Paul, Apostle To Gentiles
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But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb and called me by his grace, to reveal his Son in me that I might preach him among the Gentiles, immediately I did not confer with flesh and blood,
And as he proceeded, he came near Damascus; and suddenly there shone round about him a light from heaven; and falling to the earth, he heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I AM Jesus whom thou dost persecute; it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.read more.
And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what it behooves thee to do. And the men who journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing indeed the voice, but seeing no one. Then Saul arose from the earth; and opening his eyes, he saw no one; so they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus where he was three days without sight, and neither ate nor drank. And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; to whom the Lord said in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord. And the Lord said unto him, Arise and go into the street which is called Straight and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus; for, behold, he prays and has seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight. Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, of how much evil he has done to thy saints in Jerusalem, and even here he has authority from the princes of the priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go; for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; for I will show him how much it behooves him to suffer for my name. Then Ananias went and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared unto thee in the way as thou didst come, has sent me, that thou might receive thy sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales; and he received sight immediately and arose and was baptized. And when he had received food, he was comforted. Then Saul was certain days with the disciples who were at Damascus.
And it came to pass that, as I made my journey and was come near unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me. And I fell unto the ground and heard a voice saying unto me, Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me? And I answered, Who art thou, Lord? And he said unto me, I Am Jesus of Nazareth, whom thou dost persecute.read more.
And those that were with me saw indeed the light and were afraid, but they did not hear the voice of him that spoke to me. And I said, What shall I do, Lord? And the Lord said unto me, Arise and go into Damascus, and there it shall be told thee of all things which are appointed for thee to do. And when I could not see for the clarity of that light, being led by the hand of those that were with me, I came into Damascus. And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good witness of all the Jews who dwelt there, came unto me and stood and said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked up upon him. And he said, The God of our fathers has chosen thee that thou should know his will and see that Just One and should hear the voice of his mouth. For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard. And now why tarriest thou? Arise and be baptized and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
Whereupon as I went to Damascus with authority and commission from the princes of the priests, at midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and those who journeyed with me. And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute me? It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.read more.
And I said, Who art thou, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus whom thou dost persecute. But rise and stand upon thy feet, for I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen and of those things in which I will appear unto thee; delivering thee from the people and from the Gentiles, unto whom now I send thee to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive remission of sins and inheritance among those who are sanctified by the faith that is in me.
and when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship that we should go unto the Gentiles, and they unto the circumcision.
For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not wrought by me, unto the obedience of the Gentiles, with word and with deed, with power of signs and wonders, in virtue of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem and round about unto Illyricum, I have filled the entire area with the gospel of the Christ. And in this manner I preached this gospel, not where Christ had been named previously, not to build upon a foundation belonging to another,read more.
but, as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see, and those that have not heard shall understand.
But we will not glory of things beyond our measure, but according to the measure of the rule, of the measure which God has distributed to us, to reach even unto you. For we do not overextend ourselves by reaching unto you; for we are also come unto you with the gospel of the Christ, Not glorying of things beyond our measure in the labours of others; but having hope of the increase of your faith, that we shall be abundantly enlarged among you according to our rule,read more.
to preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, without entering into the measure of another to glory in that which has already been made ready.
of which I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the operation of his power. Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of the Christ and to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the ages has been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.
For though I preach the gospel, I have no reason to glory, for it is an obligation laid upon me; for woe is me, if I do not preach the gospel!
I am debtor both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians; both to the wise and to the unwise. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to announce the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
Therefore being certain of that terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God, and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences. For we do not commend ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf that ye may have something to answer those who glory in appearance, and not in heart. For whether we are fools, it is unto God; or whether we are sane, it is for your cause.read more.
For the charity of the Christ constrains us because we judge thus: that if one died for all, then all are dead:
nor did we seek glory of men neither of you nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome unto you as the apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, as a mother feeding and caring for her children, loving you so much, that we were willing to give unto you, not only the gospel of God, but even our own souls, because ye are dear unto us.read more.
For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail, for labouring night and day, not to be a burden unto any of you, we preached among you the gospel of God.
My answer to those that examine me is this, Do we not have authority to eat and to drink? Do we not have authority to bring with us a sister, a wife, as also the other apostles and as the brothers of the Lord and Cephas?read more.
Do only Barnabas and I not have authority to forbear working? Who serves as a soldier at his own expense? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? or who feeds a flock and does not eat of the milk of the flock? Do I say this only according to men? or does not the law say the same also? For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treads out the grain. Does God take care for oxen? Or does he say it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that plows should plow in hope, and that he that threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope. If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap material things from you? If others are partakers of this authority over you, why not us? Nevertheless we have not used this authority, but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ. Do ye not know that those who work with sacred things live of the things of the sanctuary? and those who serve at the altar partake of the altar? Even so the Lord has ordained that those who preach the gospel should live of the gospel. But I have used none of these things, neither have I written these things that it should be so done unto me; for it were better for me to die than that anyone should make this my glory void. For though I preach the gospel, I have no reason to glory, for it is an obligation laid upon me; for woe is me, if I do not preach the gospel! For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward; but if against my will, the stewardship of the gospel is committed unto me. What reward, then, shall I have? That preaching the gospel, I may make the gospel of the Christ without charge, that I abuse not my authority in the gospel.
