Peter replied, “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.
True Spirituality, A Gift from God
“I am spiritual.”
It is common to hear that statement when the topic of God and religion comes up. People probably mean many things when they say they are spiritual. Maybe they just want to give an answer that sounds good, so conversation will turn to something else. But in many instances, it seems to indicate an interest in things like morality, spiritual forces of good and evil, or a higher power.
True spirituality is important, something that God wants all of us to have. So he defines it and he tells us where it comes from.
Today’s Bible verse is a message delivered many years ago by a man named Peter. He was speaking to his Jewish countrymen about Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus had performed many miracles. He had taught with authority. The Jewish leaders and people called for his death. He was handed over and killed. But he rose from the dead and lives and rules as Lord! Many of Peter’s listeners were convicted of their guilt. “We killed the one God chose and sent! What shall we do?”
“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.” God the Holy Spirit connects us to Jesus and the forgiveness he earned by his suffering and death for us. True spirituality is a gift from God. It is freely given to those who do not deserve it. It is given to those who have failed God and others. It is given to those who are terrified about what their sins look like to God. It is given through the message of Jesus Christ. It is given through a simple, but powerful and profound, washing of water connected to that word. The Spirit comes to human hearts this way. The Spirit gives spiritual life by turning hearts away from themselves and turning them in faith to Jesus. The Spirit connects people to Jesus’ forgiveness and the peace, joy, and hope that come with it.
“I am spiritual.” By God’s gift of the Spirit through the gospel of forgiveness…by the gift of the Spirit who connects you to Jesus and his forgiveness…yes, you are!
Lord God, thank you for your gifts to us. Thank you for Jesus and his forgiveness. Thank you for the Holy Spirit and his work of connecting us to Jesus by the gospel. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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