Topic One: Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Introduction

The Holy Spirit is the third person in the trinity. There is the power of Christ, the power of God, and the Holy Spirit who gives gifts such as prophecy and healing. The Holy Spirit is mentioned several times in the Bible; (1) during creation in Genesis, (2) at the annunciation of the birth of Jesus, (3) at the beginning of the ministry of Jesus, (4) during baptism, (5) revelation of Jesus in the temple (6) Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit during his mission or ministry, after resurrection and before ascension

The role of Holy Spirit in Church and in Christian lives today.

Read JOHN 14:15-26 and JOHN 16: 5-15, ACTS 1: 7- 8

The Holy Spirit has many roles in the church and in Christian lives today. These roles are to:

Teach Christians on a daily basis messages of Jesus

Live in the hearts of believers of Christ

Be an advocate, a counselor, helper and a comforter to those who love Jesus Christ and obey God’s commandments

He would remind the disciples the words said by Jesus Christ and introduce them to their deeper meanings.

Interpret the deeper meaning of the messages of Jesus Christ

Reveal the truth and mysteries of and about God

Affirm the right of Jesus as the Son of God

Reveal the glory of Jesus death

Reveal what is right and wrong

Give the disciples of Jesus power to become witnesses of Christ.

Give courage to the disciples of Jesus and modern Christians to face prosecution on the account of following Jesus

Enable the disciples to expose the secret lives and heart of sinful people

Guide Christians; help believers to cast away evils spirits, to heal, to preach the word of God, to encourage, and to condemn evil in the society.

Paul teaching about the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Read 1 Corinthians chapters 12, 13, and 14

Spiritual gifts are extra-ordinary favors, talents, abilities, and dispositions given to Christians by God for the benefit of all believers. The gifts are used for the service of others and not for self-glorification and gratification.

The message of Peter on the day of the Pentecost

  • Peter told the disciple that what was happening was the fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy.
  • He said that Jesus of Nazareth was the Son of God.
  • He said that the suffering and death of Jesus was according to God’s plans.
  • Death was the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy.

Gifts of the Holy Spirit

  1. Gift of wisdom: – having deep understanding of issues- ‘seeing far’, being perceptive.
  2. Gift of knowledge: – ability to understand the basic facts about Jesus, His mission and knowledge about spiritual issues.
  3. The gift of faith: – refers to the confidence in God’s help. It is deep trust in God.
  4. The Gift of healing: – ability, and power to heal all forms of sickness by calling upon the name of Jesus Christ.
  1. The gift of performing miracles: – gift of healing miracles, creative miracles for example, dead legs becoming alive.
  2. 6. The gift of preaching
  3. 7. The gift of prophecy: – the ability to interpret God’s word. The ability to foresee what will happen in the future as revealed by God.
  4. The gift of distinguishing spirits or discernment: – the ability to know whether a spiritual gift is from God, the Holy Spirit or from the evil spirit
  1. The gift of speaking in tongues. The ability to utter, speak in a tongue, language unknown to the believer. Tongues are used when addressing God for self-edifications. It is personal growth.
  2. The gift of interpretation of tongues: – the ability to understand and interpret the messages of those speaking in tongues.
  3. The gift of love. (Read 1 Corinthians 13)

Paul stressed that all the gifts of the Holy Spirit are to be demonstrated with love. He stressed that love, a fruit of the Holy Spirit is supreme over other spiritual gifts possessed by Christians. It’s the greatest of all. Speaking in tongues, preaching, and martyrdom without love is useless.

Components of Love

Love is patient, kind, not jealous or boastful, not arrogant or rude, is not ill mannered or selfish, and does not insist on its own way. It is not disrespectful. It is not irritable or resentful. It does not rejoice at wrong but rejoices in truth. It bears all things.

Love believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Love is eternal. Love never fails. The other gifts are temporary but love, faith and hope are eternal.

Manifestation of the Holy Spirit in the church and Christians today

Gifts of the Holy Spirit have been manifested in churches today. We see this manifestation through people possessing the gifts of the Holy Spirit. For example, leaders in church have displayed the gift of wisdom. Preachers and Christian’s ministers have been casting out demons and performing healing.

There are reported cases of interpretation of tongues and gift of prophecy in churches today.

When Christians display the gifts of the Holy Spirit such as speaking in tongues the Holy Spirit is manifested. Other manifestations of the Holy Spirit are:

  • Through healing, prophecy, gifts of discernment, boldness in preaching, and casting out demons among others
  • Christians helping the poor by giving generosity and in kindness
  • Through singing, dancing, shouting (fruit of joy)
  • Through unity of believers and fellowships
  • Through praying,
  • Christian’s persecutions/temptations

Criteria for Discerning the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Christians who have the Holy Spirit and are guided by Jesus have certain characteristics. These are:

  • They will confess that Jesus is Lord
  • They cannot say a curse.
  • They speak the truth. They worship God and behave in accordance with Jesus teaching.
  • They led by the Holy Spirit and are known by the fruits of the Holy Spirit. These fruits are love, joy, peace, and patience.
  • Such persons serve all Christians without discrimination and strife.
  • They do not do sinful acts such as sexual immorality. They do not practice idolatry, and sorcery. They do not have in their hearts and minds hatred, and jealously or any other negative feelings and actions.

