Do you believe that the miraculous spiritual gifts have ceased or that they continue today?

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It's been a matter of debate for some time whether the gifts of the Holy Spirit are present today and particularly the more dramatic ones such as tongues, healing, prophecy, deliverance — deliverance is really a subset of healing, a subcategory of healing, I'd say, because Jesus, we read, they brought him all their sick and their demonized and he healed them. The question is whether those are still there for today. I would like to invite anyone who would like to bring the question, you know, show me the evidence biblically that states those gifts are no longer for today. I mean, they are a part of bigger gift lists and so I think we agree, you know, the gifts of preaching, of administration, of teaching are still for today. And so, why would those gifts be different? Sometimes 1 Corinthians 13 is quoted in this regard, you know — I've heard this preached — when the perfect comes, these other things, prophecy and what not, will no longer be. And the claim is, well, the perfect is that perfect Word of God. But that, I think is just a tad eisegetical. It's, you know, the real perfection that's coming is the end of the age and the new heavens and earth and our life in it. And so, there's every reason to think then that these gifts continue today.

Answer by Dr. Jeffrey J. Niehaus

Dr. Jeffrey J. Niehaus is Senior Professor of Old Testament at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts.

Dr. Niehaus has published commentaries on Obadiah and Amos for the Baker Book House three-volume commentary on the minor prophets, as well as a volume in the area of biblical theology, God at Sinai (Zondervan).

Dr. Niehaus is an ordained independent Baptist minister.