For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7 KJV
Have you ever noticed that in the King James Version of the Bible, there is no use of an apostrophe to indicate possession? NONE! Instead, possession in the Bible is expressed in the form e.g the bag of Troy (and not Troy’s bag).
Similarly, (in applying the same principle of translation), ‘the Spirit of the Lord’ in our modern English would be stated, ‘the Lord’s Spirit’.
In the above mentioned text, 2 Timothy 1:7, we see reference to “the Spirit of Fear” and then, “the Spirit of power, of love and of a sound mind”. In our modern English, this would translate, “Fear’s Spirit”, as well as, “Power’s Spirit, Love’s Spirit and Sound mind’s Spirit”. This infers that Fear would, in fact, be a person and so would be Power, Love and Sound mind.
In the spirit of not diverting from the pertinence of the present topic, let’s proceed with the identification of Power as a Person.
Jesus said, “I am. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.” Mark 14:62 NKJV
In this verse of the Bible, we see a direct reference to Father God as [the Person of] POWER. Therefore, we know that the Spirit that we have been given, the Spirit of God (God’s Spirit) is in fact the Spirit of POWER (POWER’S Spirit). 2 Corinthians 3:17 also directly personalizes the Holy Spirit saying that the Spirit is the Lord and the Lord is the Spirit, and so if 2 Timothy 1:6-7 identifies this same Spirit as the Spirit of Power (Spirit of God), we can safely and so easily deduce that the Spirit of Power is in fact a Person. Therefore, everything that the saint does or says literally permeates in Oneness with God and is in fact, an expression of who God is, Power.
The Apostle Paul in his letter to the Corinthians chapter 12, identifies the expressions/ manifestations of the Spirit or as we have identified, Power. He lists them as follows,
Wise counsel (word of Wisdom)
Clear understanding (word of knowledge)
Simple trust (Faith)
Healing the sick
Working of miracles
Distinguishing between spirits (Discernment of spirits)
Interpretation of tongues
It has been commonly taught in the popular church doctrines that when one receives the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the evidence of the baptism would be speaking in tongues. After the reception of this baptism, it is taught that one should endeavor to ‘live a holy life’ and with the holiness achieved by doing this, one would be able to access the other manifestations such as prophecy, healing the sick and even into enter into the realms of one’s “calling”. This I would like to emphatically state, could not be further from the Truth.
With the clear understanding of the fact that Power is in fact a Person and we the saints have received the Spirit of this Person, being one Spirit with this Person, we have become the sons of this Person and the manifestation of the Spirit is in reality the expression of our new nature. The New Man in Christ. These manifestations are in no way acquired “gifts” nor a reward for our self attained holiness, but the attributes of who we are in Christ. Sons of POWER! (Interesting fact: The word “gift” as used in 1 Corinthians 12, solely exists in the English translation of the letter to the Corinthians. In the original language of this passage it literally translates, ‘spirituals’ alluding to spiritual activities/ manifestations),
To simplify this understanding, we can take a look at a simple analogy. Consider a pet. And solely for the purpose of the example, a Rottweiler. Some of the attributes of this pet Rottweiler are panting (tongue hanging on the side of the mouth), growling, barking, jumping, running, wagging its tail. With these attributes in mind, if at this very moment someone took the spirit of the Rottweiler and placed it in you, the reader, what do you think would begin to happen to you by natural instinct/ manifestation? Wouldn’t you begin to naturally be inclined to the Rottweiler’s attributes? You will have the natural and effortless tendencies to pant, growl, bark, jump etc. The manifestations of the Spirit of God are exactly the same. The Saint’s natural inclinations, the Saint’s attributes.
The usage of POWER
The “gift” of tongues is very common in some denominations within the christian bracket. The Apostle Paul again in his letter to the Corinthians chapter 14 stated this:
For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also. Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified. I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all: Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue. Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men. In the law it is written, With men of other tongues and other lips will I speak unto this people; and yet for all that will they not hear me, saith the Lord. Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe. If therefore the whole church be come together into one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those that are unlearned, or unbelievers, will they not say that ye are mad? But if all prophesy, and there come in one that believeth not, or one unlearned, he is convinced of all, he is judged of all: And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest; and so falling down on his face he will worship God, and report that God is in you of a truth. How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying. If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret. But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God. Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted. And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. 1 Corinthians 14:14-33 KJV
In this passage, we can clearly see that Paul gave his recommendations as to when to use tongues and when not to use it in the gatherings of the believers. This evidently reveals that every Saint has full control as to when tongues can be used. It can be started and stopped at will. If this was not so, the Apostle would have stated the opposite i.e Don’t hinder the Spirit when its speaking through you.
In the christian community today, with respect to denominations that encourage the speaking in tongues, this is most evident. Believers possess the ability to pray in tongues at will and in a manner of their choosing. Sometimes loudly, sometimes softly. Sometimes briefly, and at other times, at length.
If speaking in unknown tongues is actually one of the manifestations of the one POWER (Spirit), then contrary to the popular church doctrines (that emphasize conditions for the acquisition of the other (gifts) manifestations of power), the other eight manifestations can be used and be controlled at will also. Just as the use of tongues begin with mere intention, the rest also commence or become active likewise. Intention followed by anticipated speaking or acting, respectively.
The dependence on Faith for the manifestation of POWER
Another common theory that exists in the popular church doctrines, is that one must have faith to access the other manifestations of the Spirit that we may not be functioning in or not confident to put to active use as yet. I would like to highlight, that Faith is actually listed as one of the manifestations of the Spirit. Therefore, if faith is actually listed as one of the nine manifestations, then faith by logical interpretation cannot be the requisite for the manifestation any of the other “gifts of the Spirit”. The reception of the Holy Spirit is the ONLY requisite. None of the manifestations of the One Spirit is dependent on the other for functionality. This would be the same as saying (in keeping with our analogy), that for a rottweiler to bark (one of its attributes), it must be able to first run (another one of its attributes).
If we carefully consider the use or functionality of the manifestation of Unknown Tongues for example, you would quickly realize that technically you do not require a mustering of faith to pray in them but rather it is initiated by the Saint’s desire or intention to pray in them. In other words, by faith we received the Holy Spirit which was Step 1. Step 2, would then be to learn the mechanics of the operation of the Spirit (that is already in you). Ergo, the method of engagement for one gift (manifestation) does not differ from the method of engagement for all gifts (manifestations).
The nine manifestations of the Spirit are not inter-dependent. They are the various expressions of ONE NATURE or ONE ENTITY. i.e ONE POWER!!!
*It must be emphatically taken into consideration that the gospel requires faith for one thing alone, i.e CHRIST IN YOU, THE EXPECTATION OF GLORY (WHO HE IS IN YOU, FOR YOU AND THROUGH YOU). After believing in the Lord Jesus, your next step would be to learn or gain knowledge of what Christ has done in you.
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20 I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective and powerful because of your accurate knowledge of every good thing which is ours in Christ.Philemon 1:6
The POWER OF GOD is the Saint’s by NATURE.
The full manifestation of the Nature is dependent on how much you know about it!