Discernment

9:39:00 AM

Monday, December 5, 2016

Does God want us to be discerning in everything or just go with the flow? And what does discernment include?

I am thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know thy testimonies. ~ Psalm 119:125 KJV
So we're talking about discernment today. I think a lot of people don't really know what discernment is so let's start with that.

A dictionary definition would say about being able to detect something with the five senses. But I've never been much for dictionary definitions so here's some synonyms I found:
determine, distinguish,  discriminate, differentiate, judge. So maybe you have a better picture of what discerning is.

It's like knowing the right from the wrong or knowing the difference in something.

How do we develop spiritual discernment then?

Many people will say it comes with time since it's kind of like wisdom and the older you get the more wisdom you have. And I would agree with that to a certain extent. As you get older you experience more and therefore develop more discernment and wisdom in certain areas.

But it kind of feels like a cop-out for us young folks. Like 'oh we haven't had life experiences yet, so we haven't been able to learn discernment and wisdom'.

That's why I wouldn't say that age is the main factor in the amount of spiritual discernment you have. It's a factor but just a minor one.

The main way that you can get spiritual discernment is from God. Being in the Bible.
2Timothy 3:15 KJV And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 
To have spiritual discernment you need two things: God's Spirit indwelling in you and God's Word. So it wouldn't matter how old you were if you didn't have these two things.
1 Corinthians 2:10  KJV But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 
 It's been in debate whether or not spiritual discernment is a gift that God gives. There does appear to be a gift called "discerning of spirits" in 1 Corinthians 12 (v.10). But in other parts if Scripture it seems to command us to be discerning.
1 John 4:1 KJV Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God:
 Hebrews 5:14 KJV But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. 
I talked with my pastor about whether he thought there was a gift of spiritual discernment or if it was more something any Christian can develop. And he explained it to me this way: in Corinth all the believers were walking around trying to boast about their specific gifts. So he said that we shouldn't get all wrapped up in what gift we may have or any of that. He said that saying discernment was a gift was kind of like putting it in a box. So if there was a spiritual gift of discernment it would be more like how eternal life is a gift but it's available to all. 

So I believe spiritual discernment is more something that you grow in as you dig into God's Word.

Well, that was a little more than I intended on including :) But hey let me know what you think about the gift of spiritual discernment in the comments! I'd love to hear the different perspectives!

<3 blue topaz

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