This study is part of a more extensive series on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. I wanted to make you aware of this entire resource before getting started.
- Believers Guide To The Holy Spirit And His Gifts
- Living A Naturally Supernatural Life
- How To Be Empowered By The Spirit
- What Are Spiritual Gifts?
- Should We Use Spiritual Gifts Today?
- The Motivation For Using Spiritual Gifts
- The Word Of Wisdom
- The Word Of Knowledge
- The Gift Of Faith
- Gifts Of Healings
- Working Of Miracles
- Discerning Of Spirits
- Speaking In Tongues
- Tongues In The Church
- Interpretation Of Tongues
- Activating The Gifts
Flowing In The Word Of Knowledge
This morning let’s take a look at what is the word of knowledge. This spiritual gift is probably one of the most exercised gifts in the body of Christ today.
When used correctly it can be a powerful tool to demonstrate that God is alive and well and living in the lives of ordinary people like you and me.
When misused it can look like charlatanry and fortune-telling.
How Do You Get A Word Of Knowledge?
I sometimes cringe at the notion of people running around seeking after “words from God.” Trust me! God is a big boy. If He has a word for you, He is more than capable of sending somebody to you to give you that word. You don’t have to go “seeking” after a word.
About a year and a half after I went through the pain of divorce, I had an instance where I couldn’t get away from some “words from God.”
I had been struggling with the issue if I would ever go back into ministry. I was genuinely wrestling with the biblical text of whether or not I was disqualified to be in ministry anymore.
Well God had an opinion on this subject and proceeded to let me know. On three different occasions in three different churches, with three different people, all of who did not know me or my history, I was given a word of knowledge concerning my past and that God was not done with me and that I would be returning to pastoral ministry.
So, my friends, God is more than capable of bringing a word to you if He has something to say. You do not have to go chasing words from God.
What Is The Spiritual Gift Of Knowledge?
In a nutshell, the word of knowledge is a gift given by God where some knowledge is revealed to you that you only knew by revelation and no prior knowledge.
There are many examples of the word of knowledge in the Bible. Jesus used it on many occasions as well as the Apostles.
I am going to give you just a couple of examples where both Jesus and the Apostles used this gift and then give you some insight I have personally learned over the years in how you can use this gift both in evangelism and in the building up of your local church family.
Examples Of Jesus Using This Gift.
One of the most famous examples of Jesus using the gift of the word of knowledge is the story of Jesus meeting the woman at the well in John 4.
Jesus is sitting at a well, and a Samaritan woman comes up to the well. Jesus strikes up a conversation with her. They talk for a few minutes, and then Jesus tells her to get her husband. She says to him that she has no husband.
Jesus then proceeds to use the gift of the word of knowledge and reveal to her that He knows she has had five husbands and the man she was with now was not even her husband.
This is an excellent example of this gift in operation. Jesus had never met the woman, had no idea her background or lifestyle, yet God revealed to Him knowledge that He previously did not have.
Another famous example of Jesus using the gift of the word of knowledge is at the last supper. Jesus, when they were all sitting together at the table, informs everyone that one of them is going to betray Him.
Of course, they are all shocked which shows that this was not something that they were expecting. Then Jesus says that the one who will betray him is the one that He will pass the bread soaked in wine to. He gives that bread to Judas.
This is another example of knowledge about a fact being revealed at a certain point.
Now I want you all to remember, that although Jesus was, and is, fully God, He chose to give up the powers of the Godhead to come in human form. He was using and demonstrating the gifts of the Holy Spirit which descended upon Him at His baptism.
In examining these examples, we do not want to fall into the trap of just thinking that this was only Jesus being God. Yes, Jesus was God, but at this moment He was the son of man and operating as a man.
Examples Of The Word Of Knowledge In The Bible.
In Acts 5 we have the story of Ananias and Sapphira. This couple had been watching people bring gifts to the apostles and receiving credit for their generosity. Ananias and Sapphira decided to sell a piece of property for a certain amount of money but tell the people that they had sold it for a lesser amount making them think that they were giving all of the proceeds from the sale to the ministry of the Apostles.
However, God knew how much they had sold the property for, and He told Peter. Peter then asked Ananias if He sold the property for the amount that Ananias said, and Ananias lied and said yes.
Well, you know the rest of the story. Ananias fell dead, they took him out, then Sapphira came and told the same lie, and she too was planted 6 feet under with her husband. Peter received from the Holy Spirit, the knowledge that He didn’t have from a natural source. It was supernatural knowledge.
The other example is the one I used with the gift of the word of wisdom. Many times these two gifts go hand in hand. It is the example in Acts 10 where Cornelius was told to send for Peter. He was given the knowledge of where Peter was.
Not only that but Peter was given the vision to prepare him to go to Cornelius’s house. Cornelius was given the knowledge that He did not have previously by natural means. It was given to him supernaturally.
How To Receive The Gift Of Knowledge.
The gift of the word of knowledge can be a powerful tool in evangelism.
Just as Jesus spoke the secrets of the woman at the well’s past, so if used lovingly it can be used to open the eyes and make people today more receptive to what you have to say concerning the gospel. It has a way of breaking down the natural barriers people sometimes put up when being told the gospel message.
It can also be a powerful tool in the church today. As in my case, it helped me overcome some lousy teaching concerning the qualifications of elders and the guilt and unforgiveness I was still dealing with concerning being divorced.
When using the gift of the word of knowledge, make sure you are operating in love. Many times this gift exposes people and makes them vulnerable.
As with all the gifts, I will emphasize that it is not your gift. It is a gift of the Holy Spirit. He uses you as a vessel for the moment. As such, this gift is most authentic and genuine when it is applied gently and without attracting undue attention.
If the Holy Spirit empowers you, then this gift is available to be used as the Holy Spirit leads and guides. It is not your gift; it is His.
I hope you have enjoyed this teaching on the gift of the word of knowledge. Every time I study this subject I learn something new.