The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly (John 4:17–18 KJV)
When Jesus told the Samaritan woman in John 4 that He had living waters, the woman politely, and most assuredly without understanding what Jesus meant, asked Jesus to give her some of His living waters. And Jesus gave her some of it—told her things about her past that mesmerized her. Afterward, she left her waterpot and sprinted into the village( John 4:28-29).
The Samaritan woman experienced the gift of the word of knowledge. Jesus told her about her life: her five prior husbands and the man she was currently living with. Jesus knew these things about her by supernatural enablement by the Holy Spirit; He did not reason it out, try to read her appearance, or do some psychic maneuvers. Therefore, the word of knowledge is the supernatural knowledge of people’s life or natural events, whether past, present or future.
The gift of the word of knowledge is distinct from the word of wisdom. While the word of knowledge mainly deals with the knowledge of things about people, the word of wisdom deals with the knowledge of the things of God, that is, insight into God’s wisdom. Paul is an excellent example of the gift of the word of wisdom( 2 Peter 3:15).
Furthermore, the word of knowledge from God must be distinguished from the supernatural knowledge from the devil or his demons. Supernatural knowledge, including information about people, can also be imparted by demons. I cannot overemphasize this fact, especially in today’s world. The classic example is Paul and the slave girl with the spirit of divination in Acts 16:16-18. And note that this spirit of divination is no longer in witchdoctor’s shrines; it is now within “Churches” where it can manifest as the accurate word of knowledge from God. To learn more about this, please read “The Spirit of Python Making its Way into Churches.”
Although this gift might be abused, misused, or even counterfeited, it is a remarkable gift of the Holy Spirit to the Body of Christ. Every time you experience that gift and receive a true word of knowledge from another brother or sister, it will have a profound edifying impact on you. Desire to experience this gift. Seek also to receive and develop it.
What is the difference between the word of Knowledge and the word of wisdom?
Apply the Word
Knowledge is power, especially a true word of knowledge from God through another believer or minister. Open your heart to drink this stream of the river of God whenever He gives it to you. Also, desire this gift.
Thank the Lord for blessing the Church with the gift of the word of knowledge.