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Discernment – Why You Might Not Have It

We often talk to many Christians who tell us they would like more spiritual discernment. What we are talking about is referred to in the Bible as “discerning of spirits” in 1 Cor. 12:10.


Here are twelve things which we believe can block a person’s ability to discern:


Personal sin and/or disobedience

Habitually walking in the flesh, rather than being led by the Holy Spirit

A weak or defiled conscience

A spirit of stupor (often caused by our bowing down to someone else’s control)

Fear of man (having a man-pleasing spirit – looking to man for approval or as one’s spiritual covering)

Pride – can manifest in so many different ways – is a blind spot in our lives

Lack of walking in the “fear of the Lord”

Asserting our self-will over God’s will in any area of our lives

Occult involvement or having a spirit of divination (which produces a counterfeit that may mimic the real)

Having a religious spirit, especially intellectualism (human reasoning without the input of the Holy Spirit)

Deception (or error in doctrine)

Looking to man for answers rather than to God; taking an opinion poll rather than praying.


As you look at this list, ask the Lord if any of the above are hindering your ability to discern. In these days, we need the gift of discernment more than ever before. In fact, your very life may depend upon it!

If you have checked this list and none of the above applies to you, then ask God to give you the gift of discerning of spirits. While you are at it, pray for wisdom and understanding as well, to be able to interpret the signs of the times in which we live and to have God’s perception on all things.