The Gift of Faith

(1 Corinthians 12:1-11 KJV) Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant. {2} Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led. {3} Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. {4} Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. {5} And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. {6} And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. {7} But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. {8} For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; {9} To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; {10} To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: {11} But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

Don't be ignorant

1 Corinthians chapters 12-14 are the chapters in which Paul writes about the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 12:1-2, he writes that he does not want them to be ignorant concerning spiritual gifts. He then goes on to remind them of what they were in times past, Gentiles,  and how they got that way, they followed the crowd (even as ye were led) and worshipped dumb idols, they did not know the living God. Now they are in Christ.

Warning: don't be ignorant and don't be led astray.

Trinity at work - 1 Corinthians 12:4-6

  • Spirit - diversities of gift
  • Lord - differences of administration
  • Father - diversities of operations

Spiritual Gifts

In 1 Corinthians 12:8-11, the gifts are listed word of knowledge, word of wisdom, word of knowledge, faith, gifts of healing, working of miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, divers kinds of tongues, interpretation of tongues.

There are three things to notice about the gifts that were given:

  1. 1 Corinthians 12:7 says, " But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal."

    It says that the manifestation of the gifts is given to every man, not that the gift itself working within one person. When the Holy Spirit manifested Himself it was for the benefit of everyone not just one or two people.
  2. 1 Corinthians 12:8 says, "For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit"

    It is not the gift of wisdom or the gift of knowledge but the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge. If it was the gift of wisdom/knowledge then it would only benefit one or two people but as the word of wisdom/knowledge it benefits everyone.
  3. I Corinthians 12:9 says, "To another faith by the same Spirit;..."

    It says that faith is given not the word of faith. Does this mean the ability to believe or knowledge of what to believe in? As stated in Faith in Faith or Faith in God, faith is what God has said.

Kinds of Gifts

Revelation Gifts Confirmation Gifts Communication Gifts
Word of Wisdom Gifts of Healing Prophecy
Word of Knowledge Working of Miracles Discerning of Spirits

Divers Kinds of Tongues

Interpretation of Tongues

But, where does the gift of faith fit in?

Back in times past, when a man spoke a revelation of God, someone one else would come along and have that message confirmed with signs and wonders.

(1 Corinthians 13:2 KJV) And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

Here it appears that Paul links the communication gift (prophecy), the revelation gift [knowledge) with the confirmation gift (working of miracles) ; it is like the gift of faith is a bridge between the three.

Revelation Gifts

Confirmation Gifts

Communication Gifts

Word of Wisdom Gifts of Healing Prophecy
Word of Knowledge Working of Miracles Discerning of Spirits

Divers Kinds of Tongues

Interpretation of Tongues

Gift of Faith

New Terminology

When the Holy Spirit came, two new terms came the scriptures: the faith and the measure of faith. Faith is mentioned twice in the Old Testament writings (Genesis-Malachi).

(Acts 3:14-16 KJV) But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; {15} And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. {16} And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.

It is imperative to understand what had just happened; the lame man that sat by the gate of the temple had just been healed and went walking and leaping and praising God. Why was the lame man healed? He was healed because he had faith in the name Jesus Christ. According to Isaiah 35, when then kingdom is to be given to Israel there will be common occurrences of eyes of blinded being opened, ears of deaf unstopped and lame men shall leap as a hart.

In Acts 3:16, his name is the name of Jesus Christ. It was through faith in the name of Jesus Christ that the man was healed; it was by the faith which is by Jesus Christ that the man was healed.

The Faith

What is the faith which is by Jesus Christ? It is what Jesus Christ had accomplished in His death, burial and resurrection. It is the hope that Jesus gave to Israel through His accomplishment, raised from the dead. The man was healed because of the words that were preached about Jesus Christ and the offer of hope of the kingdom.

The day of Pentecost was when the kingdom was actually offered to Israel if they would believe. Jesus Christ was raised from the dead to sit on the throne of David (Acts 3:22-36)

Just as Israel's faith was to be in what Jesus accomplished, so is our faith to be in what Jesus Christ accomplished for us. We do not understand the accomplishment of what Jesus Christ accomplished for us through what Peter said but through what the Apostle Paul said. We, too, are to have hope in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ

Faith is always based upon what Jesus Christ accomplished in His death, burial and resurrection and the revelation He gives through His Spirit.

