This coming Sunday will be Valentine’s Day (Men don’t forget!). We often give gifts to our significant other, whether it may be flowers, candy, or other things that they may enjoy. As I was thinking of that, I thought about the gifts that God has given us! You may have heard it said that the Bible is God’s love letter to man. God loves us and He also has given us some gifts. Here are a few.
The Gift of the Holy Spirit
Acts 2:38-39 “Then Peter said to them, repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all those afar off, as many as the Lord our God shall call.”
This gift of the Holy Spirit was promised to us by God Himself!! We receive this free gift at our baptism, where our sins are forgiven and washed away. In the Gospel of John we are told that we would not receive this gift until Jesus was “Glorified”. That of course is talking about when Jesus ascended up into heaven.
The Gift of Righteousness
Romans 5:17 “For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.”
Our righteousness is also a gift from God. Our righteousness, the Bible says in Isaiah 64:6, is like filthy rags. Romans chapter 5 compares and contrast Jesus to Adam. For example in verse 15 it states that because Adam sinned we all are going to die. But because of the free gift of Jesus Christ many have been made alive!! In Verse 16 it shows that through Adam we received condemnation, but through Jesus we receive justification. I love that word. If you break it down it says “Just if I’d” never sinned. That is what Jesus did for us. That is why we are righteous! Not for what we did, but for what Jesus did for us!!
The Gift of Eternal Life
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Let’s be honest, we all deserve hell. We all have fallen short of God’s glory (Rom. 3:23). Notice the Apostle Paul didn’t say “The wages of righteousness is eternal life.” Heaven it’s self is a gift. We do need to realize that God’s gift comes with conditions. In vs 22 it says “But now having been free from sin and having become slaves of God…” You see, in order to have eternal life we have to put away sin and become slaves to God. Sin no longer dominates our thinking. We are now trying to please God and no longer trying to please ourselves.
The Gift of Salvation
Ephesians 2:8 “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.”
By the grace of God we have been given salvation. Grace is a subject that could be discussed for days. I like to say that grace is “God’s riches at Christ expense.” This gift may be free to us, but it cost Jesus His life. We need to be careful however, because grace does not give us a license to continue to sin willfully. Romans 6:1 addresses this. “Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?” Paul answers his own question in the next verse. “God forbid” or may it never be. That is pretty strong language. We have no right to keep on sinning, hoping that God will keep on forgiving us.
Do you see a common thread in these four gifts? They have all been made possible because of Jesus Christ!! Thank you God for your love!
The writer is an evangelist with the North Broadway Church of Christ in Sidney.