The Gifts of the Holy Spirit – John Iuliano

We believe in the present day operation of the nine supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit, as recorded in 1 Cor
12. We also believe in the ministry gifts of Christ, as recorded in Eph 4:11-13.

It is amazing how difficult some jobs are without the proper tools. Can you imagine how difficult it would be to
cut a piece of timber if you didn’t have a saw? Spiritual gifts are the tools that God has given us to enable us
to be more effective in accomplishing the task of working with Him to build His church. They are not an
optional extra for the
ultra special people, but a divine gift to all believers that dares to open themselves up to
the power of God working through them.


1. The Word of Wisdom

A revelation of God’s infinite wisdom. It will be the solution to the problem at hand.

Illustration: Matt 22:15-22 Is it lawful to pay taxes?

John 8:3-11 The woman caught in the act of adultery

2. The Word of Knowledge

A revelation of a portion of God’s knowledge that would otherwise have been impossible for that person to
Illustration:Acts 5:1-11 Peter received knowledge about what Anannis and Sapphira had done.

4:17-18 Jesus knew the history of the woman of Samaria.

3. Faith

This gift enables the person to have perfect confidence that God will bring to pass that which is spoken or
desired. There is no room for doubt, but an overwhelming confidence that God will do what He said He would

Illustration: Acts 3:4-8 Peter had absolute faith that the lame man would walk.

John 10:12-14 Joshua had absolute faith that the sun would stand still.

4. Gifts of Healing

The supernatural enabling to see sickness cured.

Illustration:Acts 5: 15-16 Peter and the apostles saw many people healed.

Luke 6:19 Jesus healed all who sought Him.

5. Working of Miracles

Divine intervention to accomplish something that could not have been accomplished by natural means.
(Healing is God speeding up the process that would naturally occur. Miracles are God intervening and doing
something that would not naturally occur.)

Illustration: Matt 14:17-21 Feeding the 5000 with 5 loaves and 2 fish.

John 6:15-21 Jesus walking of water.

6. Prophecy

A divinely inspired utterance that edifies exhorts and comforts. (It can declare what will happen in the future
but doesn’t necessarily have to be predictive in nature in order to be a prophecy).

Illustration: Acts 21; 9 Philip’s daughters who prophesied.

1 Cor 14:1-40 Paul’s teaching on prophecy.

7. Discerning of Spirits

To see beyond the outward appearance and have a revelation that discerns the nature of the spirit which is at
work. This gift discerns whether it is a human spirit, a demonic spirit, a godly spirit or the Holy Spirit.

Illustration Acts 8:18-28 Peter discerning the spirit in Simon.

Acts 16:16-18 Paul discerned the demonic spirit in the young lady.

8. Different Kinds of Tongues

A divinely inspired utterance given in a language that has not been learnt by the speaker. Once interpreted
this gift is similar to prophecy.

Illustration:Acts 2:7-12 The disciples spoke messages in tongues to people at Pentecost.

  1 Cor 14:27-28 Paul’s teaching.

9. Interpretation of Tongues.

Interpretation of a message in tongues by divine inspiration and is given in the language of the speaker. The
purpose is to edify the church.

Illustration: 1 Cor 14:5 Paul’s teaching.


1. Everyone ought to desire to prophesy and operate in the spiritual gifts.

1 Cor 14:1 “Pursue love and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”

2. Everyone can prophesy

1 Cor 14:31
“For you can all prophesy one by one.”

3. The test of prophecy is whether or not it edifies, exhorts and comforts.

1Cor 14:3
“But he who prophesies speak edification and exhortation and comfort to man.”

1 Cor 14:4b
“…he who prophesies edifies the church.”

4. Those who are inspired to prophesy are in control of the timing, the words used, the emotion
and the way it is presented.

