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  • Oh, My! What Shall I Do?

    The following is from a dear lady with whom I have been corresponding for over a year.  She is in mid-years, has a number of children, and had a strong desire to know that she was going to go to Heaven.  How could she know?  What does it mean to be a Christian?  She was confused.  How wonderful to report that a few months ago, she asked Jesus into her heart, and earnestly wants to obey Him and please Him in all things.  Thus, the following email.

    Dear Susan,

    When the Holy Spirit speaks to me regarding something in my life that’s not regarded as sin in the Bible and we are not commanded to obey, is it okay to take time to pray and think it over or do you need to obey straight away?  Does the Holy Spirit only speak to us about sin?

    Examples of some of the things are: money, buying on credit, amount of children, contraception, photos (a bit like what the Amish say about them being vain and prideful). Also about headcoverings.  Also birthdays, round cakes with candles to blow out. God spoke to my heart about jewelry quite a while ago, so I stopped wearing everything apart from my wedding ring but have found myself wondering if in fact this is wrong too.  Are engagement rings and wedding rings pagan?  I stopped wearing makeup and very, very rarely dye my hair. Again because I felt as if God was telling me to stop doing these things. There are just so many areas of my life that I think need to be changed but does God expect me to make these changes all at once or is it a gradual process? There are more examples but I think I have given you enough already!

    In a second email she writes:

    And . . . Is it wrong for a woman to wear trousers/pants?  Is it wrong to buy on credit?  Is it wrong to watch any tv or to let my children watch any tv or films?  Is it more important to change yourself on the inside, to change your heart rather than focus on so many external things?  What about games: board games, playing games with dice or cards?  Could this encourage such things as gambling or playing for chance instead of relying on God? Could it promote competition like in physical sports?  How about creativity?  If it is wrong to have books, etc that depict animals talking, is it wrong to make pictures of animals, etc that are not true to life?  For example, painting an animal say that is brown in real life but you have painted different colors?  Is this called being creative or should we keep things as real as possible? These are a few more things I have in the back of my notebook! hee hee.  Are any of these considered to be sins?

    Dear L,

    You listed so many things!  That is good; you are becoming a thinking Christian!

    In answer to your first question: When the Holy Spirit speaks to me regarding something in my life that’s not regarded as sin in the Bible and we are not commanded to obey, is it ok to take time to pray and think it over or do you need to obey straight away?

    There are a lot of things not in the Bible per se, but the principles are in the Bible on what to do with these things.  The Bible fits all generations and cultures.  The Bible is true for everyone.  Thus, all the answers are in the Bible.  As we begin to follow the Lord, these types of things come up: Shall we do or not do?  Shall we wear or not wear?  Shall we decide this or not decide this?  It is important to follow the Holy Spirit’s leading and not man’s teaching or tradition.  It is often difficult for a young believer, whether she is twenty or forty, to know what the Bible principles are concerning each thing.  And we need to know why we do the things we do.  And we should have answers for ourselves and for our young people.  It is important to find out what God has to say on the subject.  We are to be followers of Him, not others.  That is why it is important to pray and wait on the Lord; He will bring the answer to you.  God is never in a hurry.

    Second, take time to discern the spirit, whose spirit it is.  Is it truly God’s Spirit or the spirit of some man or the spirit of the world or the spirit of an evil one?  Sometimes it is obvious, but other times, it is not.  This is where praying and searching God’s Word and praying some more and waiting for clear leading or knowledge or understanding before deciding on these types of matters is important.  God’s Holy Spirit will never go against God’s Holy Word.

    Third, when you are sure it is the Lord and the decision is correct, then yes, you need to obey right away.  If you don’t obey right away, then that would be sin.

    So, the above is a foundation to begin to answer your questions, but rather than just answer your questions, because then you would just be following another believer, I will ask you some pertinent questions about each topic, and then you can begin to think on them, and see what the Word of God says and how it applies.  There will always be these type of things, so it is important to develop the skill of finding the answers in God’s Word and discerning the spirits to be sure you are listening to His Holy Spirit.  So, yes, the Holy Spirit speaks to us about many things.

    Susan

    I posted this for you all to read because I receive so many questions, and I know that I have had to ponder these and many more

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