For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your slaves for Jesus' sake.
I say the truth in Christ, I do not lie, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, that I have great sorrow and continual pain in my heart. For I could wish that myself were anathema from Christ for my brethren, those who are my kinsmen according to the flesh,
Therefore, though I am free regarding everyone, yet I have made myself slave unto all, that I might gain the more. And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to those that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain those that are under the law; to those that are without law, as without law (being not without law of God, but under the law of Christ), that I might gain those that are without law.read more.
To the weak I became as weak, that I might gain the weak; I am made all things to everyone, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel's sake, that I might be partaker together of it.
But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel, so that my bonds in Christ are manifest in all the palace and in all other places; and many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.read more.
Some indeed preach the Christ even out of envy and strife, but others also out of good will. Some preach the Christ out of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add tribulation to my bonds, but the others out of charity, knowing that I am placed here for the defense of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretense, or in truth, Christ is preached, and I therein do rejoice, and will even rejoice. For I know that this shall become my saving health through your prayer and the nourishment of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, according to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour, yet I do not know what to choose. For I am in a strait between the two, having a desire to depart and to be with Christ, which is far better: nevertheless, to abide in the flesh is more needful for you. And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith, that your glorying in Jesus Christ may be more abundant by my coming to you again.
And lest the greatness of the revelations should exalt me above measure, there is given to me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord three times that it might be taken from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, I will rather glory in my weaknesses that the power of Christ may dwell in me.read more.
Therefore I am content in weaknesses, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake, for when I am weak, then am I strong.
But we have this treasure in clay vessels that the excellency of the virtue may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are unsure of our lives, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;read more.
always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
Giving no offense in anything, that the ministry not be blamed, But in all things showing ourselves as the ministers of God in much patience, in tribulations, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings,read more.
in chastity, in knowledge, in meekness, in kindness, in the Holy Spirit, in unfeigned charity, in the word of truth, in the power of God through the weapons of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, through honour and dishonour, through evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet as men of the truth; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, but, behold, we live; as chastened, but not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
I speak as concerning the reproach, as though we had been weak. Howbeit in that in which another is bold, (I speak foolishly), I am bold also. Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I. Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more, in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths often.read more.
Of the Jews five times I received forty stripes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned; three times I suffered shipwreck, night and day I have been in the deep; in journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by those of my nation, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in labour and travail, in many watches, in hunger and thirst, in many fasts, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without, my daily combat is the welfare of all the congregations . Who is sick, and I am not sick? who stumbles, and I burn not?
I have been a fool, glorying; ye have compelled me; for I ought to have been commended of you, for in nothing am I behind the grandiose apostles, though I am nothing. Truly the signs of the apostle were worked out among you in all patience, in signs and wonders and power.
And when they had gone through the isle unto Paphos, they found a certain wise man, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Barjesus, who was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man, who called for Barnabas and Saul and desired to hear the word of God. But Elymas the wise man (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the proconsul from the faith.read more.
Then Saul (who also is Paul), filled with the Holy Spirit, set his eyes on him and said, O full of all deception and all licentiousness, thou son of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord? And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is against thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness, and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand. Then the proconsul, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.
And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul so that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them.
For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not wrought by me, unto the obedience of the Gentiles, with word and with deed, with power of signs and wonders, in virtue of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem and round about unto Illyricum, I have filled the entire area with the gospel of the Christ.
And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be founded in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
being certain, beloved brethren, that you are chosen of God. For our gospel did not come unto you in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and in full assurance as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.
That I may know him and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death, if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.
Therefore we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord (for we walk by faith, not by sight). We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.read more.
Therefore we also procure, whether present or absent, that we may please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ that each one may receive according to that which they have done in the body, good or evil.
according to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour, yet I do not know what to choose.read more.
For I am in a strait between the two, having a desire to depart and to be with Christ, which is far better: nevertheless, to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.
For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my release is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith; from now on there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day, and not to me only, but unto all those also that have loved his appearing.
For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor that ye through his poverty might be enriched.
We then that are stronger ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not please ourselves. Let each one of us please his neighbour in that which is good, unto edification. For the Christ did not please himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of those that reproached thee fell on me.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, made in the likeness of men,read more.
and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross . Therefore, God also has highly exalted him and given him a name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things in earth and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is Lord in the glory of God the Father.
Be ye imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.
I do not write these things to shame you, but to warn you, as to my beloved sons. For though ye may have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet ye shall not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Therefore, I beseech you that ye imitate me.read more.
For this cause I have sent Timothy unto you, who is my beloved son and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which are in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every congregation .
Not as though I had already attained it, either were already perfect, but I follow after, if I may lay hold of that for which I have also been laid hold of by the Christ, Jesus. Brethren, I do not reckon to have laid hold of it yet, but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and extending myself unto those things which are ahead, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.read more.
