A brief summary of definitions for words used in this lesson.

Anoint: To place oil on the head of a person to request healing of an illness (James 5:14-16). The oil symbolizes God's Spirit, which is the power of God.

Character: The discernment, willingness and determination to make and carry out proper moral, ethical and spiritual choices regardless of the circumstances, pressures and tendency to do otherwise.

Endurance: The ability to withstand prolonged hardship or adversity. The act of staying the course.

Free will, free choice or free moral agency: The freedom to decide without undue pressure whether to embrace or reject a particular course of action; the characteristic of not being governed by prior causes (such as instinct) or divine intervention but able to decide for oneself.

Fruit: The result of a decision or course of action. The fruit of the Spirit is the consequence of the Holy Spirit at work in a person's life.

Human nature: The characteristics, tendencies and behavior of a human being. It is fundamentally neutral, although over time self-gratification tends to predominate. As creatures of choice, we are enjoined and expected to resist the pulls of base self-motivation and respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Persecution: Affliction, abuse, harassment or attacks on our person or character. Persecution for obedience to God allows us to suffer for righteousness' sake. Such abuse may include personal, political, religious and psychological persecution.

Reconciliation: Restoration; the opposite of alienation. We are reconciled to a relationship with God the Father through repentance of sin and acceptance of the sacrifice of Christ. Alienation from God results from sin (Isaiah 59:1-2).

Repentance: A reversal of direction in attitude and actions. We repent when we realize we are headed the wrong way, then stop, turn around and begin moving in the right direction. Spiritually, it involves genuine sorrow for sins and a resolve to do what is right.

Reward: Something God gives to those who please Him. In the broadest sense, a reward is whatever we receive for our actions, good or bad. We cannot earn our salvation, which is a gift from God (Romans 6:23), yet Christ shows through the parable of the talents that some will receive greater rewards than others in the Kingdom of God because of their service to their Creator (Matthew 25:14-30). The righteous reap their ultimate reward at the time of the resurrection of the just.

Sovereignty (of God): The unchallenged rule, power and autonomy of God. The Creator is sovereign in that no one can successfully challenge His supremacy.

Suffering: Pain caused by physical, mental or psychological factors or any combination of the three.

Trial: A test of faith, patience or stamina through being subjected to suffering or temptation. We are tried through the difficulties of life. Such tests work patience and build and reveal our character. "If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small," wrote Solomon (Proverbs 24:10). Successfully endured trials build holy, righteous character and trust in God.




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