DO YOU REALLY KNOW WHAT THE HOLY SPIRIT CAN ACCOMPLISH IN YOUR LIFE?

Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the third person of the Trinity to indwell every believer to be our counselor, comforter, and teacher. Jesus said:

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.John 14:26

But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He will bear witness about me.John 15:26

For through Him (Jesus), we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.Ephesians 2:18

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?1 Corinthians 6:19

In Him, you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.” Ephesians 2:22

Have you ever had trouble praying? Well, the following Scripture makes it clear that the Holy Spirit that indwells you will express what you cannot express with words as “the Spirit intercedes for the Saints according to the will of God.” Isn’t that good to know? The Spirit of God searches the hearts and knows what is in the mind of the Spirit and He can help us communicate to God what we can’t always put in words.

And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit because the Spirit intercedes for the Saints according to the will of God.” Romans 8:27

Note: The Spirit intercedes for the Saints. All who believe God and place their trust in Him are called Saints. Being called a Saint is not new to the New Testament. The Old Testament speaks of Saints too, all who believe God and have placed their trust in Him are considered Saints, right now, even while they’re alive as the psalmist writes that God “will not forsake his Saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off” (Psalm 37:28).

May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the Saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son.” Colossians 1:11-13

God’s grace delivered us out of the darkness and brought us into the light and transferred us from the kingdom or domain of darkness into the kingdom of His beloved Son, Jesus Christ. He does that only for His Saints who’ve repented and put their trust in Him and that’s only because we’re qualified by Jesus’ redemption.

To the church of God that is in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be Saints together with all those who in every place call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours.” 1 Corinthians 1:2

The root word for “saints” comes from the word sanctified so those whom Jesus died for are the sanctified ones or saints. To be sanctified is to be “set apart for holy use” and that is what the Saints are. For now, we have been called out of the world to go back into the world to call others out of the world. However, prophecies being fulfilled in our time tell us that Jesus’ second coming is not too far in the future.

Do you know what our role will be when Jesus returns to earth with the Saints?

And the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the Saints of the Most High.” Daniel 7:27

“Or do you not know that the Saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? Do you not know that we are to judge angels?” 1 Corinthians 6:2-3

PROPHESIED “END TIMES” PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS ESCALATES

In Australia, Victorian Premier Dan Andrews said biblical views on abortion and sexuality are, “appalling, intolerant, hatred, bigotry, and just wrong.”

Daniel Andrews, the Roman Catholic Premier of Victoria, has not only defied the God of the Bible, turned a deaf ear to the wider Christian population, but has specifically rejected the teachings of his own Church.

How quickly what we saw as foundational human rights such as freedom of speech, religion, and association are clearly eroding under the Andrews government, and other governments nationwide.

We should not be surprised as Jesus warned us that persecution/tribulation will escalate in the last days and that we will be hated by all nations for standing up for Jesus and His values.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14

While this life is fraught with many trials and tribulations, the sufferings we experience are to be counted as incomparable with the glories to come. This anticipation for glory sustains us and brings forth one major reason why we persevere: we hope in the age to come rather than in this broken and fallen age.

Paul says, that in the same way, this hope for glorification sustains us, the Spirit sustains us, for He knows precisely how to intercede on our behalf before the Father.

Where words and utterances fail us in our prayers, the Spirit transforms them into prayers that match the will of God. The Spirit’s work of intercession on our behalf is part and parcel of our endurance; we endure not only for the hope of the age to come but specifically because part of the Spirit’s work is to bring about endurance in us.

Human suffering has a purpose that culminates in glory. To make that even clearer: the purpose of our trials and sufferings is to bring us to the final redemption, where we see God face to face, free from the pain, devastation, and destruction caused by the curse of sin, our adversary Satan, and death itself.

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.Romans 8:38-39

CHRISTIANS ARE ALWAYS ON THE MOVE BUILDING GOD’S KINGDOM

When God called Abraham, he didn’t say, “You need to ascribe to these commandments, right principles, and correct beliefs.” Instead, God told Abraham, “Go from your country, your people, and your father’s household to the land I will show you.” How did Abraham respond?

So Abram went, as the Lord had told him.” Genesis 12.4

He didn’t say a word. He got his feet moving.

When it came time for Jesus to assemble the men who would become His apostles and disciples, he didn’t command them to discern and discover all of the scriptural rules and laws to govern their conduct and learn what they should believe. No, Jesus called them and what was their response?

Immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him.Matthew 4:22

They got their feet moving and so should we.

