The last two gifts in our spiritual gifts study are; the spiritual gift of the word of knowledge and word of wisdom. Both gifts are categorised under the revelation gift because they can reveal hidden things. Word of knowledge is that special gift that makes an individual know what happened in the past or the present. While word of wisdom is supernatural wisdom and guidance.
The gift of word of knowledge is often mistaken for the gift of prophecy; although they are similar, they are not the same. In this article, we will explore the meaning of the gift of word of wisdom and word of knowledge, biblical examples of the gifts, how to activate the gifts and the purpose of the gifts.
You can find the other Spiritual Gifts here
To one is given through the [Holy] Spirit [the power to speak] the message of wisdom, and to another [the power to express] the word of knowledge and understanding according to the same Spirit;1 Corinthians 12:8
In this article
- 1 What is the Gift of Word of Wisdom?
- 2 What is the Gift of Word of Knowledge?
- 3 How to activate the gift of wisdom and word of knowledge
- 4 What Is the Difference Between Prophesy and Word Of Wisdom?
- 5 Purpose of Word of Wisdom and Word of Knowledge
What is the Gift of Word of Wisdom?
The spiritual gift of word of wisdom is the divine ability to give solutions to problems in a supernatural way that the human mind cannot fathom. It can also give divine insight into a prevailing issue or challenge in a way that douses fear or stress.
While working as a teacher, a colleague of mine usually consults me whenever she has challenges or needs counsel. She was way older than me, which surprised me. One day, she told me why she always sought my counsel. She told me she always received fresh insight and perspective whenever she spoke to me, and my suggestions were usually useful. That day I realized I had the gift; I traced back past events and noticed a similar pattern with others. That is an example of a word of wisdom.
Examples of Word of Wisdom in the Bible
- Jethro (Exodus 18:21-22)
Jethro was Moses’ father-in-law. Moses was the leader of Israel. He had a lot of responsibilities because he could hear God, and the people believed in him. When Jethro came to visit Moses, he was astonished by all of Moses’s responsibilities; he knew if Moses continued this way, he would wear himself out and be unable to serve the people fully. Jethro advised him to select leaders that could handle some issues, giving Moses a new insight into leadership. That is a word of wisdom!
- Joseph (Genesis 41)
While Joseph was in prison, Pharaoh had a dream, and he wanted someone to tell him the dream and the interpretation of the dream. Joseph was called forth, and he told Pharaoh the dream. Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Joseph was not only able to say the dream but provided a solution to the problem the dream posed. Pharaoh was surprised, and he saw Joseph as the only man full of wisdom who could be promoted to the ranks of second in command.
- Solomon (1 Kings 3:16-28 )
Solomon was the king of Israel, and there was a dispute between two women over their babies. One of the women killed her baby when she rolled over him in her sleep. She woke up and exchanged her dead baby with the other woman’s baby. The issue generated a lot of commotion, and they were brought before the king. Whenever I think about this story, it sends chills down my spine; as a mom, I wonder how the events happened.
Solomon displayed supernatural wisdom by commanding that the baby be split between the two women equally. This command revealed the true nature of the women; the baby’s birth mother was pleading while the other was indifferent. What a show of God’s wisdom!
What is the Gift of Word of Knowledge?
The spiritual gift word of knowledge is the divine ability the Holy Spirit gives an individual that enables them to know about an event they wouldn’t normally know with their natural ability. It can manifest as a supernatural revelation into God’s divine will or other people’s plans. People often confuse this gift with the gift of prophecy, but they aren’t the same. In this article, we’ll explore the differences between the two.
The gift of the word of knowledge is often abused, and some people manifest a counterfeit of this gift under the influence of familiar spirits. This gift is never intended to glorify man but rather glorify God and bring to light important past events that affect the present or future events.
Examples of Word of Knowledge in the Bible
The Bible contains references to the manifestation of the gift of word of knowledge; it is fascinating that Jesus also manifested these gifts in his earthly ministry.
- Jesus Speaking to the Samaritan Woman (John 4:4-42)
The story of Jesus speaking to the Samaritan woman is a vivid example of the manifestation of the gift of word of knowledge. Jesus and his disciple went to the town of sychar, while the disciples went to get food; Jesus met a Samaritan woman by the well he told her about the things she had done. The woman marveled, and she went about telling others about Jesus.
- Gehazi and Elisha (2 kings 5:1-27)
Gehazi was like an assistant to Elisha, always with Elisha understudying him, but he wasn’t satisfied with all they had. After Elisha healed Naaman, Naaman brought gifts to Elisha, which he rejected. Still, Gehazi went behind Elisha’s back to receive the Gifts. Immediately Gehazi returned, Elisha told him he knew what he did and cursed him. Elisha’s ability to know what happened without being there is an example of word of knowledge.
- Peter and Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11)
Ananias and Sapphira wanted to also support the ministry by selling whatever they had. Still, their motivation for this action was wrong, so they lied about how much they sold the land. They lied to Peter about the price they sold the land, but God cannot be mocked; Peter, under God’s inspiration, knew the truth and paid for their lies with their lives.
- Daniel (Daniel 2)
King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream and was looking for someone to tell him the dream and interpret it. I often wonder why he couldn’t just tell the magician the dreams while they interpret, but I believe it is for God to take the glory. No one could interpret the dream except Daniel, who could do so because he had the gift of word of knowledge.
How to activate the gift of wisdom and word of knowledge
- Regularly study the word of God; the word of God is the wisdom of God.
- Desire and ask for in faith
- Stay connected to the Holy Spirit
- Be confident to speak according to the leading of the spirit
- Give room to the Holy Spirit
What Is the Difference Between Prophesy and Word Of Wisdom?
The Spiritual gift of prophecy and the word of wisdom are similar but work differently. Whoever manifests any of these gifts speaks about events or happening they didn’t or haven’t witnessed. The gift of word of knowledge is often speaking about past or present events that you weren’t there when they happened. At the same time, prophecy usually says things that will happen in the future or are about to happen.
Purpose of Word of Wisdom and Word of Knowledge
- The gift is given to guide you along God’s wisdom.
- The gift glorifies God.
- To draw more men unto God, like in the case of the Samaritan woman. After hearing the words of Jesus, she went about proclaiming his word.
- For correction and reproof, like in the case of Gehazi, Ananias and Saphira
- To strengthen the body of Christ
So give Your servant an understanding mind and a hearing heart [with which] to judge Your people, so that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge and rule this great people of Yours?”
Now it pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this thing. 11 God said to him, “Because you have asked this and have not asked for yourself a long life nor for wealth, nor for the lives of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to recognize justice, 12 behold, I have done as you asked. I have given you a wise and discerning heart (mind), so that no one before you was your equal, nor shall anyone equal to you arise after you. 13 I have also given you what you have not asked, both wealth and honor, so that there will not be anyone equal to you among the kings, for all your days.1 kings 3:9, 10-13 AMP
In the book of Proverbs, the Bible emphasizes the importance of wisdom. Wisdom is important in the Christian race. Every Christian should have the ability to speak the word of wisdom. Wisdom is the principal thing, and God asks us to ask for wisdom, and he is willing to give it to us. The spiritual gift of word of wisdom should be the desire of every Christian. We all need wisdom to live Holy in this world, and word of knowledge is also an added advantage for all who have these gifts.