A gold digger. That is what God wants you to be – someone who can find the ‘gold’ in people. In this BSSM Series, Ps. Kris Vallotton explains how to do just that. Getting people to reach their full potential is not about pointing out their weaknesses, but helping them to discover and build on their strengths. Instead of calling people out, we need to call people up to a higher standard.
Credits: Teaching by Pastor Kris Vallotton, BSSM First Year 2015/2016
BSSM LECTURE NOTES
1 Corinthians 12:7-11
“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.”
Most people didn’t have a Bible in the first century A.D. It really only became more readily available in the 1500’s. The emphasis on reading the Bible is a 19th and 20th-century phenomenon because most people couldn’t read.
God is brilliant and has the ability to receive millions of prayers at the same time and digest all of the prayers at the same time and do something about it. That is why the Greeks believed there were several Gods because it is intellectually difficult to measure God’s greatness.
What is between 1 Corinthians 12 and 14? It is the 1 Corinthians 13 chapter and its focus is on love. Do all that you do out of love.
CAN THE DEVIL KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS?
No, he can’t. He can give you thoughts, but he cannot know if he succeeded until he can see (when you react out of fear etc.) or hear (when you gossip or speak about something that torments you) whether he was successful. If you don’t want the devil to hear what you are talking about, pray in tongues. That is the language of heaven that only God and His angels understand. Praying in tongues edifies you. It is like building a greenhouse to help you get through a season.
Everybody is not the same. You are judged on your ability and you receive gifts according to your ability.
God is just, but He didn’t say all will be equal.
LOOK FOR THE GOLD IN PEOPLE
You must earnestly seek prophetic gifts. As prophets, we are looking for gold. A gold mine has a lot more dirt than gold, so you need to look, dig and search for gold if that is what you’re after. Likewise, prophecy needs to remind people of the glory or ‘gold’ that’s within them.
“Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.” (1 Corinthians 12:1 NIV)
In the original translation, it did not contain the word ‘gifts’. It just said, ‘Concerning the spiritual…”
1 Corinthians 12:2-11
“You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit. There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.” [Emphasis mine.]
This chapter was not really about the spiritual gifts, but about being spiritual.
As you can see, the emphasis is on ‘same’ and ‘one’. Here’s why: The audience (the Corinthians) had the right experience with the wrong theology. They thought that there was one god for every manifestation, i.e. they were polytheists. However, we know that there is only one God with multiple manifestations. Their gods (the gods of prosperity, miracles, reproduction, etc.) fought each other for dominance. Not so with God.
Just because someone has bad theology doesn’t mean they don’t have the right experience. Prophecy is a gift, i.e. you didn’t earn it. It is not true that you need a certain level of maturity to receive a gift.
Gifts are not a sign of maturity – the fruit of the Spirit is.
The challenge is that many gifted people never get pastored. People can move in power but have little or no character. If you have character, you still need power, because God says we should earnestly desire spiritual gifts.
1 Corinthians 14:1-3
“Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy. For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit. But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort.”
If you prophecy over someone and she doesn’t feel love, there is something wrong with your prophecy. Don’t make the person feel worse about herself after you had given her a prophetic word. Build her up. For instance: If you see they are stuck in pornography, say: “There is a banner of purity over your life and God shouts that over you.”
There are probably hundreds of gifts, not just nine. There were gifts that were from the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament that were not listed as part of the ‘nine’ gifts in the Spirit in the New Testament. Christ gave gifts to men.
“But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he took many captives and gave gifts to his people.” (What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions? He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”
THE GIFT OF PROPHECY AND THE OFFICE OF A PROPHET
The gift of prophecy is a gift of the Holy Spirit. The office of prophet is a gift of Jesus Christ.
“But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.”
“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.”
The saints get equipped with grace according to the measure of Christ’s gift. The apostle, prophet, evangelist, teacher, pastor, etc. each receives a different type of grace (e.g. prophetic grace, apostolic grace, etc.). These different graces can create multiple gifts in a person.
You can determine how much grace you receive. Conversely, the gift of prophecy is a gift of the Holy Spirit. I can’t earn it. Therefore, although I need to desire the gift of prophecy, being a prophet is God’s choice.
