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Are the Spiritual Gifts in 1 Corinthians 14 for the Church Today?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
January 24, 2022 6:30 am

Are the Spiritual Gifts in 1 Corinthians 14 for the Church Today?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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January 24, 2022 6:30 am

Episode 887 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode

1. I think that God and Jesus aren’t the same entity, but I also have heard that Jesus was also God, even as he came down as man. I hope that is right. Can you explain this?

2. My youth group leader was talking about speaking in tongues and how these gifts are given to us. I saw that she was using the Passion Translation and referring to 1 Corinthians 14. Who were the Corinthians and how do I explain their context to my youth leader? My understanding is that the apostles were the only ones with these spiritual gifts.

3. Should Christians try to convince non-Christians to convert? Why should someone become a Christian?

4. How do I love my friend without condoning and affirming her in her sin?

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Are the spiritual gifts mentioned in 1 Corinthians chapter 14 valid for the church today? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Well, hi, this is Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez.

We pray that you had a wonderful weekend. This is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day, and we would love to hear from you. Our phone lines are open right now. You can call us for the next 25 minutes or so at this number. It's 833-The-Core.

That's 1-833-843-2673. As always, you can post your question on one of our social media sites, and you can always email us your question at questionsatcorechristianity.com. First up today, let's go to a voicemail from one of our listeners. This is Paul. I've been thinking about this for a long time.

I know between God and Jesus, everybody's like, okay, they're different people or different entities, and that's his son and this and that, but I've also heard that Jesus was also God when he kind of came down here just as man. I was wondering if that was kind of close. I hope I said that right. Thank you. You guys are great. Take care.

Bye. God bless you. Paul, thank you for that question. There is no more important question I think that we can ask ourselves and answer than who is Jesus. In fact, it's the question that Jesus asked to his disciples. Who do men say that I am? Who do you say that I am? Peter responded by saying, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.

Jesus said, Blessed are you, Peter. You know, flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. So there's no more important question that we can answer than who is Jesus Christ because it relates to our own eternal salvation, rightly understanding this. Now, it sounds to me like you're on the right track in terms of you recognize that Jesus came as God, but it sounds like there's a little bit of confusion here. How do we differentiate between the Father and the Son, the persons of the Holy Trinity?

I like to go, you know, Paul, to the Gospel of John, in John chapter 1, beginning in verse 1. I think that this is a really important passage of scripture as we think about the identity of Jesus Christ. It says, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God.

Now, you have a distinction there, if you will. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. Okay, so right there we see that Jesus is God. He was there in the very beginning, but that He's distinct from the Father. And if you go down to verse 14, John said, The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen His glory.

Glory is of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. And so Jesus is God. The Word, if you will, the second person of the Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the Word came to earth and assumed humanity, took human flesh to Himself from the womb of the Virgin Mary, never ceasing to be what He always was. God, it wasn't that Jesus laid aside His divinity or the Word laid aside His divinity or something like that. No, Jesus, the second person of the Holy Trinity, the divine person, the divine person, second person of the Holy Trinity, who came, assumed humanity so that in that humanity He might live, suffer, and die for our sins so that we might be redeemed. And only God can save us, Paul.

That's why it's so important that we get this right. This isn't just splitting theological hairs. It's not that big of a deal who you say Jesus is or was. This is why the early church debated about this and talked about this, because reading the scriptures, as they're embracing what the apostles taught, they were confronted with this reality that the Word is God, God Himself.

And so we say that God is three persons, but one in essence, undivided, and this is how we understand the doctrine of the Trinity. And I would encourage you, Paul, just to meditate, maybe on John chapter one, to read that chapter. Read the whole gospel as you think about that question for yourself. Who is Jesus? Do I know Jesus?

And have I experienced His grace in my life? Thank you, Paul, for giving us a call. You know, Adriel, as you said, the most important question we could ever ask and how we answer it is so key.

So thank you for pointing that out. Man, that is so important to our lives and our belief in who Jesus really is. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. As you probably know, our goal on this program is to answer the tough questions people have about the Bible and the Christian life, theology and doctrine and what's going on in our culture today. We have a brand new free resource that answers many of these tough questions in a very helpful booklet. Yeah, we made this resource for our one year anniversary, which we just celebrated recently, answering questions live on the air. And it is, I mean, it's just that it's a resource that's going to help you answer the tough questions about the Christian faith. It's called Tough Questions Answered.