In the three short years that Jesus ministered on this earth, Jesus walked over 3000 miles. He was a man on the move. He was a man of imminency and intention.

Jesus took ordinary people, made by and in the image of, his Father, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, turned them into a community, a family, of fervent and dedicated apostles, disciples, and students, thereby launching the greatest social movement in human history.

By Jesus’ death and resurrection, He made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, to indwell the Spirit of every person who repents of their past rebellion against God and given their life to Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. Submitting to baptism in water they have shown they have died to their old life and been born again by the Holy Spirit into a new life in Christ.

It is possible to be born again by the Holy Spirit and yet we quench His work in our lives thereby grieving Him.

The detailed message we are given of how Elijah heard from God is tremendously important.

What did Elijah hear after the wind, earthquake, and fire?

And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.1 Kings 19:11-12

How did Elijah respond to the “still small voice“? He “went out..”. He got his feet moving.

And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out…” 1 Kings 19:13

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.Ephesians 4:30

It is obvious from this Scripture that it is possible to grieve the Holy Spirit and we are told that we quench His work in our lives when we ignore His “still small voice“. I know in my own life that I often am distracted by worldly attractions and miss God’s best for me which means I miss the joy that we get from serving Him.

Prayer is the way we stay in touch with God, Human beings were made to be in fellowship with God. Adam and Eve’s disobedience severed the link but thank God He asked His Son, Jesus, to restore the link. What does God do for those that relate to Him in love? The Psalmist puts it well when he said,

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence, there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.Psalms 16:11

If we are obedient and get our feet moving when He asks us to go, He will guide our steps.

Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; and whatever we ask we receive from Him because we keep his commandments and do what pleases Him.” 1 John 3:21-22

GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT’S ROLE IN OUR SALVATION AND IN OUR LIFE

“The Holy Spirit is how God quickens us to new life and births us from above.

Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.John 3:5-7

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” Romans 8:11

The third person of the Trinity. All three have a role in your Salvation.

The Holy Spirit has a special role as He seals us for eternity. The Apostle Paul says,

In Him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in Him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. Ephesians 1:13-14

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. You know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.John 14:16-17

These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.John 14:25-26

But When He, the Spirit of truth, comes He will guide you into all truth” John 16:13

But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He will bear witness about me.John 15:26

I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.” John 16:7

It is the Holy Spirit’s role to convict the world concerning sin, righteousness, and judgement. We cannot convert anyone unless the Holy Spirit has first convicted the person of their sin.

And when he comes, He will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.” John 16:7-11

The Holy Spirit produces the fruit of the Spirit in your life.

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23

He provides the gifts of the Spirit for ministry

For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another, the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another, the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another, various kinds of tongues, to another, the interpretation of tongues. All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as He wills1 Corinthians 12:7-11

SUMMARY

He lives within you forever (John 14:16).

He directs your paths (Prov. 3:4-5, Romans 8:14, Acts 8:29, Acts 8:39)

He guides you into all truth (John 14:17, 16:13a).

He teaches you all things (John 14:26a).

He reveals to you things to come (John 16:13).

He reveals to you the deep things of God (1 Cor. 2:10).

He produces the fruit of the Spirit in your life. (Galatians 5:22-23)

He equips and empowers you for ministry. (1 Corinth. 12:7-11)

He freely gives you all things (1 Cor. 2:12).

He offers you the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16).

You cannot live a Christian life without the Holy Spirit. It is impossible. Make sure you do not grieve the Holy Spirit nor quench His work in your life but follow Paul’s advice that he gave to Timothy, “fan into flame the gift of God“.

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.Ephesians 4:30

Do not quench the Spirit.” 1 Thessalonians 5:19

For this reason, I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.2 Timothy 1:6

THE HOLY SPIRIT SUSTAINS US THROUGH TRIALS AND TRIBULATION

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom He predestined He also called, and those whom He called He also justified, and those whom He justified He also glorified.” Romans 8:28-30

Coptic Christian martyrs for Christ

While this life is fraught with many trials and tribulations, the sufferings we experience are to be counted as incomparable with the glories to come. We groan, we wail, we suffer—yet with much hope as we persevere to the end, waiting for the redemption of all creation, and even our bodies. Yet in this, the tension that all mankind faces come to the forefront, and the reason for this is simple: we must wait. This anticipation for glory builds more and more anticipation the longer we must endure this life. This anticipation for glory sustains us and brings forth one major reason why we persevere: we hope in the age to come rather than in this broken and fallen age.

