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What is the duration of gifts of the Holy Spirit?

Submitted: 6/29/2006
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Question: In Ephesians 4:8 it says that Christ 'gave gifts to men.' And in verse 11 of Ephesians 4 it shows a few spiritual gifts that were given to men. These would be gifts of the Holy Spirit. We see the purpose of these gifts in verse 12 'for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,' but in verse 13 is it true that the gifts of the Holy Spirit will cease when the disciples come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ? If that is so what is the 'unity of the faith?'

Answer: We refer to these five gifts as the 'equipping gifts' to distinguish them from the spiritual gifts mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12. We agree that these gifts have been given by Jesus Christ to the church to equip the saints for ministry until the entire church becomes unified in the faith. This means that all the believers believe the same thing. It is referring to doctrinal unity. Since this is not even close to being the case today, there is a great need for all five of these gifts to be recognized and accepted by all apostolic assemblies. In the beginning the Twelve all taught the same doctrine, which means that there was one faith derived from what is called 'the apostles' doctrine' (Acts 2:42). One of our purposes in this website it to provide an interactive forum where apostolic people can move closer to a unity of the faith. We still have a long way to go.