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Spiritual Momentum: Grieving the Holy Spirit

February 11, 2024—We have our good and bad days. Some days go by fast, while others are slow. During the bad or slow days, many people consider it could be because their bodies or brains are failing them. However, this is not the case. The truth is you are grieving the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30).  The word “grieve” takes on two definitions as a verb:

  1. Feel grief for or because of.

  2. Cause great distress to someone.


Of these two definitions, which do you think applies to the Scripture? For context, here is exactly what Ephesians 4:30 says, “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” You are correct if you said the second definition applies to this passage. In context, it certainly appears that the first definition is applicable. If we take this approach, it means we will not grieve the Holy Spirit in His absence.


The Holy Bible does not say that the Holy Spirit will separate from you once He is in you. Firstly, Jesus said that He would send the Holy Spirit, and He (the Holy Spirit) will cause you to remember what Jesus has taught you (John 14:26). Secondly, after Jesus was resurrected, He came to His disciples, telling them to receive the Holy Spirit (John 20:22). This fulfilled His promise in John 14:26, which is still being fulfilled today and will continue to be fulfilled.


However, if we read the passages before and after Ephesians 4:30, we can see the opposite is true:


25 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give place to the devil. 28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. 29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.

-       Ephesians 4:25-32


Grieving the Holy Spirit

When we sin, we distress the Holy Spirit and by extension, God and Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is charged with the conviction of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8). Sin is the breaking of God's moral code. The Old Testament is the law, and the New Testament explains how it was fulfilled through the life, ministry, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Romans 3:23 reminds us that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Why is this critical? The price of sin is death. Another way to think of this is death is wages for our sins (Romans 6:23). So, what happens? God comes in the flesh as Jesus Christ, who preaches the gospel. Committing no sin, Jesus was sacrificed on the cross, where He died. Why would He do that? To pay the price of your sins.


No matter if we believe in Jesus Christ or not, when we die, we will be judged (Romans 14:10-12). Those who believe in Jesus Christ and repent have everlasting life, which means that when we die, we will go to heaven. For the people who do not believe in Jesus or do not repent, they will go to hell.


A wooden cross overlooking mountaintops. Trees, hiking
A wooden cross overlooking mountaintops. Photo by Thanti Riess on Unsplash

If mankind were judged based on God’s moral law today, would you be innocent or guilty? By Paul’s account, all have sinned, so all are guilty. Since no man (or woman) can save themselves from God’s judgment, Jesus was necessary to pay the fine for our sins so we may have a chance to be saved from His judgment and have eternal life.


Beloved, if days are going by slowly, or you cannot get up in the morning, read the Bible, and pray. You are grieving the Holy Spirit with sin. Repent and turn to God with your heart, soul, and mind.


Accepting Jesus

Maybe you have not received the Holy Spirit yet because you haven’t accepted Jesus. Jesus is “the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through” Jesus Christ (John 14:6). Jesus shows you the way through His Spirit (the Holy Spirit). Are you ready to accept Jesus Christ as your savior? If so, say this prayer aloud.


God, I confess that Jesus came in the flesh and blood, paid the price for my sins, died on the cross, rose on the third day, ascended to the heavens, and sent the Holy Spirit to help me understand Your ways. For that, I accept Jesus Christ as my savior and Lord, and I welcome the Holy Spirit in my life. In Jesus’s name, I pray, amen! 

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