A prophet is not what I do, but who I am. It affects how I do life, because it is cellular, i.e. not a job, event or career – it is who I am.
3 Requirements to be in the ministry:
- Gifting – ability to do something
- Calling – gives me my identity. It is who I am.
- Anointing – gives me my purpose. Anointing is always followed by a to-do list, i.e. things you need to do.
The gifts and calling of God are irrevocable. However, the anointing can be taken away, so if you have a gift and calling and you walk away from God, your gift and calling will stay with you, but God’s anointing will be replaced with the devil’s anointing.
Prophecy is both foretelling the future and forthtelling / co-creating the future (knowing and causing the future).
God doesn’t need to co-create with us, but He chooses to.
THE THREE PARTS OF PROPHECY
- Revelation: what is it?
- Interpretation: what does it mean?
- Application: how do I apply it?
If God gives you a revelation for someone and He didn’t give you the interpretation, then don’t try to share the interpretation. When God stops speaking, you should too! You don’t have to say something profound to be powerful.
You are called to love everybody no matter what the person’s condition is. Even if you don’t agree with a person’s life philosophy, you still need to love the person.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
Your job is to give people a future and a hope. The goal of prophetic ministry is to find the gold in people’s lives. It is easier to find dirt in a gold mine than it is to find gold.
There is a big difference between Old Testament (OT) and New Testament (NT) prophecy:
- OT: Judge people. Righteousness based on your works. Prophets were the policemen of the law and judged nations.
- NT: Judge prophecy. Righteousness based on His works. All the wrath of God was poured on Jesus. He became sin so that we can can become sons and daughters.
Jesus has given us the ministry of reconciliation. He did not count our transgressions against us. We are to do likewise, i.e. reconcile people to God by not counting their transgressions against them.
Even if, as a prophet, you see a lot of sin in people’s lives, but your focus should be on the gold within them. If you move Elijah to the other side of the cross, his ministry changes from the ministry of judgement to the ministry of reconciliation.
The main goal of the OT prophet was to enforce the law. The main goal of the NT gift of prophecy is to build people up.
God didn’t send Jesus to judge the world. Neither should we judge the world.
Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy.
1 Corinthians 14:1, 24-25
“But if an unbeliever or an inquirer comes in while everyone is prophesying, they are convicted of sin and are brought under judgment by all, as the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, ‘God is really among you!'”
1 Corinthians 14:1-5, 17, 26, 29-31
“Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy. For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit. But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort. Anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies themselves, but the one who prophesies edifies the church. I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in tongues, unless someone interprets, so that the church may be edified.
You are giving thanks well enough, but no one else is edified.
What then shall we say, brothers and sisters? When you come together, each of you has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. Everything must be done so that the church may be built up.
Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said. And if a revelation comes to someone who is sitting down, the first speaker should stop. For you can all prophesy in turn so that everyone may be instructed and encouraged.”
‘Secrets’ refer to treasures, not sin. Prophecy needs to edify the body.
1 Samuel 9:16-20
“About this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him ruler over my people Israel; he will deliver them from the hand of the Philistines. I have looked on my people, for their cry has reached me.” When Samuel caught sight of Saul, the Lord said to him, “This is the man I spoke to you about; he will govern my people.” Saul approached Samuel in the gateway and asked, “Would you please tell me where the seer’s house is?” “I am the seer,” Samuel replied. “Go up ahead of me to the high place, for today you are to eat with me, and in the morning I will send you on your way and will tell you all that is in your heart. As for the donkeys you lost three days ago, do not worry about them; they have been found. And to whom is all the desire of Israel turned, if not to you and your whole family line?”
If we don’t know our true identify, we will be looking for donkeys when we should be kings.
1 Samuel 10:1-7, 9
“Then Samuel took a flask of olive oil and poured it on Saul’s head and kissed him, saying, “Has not the Lord anointed you ruler over his inheritance? When you leave me today, you will meet two men near Rachel’s tomb, at Zelzah on the border of Benjamin. They will say to you, ‘The donkeys you set out to look for have been found. And now your father has stopped thinking about them and is worried about you. He is asking, “What shall I do about my son?” ’ “Then you will go on from there until you reach the great tree of Tabor. Three men going up to worship God at Bethel will meet you there. One will be carrying three young goats, another three loaves of bread, and another a skin of wine. They will greet you and offer you two loaves of bread, which you will accept from them. “After that you will go to Gibeah of God, where there is a Philistine outpost. As you approach the town, you will meet a procession of prophets coming down from the high place with lyres, timbrels, pipes and harps being played before them, and they will be prophesying. The Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is with you.
