The Gift of Prophecy
In today’s first reading the story tells us about the 70 leaders in Moses’ group who were bestowed the spiritual gift of prophecy and immediately began using it. In addition, two others Eldad and Medad who were not in the camp also were given this gift and began using it as well. But a young man observing these other two, questioned Moses as to whether they should be doing this. To which Moses answered him, "Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the people of the LORD were prophets! Would that the LORD might bestow his spirit on them all!"
God gives each person unique spiritual gifts recognized in the Sacrament of Baptism. The church in this rite calls each to be priest, prophet and king in using our spiritual gifts in order to show others how to be the way, the truth, and the life in being a disciple of Jesus Christ. Our spiritual gifts are given for the good of others; and in faith communities we can encourage one another to go forth to use them.
The young man in the story of Moses, questions why other people are using the spiritual gift he understood was given to Moses. But Moses reassures him that God bestows spiritual gifts to everyone. Moses encourages the use of the spiritual gift of prophecy by those who have received it and even hopes that God may pass it on to others.
Like the thinking of the young man, sometimes people can be jealous of the spiritual gifts given to others and wish it for themselves. God gives each their own unique spiritual gifts to be used where they are at and for the service at others. God calls forth the spiritual gifts for each person and each community as needed. In the case of Moses, it was prophecy and Moses lets the young man know it is good the spiritual gifts are being used and hopes that God may bestow his spirit on them all.
In an address to the general audience in Rome on October 1, 2014, Pope Francis encourages us in our spiritual gifts tells us they are abundant and to be used. “As a sign of God’s superabundant love for his children, they (spiritual gifts) are rich and varied, yet each is meant to serve the building up of the Church as a communion of faith and love. The very diversity of the Spirit’s gifts invites us to share them generously for the good of all, and "never to let them become a source of division”. Today let us ask the Lord to help us recognize with gratitude this great outpouring of spiritual gifts which enables the Church to persevere in faith, to grow in grace and to be an ever more credible sign and witness of God’s infinite love.”