“He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy. He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit. Still another person is given the ability to speak in unknown languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said.” I Cor. 12:10 NLT
The closer we come to the end times the more prevalent the lack of discernment will be a major problem.
I John 4:1 reads: “Beloved do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Here again, we see that there is such a thing as false prophets who may bring to us a false spirit and we should therefore test, prove and discern so that we will not be deceived.
Everyone in the Church needs discernment and needs to be on their guard in regards to everything. We should learn to be a little less gullible, a little less quick to accept and a little more dependent upon the Lord. In this way we will be kept safe and on the right path.
We need to learn what it means to have discernment and how it might be used in our lives and ministry.
Though we have a God given discernment through the Holy Spirit within, most of us are not willing to trust what we discern. We think, “It is just me; it is just in my mind, or it is just according to what I feel”, when it is truly insight that the Lord has given to us in regard to a particular situation.
Discernment is the ability to know and to perceive something about a person, situation, message or ministry that you could not know by any other means than the Holy Spirit within you.
By discernment we are able to judge a situation with the light and knowledge of God.
I Corinthians 2:14-15 shares some light with us concerning discernment, we read: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things.”
Here we learn that to discern is to be able to accept, receive, judge, understand and perceive spiritual truth.
Discerning is the Christian’s ability to know and understand the things that other people cannot.
True discernment is spiritual and is from the Holy Spirit, it is not from man; it is not because we personally may be something special. There may be some non-believers who are better at understanding certain things than others but true discernment is from the Holy Spirit.
Discernment is not to be a work of our soul, but always reliance upon God, and therefore, if you have solid discernment there is no place for pride.