Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit… Fear of the Lord

All 7 Gifts… Will YOU receive them?

A List of all the previous GIFTS…

(1) Wisdom = the desire for the things of God, and to direct our whole life and all our actions to His honor and glory

I did some extensive research on the subject of Wisdom and what the Church and Sacred Scripture has to say about this particular gift that – appropriately so – is the FIRST gift of the Seven Gifts…

The writers of, “Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, The Song of Songs, Wisdom, and Sirach. The writers of the Sapiential Books consider wisdom in its relation to man as the perfection of knowledge showing itself in action.emphasis added…

Read more on Wisdom…

(2)Understanding – enables us to know more clearly the mysteries of faith

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches…

The Holy Spirit gives a spiritual understanding of the Word of God to those who read or hear it, according to the dispositions of their hearts. By means of the words, actions, and symbols that form the structure of a celebration, the Spirit puts both the faithful and the ministers into a living relationship with Christ, the Word and Image of the Father, so that they can live out the meaning of what they hear, contemplate, and do in the celebration. ~ CCC§1101, emphasis added

When worshiping God and His Son, those who receive this gift of UNDERSTANDING are more able to give 100% of themselves because they KNOW WHO they are worshiping.  They KNOW WHY they are worshiping.  And their lives begin to REFLECT that UNDERSTANDING in what they say and do.

Read more on UNDERSTANDING...

(3) Counsel – warns us of the deceits of the devil, and of the dangers to salvation.

“The gift of counsel enables one to judge promptly and correctly what action is to be taken in a particular case… the gift of counsel enables one to decide by a sort of supernatural intuition the correct course of action.” ~Encyclopedia Dictionary of the Bible, Welcome to the Catholic Church, CD-ROM, emphasis added

Read more on Counsel…

(3) Fortitude – strengthen us to do the will of God in all things …

Fortitude (sometimes called strength, courage, or might) is also one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. ~Glossary, Catechism of the Catholic Church

Though there is not much to be said about Fortitude – probably because the word speaks for itself – it is important to note when Fortitude is addressed in the Faith and for what purpose…

Read more about Fortitude…

(5) Knowledge – enables us to discover the Will of God in all things…

King Solomon says this with regards to Wisdom, which in turn, is also with regards to Knowledge…

For she is an initiate in the knowledge of God, and an associate in His works. ~ Wisdom 8:4,emphasis added

Read more about KNOWLEDGE…

(6) Piety – Love God as a Father, and obey Him because we love Him.

One of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. This gift begets in one’s heart a filial affection for God and a tender devotion towards persons and things consecrated to Him, and gives one a holy joy in his religious duties.

~ Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Bible, Welcome to the Catholic Church, CD-ROM, emphasis added

Piety is also a VIRTUE.  Like the GIFT, the virtue also displays in the subject a LOVE for God Almighty…

Read more about PIETY…

THE FINAL GIFT – Fear of the Lord (a.k.a. the Fear of [Offending] the Lord)

(7) Fear of the Lord – have a dread of sin and fear of offending God

One of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit which ensures our awe and reverence before God ~ Glossary of Terms, The Catechism of the Catholic Church

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. ~ Proverbs 1:7

Jesus Christ won us salvation by His death on the cross…

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but by Me.~Jn 14:6

But that very action in NO WAY guarantees that we, His creation, won’t REJECT His offer of salvation.  And how would we reject it?  By turning from His commandments, by ignoring His degrees, by doing our own thing rather than God’s Holy Will…

So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please Him.

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive good or evil, according to what he has done in the body.

Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men; but what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. 2Cor 5: 9-11, emphasis added

It is this reminder of all men will die and then comes judgment (cf. Hebrews 9:27), that should call men…

… to conversion while God is still giving them “the acceptable time, . . . the day of salvation (2Cor 6:2).” It inspires a holy fear of God and commits them to the justice of the Kingdom of God.

