What Are the Gifts of God's Spirit?

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What are the gifts (fruits) of the spirit God can give to believers? How many of them are there?

The King James Bible uses the word "fruits" (or its singular) 250 times. It is in the New Testament, however, that the word is used in relation to the works believers are to produce under the inspiration of God’s Holy Spirit.

It should be noted that the first and most important of all the fruits of the spirit, available to all truly converted Christians, is the precious present of God's grace (2Corinthians 9:14, see also Ephesians 2:8).

Because of conversion and grace, God uses the individuality of each person in order to impart gifts, skills, or aptitudes. They do not have to be great qualities, as humans would view them, but God sees them with the perspective of the Master Builder.

For I wish that all men might be even as myself, but each one has his own gift from God; one is this way, and another is that way (1Corinthians 7:7, HBFV throughout).

God's grace should manifest in the believer fruits of the spirit. The Apostle Paul, in Galatians, lists them as the following.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control; against such things there is no law (Galatians 5:22 - 23).

When you read the above verses, you will notice that love is first on the list. Love, then, is the greatest thing God can give and is the result of his work in a Christian. Without it, everything else is to no avail. The fruits or gifts of God, with love at the head of them all, are also labeled the "gift of righteousness" in Romans 5 verse 17.

Fruitful Gifts

The book of 1Corinthians also offers a listing of fruits.

Now there are differences of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord . . . For to one, a word of wisdom is given by the Spirit; and to another, a word of knowledge according to the same Spirit . . . (1Corinthians 12:4 - 5, 8).

Combining the spiritual gifts listed in 1Corinthians 12, Ephesians 4 and Romans 12 produces the following list of fruits. A person can be blessed to organize projects and lead others, to teach and encourage others in the Bible, to discern spirits, to evangelize, to have extraordinary faith or generosity, or be able to heal others.

Christians can also be gifted to be dedicated to helping others (the ministry), to interpret or speak messages in different languages, to work miracles or to speak prophetically. Christians may also receive the fruit that allows them to be extra merciful with others, or the ability to be knowledgeable and wise on particular topics.

No matter what fruits of the spirit a person is given, it should always be remembered that God gives them so that they can be used to serve others. They should never be used as justification to increase a person's ego or to look better in the eyes of others.

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