In Mark 4:3-8 Jesus tells a parable about a farmer who was planting some seeds. In Mark 4:14-20 he explained what it meant. He described four scenarios where the seed symbolises the good news about Jesus and the ground represents different types of people.
What kind of ground are you? Do you get dragged to church each week and sit there doing your best grumpy cat impersonation? Did you accept Jesus but got discouraged when life got difficult? Do you go to church on Sunday but live like the world for the rest of the week? Or are you good dirt? Do you read your Bible, love going to church and worshipping God, do you pray, are generous and serve others and tell them the Good News?
In Mark 4:8 Jesus said, But other seeds were planted on good ground, sprouted, and produced thirty, sixty, or one hundred times as much as was planted. Be good dirt and live a fruitful life serving Jesus!
The second part of 1 Corinthians 8 says, the same Spirit gives another the ability to speak with knowledge. Knowledge and wisdom are listed as two separate gifts. The Bible doesn't give us a clear definition of the gift of knowledge but I will attempt to make sense of it.
HELPS—Word Studies defines the original Greek word as 'functional ("working") knowledge gleaned from first-hand (personal) experience.' It's a bit like saying, 'I know about gravity because I fell out of a tree when I was six.' I know about it because I experienced it. I think that it's similar to someone having the gift of knowledge—they know because they have experienced it. Many people know that God loves them, but it's just a head knowledge. Other people have experienced his love in a powerful way and it has moved from being a head knowledge to a heart knowledge. The Holy Spirit gives us this knowledge, you can't learn it.
Here's another illustration. If you haven't seen snow you can still know about it—you know that it's white and cold, you could even imagine what it feels like. But if you have stood in the snow, touched and tasted it, you know about snow on a whole other level.
In my understanding, the gift of knowledge is linked to our experiences as the Holy Spirit helps us to understand them. It gives us a new perspective. Some people have the gift of seeing things from a God point of view, instead of a human point of view—I think that is part of the gift of knowledge. Hope that makes sense.
In 1 Corinthians 12:8 Paul says, The Spirit gives one person the ability to speak with wisdom (Easy-to-Read Version). Here is verse 8 in several other versions:
To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice (Living Bible).
To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom (New International Version).
Some of us can speak with wisdom (Contemporary English Version).
The original Greek word for wisdom is sophia which translates to the 'art of using wisdom' or 'affection for wisdom' (HELPS Word Studies). Giftstest.com defines the gift of wisdom as 'the divine strength or ability to understand and to bring clarity to situations and circumstances often through applying the truths of Scripture in a practical way.' Put simply, the gift of wisdom is being able to understand and apply the Bible to everyday life.
Even though Jesus didn't appear until the New Testament, the entire Old Testament points to him. Colossians 2:3 says, God has hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge in Christ (Names of God). Christ crucified and risen is the wisdom of God. The gift of wisdom comes from the Spirit—no about of Bible study or theological studies can give you this wisdom, only God can.
As you reflect on this, can you think of someone that you consider to be wise? Do you know someone who understands the Bible and can explain it clearly?
Short and sweet inspirations for Christian teen girls.