Let us, therefore, as many as are perfect, be thus minded; and if in anything ye are otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Nevertheless, in that unto which we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us have the same mind. Brethren, be imitators of me and consider those who so walk, as ye have us for a pattern.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is any praise, exercise yourselves in these things. Those things, which ye have both learned and received and heard and seen in me, do, and the God of peace shall be with you.
Now we charge you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walks out of order, and not after the doctrine which ye received of us. For you know in what manner you ought to imitate us, for we did not walk disorderly among you, neither did we eat any man's bread for nought, but working with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you,read more.
Not because we did not have authority, but to give you an example that you might imitate us.
who now rejoice in my sufferings for you and fulfill in my flesh that which is lacking of the tribulations of the Christ for his body's sake, which is the congregation ,
For in the same manner that the sufferings of the Christ abound in us, so also our consolation abounds by Christ. And if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and saving health, which is effected in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and saving health. And our hope of you is steadfast, being certain, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.read more.
Because, brothers, we would not have you ignore our tribulation which was done unto us in Asia, that we were burdened beyond our strength, in such a manner that we despaired even of life: But we had the sentence of death in ourselves that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead;
But we have this treasure in clay vessels that the excellency of the virtue may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are unsure of our lives, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;read more.
always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we who live are always delivered unto death for Jesus' sake that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. So then death works in us, but life in you.
For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with carnal wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world and more abundantly towards you.
And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called the elders of the congregation . And when they were come to him, he said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, serving the Lord with all humility and with many tears and temptations, which have befallen me by the ambushes of the Jews,read more.
and how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have showed you and have taught you publicly and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews and also to the Gentiles, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
For we are not as many, false merchandisers of the word of God, but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.
Therefore seeing we have this ministry, according to the mercy we have received, we fault not, but remove from ourselves every hidden shameful thing, not walking in craftiness, nor adulterating the word of God, but in the manifestation of the truth, commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
Ye are witnesses, and God also, of how holy and just and irreprehensible our behaviour was among you that believe, as ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father with his children, that ye would walk worthy of God, who has called you unto his kingdom and glory.
For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ.
Have I committed an offence in humbling myself that ye might be exalted because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely? I deprived the other congregations , taking wages of them, to do you service. And when I was present with you and had need, I was not a burden to any of you, for that which was lacking to me was supplied by the brethren which came from Macedonia; and in all things I have kept myself from being burdensome unto you, and so will I keep myself.read more.
It is the truth of Christ in me that this glory shall not be sealed up unto me in the regions of Achaia. Why? because I do not love you? God knows.
Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you, and I will not be burdensome to you, for I seek not your things, but you; for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children. And I will very gladly spend and be utterly spent for your souls though the more abundantly I love you, the less I am loved.
And the Lord make you to multiply and make charity to abound among you and toward all men, even as it is with us toward you,
First, I thank my God through Jesus, the Christ, regarding you all, that your faith is preached in all the world. For God is my witness, whom I serve in my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I always remember you in my prayers, making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and charity unto all the saints, cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him;read more.
illuminating the eyes of your understanding, that ye may know what is the hope of his calling and what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints and what is the exceeding greatness of his power in us who believe, by the operation of the power of his strength,
Therefore in this manner we pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of his calling and fill each will with goodness and the work of faith with power that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be clarified in you, and ye in him, by the grace of our God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.
But I beseech you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ, and by the charity of the Spirit, that ye help me with prayers to God for me, that I may be delivered from the disobedient in Judaea and that the offering of my service to the saints in Jerusalem may be accepted, that I may come unto you with joy by the will of God and may be refreshed together with you.
and for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth with confidence, to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that in this I may speak boldly as I ought to speak.
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did exhort you by us; we beseech you in Christ's name, be ye reconciled to God.
And in this manner I preached this gospel, not where Christ had been named previously, not to build upon a foundation belonging to another,
According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another builds upon it. But let each one see how the building is built.
Who then is Paul? and who is Apollos? but servants by whom ye believed, each one according to that which the Lord gave. I have planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that plants anything, neither he that waters, but God that gives the increase.read more.
Now he that plants and he that waters are one although each one shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God; ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.
as ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father with his children, that ye would walk worthy of God, who has called you unto his kingdom and glory.
My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ is formed in you,
nor did we seek glory of men neither of you nor yet of others, when we might have been burdensome unto you as the apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, as a mother feeding and caring for her children,
For I think that God has set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world and to angels and to men.
Now thanks be unto God, who always causes us to triumph in the Christ and makes manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place. For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in those that are saved and in those that perish; to the one we are the savour of death unto death and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?
Paul, slave of Jesus, the Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God
Paul and Timothy, slaves of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
Paul, slave of God, and apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect and the knowledge of the truth which is according to godliness;
Thou, therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and charity which is in Christ Jesus. Keep the good deposit committed unto thee by the Holy Spirit which dwells in us.