It proclaims the “blessed hope” of the Lord’s return, when He will come “to be glorified in His saints, and to be marveled at in all who have believed (Titus 2: 13; 2Thes 1:10).” ~CCC§1041, emphasis added

It is in this guarantee, this reminder of…

The Last Judgment will come when Christ returns in glory. Only the Father knows the day and the hour; only He determines the moment of its coming. Then through His Son Jesus Christ He will pronounce the final word on all history.

We shall know the ultimate meaning of the whole work of creation and of the entire economy of salvation and understand the marvelous ways by which His Providence led everything towards its final end.

The Last Judgment will reveal that God’s justice triumphs over all the injustices committed by His creatures and that God’s love is stronger than death (cf. Song 8:6). ~CCC§1040, emphasis added

We, as God’s chosen, as His children, must be aware of our words and our actions.  When we do harm to the Body by lying, cheating, ignoring, choosing the immoral, participating in evil, we do well to SEPARATE ourselves from God’s Love – and in TRUTH – from the Salvation won for us by His Son…

The contrition called “imperfect” (or “attrition”) is also a gift of God, a prompting of the Holy Spirit. It is born of the consideration of sin’s ugliness or the fear of eternal damnation and the other penalties threatening the sinner (contrition of fear)…

It should be the soul’s desire to receive forgiveness and reunification with God…

Such a stirring of conscience can initiate an interior process which, under the prompting of grace, will be brought to completion by sacramental absolution.

By itself however, imperfect contrition [CANNOT] obtain the forgiveness of grave sins, [BUT] it disposes one to obtain forgiveness in the sacrament of Penance. ~CCC§1453, emphasis added

Thus…

The reception of this sacrament ought to be prepared for by an examination of conscience made in the light of the Word of God.

The passages best suited to this can be found in the Ten Commandments, the moral catechesis of the Gospels and the apostolic Letters, such as the Sermon on the Mount and the apostolic teachings (cf. Mt 5:7; Rom 12-15; 1 Cor 12-13; Gal 5; Eph 4-6; etc). ~CCC§1454

The sacrament called Reconciliation, only exists in the Church Christ established, because it was only to the Apostles and their successors that Jesus gave the power to forgive sins:

“…Peace be with you.  As the Father has sent Me, even so I send you.”  And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.  If you forgive the sins of any they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”  ~Jn 20: 19c-23

This is another reason why frequent confession is highly recommended for those seeking holiness in Christ’s Holy Church.

For our separated brethren – those outside of Christ’s Church and still desiring a union with Him and thus desiring the gift of Salvation, take heart and have…

Respect for His name [which] is an expression of the respect owed to the mystery of God Himself and to the whole sacred reality it evokes.

The sense of the sacred is part of the virtue of religion:

“Are these feelings of fear and awe Christian feelings or not? . . . I say this, then, which I think no one can reasonably dispute.

They are the class of feelings we should have – yes, have to an intense degreeif we literally had the sight of Almighty God;

Therefore they are the class of feelings which we shall have, if we realize His presence. In proportion as we believe that He is present, we shall have them;

And not to have them, is not to realize, [is] not to believe that He is present.” ~ John Henry Newman, Cardinal, Parochial and Plain Sermons V, 2 (London: Longmans, Green and Co., 1907) 21-22.

~ CCC§2144, emphasis added

Or as the Psalmist sings…

Come, O sons, listen to me, I will teach you the fear of the LORD. ~ Psalms 34:11

And so I close out this final GIFT of the HOLY SPIRIT with the words of the Prophet Isaiah…

The LORD is exalted, for He dwells on high; He will fill Zion with justice and righteousness; and He will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is His treasure.  ~Isaiah 33: 5-6, emphasis added

7 GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

INTRODUCTION:

The Gift of WISDOM

The Gift of UNDERSTANDING

The Gift of COUNSEL

The Gift of FORTITUDE

The Gift of KNOWLEDGE

The Gift of PIETY

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