1 Thessalonians 5:19-22

Illustration of 1 Thessalonians 5:19-22 NIV — Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.

We can quench — or turn off — the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives and in our churches. We can do this by accepting things that seem spiritual but are actually evil. We also can do this by despising what is true and good. John warned Jesus' followers to test the spirits to make sure they were not following a false spirit that would lead them astray (1 John 4:1-3). Similarly, in today's Scripture, Paul reminded folks to test the teaching of those who claim to speak by the power of the Holy Spirit. We are not to discount the message of those who speak God's truth, but we are to test each message and reject what is harmful and obey what is from God. Thankfully, we are not alone in trying to discern good from evil or Spirit-inspired truth from evil untruth. The Holy Spirit, our anointing from the Father, will help us know and discern what is good and help us reject what is evil (1 John 2:20-29).

Father, I ask for wisdom and discernment. More than just human wisdom and discernment, I pray for the ability to discern your truth by the power of your Holy Spirit. In my world, there are so many voices competing for my attention, and I want to follow only your will — not my own or anyone else's. Help me to hold on to what is good and reject what is harmful.