Wednesday, December 5, 2018
Ephesians 4:7 – 8 7But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. 8This is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men.”
I’m sure you’ve heard the Christmas song The Twelve Days of Christmas. I’ve always thought it to be the strangest Christmas song ever. Why would my true love give me eight maids-a-milking and nine ladies dancing? Why would I give my true love ten lords, eleven pipers, and twelve drummers?
According to Roman Catholic tradition, the twelve days of Christmas begin on Christmas day and lead up to Epiphany on January 6th, the date believed to be the day the wise men from the east visited Jesus. Supposedly it is a song of Christian instruction dating to the 16th century religious wars in England, with hidden references to the basic teachings of the Faith. Some contend that it was a mnemonic device to teach the catechism to youngsters. The “true love” mentioned in the song is not an earthly suitor but refers to God Himself. The “me” who receives the presents refers to every baptized person who is part of the Christian Faith. Each of the “days” represents some aspect of the Christian Faith that was important for children to learn. There is no historical evidence to support this claim, but if you are interested in what the twelve gifts might represent, you should visit this web site – http://www.crivoice.org/cy12days.html.
My interest in relating that information to you is this – as born-again believers we have received far more than just twelve gifts from God, who is the True Lover of our souls. When we trust Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, there are 31 specific things that God gives us as gifts. We have been studying some of them since Thanksgiving, but there is no way we are going to get through all of them before Christmas. So many gifts and so little time. But here’s the list in alphabetical order with their Scripture references so you can study them on your own. I hope they bring you as much joy as they have brought me.
Gifts God Gives Scripture References
Daily Provisions Matt. 6:33
Encouragement Rom. 15:5 ; 2 Thess. 2:16
Endurance Rom. 15:5
Everything we need for life 2 Peter 1:3-4
Fullness in Christ Col. 2:10
Gifts to the church Eph. 4:11
Grace Eph. 1:6
Himself as a sacrifice Matt. 20:28; Gal. 1:4; Eph. 5:2; 1 Tim. 2:6; Titus 2:14
His Son John 3:16 ; Rom. 8:32
Holy Spirit John 3:34 ; John 14:16 ; 1 John 3:24 ; 1 John 4:13
Hope 2 Thess. 2:16
Inheritance Acts 20:32
Joy 1 Thess. 1:6
Knowledge Matt. 13:11 ; Eph. 1:17 ; 2 Cor. 4:6 ; 1 John 5:20
Life John 5:21 ; John 6:27 ; John 10:28
Light John 1:9
Living Water John 4:10
Ministry of reconciliation 2 Cor. 5:18
New Birth 1 Peter 1:3
Peace John 14:27 ; 2 Thess. 3:16
Power and authority Luke 9:1 ; 2 Tim. 1:7
Relief from trouble 2 Thess. 1:7
Repentance Acts 5:31
Rest Matt. 11:28
Rights of children of God John 1:12
Spiritual gifts for serving Him 1 Cor. 12:7-11 ; Hebrews 2:4
Strength Phil. 4:13 ; 1 Tim. 1:12 ; 2 Tim. 4:17
Thorns to keep us humble 2 Cor. 12:7
Unity Rom. 15:5
Victory 1 Cor. 15:57
Wisdom Acts 7:10 ; 2 Peter 3:15 ; James 1:5
Print this list out and put it in your Bible. May I suggest that you use the month of January, which has 31 days, to study one of these gifts each day. It’s a great way to start the new year. It’s a significant way to strengthen your relationship with God. Enjoy the gifts God has given you. They are a living testimony to your value to Him. They will sustain you through difficulty. They will strengthen you in weakness. They will supply you with grace in every emotional and spiritual need you experience.
They are freely given to you by your One True Love.