In this series of sermons on spiritual gifts, our founding pastor, W. Graham Smith, preaches on the gift of exhortation. Here are some excerpts:

“…[R]oosters and preachers have many similarities. For example, the rooster crows at certain hours, the preacher likewise. The rooster has a tendency to strut, just like the preacher!…”

“…Is this what is meant by the gift of exhortation, of which our text speaks? I think not…”

Definition of Exhortation

“The dictionary definition of “exhort” is “to urge or warn earnestly”; but the Greek word translated “exhort” in the New Testament does not imply being bombastic or noisy. It is a very interesting word — it is “parakaleo.” Now “kaleo” means to “call” and “para” means “alongside.” So, an “exhorter,” a “paraclete,” is literally “one whom you call alongside you to help and encourage you.” The Latin equivalent of “parakaleo” is “advoco”; “voco” means to “call,” and “ad” means “alongside”; and from this Latin verb “advoco” we derive our English word “advocate,” which is one name for a lawyer…”

The Gift of Exhortation

“So, you see, the Holy Spirit has been called to our side to assist, strengthen, encourage and counsel us; and the Lord Jesus Christ has been called to represent us before the Father. You can see, can you not, that this gift of exhortation or encouragement involves the supernatural ability to come alongside some fellow believer to help and encourage him or her, to strengthen the weak, reassure the wavering, buttress the buffeted, steady the faltering, console the troubled, and encourage those who are disappointed and dispirited. Just as the Holy Spirit is an instrument of help, so the same Holy Spirit…”


The Gift of Exhortation. Graham has a lot more to say about this topic. If you would like to learn more, please download and read the attached transcript of the sermon, as the above excerpts do not even scratch the surface. If you would like to do a word search on the transcript, download the file, and then open the file with your web browser after downloading and use your browser’s find feature.

July 10, 1988

Romans 12:6,8

Rev. W. Graham Smith

Download Transcript (PDF)