The fruits of the HOLY SPIRIT (GALATIANS 5:16-26)

Paul taught that the fruit of the spirit are: Love, Joy, Patience, Long suffering, Goodness or Generosity, Faith and faithfulness, Peace, Meekness and kindness, gentleness, self- control and temperance.

Answer these questions after reading – JOHN 14:15-26 and JOHN 16: 5-15, ACTS 1: 7- 8 and 1 Corinthians chapters 12, 13, and 14.

  1. What is the role of the Holy Spirit among Christians? (Read a)
  2. Discuss the gifts of the Holy Spirit
  3. Write a talk about the Holy Spirit
  4. Define love?
  5. Describe the different types of love
  6. Why do Christians need the Holy Spirit today?
  7. State the role of love in church and in Christian lives today.
  8. How has the gift of the Holy Spirit been manifested in Christian lives?
  9. Which activities show that the Holy Spirit is working among Christian in Kenya.
  10. How have the gifts of the Holy Spirit been misused in the church today?

Answers are also in the text. Read sections with answers

The role of the Holy Spirit

  • An advocate, a counselor and a comforter.
  • He would remind and introduce the disciples to the deeper meaning of the word of Jesus Christ. To reveal the myth and mysteries of God.
  • He would affirm the right of Jesus as the Son of God.
  • He would reveal the glory of Jesus’ death.
  • He would enable the disciples to discern and expose the secret heart of sinful men.

The gift of the Holy Spirit has been misused today by pride and public manifestation of the gift as a way of show off. Some Christians have misused the gift of Holy Spirit of prophecy by prophesying for money.

PETER’S MESSAGE ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. Read ACTS 2: 14-41

Introduction

Jews commemorate Pentecost day. This is the day that God gave Moses his laws on Mount Sinai. It is also referred to as the festival of weeks. Pentecost day was celebrated 50 days after the Passover. It was compulsory for all Jews. On this day, Jews brought offering, the first fruits of harvest, to the temple in Jerusalem.

Pentecost a day

On the Pentecostal day, the disciples were gathered in Jerusalem awaiting the promise of the Holy Spirit. And as promised, the Holy Spirit came in the form of a strong wind, and tongues of fire. The Holy

Spirit rested on the head of each disciple. The disciples received the gift of the Holy Spirit. They spoke in new tongues. Some of the observers mistook this experience. They thought that the disciples were drunk with wine.

Peter stood up to explain what was happening and defend the disciples. He told those who saw the experience that the disciples were not drunk. It was in the morning.

Peter’s Message. Read Joel 2: 28 – 32

Peter told the onlookers that; what was happening is fulfillment of Joel’s prophesies about the outpouring of Gods spirit. He said that Jesus of Nazareth was the Son of God. This was proved by the miracles that Jesus performed. He emphasized that the suffering and death of Jesus was according to God’s plans. Jesus is a descendant of David. Death and the resurrection of Jesus fulfilled prophesies in the Old Testament.

God raised Jesus from the dead. He taught that Jesus had both the nature of God and Man. The apostles are the living witnesses of the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus has been exalted and sits on the right hand of God where He is Lord and Judge. They holy Spirit is a gift from Jesus

Peter then invited the listeners to repentance so that they could be forgiven and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Three thousand souls accepted salvation message and were added to the fellowship of the disciples.

After the Holy Spirit infilling.

The disciples sold their possessions and goods and assisted the needy. They did many wonders and signs. They continued to live in unity, worshiping God, fellowshipping together, and breaking the bread.

Lessons Christians learn from Leadership of Peter.

Christians should be:

  1. Courageous and stand up for Jesus Christ all the times.
  2. Ready to spread the Gospel of Christ.
  3. Win new converts to Jesus by inviting them to repentance.
  4. Have faith in the risen Christ.
  5. Pray to be filled with the Holy Spirit like Peter and those in church leadership should take their roles seriously.

Relevance of the Pentecostal Experience

Speaking in diverse tongues signified that Christianity is a universal religion. It pointed out the importance of all languages when communicating to God. There were no specific languages for speaking with God, as it was when Latin was the language of literacy and Christianity.

Christians should be bold in their preaching. They should not be afraid as they have the counsel and helper, the Holy Spirit. Christians should understand that God chooses anyone as a leader, preacher, and witness of Christ.

Pentecostal experience signifies that Christians need to receive and be filled with the Holy Spirit

Revision questions

a) Explain the meaning of the Pentecost

b) Describe the manifestations of the Holy Spirit on the day of the Pentecost (Acts 2: 1-40) (or narrate the events that took place on the day of the Pentecost)

c) Write down five teachings about Jesus from Peter’s speech on the day of the Pentecost

d) What were the qualities of peter that made him a successful leader of the apostolic church?

e) What lessons can Christians learn from the events of the day of the Pentecost?

f) State the teachings of Jesus on the Holy Spirit (John 14:14-26) (acts 1:7-8)

g) What is the role of the Holy Spirit according to Jesus?

h) What is the role of the Holy Spirit in the believers or the church or Christians?

i) Outline the fruits of the Holy Spirit

j) State the criteria for discerning the spiritual gifts

k) List down the gifts of the Holy Spirit

l) Explain why Paul taught that love is the greatest of all spiritual gifts

m) Explain how the Holy Spirit is manifested in the church today

n) State ways in which the gifts of the Holy Spirit are being abused in the church today


Topic Two: The Unity of Believers

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