Spiritual gifts are for building not destroying

Spiritual gifts are designed to destroy the works of the devil - not people. They are designed to build people up.

2 Cor 10: 8 “For even if I should boast somewhat further about our authority, which the Lord gave for building you up and not for destroying you, I shall not be put to shame”.

1 Cor 12 v 7 “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good”.

The problem is that we are often presented with a mixed picture by God, in which the negative is often easier to see. Leeper’s ambiguous lady is a good example of this. Looking past the obvious ugly foreground reveals beauty. The reason that the negative is often easier to see is that evil is boastful, arrogant and likes to occupy centre stage. The godly call on someone's life will often be a beautiful background detail waiting to be recognised. When, the young woman turns to face her destiny the image of the old woman will be destroyed.

'Leeper's ambiguous lady' a black and white drawing of a two people in one image - the jawline of a pretty young woman looking to the rear of the image forms the nose of the ugly old woman.


Keep looking until you see the Lord’s perspective


God will often allow you to see the negative in a person or situation first. It is essential that you do not to speak this out to them, but look beyond it and seek God for the positive in order to minister that to the person. Any negative you see will always have an opposite - the glorious person they are called to be. Once you see that, then you can speak out the plans which God has to bring this into being.
A scriptural example of this is in Daniel 7 where he has a dream and visions. The first part of this is obviously evil with four great beasts:
Daniel says 7:4 “I kept looking until the wings of one of them is plucked …… 7:6 I kept looking until and behold another one like a leopard ……I kept looking …. and behold a fourth beast… I kept looking until thrones were set up and the Ancient of days took his seat.”
Daniel did not stop looking when he found God as most of us would!…. I kept on looking in the night visions……and behold, with the clouds of heaven One like a Son of Man was coming, and He came up to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him.”
Daniel just kept looking and asking for visions, until on the seventh time (the perfect number). He was happy that he had the complete picture when the Son of Man arrived.
A good principle to adopt is to keep on looking and if necessary ask again and again until you can see Jesus in a situation!

Daniel had to go through the heavenly battle and keep on looking in order to see into what happened in the place of God’s abode (‘The third heaven’ 2 Cor 12:2). We have to do the same with situations and people. It is important not to prophesy the negative or the plans of the evil one into a situation. Keep looking and asking until you have God’s perspective.

“‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ declares the Lord. ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.’” Isaiah 55:8-9

“Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, ‘Truly, truly I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the father doing; for whatever the father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.” John 5:19

Elisha in 2 Kings 6, when the town he was in, was surrounded by an enemy army, was able to see the true situation because he looked with his spiritual eyes of faith, beyond the obvious problem, to how God saw it.
He then prayed that the eyes of his servant would be opened. His servant was then able to see the mountain full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
This is a good example of the prophetic in action. 2 Cor 4:18 puts it this way “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

Next.
1. Introduction - friendship with God.
2. Friendship is higher than service.
3. OT prophet. The Spirit came upon them.
4. God wanted prophecy for all in the OT.
5. The wrath of God.
6. God is a merciful judge.
7. John the Baptist - the prophet between the OT and NT
8. NT prophet. The Spirit within we can all prophesy!
9. The spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus.
10. Spiritual gifts are for building not destroying.
11. What you speak to rises up.
12. Prophesy truth not facts.
13. The primary purpose of prophecy in the NT.
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