1. Whom should our prayer be addressed to? The Father, the Son or the Holy Spirit?
– Asked by Kenneth, Nina.
Answer: Please note, Jesus tells His disciples to ask the Holy Spirit to send out workers into his harvest field. (Matthew 9:38) Another time, Jesus mentions about prayer to be addressed to the Father. (Matthew 6:9) Can these both be correct? Essentially, prayer is addressed to God. And as we have studied, the Father, the Son and the Spirit are ONE. And unlike us, they are united without any ego issues. So go ahead and pursue Him as you are led.
2. What does the scripture mean by, “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil 2:12)?
– Asked by Jeevaga
Answer: This is a verse that has caused many people to think we need to work to achieve our salvation. Please note, this verse does not mean that we have to make efforts to deserve salvation on the grounds of our good works. That is out of the question, for what can man do that is equivalent to eternal life in heaven?
It also does not mean that we have to work towards making atonement for past sins. It would be equally impossible, and besides, is unnecessary. It is an act which has already been done by our Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
What it does mean is that, we are not to live in sin, but make honest efforts to live in the way which God has commanded in His Word. This can only be possible when we live in reverence to God (in other words, in the fear of God). Read more on how you can pour out yourself and walk with Jesus.
3. Is Baptism without fully believing in Christ valid? Is child baptism or sprinkling of water enough?
– Asked by Rini, Vijay, Neena and others.
Answer: Jesus clearly mentions that those who believe must be baptized. (Mark 16:16) A child in its infant stage has no knowledge of sin. So there is no way that an infant baptism will have any effect on the child. The only closest mention in the bible related to this subject, is of a child dedication with an offering unto God. (Luke 2:22,23) See more on Baptism here.
4. What happens if someone is married to an unbeliever and hence prolongs the decision to get baptized until after the spouse’s conversion? Is that a legitimate reason to wait?
– Asked by Rhona
Answer: The Bible certainly encourages us to obey our government, leaders and parents, and honor marriage, all based on the fact that they come after God. So it means, if your leaders, partner or parents ask you to do something that is against obeying God, you should, instead, obey God first, and only then love them.
We should not forget that Jesus said, “Brother will deliver brother over to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death, and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. ” Matthew 10: 21, 22.
Jesus goes on to say in the same chapter, verse 28 – 33, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear Him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges Me before men, I also will acknowledge before My Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies Me before men, I also will deny before My Father who is in heaven.”
Your obedience to God may attract persecution for a while, but it will give your persecutors a chance to know this precious Jesus, for whom you are willing to die.
We are called to be the light. It starts with us. Our families will follow. See more on how you can effectively witness.
5. How do you meditate? What does it mean to meditate as a Christian?
– Asked by Junia and others.
Answer: As a Christian, you have to be careful not to meditate on anything or anybody else other than Christ. Classes today that teach yoga, calming or emptying of mind and more, are great deceptions of the enemy. Remember, Jesus mentioned how the devil came back to posses the man who was free of demonic possession and was still empty. It caused the demons to attack him again with seven more demons. We are called not to empty our minds, but to transform our minds to the mind of Christ.
However, as a child of Jesus, you can meditate on the Word of God. In silence (or even in the midst of the noisy world around us), ponder about what Christ has commanded us to do and how you can follow Him.
To meditate on the Word simply means to dwell on a thought from the Word or to think deeply and carefully into a verse. During this time, allow the Holy Spirit to speak into your heart. When you silence your heart and meditate on the Word of God, you will begin to hear God’s voice more clearly!
6. How do I know the will of God? How will I know what to choose, how to choose, what to do, when to do?
– Asked by Priyanka, Jenn, Benny, Priapt, Marilena, Chinju, John and others.
Answer: Even though we wrote about the bigger perspective of knowing God’s will, I understand the fact that many would still want to know how to know God’s will on specific situations.
There are certainly no one line answers to this. I would still suggest that you closely study, “How to know the will of God” post. Yet, due to frequent questions on this topic, I’d like to try and break this subject into 5 areas on how you can understand the will of God.
1. First, remember that knowing God’s will is completely based on knowing what God wants for us through the Word of God. Yes, the Word of God has answers to all your day-to-day needs! Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal them to you. Check if your decision aligns you to the Word of God. If the decision you make is even remotely contradicting the Word of God, then flee from it without the slightest compromise.
2. Ask the Lord to reveal to you. This may happen through many ways.
- God can use a prophet to already confirm what He has been speaking to your heart.
- God can use anything around you to speak to you – literally, or figuratively through parables.
- God can speak to you through dreams. Remember not to read too much into it. God will make it clear for you.
- God can speak to you through visions when you are in prayer.
