Spiritual Gifts and Idiots
Spiritual Gifts and Idiots
I have been fasting, praying, and seeking the Father to understand how belief, trust, and faith work in the spiritual realm. Ever since I had that experience a couple of months ago of entering into the very image and essence of Yahweh, I have been on a quest to better understand and enter back into that amazing status of rest. I came one step closer to whatever the Father is drawing me to during one of our Bible studies.
I was sitting up in my bed with my curtain closed and lights down low, just praying and intensely pressing into the Spirit to help me become more like His image when all of a sudden I saw a vision out of nowhere. I don’t see visions nearly as often as Blake. And when I do, they are normally in my spirit where I can describe something my spirit saw and I don’t even know how I know the information I’m sharing. This was not that type of vision. This vision I saw in color while I was praying. I had my eyes closed, so it was dark, but then in the center of the blackness I saw a white hand coming out from a volume of books holding a candle that was illuminating them. The books, a four-volume set of Hebrew-Greek Interlinear texts, had been donated by a kind soul to help aid me in my research. They were on my bookshelf. It truly freaked me out to see this video playing right in front of my eyes. Like I said, this type of vision doesn’t happen to me very often. I had no idea what it meant and when I asked the Father to give me the interpretation, He was silent. This was strange to me as He has often given me the interpretation to dreams and visions within seconds of me asking Him for it. Not getting anything was not normal.
Not long after I had the vision it was time to head to the chow hall for dinner. During dinner I was talking to Blake, giving him a history of Passion For Truth and filling him in on how it came about, its struggles, its victories, etc…when he stopped me. He said he was getting something in his spirit and that we needed to go to 1 Corinthians 12. He said, “That’s where we need to dig. There’s gold there.”
I was a bit confused. You see, I am pretty one-track minded sometimes and I didn’t understand why on earth 1 Corinthians 12 had anything to do with what we were talking about. I was actually thinking that he was being kind of rude when he was, in fact, getting a word from the Lord! Sometimes I’m a little slow. He went on to say that he saw a shovel push into the dirt on the side of a mountain and immediately hit gold. But not just any gold. He said that the entire mountain that we were standing on was made of gold and the Lord said it would start in 1 Corinthians 12. We were both excited to see what the Father was up to.
Right after dinner, at about 5 pm, we went down to our normal Bible study spot in the foyer of the lower section of the dorm. We read through the entire chapter slowly (it starts out talking about the spiritual gifts). When we came to verse eleven, he excitedly said, “Stop! That’s it!”
I said, “What’s it?”
He said, “That’s where we are supposed to dig.”
I said, “How do you know?” But all he said was that verse eleven was where we were supposed to dig in. So I conceded and reread it again, and again, and again:
“But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.”
Blake was all excited. I was not. I didn’t understand what the big deal was. Okay, so the Spirit gives the spiritual gifts to each person as He desires. How is that so earth shattering? We talked about the passage for over TWO HOURS, discussing the spiritual gifts and BL trying his best to share the excitement of what he was hearing in his spirit. I was falling asleep. Then things began to shift.
I was trying to understand something I thought I already had a handle on, as it seemed very clear already. Then Blake had a vision. He saw a large wooden yoke around my neck with a golden lock on the right side. In Scripture, the yoke was a Hebrew idiom that meant, “the way a rabbi interpreted the Torah and how to apply it.” That’s why when Yeshua says, “take my yoke upon you for my burden is light,” He is saying, in effect, “Take my interpretation of Torah upon you, for the way I interpret it makes it far easier to apply than the Pharisees’ interpretation, which burdens you with things I never intended.” The Father was saying He has HIS yoke around my neck and has me locked into where He wants me to go. It was after this vision that our study went through the roof.
Just a few minutes later, Blake did something that blew me away, something that he has never done before in any study that we have had since he got here. He pulled out one of the blue Interlinear books from his bag and casually set it on the table. I was stunned. This was the book I had seen in my vision that afternoon! I was no longer sleepy. He said he brought it because he knew that I would have my concordance to look up the Greek and Hebrew words. He has an Interlinear set that gives you the original language and Strong’s numbers, but he has no way of looking them up. As he pulled it out and we started reading, he said the Spirit was telling him that we needed to look up the word “individually.” I asked him if he was serious. He gave me that look my wife gives me sometimes that made me want to retract whatever it was I had just said. So I proceeded to look up that word in the Greek, all the while thinking, “What on earth could ‘individually’ mean that we don’t already know?” When I finally got to Strong’s #2398 I felt like an idiot. Why? Because that is exactly what the word is in the Greek! “Idios,” which is the root word from which we get our modern day English word “idiot.” What?! The Spirit only gives the spiritual gifts to idiots? I rechecked the Strong’s number from the Interlinear. Yep. It was the right one. Everything began to make sense now as to why the spiritual gifts are in operation so much here. I told him it was because “we are the biggest idiots here!” We laughed.