1 Cor 14:
32 “And the spirit of the prophets are subject to the prophets.”

5. Those who prophesy must be willing to have the accuracy of their prophecy judged by others in

1 Cor 14:29
“Let two or three prophets speak and let the others judge.”

6. There are 2 types of tongues.

1. A message to God that is not directed to man (Personal tongues). 1 Cor 14:2 “For he who speaks in a
tongue does not speak to man but to God, for no one understands him…”

2. A message to men that is inspired by God (Public Tongues).

1 Cor 14:21
“… with men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people.”

7. Personal Tongues are for edifying oneself and praying in the spirit.

1 Cor 14:4
“He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself…”

1 Cor 14:14
“For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays…”

8. Public Tongues when interpreted are for the edification of the church.

1 Cor 14:5, “I wish you all spoke with tongues… that the church may receive edification.”

Note: Once the two types of tongues are understood then it is clearer to see why the public use of tongues is
a gift that not all believers use. It is one of the nine gifts and is motivated by the will of the Holy Spirit. However
the private use of tongues is for personal edification. Every believer needs to be built up. Every believer
needs to pray in the spirit. Classical Pentecostals believe that the ability to speak in “personal” tongues is
not necessarily one of the nine gifts of the spirit but the initial evidence of being filled with the Holy Spirit.


Ephesians 4:11 “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors
and teachers.”

1. Apostle.
Definition: One that is authorised and sent forth as a messenger to carry out an official duty on the sender’s
Duties: To establish churches. To govern churches. To raise up ministries. To pilot a Christian movement. To
equip Christians for service.

Illustration: Acts 2:42-47 The establishing of the New Testament under the apostles leadership.

Acts 19:1-20 Paul establishes a Christian movement throughout Asia while based at Ephesus.

2. Prophet.

Definition: One who speaks divinely inspired messages and has a role of leadership within the church. They
are able to foresee future events and have an ability to discern the signs of the times. (Just because one
operates in the gift of prophecy doesn’t necessarily mean that one is a prophet.)

Duties: Keep a church on an even keel. Have foresight in making sure the church is keeping on course.
Motivates spiritual zeal, equips the Christians for the work of the ministry. Exhorts, encourages and comforts.

Illustrations:Acts 11:28-29 Agabus foresaw a great famine coming and prepared the church to send relief to
the churches in Judea.

Acts 15:32 Judas and Silas were used of God to exhort and strengthen the church.

3. Evangelist.

Definition: One who declares the good news about Christ.
Duties: To keep the church zealous with a passion to reach the lost. To equip Christians to declare the good
news about Jesus to those who don’t know Him.

Illustration:Acts 8;4-8 Philip takes God’s word to Samaria and sees a revival (Acts 21:8 calls him an

Romans 10:14-15 Paul describes an evangelist.

4. Pastor.
Definition: One who cares, tends, feeds and leads a group of Christians into their God-given destiny. A
Duties: To encourage people in the faith. To lead a congregation of Christians. To equip Christians to serve.
To correct those who go astray. To declare God’s truth. To teach God’s Truth.

Illustration:1 Peter 5:1-5 Peter’s description of a good shepherd (pastor).

1 Tim 4:6-16 Paul’s description of a good minister (pastor).

5. Teacher.

Definition: One who instructs. One who turns the lights on. One who makes difficult things easy to understand.
One who leads others into understanding.
Duties: To know God’s word. To love God’s word. To impart God’s word. To impart to Christians a love for
God’s word. To make God’s word practical and applicable in a daily Christian walk.

Illustration:2 Tim 1:11 Paul was a teacher to the Gentiles.

3:2 Jesus was a teacher sent from God.

God’s gifts are given to the church to equip us to be able to impact the world. It is important that we not only
recognise the validity of these gifts, but also constantly seek to promote and utilise their use within the church.
These gifts are not meant to be ornaments placed into the churches display box, but tools on the church floor
constantly used, constantly appreciated, constantly worked and constantly producing what God intended them

Teaching Copyright (C) 1999 John Iuliano (M.A. Min). All rights reserved. Published here with permission.

What do YOU think?


About Michael Fackerell

The Christian faith is about Jesus. He came to save the lost. About Jesus Christ, Bible teaching, Testimonies, Salvation, Prayer, Faith, Networking.


