The gift of exhortation is the motivation to stimulate the faith, hope, and obedience of others.
“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness” (Hebrews 3:13).
1. The exhorter has been called ‘the church cheerleader or coach’ or ‘the one who lights the fuse’ or ‘the adrenal glad of the Body of Messiah’ or ‘the person with the gift of enthusiasm’.
2. Unlike the prophet who tends to be negative, this gift is highly positive in nature, the exhorter lives in the here and now and are eternal optimists.
3. The Exhorter desires to see the Word become flesh in the saints.
4. Expressed in personal counseling, both in casual conversation as well as in more formal settings.
5. The Exhorter depends upon visible acceptance when speaking to individuals our groups. Without heart-to-heart rapport this gift is not effective.
6. Can visualize specific goals for people and then give practical steps of action. Words of knowledge and wisdom often flow through the exhorter.
7. Very natural for the exhorter to share examples from personal experience to make his point and then find a Scripture to confirm the Truth.
8. Exhorter can idealize negative, hopeless situations, putting the best construction on everything.
9. Finds great joy when his counsel is heeded.
10. Evangelists and prophets usually have this gift, Acts 15:32.
Fruit of the Spirit
Patience and hope are needed by the exhorter, especially when people are slow in responding. Must be devoted to prayer, wherein he/she finds encouragement and inspiration from the Holy Spirit. OFTEN there is no one to exhort the exhorter!
Temptations to Avoid
1. Becoming discouraged with a lack of progress.
2. Motivating others for selfish gain.
3. Spending too much time with those who are not serious about following the Messiah. Exhorters can be exploited.
Problems and Misunderstandings
1. Emphasis on steps of action may appear as an over-simplification of serious problems.
2. Use of Scripture to confirm words of counsel and discernment may appear as a misuse of Scripture – taking the Word of God out of context.
3. Enthusiasm may appear to be unreal, unnecessary or overbearing.
1. Yeshua, The Beattitudes and much of his teaching abounds with exhortation, Matthew 5:1-11, Matthew 11:28
2. Barnabas, Son of encouragement or consolation, Acts 4:36. Encouraged the Jerusalem believers to accept Paul after his conversion, Acts 9:26; Encouraged Paul to come to Antioch from Tarsus to help in the revival, Acts 11:25
General Counsel and Application
When a church has many immature people or complacent, lukewarm people, there is a powerful need for exhorters. People need to be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit and its gifts. Those who have received this anointing gift need to be encouraged to grow into maturity so they can encourage others in the Body of Messiah to walk in their own spiritual gifts. Chief authority in a church setting must acknowledge and affirm the exhorters and encourage believers to receive their ministry or their will be no exhortation.
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©2013 Tentstake MInistries Publishing with The Keys to Church Harmony, 1983