As we dug further, the mystery began to unfold. The meaning of “idios” and “idotes,” its counterpart, was “a private person, an ignorant person, an unlearned person” as opposed to someone that is learned and has understanding. It goes on to say that, “The apostles were accused of not having that learning gained by mingling with people who have important affairs to transact. Sources of learning are from God Himself or from books and people (literature and politics). The word became a derogatory word because the Greeks felt one’s highest education consisted in public life and to purposely withdraw from it was unthinkable.” So, an “idiot” was someone who was uneducated and chose to learn only from God Himself rather than to spend his time learning the things of men that didn’t affect the spirit of a man. I have spent the majority of my life trying to learn the things of God and always felt somewhat unworthy for not going to college or getting any degrees or “titles” behind my name. Now, I see being an “idiot” isn’t all that bad. LOL. I don’t think I will get a t-shirt made anytime soon with the slogan, “I’m an idiot for God,” but at least I found my family roots!
1 Corinthians 12:11 now had real meaning. The Spirit only gives to each one who chooses to only learn from Him, who seek Him with all their hearts, and become fools in the eyes of men in the process. The Spirit only gives and operates the gifts in those that are sitting in HIS “class.” The lights began to come on.
There are two “classes” of learning. The first class is the class that operates in the physical, with our physical faculties such as our mind, will, and emotions: our soul. With our physical brain, we have the ability to comprehend all human and earthly concepts. Sitting in this “class,” we can study the Bible, learn about the God of our forefathers, discover all the intellectual connections and nuances of the languages, and begin to apply them to our everyday lives. We live in the real world so this class is easy for us to understand. We use it for just about everything we do in this world. The second class is a hidden class to the physical senses, but is far superior. This class is the class of the inner spirit-man. This class is the class that is only full of “idiots.” It is only for those that have chosen to try to learn something in a “spirit-mind” that he has no idea how to access or activate, and from a source that he cannot see, understand, or prove. Yep. Sounds like an idiot from the world’s perspective. But it is just this type of person to whom the Creator seeks to reveal Himself. It is this class that BL, Kevin, and I are in and, by extension, it is this class that all of you are in if you are following along closely. If you are reading this blog just to read it (with your physical senses), you will miss everything. But if you read this with the eyes of the inner man, and seek with all your heart along with us, you will find the same gold that we are finding, a MOUNTAIN of gold that is priceless.
There are many believers that truly desire to grow and please their King. Unfortunately, many of those well-meaning believers don’t know how to do that. They don’t know how to grow, much less which part of them to grow. Most don’t know that there are two individuals inside of them. There is the outer man that works like a computer and an inner man that works like a sponge, one that searches for information on the Internet, finds what it is looking for and downloads it, and one that simply absorbs it like a sponge from the atmosphere it is in.
Which man do you relate to more? Do you tend to seek God like you are Googling something on the Internet? Does your relationship mainly consist of your knowledge and things that you have learned about Him and His Word? If you were to truly audit your life and had to pick a real percentage of how much you live by faith and how much you make decisions and live by the facts of the situation and your own wisdom, what would that percentage look like?
I know in my own life, I was head over heels seeking God with my all my heart, mind, soul, and strength and only accidentally tapping into my spirit man by faith. When I was on stage, I always begged Yahweh to be with me right before I went on. I truly knew that I was not qualified to speak for Him and that if He didn’t speak through me that I would fail in the mission He gave me. And each time, He would show up and supernatural things would happen. My spirit man was activated at high levels when I was operating in my spiritual gift. But when I stepped off the stage, I would go right back into walking by sight, using all the physical faculties of the “works” side of the coin to solve problems, grow the ministry, raise my family, etc. Even when I fasted, it was many times for Him to give me the wisdom to know what to do for this and for that. The growth of the obedience side of the coin and the understanding of His physical Word was as tall as a pine tree and was not slowing down. The size of my spirit man was about as high as my three-year-old, not even tall enough to reach the spiritual water faucet to get a drink to quench its thirsty pallet.
PFT, an extension of me, had grown exponentially in five short years from twenty people in a basement to over a half million people following us online in multiple languages. And we were about to broadcast through television to an audience of 250 million in 170 countries. The problem was that we were about to broadcast an image that was not “mature and complete, not lacking anything,” as James says. We were lacking something. He made that clear to me when I first got here. Now, it’s even more clear exactly what we were missing. I had gotten too used to my mechanical bulldozer that I’d built. I had learned to relate to God only through “physical contact” through His Word and occasionally through the Spirit. The proportions were way out of balance. His quest is to change that balance. My quest is to be a willing vessel to let Him. As we continue, I encourage you to truly search your soul and ask Him to show you how strong your spirit man is versus your physical man. You might just discover that it is truly time to cross the Jordan and be an “idiot.”
This discovery was only the first of many that would be made that night. I have almost ten pages of notes from this one study and we are only two pages in! There is far more to come.
Jim’s life’s desire is to help believers everywhere draw closer to the Father by understanding the truth of the scriptures from their original cultural context (a Hebraic perspective) and to apply them in faith for today.