On a general note: Bible encourages us to test all things. It means we should not make swift decisions but wait on God for clarity on what He is showing you.
3. Walk by faith. If none of the above happens, remember that God is your Father. Ask Him to shut any doors that are not from Him, and lead you to those doors that are from Him. Before you step out in faith, you must have a relationship with Jesus. Based on this relationship with Him, the Lord would lead your steps. “The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in His way.” Psalm 37: 23
4. God expects you to have the mind of Christ. There are Christians who, even after years of being believers, still depend on prophets or other people for guidance on even the simplest of things. As you grow in the Lord, the Lord expects you to walk, knowing the heart of God you have received through His Word. As a child of Jesus, keep your heart and mind open to what pleases God. And as you do that, remember, as we love Him, all things will work together for our good. (Romans 8:28)
5. Pray like everything depends on prayer! This, I believe, does not need any explanation. However, do not underestimate the power of prayer and fasting. The Lord will guide your steps.
It may not be in your time and the way you expect, but the Lord will certainly guide your ways as you commit your life to please Him totally.
7. How do I know what my gifting is? How do I know what my calling is?
Answer: It is not very hard to know what your gifting is. Because if the Lord has gifted you in an area, it will begin to manifest. It may start manifesting in an insignificant way, through small healings, small prophetic unctions, or a word that comes to you. As you begin to practice using those gifts, those giftings will significantly become more visible, multiply and bear fruit for our Master’s glory.
It’s wonderful to know what one’s calling is. When Jesus called His disciples, He gave them one common command-to witness to the unsaved. Later on, we see how different offices of the Church are mentioned in the Bible. It is not necessary to be upset or halt everything to know your calling, because I believe that as you wholeheartedly pursue God, it is only a matter of time when you will find yourself serving the Lord in what He has called you into.
Take out time to check what the passions are that God has laid in your heart with regard to serving people. Is it to serve, teach, preach, music, motivate or empower? Those will give you an idea of how God may be leading you. Ask your overseer or your Pastor on what strengths they notice in you. Begin to closely associate yourself with those who have a similar passion. Never stop learning. Ask the Lord to send you a mentor who fears God, to guide you in your calling.
8. What should we do if sharing about Christ ends up in an argument?
Answer: Please remember, no one comes to Jesus because they lost an argument. Bible says, “No one comes to the Father but through Jesus”. Never try arguing. It does no good to either side. Titus 3: 9 says, “But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless.”
Simply pray and love! Let God do the opening of the heart!
9. Can every believer cast out demons and pray for the sick?
Answer: Jesus said, “And these signs will accompany those who believe.” Mark 16:17
However, if there is any doubt or fear in you, then do not lay hands on the sick, especially those possessed with demons.
This should not let you be discouraged or to refrain in fear, though. Have fellowship and learn from those believers who have been practicing God’s power through faith in the name of Jesus. As you study the Word of God and remain in prayer and fasting, the Lord will equip you with faith and the power that is the name of Jesus. It’s only a matter of time that God will begin to use you as you walk with HIM!
10. Will the Church go through a tribulation period? When will the return of Jesus be? What does it mean by pre-tribulation, mid-tribulation and post-tribulation rapture?
Answer: Well, there are a lot of scriptures in the Bible that talk about the second coming and the events surrounding the second coming of Jesus Christ. Over time, there have been various interpretations by different theologians on when the rapture will be.
Here are 3 major interpretations that are widely accepted among the churches world over:
1. Pre-tribulation Rapture: This interpretation infers that the rapture will mark the beginning of the seven year tribulation when the anti-Christ will rule over the earth, and that the glorious appearance of Jesus with the saints that were caught up in the rapture, will be at the end of this seven year period, thus implying that the church will not go through the tribulation period.
2. Mid-tribulation Rapture: This interpretation infers that the rapture will happen three and a half years into the tribulation period. Thus the church will be saved from the severe cruelty at the hands of the anti-Christ in the second half.
3. Post-tribulation Rapture: This interpretation points out that Jesus will come at the end of the tribulation period. Thus the church will go through the full length of the tribulation period, and the coming of Jesus will squash the anti-Christ’s rule on the earth and begin a new millennium from then on.
Now to find out when the rapture will be, we need to go back to the Words of Jesus.
Jesus said, “No one but the Father knows the exact hour.”(Matt 24:36) Paul reminds us in Philippians 1:21, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” There is no harm in trying to study the possibilities of Christ’s return, but our greater responsibility is to live prepared for what God has purposed for our lives.
This brings us to the conclusion of this mega project! I cant wait to release this PDF (Around 100 pages, sign-up below to know how you can get a copy) this Thursday!
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