Author: Carla Alvarez

Developing the Gift of Discerning of Spirits

Discerning of spirits is one of the “knowledge” spiritual gifts. It can be used to determine the source of what appears to be manifestations of the power and speech gifts versus false signs. It is also used in identifying situations that need intercession.

So how do you develop the gift of discerning of spirits?

First of all, every single experience should be tested against the Word of God. If you think that you have this gift or if you want to develop this gift (we are told to desire the gifts,) it is very important to make reading, studying, and memorizing the Word of God part of your daily lifestyle. You have to have a solid foundation to work from.
It is also important to be with a group of like-minded believers. First, to test what you are experiencing to see whether it is from God or not and to judge your assessment. Second, to learn from.

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Purpose of Discerning of Spirits

So what exactly is the “discerning of spirits?”

It is one of the Gifts of the Spirit.  The King James Version translates it as “discerning of spirits.”  The English Standard Version translates it as “distinguish between spirits.”

I think that both are true.

Purpose of Discerning of Spirits

As with all of the spiritual gifts, the purpose is to build up the body of Christ.  Each person is given a gift that is meant to work in coordination of another.  Because of that, Paul instructs the church:

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