Biblical Foundations

There are at least four strong biblical foundations for using the spiritual gifts model for church life.

One. A child grows by using what he or she has, in a trial and error fashion, best in an atmosphere of unconditional love and encouragement despite mistakes. So the church body grows by discovering and developing, often by trial and error, whatever gifts have been deposited within it. (See 1 Corinthians 12-14.)

Two. Each servant of Christ has a gift, the property of God, given at the discretion of the Holy Spirit, to be used and developed until His return. In this sense, the Christian's evaluation, exploration, use, and development of his or her own gifts is what it means to "Watch" and "Be ready" for the return of Jesus. (See Matthew 24-25.)

Three. Since the work of the Gospel is to restore the priesthood to all believers, every member has access to God to learn his own duty, every member is called to minister the Gospel to those around him or her, and every member works as a lively part of the church. The one pastor equips the many ministers. (See 1 Peter 2:5-9; 3:14-15.)

Four. The Holy Spirit manifests Himself in gifts, that is gifted individuals placed for the benefit of the church. Therefore any "baptism" or "outpouring" of this Holy Spirit will be manifest in a proficiency with some sort of spiritual gifts model of church life. The gifts are different and fluid, fitted together under the leadership of the Spirit. (See Acts 1:8; 2:16-21: 4:13.)

So we suggest a serious immersion in these passages and four others to give time and space for the Holy Spirit to talk with you about spiritual gifts. The other four passages are these:

  • 1 Corinthians 12:1-31
  • Romans 4:3-10
  • Ephesians 4:7-16
  • 1 Peter 4:8-11