Question From the Internet

By Don Willis

“My question about the Bible is: How many spiritual gifts can a believer get from God? What does the Bible say?”


There are many spiritual gifts, i.e., gifts from God. His love, his Son, his mercy, his gospel, his daily care, etc.

Miraculous spiritual gifts are discussed in a few in- stances in the Scriptures. Jesus was in conversation with his apostles (John 13-17), and promised the Holy Spirit unto them (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7-15). The apostles received a measure of the Spirit that was far different from that given to saints.

1 Corinthians 12-14 discusses miraculous gifts given to men. Chapter 12:4-11 discusses the unity of the Spirit in bringing gifts as needed unto men. These are enumerated in 12:28-31. Chapter 13 discusses the importance of love, as far superior to any miraculous gift. Chapter 14 is a regulation of gifts. Prophecy (miraculous teaching) is far superior to speaking in tongues (that which is most seemingly desired), for prophesying edifies the church (14:4).

1 Corinthians 13:8-12 discusses the duration of miraculous gifts. Miraculous gifts were given in part, fragments, glimpses, bit by bit (various translations). When the perfect, complete, wholeness (various translations) comes, that which is in fragments will cease. Miraculous gifts were to cease. Partial inspiration would cease once the complete revelation is given.

Ephesians 4:7-16: Christ ascended upon high and left gifts (v. 11) unto men, for the purposes of equipping the church to function, “till” (v. 13) shows the duration; the ending of the gifts to men. Speaking truth in love is that which builds one up.

God has revealed all truth! Hebrews 1:1-2; Jude 3; 2 Peter 1:3-4; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Romans 1:16-17; Galatians 1:6-11. Everything God desires man to know was given by divine revelation, recorded by these inspired men (Eph.

3:3-4) in order for us to read and know the will of God!

Men do not raise the dead anymore (Acts 9:36-42). These gifts served their purpose. Mark 16:17-20 shows the signs were given, “. . . the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.” This salvation was “first . . . spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will” (Heb. 2:3-4).

Paul cautioned individuals, “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1:8-9).

The gospel of Jesus Christ is the power of God unto salvation (Rom. 1:16). There is no need of miraculous gifts today! We walk by faith, and not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7). Some think they must have more than the Bible in order to be all that God desires of them.

Whose claimed miraculous power is one to believe? The Catholics, Mormons, Pentecostals? They do not all teach the same thing. Truth is not confusing (1 Cor. 14:33). Even if an angel told us something other than revelation, Paul said do not believe him (Gal. 1:8).

“Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). Miraculous gifts are not necessary to truth. Truth is already confirmed! Let us believe it, obey it, and enjoy the salvation provided by God.