices" in the church that are not the normally recognized offices like pastor or teachers, but they are, none the less, exercising a very important administrative gift. We all serve in some capacity based on our gifts, and all are as important as the next. Not all are eyes, tongues, etc., but all are as just as important!
.
in all.
; and
:
- Wordsearch's Strong's G1411
Strong's Talking Greek_Hebrew Dictionary.
Wordsearch. (2020).
Strong, J.
Wordsearch Bible. [computer software] . Nashville, TN: LifeWay Christian Resources. (Original work published 1890)