  1. Redbuck40 says:

    I object to your inclusion of Pastor in the Ministries of the Church and combining the work of the ‘pastor’ and the teacher, when the scriptures actually state “shepherd and teachers”.
    In Ephesian 4:11 the word ποιμήν translated as shepherd, and is translated everywhere else as shepherd, of 18 places where the word is used in the NT only one is translated as pastor. Pastor is not a biblical word, it is a mistranslation.
    1 Timothy 3:1 the word used is ἐπισκοπή from which we get the word Bishop or Overseer.
    1 Timothy 3:8 the word used is διάκονος from which we get the word Deacon likewise in 1 Timothy 4:6.
    In Titus Paul left him in Crete not to appoint Shepherds but πρεσβύτερος from which we get the word Elders. Describing it further in v7 Paul uses the word ἐπίσκοπος which is translated as Bishop or Overseer.
    Possibly the first mention of this word is in Acts 20:28 where the Overseer or Bishop were to be the shepherds.
    Therefore it is possible to say that a Bishop, Elder and Shepherd are all the same office, but a Pastor is man’s creation.

    By the way I enjoyed reading the article, and can say that for the most part I agree with your conclusions.

    In Christ, Chris

  2. Sunny Shen` says:

    So if there is gifts of tongues and prophecies. How come 1 cor 13:8 says “Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.” ??

    • The Bible says that speaking in tongues shall cease. But at the present time, before the return of Christ, it is no more true that “speaking in tongues has ceased” than it is true that “knowledge has vanished away”.

      Paul is very clear from the context, that the time when tongues, knowing in part and prophesying in part will pass away – is when the PERFECT comes, THAT IS, when we shall see Jesus face to face. We must let Scripture tell us what Scripture means rather than forcing our own interpretations INTO Scripture, interpretations which DENY important teachings FROM the Scriptures and try to MAKE THE WORD OF GOD OF NO EFFECT.

      Here is the rest of the 1 Corinthians passage until verse 12 which people need to read in order to understand what Paul is talking about and WHEN it applies.

      9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke 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 in a mirror, dimly, but THEN face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

  3. Thanx for the comments,I also feel that if you truly are in Christ your desire for His gifts will be to please God and not please self.

  4. Hi I just want to know when do you receive the gifts of Christ.
    I am a christian now for some time and pray for the gift of tongues and desire also other gifts. Do you have to be on a certain spiritual level of growth to receive this gift or is it that the Lord knows when to give it to who? Can someone give me clarity. I know that when you give your heart to Jesus you have the Holy Spirit but when do you receive the anointing of the Spirit?

    • Jade Karling says:

      He does not give you the gifts you desire. He gives you the gifts you need to please him and show his glory. Everything on this earth is for his glory not man. When you truly believe that he is the saviour of your life and that there is only one God who reigns, then he will provide.

      God supplies according to need and never your wants, so if it is something you want and not need you’ll never recieve it from HIM. You need to ask yourself why you want what you do. Then ask yourself if the motive is pure or selfish. If the motive is tainted then there is no love in the wish. Without love there is no Jesus or the Holy Spirit.

      In HIM…

      Read the book of Job for example.


      • I would say many times God does, because He has given us all things that pertain to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3) and has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places already (Ephesians 1:3). From God’s side, these things are all available.

        Furthermore, God puts holy desires in us for the things of God and He intends that we reach out for them and receive them. Yes, it is all for His glory – if our motives are for self-glorification then it will be difficult for us to receive, and probably undesirable from Heaven’s point of view also.

        God sometimes supplies your wants. But not always. Have you ever wanted something you don’t strictly need, and received it? Of course you have – God is not a miser running a concentration camp for His children, only giving them what is strictly necessary for survival.

    • You receive the gifts of Christ when your faith meets the provision of God’s blessing which normally comes as the result of the prayers of the saints. God has already provided everything legally but prayer and faith will bring it into our experience. God is willing to give good gifts and tells us this in Matthew 7:11 “how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him?”

      You can speak in tongues when you meet the biblical conditions and especially when you believe you can, based on God’s Word. There are some conditions – for example, walk in forgiveness, ask, desire, give yourself to God and so on.

  5. Shawn Smith says:

    Thank You! We so need this teaching!

  6. steve rutledge says:

    this is very helpful

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