God At Work Through IM

The Gift of Spiritual Discernment

The Gift of Spiritual Discernment

This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. 14 The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Co. 2:13-14).

Bobby started attending my Bible class last year after the prison finally opened its doors to in-person ministry following the COVID lockdowns. As the weeks passed, I noticed that Bobby was struggling with some of the more difficult teachings of Scripture — teachings that according to Paul are considered “foolishness” to the world. Human wisdom, which is governed by reason and logic, can neither “accept these things” nor “understand them” because “they are spiritually discerned.”

One day after Bible class, Bobby asked why he couldn’t stay and join the four men I communed each month after class. Our discussion eventually led to my conducting a new Bible study which would cover the basic doctrines of Scripture. In the months that followed, we embarked upon a journey through God’s Word — a journey in which God blessed our study group with “words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.”

For the next five months or so, I took my class through the fundamentals: Creation, the Fall into sin and the Promise of a Savior. We followed the Messianic prophecies down through the Patriarchs. We studied the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, as well as the birth of the New Testament Church. We covered it all, from the inspiration of Scripture to the Ministry of the Keys, and in our final lesson, we covered the Lord’s Supper. As the months passed, I witnessed the Holy Spirit working in Bobby’s heart, as he grew in knowledge of Jesus and His saving work — maturing in his Christian faith, and more importantly, his child-like trust in what Scripture teaches as the Holy Spirit blessed him with spiritual discernment.

When we finished covering the basic doctrines of Scripture, Bobby was confirmed along with two other men who attended the class. Together, we celebrated the Lord’s Supper and rejoiced in the many and gracious blessings that God pours out upon His people. Now when I bring Holy Communion into the prison, there are as many as seven men who stay after Bible class to celebrate the Lord’s Supper together, and one of them is Bobby. To God be the glory!

Thank you for your interest, support, and partnership in this unique Gospel ministry: shining the light of Jesus’ love upon the walled-in souls of our communities. What a privilege it is to serve God with you in this way! In the words of St. Paul: “We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ” (1Th. 1:2–3). May the Lord continue to bless our work together.


Be a blessing today!





Ministry Behind the Walls

Institutional Ministries is a nonprofit organization established in 1901 that carries out behind-the-walls ministry by shining the light of Jesus’ love into hearts.