It's only about a 50 page long booklet, but we cover topics like doesn't science make religion unnecessary? Why is Christianity so exclusive? You know, a lot of people today. That's one of their big issues with the Christian faith.

It just seems so exclusive. How can you say that Jesus is the only way? If you've heard that, get a hold of this resource. It's over at corechristianity.com.

You can get it for free. It's a fantastic resource. And as Adriel said, it answers a lot of the tough issues that come up, especially if you have a friend or relative who might be an agnostic or an atheist, somebody who's always peppering you with questions about the faith.

And you're not really sure how to answer them. And this booklet will really help you in your conversations. So please go to our website corechristianity.com forward slash offers. Look for Tough Questions Answered.

Tough Questions Answered, this 50 page booklet. It's absolutely free for you at our website. Well, our phone lines are open. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, we'll be taking calls for the next 15 minutes or so. So jump on your phone right now and give us a call. Here's the number 1-833-843-2673.

That's 833 the core. Here's a voicemail we received from one of our listeners named Grace and youth group yesterday. The topic of speaking in tongues and spiritual gifts came up. I understand that the apostles were the only ones with these spiritual gifts, but one of the leaders and my group was talking about speaking in tongues and and the spiritual gifts and how they are given to us through the Holy Spirit. I saw that she was using the Passion translation, but I want to know is the first Corinthians context was this letter written to and who were they and what is the best way to explain the context?

I'll start doing my own research on this question. But what I understand is that the apostles were the only ones with these spiritual gifts. Thank you. Hey Grace, I love your question. Thank you for calling and how wonderful you know, you're in youth group and you're hearing some things and you want to you want to test what you're hearing. You're wanting to be Berean to search the scriptures to find out if what you're being taught is really true. And so I want to commend you in that as you dig into the scriptures and you do the research for yourself. Now who were the Corinthians? Well, the Corinthians were a church that you know, the Apostle Paul is writing to they had a lot of issues. I mean you read through the book of First Corinthians, Second Corinthians and you realize there were a number of issues there at the church in Corinth.

Theological questions, issues of morality, issues of division. That was a huge issue in Corinth. It's one of the things that the Apostle Paul is trying to address. One of the things that the Corinthians were divisive over was spiritual gifts. It seemed according to the Apostle Paul as if you know, there were there were Christians there in Corinth who were exalting themselves, you know, everything.

Oh, well, my gifts the better gift that kind of a thing and they were neglecting others within the church and that's one of the reasons why the Apostle Paul said what he said in First Corinthians chapter 12. And what he emphasized there is that every member of the body is gifted by the Lord in unique ways and that each member plays a very important role that you know, the hand can't say to the eye, I don't have any need for you. And right there he makes it clear that it wasn't just the apostles who had these spiritual gifts, these miraculous gifts even at times there in the first century, but the various members in the church. Now one question that we sometimes get grace is do I have to speak in tongues to be saved or is that a sign that I truly am saved?

And we always answer that question by saying no. Because again, the Apostle Paul says especially towards the end of First Corinthians chapter 12 that not every believer has the same gift. But it seems like another part of your question here is are these gifts, these miraculous gifts still for people of faith today or still for followers of Jesus today? Now my view is that those gifts passed out of the ordinary life of the church as the word of God continued to advance as local churches were established. I mean you don't read in First Timothy 3 or in Titus 1 the qualifications for prophets within the new covenant community.

You do have the qualifications for elders and deacons. It seems like those were going to be the ordinary officers in the life of the church. And so I don't think that you have prophets today walking around like you did in the days of Jeremiah and Isaiah or even what you had during this sort of transitional period in the New Testament, the first century church, the book of Acts, what we see there. This is something that is debated by believers, by Christians today. But one thing I do want to emphasize for you is that these sign gifts were really meant to help fix people's eyes on the gospel and the forgiveness of sins. That's why God was working in this miraculous way at this stage of redemptive history, if you will, as the gospel was first going out. And I think of what the author of the Hebrews said in Hebrews chapter 2 beginning in verse 3. He's talking about embracing the gospel.

He's writing to these Christians and he says, How shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will. In other words, what was the purpose of those miracles and those gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to the will of God? It was to bear witness to the message, the message of salvation in Jesus Christ. That has to be central in Christian ministry, in your youth group.

That message, the message of the cross, Christ crucified for the forgiveness of our sins, for our justification. That's what we should be hearing about every single week when we gather together with the people of God. That's what we need, and it's that message that the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the first century church were meant to help to bolster. And so can God work in extraordinary ways today?

