I think Eric and I are pretty much done talking about spiritual gifts, but if you have any questions feel free to ask either of us. In light of this, I would like to quickly and clearly lay out my basic thoughts on the gifts in hopes of reducing any confusion as to what I believe regarding the gifts.
- That God can and does as He wills on the earth according to His plan and not ours.
- That God saves men through both invisible and external means.
- That God’s Spirit must quicken men from death to life and apart from His work we are left dead in our own sins.
- That God’s Spirit will never contradict Scripture (God’s Word).
- That the Cannon is closed and thus God is not revealing anything new doctrine wise to us.
- That God had a special purpose for the Apostles and their ministry was unique for that time in history.
- That prophecy is proclaiming God’s revealed word and that no new revelation (doctrine) is given to us.
- That tongues are unclear as to reference human language or divine and are not to be used as proof alone that God is working.
- That God heals today, however, there are many false healers in the world who are not pleasing God.
- That the gifts are secondary to Faith, Hope and Love, and we are to focus on Christ and the Gospel over gifts.
- That God sovereignly gives the gifts or withholds them according to His plan not man’s.
- That we are not to strive after the gifts, but holiness and sanctification.
- That many false signs are in the world so that we must test the spirits (doctrine) of all teachings and prophecy (spiritual words proclaimed about God).
- That we are to have grace for our brothers in Christ and not divide over their views of the gifts.
- That we are to flee excess of over focus on the Spiritual and Gifts, and the under focus of God’s Spirit’s working.
- That there are many gifts used in the same force back then (first century) as today and are not under question.
- That the Apostles and their unique gifts were given to build the foundation and cannon of the Church.
- That we must not in our minds limit what God can do, but we must not stray from His word in what He normally does.
- That God limits Himself through His will (does not save everyone or remove all pain right now) or is limited by His nature (He cannot sin).
- That God saving a dead sinner is as miraculous as Him having the sinner speak in tongues or receive back his sight.
This is probably not exhaustive, but should help clarify many of my clear and subtle points.