As I stated in an earlier post, I think that we are often tripped up at the
term CHARISMATA because of its modern baggage (including prejudices for and
against). However, the list of nine gifts early in 1 Cor. 12 are surely
governed by the triad that Jonathan mentions:
> 1Cor 12:4 (GNT) DIAIRESEIS DE CARISMATWN EISIN, TO DE AUTO PNEUMA: >KAI
DIAIRESEIS DIAKONIWN EISIN, KAI hO AUTOS KURIOS: 6 KAI DIAIRESEIS
>ENERGHMATWN EISIN, hO DE AUTOS QEOS hO ENERGWN TA PANTA EN >PASIN. 7
EKASTW DE DIDOTAI hH FANERWSIS TOU PNEUMATOS PROS TO >SUMFERON...
...or am I missing something? These surely describe the mode of Spiritual
manifestations (H FANERWSIS TOU PNEUMATOS) with Paul's emphasis on the
variety but intrinsic unity? In other words, these manifestations are
gifts, they are service, they are outworkings, all of the same Holy Spirit.
We focus on the term CHARISMATA as an umbrella when probably it should be
PNEUMATIKWN. Fee says that more often than not in Paul this means what
pertains or has to do with the Spirit, as opposed to the western immaterial
vs material concept for "spiritual." Maybe we should see these as
primarily manifestation of the Holy Spirit, maybe even concrete
manifestations at that, but not "gifts" in the sense we now have in
Pent./Charism. world (permanent endowments, "possessable" and controlled by
individuals. In fact, Paul's argument seems to contradict that type of
attitude which prevailed in the Cor. church.
My earlier question was on how would this effect our understanding of 1
Cor. 12:31 and chap. 13. I believe that faith, hope, and love would then
be seen as the persistent (MENEI) environment in which these diversities
(DIAIRESEIS) of manifestations operate (if you catch the tension I am
trying to express between what is diverse and therefore somewhat
unpredicatable and what is abiding). This seems to be heightened by Paul's
assertion that the manifestations are in fact temporary, for this age only.
Carl's suggestion about the imperative would then make perfect sense, not
in the sense that love is set in opposition to the manifestations of the
Holy Spirit, so that is is an aklternative "gift," but would provide the
native environment for their operation as CHARISMATWN, DIAKNIWN AND
This has been a loooooooooooooooong day and I know I could have said all of
this far better.
Paul F. Evans
Thunder Swamp Pentecostal Holiness Church
MT. Olive NC
"Endeavouring to make use of NT Greek in a real life ministry!"