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The Gifts of the Spirit.

The Gifts of the Spirit.

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Published by glennpease
BY HENRY ALEXANDER DOUGLAS


1 Corinthians xii, 11.



'' All these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to
every man severally as He will.'*
BY HENRY ALEXANDER DOUGLAS


1 Corinthians xii, 11.



'' All these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to
every man severally as He will.'*

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 04, 2013
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THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT.BY HERY ALEXADER DOUGLAS1 Corinthians xii, 11.'' All these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing toevery man severally as He will.'*WE are now living under what is called thedispensation of the Spirit. That is to say,the Holy Spirit dwelling upon earth is, as it were, thehidden President of the Church, living in the membersof the Church severally, and working in the wholebody generally, so that His influence is felt every-where as the source of all good and all life.And thus working at once in each member and inall the body, He so works in each as to contribute tothe good of all. He shows His presence in each bythe gifts which He bestows on individual men. Heshows His presence in the whole body by the resultof all these separate gifts combining together, andworking out as their issue the common good.This is what St. Paul teaches us in this tenthchapter, which is on the subject of spiritual gifts.He shows that as in the body there are many mem-bers, each having its own office, distinct and peculiarto itself, but with a clear reference to the general good,so in the Church there are different gifts belonging todifferent persons for the good of all, and workedin them hj the same Spirit, who divides " to everyman severally as H© will."Digitized by CjOOQIC
 
SEBM.XIX.] THE GIFTS OF THE SPlBIT. 24'5The sul^t is an important one^ and I shall proceedwithout further preface t6 set before you certainprinciples which St. Paul lays down, and certainreflections which naturally arise from them.I. First, — every goodlhing which a man has is a gift.othing good which a man has is his own. '* Everygood gift and every perfect gift is from above^ andoometh down from the Father of Lights;" tha^tis, every good is a gift, and a gift from God above.We owe it not to ourselves, but to God. It has notits origin in us, but in Him. We are not creators.God made us, and God is the author of everythinggood within us, or without us. Goods of the mind,goods of the body, goods in our character, or goodsin our circumstances; anything and everything towhich the term ^ good ' can righdy be applied, comesto us, comes from above, comes down upon us, comesfrom God. This is true of all men, even of those whoare living only by the light of nature, and who aregifted only with natural advantages ; but it is especiallytrue of those who are not only men but Christians,members of Christ; and it is true, above all, of spiritual gifte.Christians have all those other gifts which are givenin various measures and degrees even to heathenpersons, but they have also that greatest gift of theHoly Spirit, which not only brings with it certainspiritual gifts as its immediate consequence, butchanges all natural talents and advantages into ahigher character and turns them to nobler uses. If,therefore, these natural talents were gifts at any rate,they are gifts more truly tlian ever by reason of thattranscendant gift of the Holy Ghost, Who takes themfor His own purposes and uses them for His own ends.
 
m3Digitized byCjOOQlC246 THE GIFTS OP THE SPIRIT. [SERM.All our gooddi then, are gifts, — talents given byour Master and our Lord to those who but for Himwould have nothing. They are our own now, ours,for use, for enjoyment, for the profit of the body; butthey would never have been ours except for HimWho gave them to us out of His own fulness andaccording to His own will.II. I would observe, next, that every man hassome gift. Every Christian, as a Christian, hasthe gift of the Spirit. " By one Spirit are we aUbaptized," " and have been all made to drink into oneSpirit." And therefore all have received some gift.Some have more than others, some have less. Somehave many gifts, some have but a few. To one Hegives " five talents, to another two, and to anotherone ;*' but to all He gives at least one. one arewithout some small measure of good gifts which canbe used for high and useful purposes. There is nosingle Christian who has not some talent or otherwhich may be turned to good account. I speak notnow of such a presence of the Holy Spirit as isneedful to enable a man to turn from sin and live toholiness. In respect of these all are equal, but thereare other gifts having reference to a man*s influenceupon others, and to the work which he may do in theworld, and the like ; and of these I say that no manis without some one or more of these. Every manhas at least one talent.Some are greatly gifted. Some, for instance, areborn of good parents who train them wisely, have all

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