Paul says, that in the same way, this hope for glorification sustains us, the Spirit sustains us, for He knows precisely how to intercede on our behalf before the Father.

Where words and utterances fail us in our prayers, the Spirit transforms them into prayers that match the will of God. The very purpose of the Spirit’s intercession is not so we can feel good about His work in doing so, though we should have much joy in this fact. Rather, the Spirit’s work in transforming our failed prayers likewise culminates in us reaching the finish line, where we are ushered into the presence of our Triune Lord for all eternity. In other words, the Spirit’s work of intercession on our behalf is part and parcel of our endurance; we endure not only for the hope of the age to come but specifically because part of the Spirit’s work is to bring about endurance in us.

Here then is where we find our particular reference that God works all things for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. And what is that purpose? Paul says, the “good” that God is working all things together for, is explicit.

For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.” Romans 8:29-30

Human suffering has a purpose that culminates in glory. To make that ever clearer: the purpose of our trials and sufferings is to bring us to final redemption, where we see God face to face, free from the pain, devastation, and destruction caused by the curse of sin, our adversary Satan, and death itself.

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.Romans 8:38-39

God sees to it, from eternity past to eternity future, that those who love God, that is, those who are in Christ, will one day be glorified, first to assist Jesus in His Millennial reign on this earth and then, after the White Throne judgement, to be ushered into a world free from the Fall and its effects. All of our groaning, all of our longing, all of our deferred hope for what is to come, shall be satisfied in the fullness and richness of God’s saving love through Christ.

Adapted from an article by Jason Gilbert “God Works All Things for Good” August 23, 2022, http://www.patheos.com

HOW SHOULD CHRISTIANS LIVE IN THESE LAST DAYS?

For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.Philippians 1:21 Can we say as Paul did, “to live is Christ“? We can only do it if we know the presence of the Holy Spirit within. When we have experienced His presence and leading. For me. speaking and especially singing in tongues confirms the presence of the Holy Spirit within my spirit. The more we experience His presence the less likely we are to quench His work in our lives and grieve Him. “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.Ephesians 4:30

Christian martyrs

What about suffering for Jesus Christ, even rejoicing in our suffering for Him? Once again we can only do this “because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.Romans 5:3-5

For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in Him but also suffer for his sake, engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.Philippians 1:29

We will need to know the presence of the Holy Spirit and trust Him implicitly in the soon coming prophesied “end times” because Jesus warns us that there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world.

For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, those days will be cut short. Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand.Matthew 24:21-25

EMPOWERED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT

But now I go away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.” John 16:5-11

Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Romans 6:46

If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.Romans 8:11

The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.Romans 8:16-17

SALVATION

God’s people longed for God’s judgment because it meant that God would set things right (Psalms 72:4). This saving judgment entailed God condemning their enemies but they thought little about what God required of them.

Some readers might need to reorient how they think about “being saved.” Salvation concerns both what we’re saved from and what we’re saved for. Many people think almost exclusively in terms of the former. We are saved from wrath, punishment, condemnation, and hell. Though a glorious truth, it is a partial truth.

Nothing is wrong with stressing the importance of being saved from something. Being saved from the penalty, power, and presence of sin is glorious! But…. and this is an important “but” … no one is saved merely from fear of penalty. Ultimately, salvation requires love for Christ and obedience to Christ by obedience to the guidance of the Holy Spirit that dwells within your spirit.

The goal of salvation is believers’ conformity to the Son of God—their participation in his rule over creation as God’s eschatological family and as renewed humanity—but only and always with the purpose of extending God’s hand of mercy, love, and care to his wider creation. This was humanity’s job in the beginning; it is the believer’s responsibility now and will be the believers’ responsibility and honor in the future, first during Jesus’ Millennial reign on this earth when He and the resurrected Saints will rule the nations with a rod of iron. This is a transitional era when Satan is bound but he is released at the end of the Millennium when he is still able to raise an army like the sand of the sea. He and his army will be defeated and this earth destroyed with fire. The second resurrection and the White Throne judgement follow, before the new earth and heaven where only the righteous dwell.

This vision is compelling and sustaining. It creates a far more robust biblical perspective on following Christ.

People know that the world has problems. Moreover, the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin and righteousness and He will guide and direct our steps to evangelize the lost. He will even give us the words to say so they know that we are being used by God. We just need to be obedient to the call of God on our lives regardless of the cost.

