If there was ever a time in history when you needed discernment, it is now, for the spirit of deception is rampant on the earth.
In today’s world, everything is camouflage. If you don’t know the real from the counterfeit, you will be greatly deceived. Lies are presented as truth and truth as lies, leaving many confused.
Many people are trusting in man more than God. So, whatever comes out of the mouths of politicians, celebrities, community leaders, and even pastors and religious figures, they believe it without verifying if it going against God’s word or if it’s biblically correct.
Jesus said, “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is Christ,’ or ‘There He is,’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders, so as to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” (Matthew 24:24)
In 1 John 4:1, believers were also encouraged not to believe every spirit but to test the spirits to see if they are from God, as many false prophets have gone out into the world.
Now, let’s explore the distinction between discernment and the gift of discernment.
Discernment vs the gift of discerment
Let me start by saying that every born-again believer can discern because they have the Holy Spirit in their lives. However, the gift of discernment is a special grace given to an individual by the Holy Spirit for the benefit of the church.
Discernment is the ability to distinguish, through scripture, whether something is good or evil.
On the other hand, the gift of discernment, often referred to as the discerning of spirits, is the ability to discern different spirits at work in a situation. This gift enables you to sense whether something is from God, from the self, or has demonic origins.
5 Benefits to having the gift of discernment
- You are able to see things through the eyes of God.
- Sense what is happening in the atmosphere and the spiritual realm.
- Identify the demons that are at work.
- Perceive the intentions behind someone’s words and presentations.
- Recognize the good in others.
The purpose of the gift of discernment
The gift of discernment is mainly to protect the church against deception.
There are many false prophets and teachers whose aim is to deceive believers. This gift uncovers deception and exposes false teachers with erroneous doctrines, enabling believers to stand firm in God’s truth and grow in faith.
Additionally, this gift accurately identifies the demons at work and grants the power and authority to bind them, uproot them, and send them dry places in the wilderness.
It also helps you to set the captives free and those who are in dark places.
How can you recognize if you have the gift of discernment?
- You have a heart for God and upholding His biblical truth, even when others stray.
- You are spiritually sensitive to the atmosphere, detecting negative or positive spiritual presences.(being able to see angles or demonic activities)
- You can quickly sense hidden motives or agendas.
- You pick up on emotional and spiritual distress in others, even when it’s not expressed.
- You experience unexplained discomfort or a sense of danger in certain situations or around specific people.
- People seek your counsel because you provide insights beyond the surface.
- Holy Spirit reveals to you during your prayer time that you possess this gift.
- Your spiritual leaders and those close to you confirm that you have the gift of discernment.
Persons with the gift of discernment tend to have a balanced perspective and can separate personal biases from the discernment process. They seek God’s guidance rather than relying solely on their judgment.
It’s important to note that having the gift of discernment doesn’t mean you’re always right or infallible. Discernment should be exercised with humility, prayer, and alignment with God’s word.
If you suspect you have the gift of discernment, seek guidance from your spiritual leaders.
How can you receive the gift of discernment?
The gift of discernment, like any other spiritual gift given by the Holy Spirit, can be received by simply asking in faith, and God will grant it to you. As Jesus said, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7-8)
Here’s a prayer to receive the gift of discernment:
With gratitude and praise, I come before You.
I ask for the gift of discernment,
that I may honor and glorify Your name
By standing firm in faith.
Thank You for hearing and answering this prayer,
In the name of Jesus, Amen.
The gift of discernment is a valuable and impactful ability that enables individuals to perceive and understand spiritual dynamics in various situations.
You must approach this gift with humility and with a heart that is seeking God’s wisdom and guidance.
Whether you’re just discovering this gift within you or have been using it for a while, remember that you can positively impact the lives of many. Embrace the gift of discernment with a heart of service, guided by the light of God’s truth.
Bible verses about discernment of gifts
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2
For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds. 2 Corinthians 11:13-15
Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 1 Timothy 4:1
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?” 1 Kings 3:9