As Saul turned to leave Samuel, God changed Saul’s heart, and all these signs were fulfilled that day.”
FIND YOUR PEOPLE
Saul was most likely changed into a different man in the sense that he was changed into the man that he was supposed to be. The gold that we bring out of people should help them become the people that God destined them to become.
A lot of people looking for their destiny just need to be looking for their people. It is in being with your people that you find your destiny. Don’t ask God for your purpose. Ask God for your people and you will automatically find your purpose. Every time Saul was separated from this people (the prophets), he became less of the person he was supposed to be.
“Then the magicians, the astrologers, the Chal-dēans, and the soothsayers came in, and I told them the dream; but they did not make known to me its interpretation. But at last Daniel came before me (his name is Bel-te-shazzar, according to the name of my god; in him is the Spirit of the Holy God), and I told the dream before him, saying: “Bel-te-shazzar, chief of the magicians, because I know that the Spirit of the Holy God is in you, and no secret troubles you, explain to me the visions of my dream that I have seen, and its interpretation. “These were the visions of my head while on my bed: I was looking, and behold, A tree in the midst of the earth, And its height was great. The tree grew and became strong; Its height reached to the heavens, And it could be seen to the ends of all the earth. Its leaves were lovely, Its fruit abundant, And in it was food for all. The beasts of the field found shade under it, The birds of the heavens dwelt in its branches, And all flesh was fed from it. “I saw in the visions of my head while on my bed, and there was a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven. He cried aloud and said thus: ‘Chop down the tree and cut off its branches, Strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts get out from under it, And the birds from its branches. Nevertheless leave the stump and roots in the earth, Bound with a band of iron and bronze, In the tender grass of the field. Let it be wet with the dew of heaven, And let him graze with the beasts On the grass of the earth. Let his heart be changed from that of a man, Let him be given the heart of a beast, And let seven times pass over him. ‘This decision is by the decree of the watchers, And the sentence by the word of the holy ones, In order that the living may know That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, Gives it to whomever He will, And sets over it the lowest of men.’ “This dream I, King Nebū-chad-nezzar, have seen. Now you, Bel-te-shazzar, declare its interpretation, since all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation; but you are able, for the Spirit of the Holy God is in you.” Then Daniel, whose name was Bel-te-shazzar, was astonished for a time, and his thoughts troubled him. So the king spoke, and said, “Bel-te-shazzar, do not let the dream or its interpretation trouble you.” Bel-te-shazzar answered and said, “My lord, may the dream concern those who hate you, and its interpretation concern your enemies! The tree that you saw, which grew and became strong, whose height reached to the heavens and which could be seen by all the earth, whose leaves were lovely and its fruit abundant, in which was food for all, under which the beasts of the field dwelt, and in whose branches the birds of the heaven had their home— it is you, O king, who have grown and become strong; for your greatness has grown and reaches to the heavens, and your dominion to the end of the earth.
Therefore, O king, let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins by being righteous, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor. Perhaps there may be a lengthening of your prosperity.” All this came upon King Ne-bū-chad-nezzar. At the end of the twelve months he was walking about the royal palace of Babylon. The king spoke, saying, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?” While the word was still in the king’s mouth, a voice fell from heaven: “King Ne-bū-chad-nezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you! And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen; and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.” That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Ne-bū-chad-nezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws. And at the end of the time I, Ne-bū-chad-nezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever: For His dominion is an everlasting dominion, And His kingdom is from generation to generation. All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing; He does according to His will in the army of heaven And among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand Or say to Him, “What have You done?” At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my honor and splendor returned to me. My counselors and nobles resorted to me, I was restored to my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me. Now I, Ne-bū-chad-nezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down.”
When you love people who don’t deserve it, it gives you access to them. True humility is knowing the source of you greatness. When you prophecy and tell people about their Creator, you make them confident, not arrogant.