God has a message for us
God has a message for us and it can transform our lives. He wants us to know Him personally and find the joy of His purpose and plan for our lives. God’s ultimate desire is for us to share in His eternal life. Jesus Christ (God the Son) came to the world to bring us eternal life. Eternal life is the life from God the Father. We receive His life by hearing, believing and obeying what Jesus taught about inheriting eternal life. The teachings of Jesus continue to this day, as we read the Bible and hear God’s message proclaimed to us.
How can we hear God's message?
A local church is the context where everyone can hear God’s message. God’s message, or His ‘word’, is able to illuminate our hearts and impart eternal life to us, if we will receive it. His word, declared from the Bible and inspired by the Holy Spirit, enables us to know the truth of eternal life and of God’s purpose for our lives today.
Knowing this truth gives us great freedom to participate in God’s plan for our lives. We can be assured of how to live together with those around us, knowing genuine friendship, practical care and integrity in all our relationships. We can receive guidance on how to be set free from sinful behaviour and attitudes that cause distress, disharmony and division in families and society.
God speaks to us through the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit leads and enables individuals to express God’s word through various gifts and ministries (such as words of knowledge, prophecy, tongues and healing). These gifts and ministries are expressed within the fellowship of a church, where others who are filled with the Holy Spirit can confirm the sincerity of any teaching or direction. This allows us to have confidence that what is proclaimed is not simply someone’s personal opinion, but it is God’s message for us today. The Holy Spirit also convicts our own hearts about the truth of this message, which has the power to bring eternal life if we choose to obey it.
What is our response to God's message?
Every person has the dignity of making an individual response to God’s word. Hearing and obeying are freely given actions of faith. Our response to God's word is never coerced. By hearing and obeying His word, we connect with the supernatural capacity of God to fulfil His purpose and plan for our lives. We are strengthened to confidently live our lives and to serve and bless others around us.
Qualities that are of the same nature as God Himself will become evident in our lives. The Bible lists these qualities – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These qualities are not simply new standards to which we try to comply. They are the result of the Holy Spirit, as He challenges the motivations of our heart. His work in us is real and life-changing.
The new life that we live as Christians, in our homes and at work during the week, will be of the same nature as God Himself. Our lives can be filled with joyful friendship and hospitality as we share the life that has been given to us.