By: Undre Griggs, Jr
Giving your life to Jesus Christ through baptism is necessary to receive the blessing of eternal life. Only after baptism for the remission of sin will you receive the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:38 (ESV): And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
While we understand the blessing of eternal life, we sometimes overlook the blessings of the Holy Spirit here on earth. Besides assisting us with our prayers to Father God, the Holy Spirit produces blessing we would spend an inheritance to secure.
Galatians 5:22-23 (ESV): But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
John 13:34-35 (ESV): A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Joy and Peace:
Romans 15:13 (ESV): May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
Gentleness and Self Control:
Titus 1:8 (ESV): But hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined.
Kindness and Patience:
2 Timothy 2:24 (ESV): And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil,
Goodness and Faithfulness:
Proverbs 3:3 (ESV): Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.
You will notice obedience to God is the manner in which the Holy Spirit provides the gifts. You cannot be baptized, do nothing to grow your faith, and expect the Holy Spirit to miraculously provide these blessing to you. You have to be diligent in your faith and work to grow it (Revelations 2:10). After baptism; stay in constant prayer, meditating on what is good and pure, reading your Bible daily, and the fruits of the Spirit will be yours.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
The Bible speaks on the difficulties an unbeliever will have understanding the word of God. Are we understanding and long suffering with them as they grow in understanding?
1 Corinthians 2:14 (NIV): The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.
While the challenge an unbeliever will face through their conversion is understood, it is not a pass or excuse for their inaction. God believes He has provided enough evidence for us to be able to conclude that the world did not end up this way by chance.
Romans 1:18-20 (ESV): For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
There is enough evidence for anyone to start the quest for truth. There is enough information for an unbeliever to start to understand something greater than luck is at hand. The role of Christians is to be ready to help build a foundation of truth in love for Jesus Christ. Once that foundation is built, all questions will not be answered, but there is an element of faith that cannot be overlooked. There is enough evidence to understand God exists, but that does not mean all information will be made available.
Hebrews 11:6 (ESV): And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
1 Peter 1:8 (NIV): Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
The English word "angel" comes from the Greek angelos, which means 'messenger'. As messengers of God, angels have many tasks and responsibilities. We recall the angel speaking to Philip when it guided his path to cross the Ethiopian Eunuch.
Acts 8:26 (ESV): Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is a desert place.
Angels are often used to minister to the needs of the saints.
Acts 5:19 (NKJV): But at night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, “Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.”
Hebrews 1:14 (ESV): Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?
Psalms 91:11 (ESV): For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.
Angels can have a spiritual form and a physical form.
Isaiah 6:2 (ESV): Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew.
Hebrews 13:2 (ESV): Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Judges 13:6 (ESV): Then the woman came and told her husband, “A man of God came to me, and his appearance was like the appearance of the angel of God, very awesome. I did not ask him where he was from, and he did not tell me his name,
Much like us, angels can fall and succumb to sin (which leads to death).
Jude 1:6 (ESV): And the angels who did not stay within their own position of authority, but left their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains under gloomy darkness until the judgment of the great day
And yes, children have guardian angels who will deliver messages to the Lord.
Matthew 18:10 (ESV): “See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
In the world, we don’t always feel like dealing with the abuse or lack of recognition. We don’t always feel appreciated or understood, but we cannot let that affect our effort. Our effort is a testimony to the Lord and of the Lord.
Matthew 5:16 (ESV): In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Colossians 3:23 (ESV): Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,
We have to continually remind ourselves that we are not working for anyone but the Lord. That means we are not worried about earthly rewards and recognition. We are not easily deterred by people, because our work ethic is only contingent on Jesus Christ (and He has never let us down). When we keep our eyes on the Lord, it is easier for us to remember that everything we have was given to us. Therefore, there is nothing we can do in life that cannot be used for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31 (NIV): So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
Romans 11:36 (NKJV): For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.
Our days on this earth are not promised to us and we need to live every moment for the Lord. We cannot let the roller-coaster that is life stifle our effort and representation of Christ. Neither should we assume any task cannot be used for the furthering of God’s kingdom. Our lives and talents are precious to God and should be precious to us; live today without regret as if Christ was returning tomorrow.