The Gifts of the Holy Spirit

If ever there was a list of ten Biblical subjects that are unquestionably controversial, one of them would undoubtedly be as to whether the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit as identified in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 NASB are still in operation today.

There are two primary schools of thought on this subject, one being Classical Cessationists, who believe that the miraculous gifts such as prophecy, healing and speaking in tongues, ceased with the original Apostles and the other being Continuationists, who believe that the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit are still available to the Church, to this very day.

Tim Challies ( is a Cessationist and he provides a case for Cessationism here.

Matt Slick ( is a Continuationist and he provides his case for Continuationism here.

It’s interesting to note that there are a number of scholarly heavyweights that have opposing perspectives on this subject. John Piper (, Wayne Grudem ( , Sam Storms ( and James K.A. Smith ( all hold to a Continuationism perspective while John MacArthur (www.gty.oirg), Eric Bargerhuff (, Daniel B. Wallace (Daniel, and Peter Enns ( all hold to a Cessationism perspective.

General Overview Links:

Other Noteworthy Links:

It’s important to note that these areas of controversy are never simplistic and generally speaking, from what I can gather from an ordinary layman’s perspective, the many arguments that can be made, have already been made, by both opposing perspectives and invariably, there are multiple layers of additional complexity involved. In short, it’s seldom, if ever, as simple as one might think it is.

I’m going to close this post with a quote that Matt Slick wrote in his case for Continuationism.

Fortunately for the Christian church, whether or not the spiritual gifts are for today is not a salvation issue. Therefore, we need to be gracious. Romans 14:5 says, “One man regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Let each man be fully convinced in his own mind.” As you can see, the Bible leaves room for debate and differences of opinion on non-essential doctrines. The issue of whether or not the charismatic gifts are still around is a debatable issue, and charity needs to be granted from both sides of the argument.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!


  1. Here is yet another facet of grace. Thank God we don’t have to know EVERYTHING to be saved, just trust the Lord and continue to look to Him.
    On that note, I would like to add that if you DO believe in prophesy, “word of knowledge,” and other manifestations being valid today, they must be tested against what is already revealed. In other words, any “prophesy” that contradicts Scripture is false prophesy!

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  2. I look forward to reading the Challis and Slick pieces. “… there are multiple layers of additional complexity involved.” So true. I lean toward Cessationism in general, but believe that the miraculous gifts do exist, but in limited occurrences.

    Thanks for posting this, Bruce.


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