In one of the most well-known passages in the Bible, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, where Paul clarifies some important realities of spiritual gifts, one very important verse is often overlooked.
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 1 Corinthians 12:7 New King James Version (NKJV)
The word manifestation, when clearly understood, can bring an often missing clarity to understanding spiritual gifts. Understanding the nature and pattern of how God’s manifests himself on earth among people will help in understanding the deceptive manifestations of the Devil and his minions which are meant to mimic and oppose God and His ways.
Examine this list of 18 occurrences of the English word manifestation in 13 Bible translations:
The word itself, manifestation, is not uncommon in non-religious contexts and is fairly straightforward in its definition:
noun: manifestation; plural noun: manifestations
- an event, action, or object that clearly shows or embodies something, especially a theory or an abstract idea. “the first obvious manifestations of global warming”
- the action or fact of showing an abstract idea. “the manifestation of anxiety over the upcoming exams”
- display, demonstration, show, exhibition, presentation
- “the manifestation of anxiety”
- a symptom or sign of an ailment.
- sign, indication, evidence, token, symptom, testimony, proof, substantiation, mark, reflection, example, instance
- “manifestations of global warming”
- a version or incarnation of something or someone. “Purity and Innocence and Young Love in all their gentle manifestations”
- an appearance of a ghost or spirit.
- apparition, appearance, materialization, visitation
- “a supernatural manifestation”
Reflect on the following question: How does a clearer understanding of the Biblical use of the word manifestation bring clarity for you to the demonic aspects of spiritual warfare?