Discussion of the Spiritual Gifts of the Romans, Chapter 12

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The book of Romans puts forth many important doctrines of the Christian faith and has been likened to the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of

Independence. Embedded in Romans 12:6-8 is a list of seven spiritual gifts, however, it is

important to understand that "not all the gifts referred to elsewhere are specified in this

passage" . The gifts mentioned in this passage are: prophecy, service, teaching,

exhortation, giving, leading and mercy.

A foundation needs to be established as we enter into a study of the spiritual gifts

mentioned in Scripture. First of all, we must understand that God gives the gifts through

His grace and that each believer receives at least one. These gifts are different from the

natural abilities a person may possess in that they are supernaturally imparted to the

believer. The purpose of these gifts is "to make each believer a direct benefit to the Body

of Christ" . With that purpose in mind, God matches the believers gift to the "particular

service to which God calls him." No individual receives all of the gifts. The spreading

of the gifts forces the collaborative efforts of the Church to accomplish God's goals for it.

A person may need to experiment to determine their gift as Bruce notes: "every believer

needs to test his gift. If you feel that you have a certain gift and you are using it, you

ought to test it." After testing a gift, the believer should analyze their effectiveness to see

if it is truly a gift from God or not. All gifts serve a separate purpose and 1 Corinthians

12:31 shows us that certain gifts are greater than others. In that verse, Paul encourages us

to desire "greater gifts." Some have argued that it cannot "be said that any ...

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...urage, the givers should do so generously, the leaders should govern diligently, and

the merciful should show mercy cheerfully.

Works Cited

Bruce, F.F.. The Epistle of Paul to the Romans. (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1983)

Barnhouse, Donald Gray. Romans IV. (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1991)

Barclay, William.. The Letter to the Romans. (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1975)

Bray, Gerald. Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture. New Testament VI Romans. (Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1998)

Newell, William R.. Romans Verse By Verse. (Chicago: Moody Press, 1938)

Murray, John. The New International Commentary on the New Testament. The Epistle to the Romans. (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1968)

McGee, J. Vernon. The Epistles. Romans. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1991)
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