31 December 2014
Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 1 Corinthians 12:30
Here, Paul finishes his list of gifts that have been disbursed among the body. In this, he lists two of the gifts that were lumped together without an adverb separating them during his previous list. They are “healings” and “tongues.” He also leaves out “helps” and “administrations” which were in that same combined list and he adds in the gift of interpreting.
These three should all be considered lesser gifts because of how they were kept separate from the previously noted gifts. Further, Paul will particularly speak about tongues and their interpretation as he continues later in chapter 14. There we will see that even at the time of the early church the gift of tongues was not being handled in an appropriate manner by the Corinthians. Because of this, he will give explicit instructions concerning this gift; instructions which have been completely ignored by most charismatic churches since the beginning of the charismatic movement.
Likewise, the abuse of the gift of “healings” has reached such an absurd level that churches often seem more like a comedy show than a true church in any real sense. In the abuse of these two gifts, there has been a complete lack of holiness, order, and honor for the exalted name of Jesus. If someone truly possesses the gift of healing, they will use it in a manner which highlights the Lord, not the possessor of the supposed gift. And if someone has the ability to speak in another language, they are to follow the explicit instructions for tongues given in chapter 14. If these aren’t followed, then what is presented is not a gift, but rather an ostentatious show designed to call attention to oneself, not the Lord.
Life application: Paul’s words are doctrine for the church. They were given by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and therefore any conduct in a church which contradicts or ignores his instructions cannot be of God.
Lord, as the year ends I know that I need to look back on the year behind me and evaluate who I am and how I have conducted myself. Please help bring to mind the things that need correction and then give me the resolve to make the needed changes so that I continue to grow in You and bring honor to You in the year ahead. I pray that the coming year will be one where my walk with You will be close and sweet. And Lord, as always I pray for Your return. Even so, come Lord Jesus. Amen.