I think that he can if he chooses to, but ordinarily I think he works through the faithful preaching of the word of God, the faithful teaching of scripture and growing together in Christian community. It sounds to me like that's exactly what you want, and may the Lord bless you as you continue to dig into the scriptures and grow together with the body of Christ. Thank you, Grace. God bless. Grace, thanks for listening to CORE Christianity, and we love the fact that you are digging into God's word.

And when you hear teaching and you're kind of going, I'm not sure this fits the Bible, you actually explore it. And thank you for your call, and we appreciate you so much. This is CORE Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Let's go to Taylor, who's calling in from Houston, Texas. Taylor, what's your question for Adriel? Hey, so my question is, if you were to be speaking with someone who is not a Christian, be it an atheist, practicing Muslim, whatever have you, why should they be a Christian?

Taylor, thank you for that question. So I'm talking to someone who rejects the Christian faith, and I'm trying to convince them you should embrace Christianity. The first passage of scripture that my mind goes to is what Peter said in Acts 4, verse 12. He said, there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. Christianity has what you can't find anywhere else, not in any other world religion. It has what we call the gospel. The word gospel simply means good news, and it's the good news of what God did for you in his son Jesus. It's not do this, that, and the other, and God will love you. Here's a list of commandments that you can obey or a regimen for fasting that you can do that will bring you into God's good graces. It's the fact that we were dead in our trespasses and sins, that all of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and yet God did not leave us in that condition.

He sent his son into the world so that through him we might have life. You're not going to find that in atheism, of course. You're not going to find that in Islam or in Buddhism. Yeah, there might be prophets and good teaching or holy teaching or calls to morality, but what you don't have is the one name given under heaven by which men must be saved, Jesus Christ. And so it's the love of God, the grace of Jesus Christ that I think we put before others, that I want to put before others and say, hey, you're not going to get this anywhere else. Sure, other places will tell you how to be a good person, how to live a good life, but they won't tell you how you can have your sins forgiven because they don't have a mechanism for it like Christianity has.

The blood of Jesus Christ, God himself forgiving our sins through his son Jesus. And so that's one of the places I would want to go. I mean, just knowing the little that I know, Taylor, based on your question, and it just depends. You know, if I have conversations with people who aren't believers, who don't embrace the gospel, I might approach it differently based on where they're coming from and the kinds of questions that they're asking.

But fundamentally, I would say it's what Christianity has that you can't find anywhere else. God bless. Amen. Thank you for that, Adriel. What a clear explanation and so critical when we're talking to people who don't believe or who have questions about our Christian faith. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Just a reminder, we have this great free resource available to you, and it's very similar to what we do here on the program every day. It answers a lot of the tough questions people have about the Christian faith. It's a 50 page booklet. It's absolutely free and you can get it by going to our website at corechristianity.com forward slash offers.

That's corechristianity.com forward slash offers. Look for tough questions answered. Let's go to Debbie calling in from St. Louis, Missouri. Debbie, what's your question for Adriel?

Hi, thanks for taking my call. What's the difference between the Epistles and the Gospels and the Bible? Hey, Debbie, thank you for that question. Well, the Gospels, you have the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, which are going to give us a record, if you will, of the life of Jesus, of his earthly ministry in particular, but also of his birth and so on and so forth. In the Gospels, we might say we have history, eyewitness accounts given to us of what Jesus did, especially focusing on his ministry, his death on the cross, and his resurrection from the dead. The Epistles were written after Jesus' resurrection from the dead. These letters that you have in the New Testament, you have the Pauline Epistles written by Paul, the general Epistles written to the church, generally books like the book of Hebrews or 1 and 2 Peter, pastoral Epistles even, you think of Paul's letters to Timothy, and these are encouragements that we receive, that the church received after the resurrection of Jesus pertaining to how to continue to follow the Lord, applying the truth of the Gospel to the people of God and to the issues that their churches were facing. The Gospels, we might say, are the historical account of the life of our Lord Jesus Christ and what we need to focus on in terms of his redemptive acts. In the Epistles, we have these pastoral letters that were written to churches there in the first century that were struggling to walk with Jesus, to be faithful to the Gospel that they had embraced, growing in their understanding of the truth of God's word. We believe that those Epistles are also inspired by the Holy Spirit, that God, the Holy Spirit, worked in these individuals to write these things down, not just for the benefit of those churches to whom they were originally written, but for the whole church, for us today. That's a real simple distinction, but it's helpful to understand that, especially as we read through the Bible and as we seek to get what's being said in the New Testament. God bless you as you dig into the scriptures, Debbie.

