Sunday, June 18, 2017

Causes of Spiritual Grief

UV 2297/10000 Causes of Spiritual Grief
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
Ephesians 4 v 30
When we by faith invite Jesus to dwell in our hearts, the Holy Spirit is sent to seal our bodies, minds and spirits. Christ in us does the work of wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption through the third person of the Trinity- the Holy Spirit. When we err in our hearts deliberately, wantonly and repeatedly without repentance, we grieve the gentle Holy Spirit. He is a person, not an “it”. He has feelings, very intense feelings. In fact, the word used in the uni-verse is the extreme form of sadness or sorrow- grief as one mourns at the death of a loved one. He rejoices intensely when we listen to Him, yield to His promptings, whispers, prodding, counsel, reminders and comfort even as He grieves when we do the contrary. He grieves for there is no more opportunity for redemption and sanctification than the one presented in the sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus. We err in our hearts when we engage in bitterness, rage, disputes, arguments, conflicts, verbal abuse, gossip, lying and so on, even after we are declared redeemed by our faith, called ‘born again’ and yet return often to our primal pre-saved nature.

We also grieve the Holy Spirit when we resist His word of direction and leadership in our lives. When we yield to our own deceitful sensual lusts that emerge from our old pre-Christ nature, we hurt the Spirit of God. When we give up our quest to be like Christ, we grieve the Holy Spirit. We should not give place or even a foothold or toehold to the enemy of our souls. Eve grieved the Spirit of God by listening to the words of the crafty one. She was deluded into believing that if Adam and she ate of the forbidden by God, they would be like God and live forever. In so doing, they obtained the opposite result- they lost eternity. They broke faith with their Creator. The enemy got a foothold in the heart and mind of man. The rest is history. The Holy Spirit grieves over the loss of peace, loss of joy, the pain and needless suffering we bring on ourselves by our obstinate unlearning, unbending nature.

When we disbelieve the promises of God and take things into our own hands, we grieve the Holy Spirit. Abraham and Sarah took things into their own hands when they decided to procure a son and heir through the servant Hagar, disbelieving that God is faithful to his promise and can do the impossible. When we become impatient and rely on our own strength, wisdom and resources, we grieve the Holy Spirit. When we do not wait for God to turn up and fulfil His promise, we grieve the Holy Spirit. When we grumble and mutter under our breath like the ancient Israelites out of slavery and in transition to freedom in their promised land, we grieve the Holy Spirit. When we do not discern the spirits and assume that every voice we hear is from the Lord, we grieve the Holy Spirit. Knowing the word and the ways of God described in it, we depart from the word and His ways. Knowing that we have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb of God, we take to religion and man made custom, ceremonies and rituals to justify ourselves- this grieves the Lord that for such as these Christ died on the cross in vain. The good thing is that the opposite of all these types of behaviour pleases the Holy Spirit and causes Him to rejoice. Our spiritual failures and rebellions are not fatal or final and we have every opportunity to make amends.

Prateep V Philip

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