"...Art Thomas’ book is a solid, sane and biblical exposition of the nature of the word of knowledge—a gift much misunderstood and most often interpreted through the filter of experience. The reader can trust what he writes. More significantly, Art has connected with the heart of the Father. I highly recommend this book!"
R. Loren Sandford
Senior Pastor of New Song Fellowship in Denver, CO
Author of Purifying the Prophetic,
Understanding Prophetic People,
and The Prophetic Church
I closed the book in frustration. It was the fifth book I had read about spiritual gifts, and it was the fifth unique definition for the Word of Knowledge. I found the inconsistency utterly obnoxious.
I’m the type of person who likes to learn things. I’m also the type of person who hates to waste my time learning things that aren’t true. So when five different authors contradict each other in whole or in part, it bothers me!
In desperation for something solid, I grabbed the giant Strong’s Concordance from my mother’s bookshelf and started looking for any references I could find about the Word of Knowledge. I found just one:
1 Corinthians 12:7-8—But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit… (NKJV)
That was no help at all! All it tells us is that that the Word of Knowledge exists, that the Holy Spirit gives it, and that it ranks among the other spiritual gifts listed in that chapter. Naturally, the cynical side of me jumped into high gear. What basis did all these other authors have for the definitions they brought to the table? What right did they have to define something without any biblical grounds for their definition?
As much as I’m passionate about the supernatural power of God and the reality of the spiritual realm, I’m a stickler for sound doctrine. The word “doctrine” has gotten a bad rap in many Charismatic circles. The problem stems from a kneejerk reaction that some have had to religious people who were sold-out on wrong doctrine. Naturally, when you truly believe wrong doctrine, you treat it like right doctrine, which in turn gives the word “doctrine” a bad name.
Suppose we applied this mindset to Rolex watches. Everybody agrees that Rolex is one of the most recognized names in the watch industry, known for their quality, value, and precision. Nevertheless, nearly anyone who has been to the inner city has seen a fake Rolex being passed off as the real deal. Now I ask you: just because there is such a thing as a fake Rolex, should we decide that all watches bearing the Rolex name are fake? Should we define this brand name by the imitations or by the genuine articles? Doctrine is the same way. Just because false doctrine exists doesn’t mean all doctrine is bad.
I consider doctrine to be very spiritual. In fact, I believe the Holy Spirit is presently bringing a revival of doctrine to the church—helping us to provide solid biblical grounds for everything we believe. Gone are the days when Christians were content to base their beliefs on subjective experience or philosophical human reasoning. All experience and philosophy must bow to God’s truth.
For several years, I purposefully decided not to buy into any definition of the Word of Knowledge. If it wasn’t spelled out in the Bible, I didn’t see any reason to put any confidence in the thoughts and opinions of others. I believed that it happens in the Church today because the Holy Spirit is alive today, but I accepted that since we can’t define it, we can’t identify it.
It was within this frame of mind that the Lord showed me something in the Scriptures that I had never seen before. Suddenly, the Word of Knowledge took on new meaning. The definition jumped right off the page. I saw how it could function powerfully in the church. I saw how it was integrated into the Body of Christ. I saw how it could work had-in-hand with prophecy, visions, dreams, healing, intercession, evangelism, and various other forms of ministry. Most importantly, I saw the biblical evidence for all of it.
This book is the fruit of that revelation. Through personal experience, supported by Biblical examples and doctrinal truth, I’m going to introduce you to a spiritual gift that has flown under the radar in the Church for years. Sure, we’ve captured glimpses of what this gift might mean, but for the most part, we’ve only scraped the tip of the iceberg. In the following pages, not only will you learn various functions and uses for this spiritual gift, but you will discover how to activate it, enhance it, and implement it with focus and wisdom. Get ready to discover what it really is to receive a Word of Knowledge and use it for the glory of God.
Excerpted from The Word of Knowledge in Action
by Art Thomas, published by Destiny Image Publishers