You're listening to Core Christianity. Our phone lines are open right now. If you have a question about the Bible, the Christian life, doctrine, theology, or maybe how your faith walk intersects with what's going on in today's culture. In fact, we're going to be recording a second program today. So after our live program goes off the air, we'll continue taking calls. Here's the number. Jot this down and give us a call in the next half hour. So if you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, it's 833-843-2673.

That number is 833-THE-CORE, and we would love to hear from you. Let's go to Tessa calling in from California. Tessa, what's your question for Pastor Adriel?

Hello. I have a good friend who is a Christian who is walking away from the faith because of pursuing a secular sexual identity, but she still believes Jesus supports her choices. I shared the biblical truth with her, but it's clear she's not willing to listen at this point and has committed herself to a sinful relationship.

How do I continue to love her and be a light and witness while on one hand not being a pest, but the other hand not affirming her choices? Thank you. Hi, Tessa.

Well, thank you for that question. Let me begin by just praying for your friend and for you. Father, Lord, in this day when there are so many who are turning away from the faith to pursue other things, Lord, we know that this was prophesied in your word in various places, Lord, and yet it still breaks our hearts, and we long to see those whom we love, who maybe were once in the church but have since left, come back, Lord, like the prodigal son and be embraced by You. And I pray for Tessa's friend, God, that You would work in her life by the grace of Your Holy Spirit, that like the prodigal son, she would see how empty a life without You is and that she would come home to You, Lord. And would You give Tessa wisdom, the grace of the Holy Spirit to know how to interact with her friend, to love her, Lord God, and yet to speak the truth boldly as well. Be with her, I pray, in Jesus' name.

Amen. Well, Tessa, I think that that's just the thing. It's loving her. But loving an individual who is committed to turning away from Jesus or living in a way that's contrary to Jesus needs to be defined in a biblical way. It's often today people say, well, love should just mean you just affirm what an individual wants, the decisions that they make for themselves.

And of course, that's not true at all. I have five small children, and loving them as their father does not look like just letting them do whatever they want and affirming them in those decisions because sometimes the decisions that they make or the things that they want aren't best for them. Now, of course, this situation is a little bit different. You're not her father.

I mean, the two of you are friends. But you want her to love Jesus and to know Jesus. And the apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 5 that when a professing believer is going this way, when they're rejecting the teaching of the Bible really on anything. I mean, here we're talking about the sort of sexual ethic. And in the context of 1 Corinthians 5, I think that's front and center as well. But what Paul says, when that's happening, we don't minimize their sin. We don't just say, okay, everything is fine. Let's just pretend like nothing is wrong. Let's continue to love this person by, you know, we still hang out. We have a good time together.

I'm hoping that maybe over time as we just continue to be friends and spend time together, you know, she'll change her mind. No, I think you want to be honest and say you're headed down a destructive path. You're turning away from Jesus. Again, what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 5, verse 9, I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people, not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world or the greedy and swindlers or idolaters.

Since then, you would need to go out of the world. But now I'm writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother. If he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed or is an idolater or reviler, drunkard or swindler, not even to eat with such a one, for what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside. Now, the whole point with this, with saying, look, I can't just spend time with you and laugh and joke like everything is okay is not to cut this person out, not to be rude in any way. It's to highlight the fact that there is something seriously wrong in the relationship that you can't just laugh and have a good time as though there wasn't this serious issue, this departure from the faith. And so I think you can be honest.

You keep the door open. But you also say, look, if you're going to continue to profess to be a Christian, a follower of Jesus, and yet reject what the Bible so clearly teaches with regard to these things, I can't just sort of pretend like everything is okay. It's a hard thing. And I've found that when you are truthful with friends in situations like this, that oftentimes they end up cutting off the relationship because they just don't want to hear it anymore.

They're choosing to go down this path, and they don't want others to tell them, hey, that's not right. And so the other big thing here, Tessa, is to pray, to continue to pray for your friend because ultimately it's a work of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God needs to work in her heart, softening her heart, and you know what?

He's able to do that. And so I would say be committed to praying for her. Be committed to loving her by being honest with her and truthful with her about this decision that she's made and saying you're always there for her. But don't just pretend like everything is fine. Don't just be friends as you were prior to on the basis of what Paul says there in 1 Corinthians 5. And may the Lord bless you as you seek to love her and to continue to share the love of Christ with her. The truth of God's Word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-18 05:03:20 / 2023-06-18 05:13:30 / 10

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