There are even more gifts under the Tree of Life!

By L. AGNES RUSSELL,

He shall be named “JESUS; for He shall save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21) And, “…the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23) In John 17:3, praying to the Father, Jesus defined, “And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, Whom Thou hast sent.” He “freely gives us all things,” (Romans 8:32), and II Peter 1:3 asserts that “His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” 

Gifts must be received in order to do any good.  Jesus sent down the “Promise of the Father,” (Luke 24:49), His precious Holy Spirit, and offered Him to everyone who seeks to have Him.  In  Luke 11:10-13 Jesus promised that the Father will “give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him.”  Another proof text is Acts 2:38-39, “…ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” 

The Holy Spirit, God Himself, lists His own gifts in I Corinthians 12 and 14.  These gifts are given to enable us to carry out the Great Commission, in which Jesus told the disciples to “teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you,” (Matthew 28:19, 20)

Jesus had commanded them to “preach, saying The kingdom of heaven is at hand, Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:7)  In John 14, the same chapter that has the comforting funeral passage about His going “to prepare a place for you,” Jesus proclaimed, “He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall He do also…” (vv. 3, 12)  If we believe and are comforted by those first words at a funeral, we should also believe His other teachings in that context. 

Jesus came to “destroy the works of the devil,” (I John 3:8) How did He do that?  He modeled the things He also commanded them to do as He sent them out before Him.  We have been so lax, lazy, loveless, and limited in carrying out His commands. But in these last days many across the world are beginning to catch the vision that they have been given a 

mandate to do the very things He did, empowered by the Holy Spirit in love, so that “Thy kingdom come and Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10)

Some of those disciples back then were thrilled that the demons were subject to them, as they had been given authority to cast them out; but Jesus said that instead, they should “rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20)  Thank God for the gift of deliverance that I received in 1971.  A servant of God prayed for me, and the result was complete freedom from a problem I had had for years!  I was no longer plagued by that problem, even to the point of no more temptations.  All these years since then!  Praise God!

I am so glad that the Holy Spirit leads and guides us into all truth and into the practice of that truth.  We can’t give up seeking God diligently to receive His promises.  When Jesus was on this earth, He displayed the will of the Father by healing everyone who asked Him, by raising the dead, and by casting out demons left and right!  Does He want anything less for us?

Our family has not yet experienced all the healing we are seeking.  Several in our family inherited myotonic muscular dystrophy, which has resulted in symptomatic problems for my husband Royce and two daughters.  Because of the MMD, we lost one precious granddaughter who only lived four days, and our grandson Joshua in Tennessee is an invalid.

We seek God for the healing of these loved ones, waiting to see Joshua “rise up and walk,” to be able to “leap for joy,” and to be a Spirit-filled man of God!  Royce has recently become afflicted with symptoms of dementia, possibly resulting from another stroke he had since the one he first had.

One day I was so discouraged, but when I went to the computer and typed in “dementia healing testimonies,” I found several, which encouraged me so much!  One woman was healed by the word of God and prayer, others by prayer and coconut oil!  We are now using both, and we are thanking God for His natural and supernatural provisions for His children, as He promised in Psalm 103 and elsewhere. 

It is a wonderful gift that both Jesus and the Holy Spirit are “interceding,” or praying, for us to the Father. (Romans 8:26, 34) Did you ever wonder why?  This was brought to my attention recently, as a preacher recounted why Jesus told Peter He prayed for him —“that thy faith fail not” (Luke 22:32).  I’m thankful to think Jesus is praying that about me.  He asked poignantly in Luke 18:8, “when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”  Let us pray that we will not be guilty of disappointing the Saviour.  It’s for sure He will never disappoint His children, those who believe on His wonderful name!