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.Romans 8:35-39

They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.” Revelation 20:5-6

CHRISTIAN LEADERS WILL FAIL

This article has been extracted from an insightful article by Sarah Yardley entitled HOW TO COPE WITH THE FAILURE OF CHRISTIAN LEADERS. She is a Californian based in Cornwall, UK. She studied Theology at St. Mellitus College. Sadly she ignores the Holy Spirit’s role as our teacher, comforter, and counsellor. Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell our spirit and enable us to live the Christian life. For many of the leaders that have failed, one has to question: were they ever born again by the Holy Spirit? If they were they have certainly grieved Him and quenched His work in their lives.

Recently, it seems like we have seen an acceleration of sins exposed, hearts laid bare, and the broken places in the lives of our leaders revealed. What do we do when we find our heroes have fallen from their pedestals? I have found the following areas essential as I navigate moral failure.

  1. Look to Jesus

Beyond the current headlines, I think of key leaders in scriptural and Christian history: Noah, Moses, Naomi, David, Martin Luther, Karl Barth, Bill Hybels, Bob Coy, Ravi Zacharias, myself… At some point, all will fall and all will fail. The only one in whom I have certain hope, trust, and expectation of faithfulness is Jesus. When my leaders fail, I fix my eyes on Him.

  1. Seek truth and accountability

When I first experienced a period of watching leaders close to me fall into moral failure, I struggled with panic attacks, doubts, and anxiety. If they could fall, surely I would too. (I do, often). These questions can push us into pain and bitterness, or they can cause us to say: “But for the grace of God, there go I.” Choose friends in your life who will speak truthfully and honestly to places of failure, and ask for grace and help in growth.

  1. Forgive

Forgiveness is a key distinctive of the Christian faith. It reminds us that the faults and failures that once defined us can be redeemed at the cross of Christ. Actively choosing to forgive can be challenging and raw, but it frees us from carrying a weight that will cripple us. As Ray Hinton, wrongly imprisoned for years for a crime he did not commit, wrote: “If you want to be free, you have to forgive, and I want to be free.”

  1. Process the pain

Leaders fail. Allow that to bring grief. Let it break your heart, stretch your soul, and make you weep. Don’t rush past the emotion that it can – and should – bring us when one who proclaimed the words of truth with life and power, who made doctrine dance, also allowed honesty to dance away as well. Read the Psalms. Lament. These are the wounds we received in the house of our friends, and our saviour is still binding them up.

  1. Live in the light

I don’t publish every sin I wrestle with. I don’t feel the need to post every place I have battled pride, lust, gossip, fear, or offense. But they are many. And my close friends, leaders and, above all, Jesus are walking with me in these places. If we walk in his light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7). Wherever possible, live in the light.

  1. Pursue presence above platform (Seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance continually each day so that you will not grieve Him and quench His work in your life)

Everything in our lives is an invitation to intimacy with Christ. Every day, we choose to turn our hearts towards his love or towards our own pleasures. I see some of the moral failures in our Church today and wonder about the infinitesimally small, unseen choices that turned hearts towards pleasure and power. It’s easy to sit in the position of judgment towards others and forget how much our own souls long for immediate pleasure. In the presence of Jesus, we find a different, deeper, eternal joy. He continually invites me to choose his presence above any other platform.

CHRIS PRATT, LIKE ALL OF US, NEEDS TO BE CONCERNED HE DOES NOT GRIEVE THE HOLY SPIRIT

Actor Chris Pratt is turning heads with recent comments he made about religion and public perception, proclaiming in a new Men’s Health interview, “I’m not a religious person.”

He speculated that some of the anti-religious animosity he has struggled with emerged after a 2018 speech at the MTV Movie & TV Awards during which he openly discussed God and encouraged young people to cling to Him.

Chris Pratt arrives at the premiere of “Thor: Love and Thunder,” Thursday, June 23, 2022, at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles

God is real. God loves you, God wants the best for you,” Pratt said during his speech while accepting the Generation Award. “Believe that; I do.”

The actor reflected on that moment in his interview with Men’s Health, wondering if he actually touched anyone. He also reportedly now understands why people responded so negatively.

“Maybe it was hubris for me to stand up on the stage and say the things that I said. I’m not sure I touched anybody,” he said. “Religion has been oppressive as [expletive] for a long time.”