Word of Faith

There is a Biblical term "word of faith" but it is not the "gift of faith".

(Romans 10:8-9 KJV) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; {9} That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

From  Romans 10:8, we can see that "the word of faith" is defined as what was preached. And in context of this verse we understand that what Paul preached was that Israel had been blinded and God is now doing something new, something different than the prophetic program with the nation of Israel.

(Deuteronomy 30:14 KJV) But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it.

Paul is quoting Moses but he changes it to "the word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart that is, the word of faith, which we preach".  Why the change? The word which we are to believe is what God spoke to the Gentiles through the Apostle Paul.

Hearing of Faith
(Romans 10:17 KJV) So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

In order for one to have faith one needs to hear what God is saying.

(Galatians 3:1-2 KJV) O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? {2} This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

The hearing of faith is hearing what God had to say through what Paul preached. Faith is not believing something but hearing something that was spoken to them. Faith is hearing what God has spoken.

Paul preached a different message than what the twelve preached. A new revelation was given to the Apostle Paul and to prove that message to be true in Paul's early ministry there were many confirmation gifts manifested.

The Measure of Faith

(Romans 12:3 KJV) For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

"Through the grace given to me" refers to the revelation of the dispensation of grace.

God has dealt to every man the measure of faith, that is, He has told us how to believe. He tells us how we are to believe by the words that Paul preached. It is through Paul's' writings that we learn how we are saved and for what purpose we are saved. This measure of faith is given to every man.

(Romans 1:24-26 KJV) Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: {25} Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.{26} For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

God gave the Gentiles up at the tower of Babel because they had exchanged the truth for a lie. The Gentiles had the truth but they exchanged it for a lie.

(Romans 3:1-3 KJV) What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? {2} Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God. {3} For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?

The oracles (words) of God were committed unto the Jews. God gave to the nation of Israel things that were already known. The knowledge of what God wanted to do was already made known but the Gentiles could not be trusted with it; they had exchanged the truth for a lie. God has preserved His word through Israel; Israel is the nation that has recorded what God had said in writing.

(Deuteronomy 4:1-2 KJV) Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you. {2} Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

What was written in the Law was complete.

(Isaiah 30:1 KJV) Woe to the rebellious children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me; and that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin:
(Isaiah 30:8 KJV) Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come for ever and ever:

After the law was given Israel began to turn away from God. God told the prophets to write down what they had said. In the earthly ministry of Jesus, He often asked, "Have you not read...?" Jesus always quoted the scriptures as being the authority.

In the early chapters of Acts, the Holy Spirit spoke the words of Jesus Christ to the twelve. In the book of Revelation, we learn that there is not any new revelation to be given after the completion of the written word of God.

(Revelation 22:18-19 KJV) For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: {19} And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

God's message to Israel, the book of prophecy, is complete.

(2 Peter 1:15-21 KJV) Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance. {16} For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. {17} For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. {18} And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. {19} We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: {20} Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. {21} For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

Peter writes that after his death Israel will have his words to remember because he is writing them down. He writes that what is written is more sure than what he saw when he went up onto the mountain with Jesus and saw His glory.

(2 Peter 3:15-16 KJV) And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; {16} As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.

This is where Peter writes to the kingdom believers and explains why the prophetic program has not yet been fulfilled. He writes that the interruption can be understood by the things that Paul writes about. In other words, Peter is saying that the things that Paul was doing at the time was different than what Peter and the eleven were doing. Paul's message is different and it explains what God is doing today.

(Colossians 1:25 KJV) Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;

The revelation that was given to the Apostle Paul is complete; his writings fulfil the word of God.

(1 Corinthians 13:9-12 KJV) For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. {10} But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. {11} When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. {12} For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

That which is perfect refers to the word of God, with Paul's writings, the word of God is complete.

Paul's writings tell us about the dispensation of grace and the other books tell us about the prophetic program. In Revelation 22:18-19, we read that the book of prophecy has been complete and in Colossians 1:25, we read that the revelation of God fulfills the word of God. There is nothing more to be added. We can know what God wants us to know.

Our faith rests in what God has said and it has all been written down.

Reference used:
Charismatic Miracles, Gifts, Signs and Wonders, and the Bible
The Gift of Faith
Speaker: Tom Bruscha