Pratt continued, “I didn’t know that I would kind of become the face of religion when really I’m not a religious person.” “I think there’s a distinction between being religious — adhering to the customs created by man, oftentimes appropriating the awe reserved for who I believe is a very real God — and using it to control people, to take money from people, to abuse children, to steal land, to justify hatred. Whatever it is,” Pratt told Men’s Health. “The evil that’s in the heart of every single man has glommed (grabbed) onto the back of religion and come along for the ride.

It should be noted Pratt has often discussed his faith, telling Esquire in 2014 about how he first encountered Jesus. Here’s what he said at the time:

“In Maui, about four weeks before I was discovered to go to California, I was hanging with my buddy. I wasn’t quite old enough to drink, so we got somebody to go in and buy us some alcohol. This guy came by and was like, ‘What are you doing tonight?’ I was like, ‘Oh, I dunno. I was just gonna wait out here, my friends are gonna buy me a bottle of Carlo Rossi and a sixer of Milwaukee’s Best Ice. So he’s like, ‘Will you fornicate tonight?’ I was like, ‘I hope so.’ ‘And drugs and drinking?’ It’s like, ‘Most likely, yeah. Probably all three of those things. I mean, at least two of them, possibly all three.’ He was like, ‘I stopped because Jesus told me to stop and talk to you. He said to tell you you’re destined for great things.’ My friends came out, and I was like, ‘Hey, I’m gonna go with this guy.’ I gave my soul to Jesus within, like, two days. I was stuffing envelopes for his organization, Jews for Jesus. I’m not even sure, at that age—I was nineteen years old—I knew what Jewish was.”

One of the more personal issues Pratt spoke on was claims from some critics he was somehow insulting his first wife, Anna Faris, last fall when he took to Instagram to compliment his new wife, Katherine Schwarzenegger.

For context, in November 2021, Pratt shared an Instagram photo of Schwarzenegger lovingly gazing at him and showered praise upon her in the text.

What most reasonable people would view as a comical, loving ode to his wife was dubbed by a Salon writer as a “bizarre early birthday post.” The writer went on to explain how “many viewed this as an ableist (fostering discrimination against disabled people) slight toward his first wife, actor Anna Faris, and the son they share, who was born premature and is disabled.”

These claims, which were bizarre at the time, have hurt Pratt. “I’m like, that is [expletive] up. My son’s gonna read that one day. He’s nine. And it’s etched in digital stone,” he told Men’s Health. “It really [expletive] bothered me, dude. I cried about it. I was like, I hate that these blessings in my life are — to the people close to me — a real burden.”

It appears from this and other interviews that Chris Pratt is struggling with giving up his life totally to God. “I’ve been broke-broke, dude,” he says. “And I think early on in my career it was so important to me. It’s like, Don’t forget where you came from. Don’t forget who you are. And part of me is struggling with who I am maybe not being who I was.”

For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.Romans 8:13-17

All of us struggle with the flesh but in this Scripture, Paul makes it clear that we need to be led by the Holy Spirit. Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell a believer’s Spirit to be his counsellor, comforter, and teacher. Chris Pratt, like all of us, needs to be concerned that he does not grieve the Holy Spirit or quench His work in his life.

CREATE IN ME A CLEAN HEART, O GOD

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!
Psalm 51:1-2

A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet challenged him about his sin with Bathsheba.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.Psalm 51:10-12

“that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” Philippian 3:10

NOTE: God had given David an understanding of the role of the Holy Spirit in living Christ-like and this is one thousand years before Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell believers as a result of His atoning sacrifice.

But also note what Paul says about living Christ-like, we are to forget those things that are behind us and focus on those things ahead.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.Philippians 3:12-16

John 10:10 says that Jesus came to give us life, freedom, and a relationship with Him. He is our only hope—the only source of true peace. Are you experiencing this peace? If not, that can change if you trust in Him as Lord and Savior, repent, and turn to Him (Romans 10:9).

Gordon Cove once challenged his audience: “You have not sought the Lord with ‘your whole heart’ until you have tried a protracted season of prayer and fasting.” Could a lack of prayer, fasting, and repentance be one of the hindrances to a spiritual awakening? Absolutely! Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Fasting doesn’t twist God’s arm, but it does bend our knee. There is simply too much on the line—a massive spiritual awakening is our only hope.

As G. Campbell Morgan said, “We cannot organize revival, but we can set our sails to catch the wind from Heaven when God chooses to blow upon His people once again.”

It’s time to break up our fallow ground and seek the Lord while He still may be found (Hosea 10:12).

“We prepare the sacrifice with a humble and contrite heart and God will bring the fire of revival.” shaneiIdelman.com