August 22, 2009
The flesh is the part of us that resists our transformation into the new person in Christ.
And since this is the case the devil wants to use the pleasures of our flesh to keep us enslaved to our old habits and sinful attitudes.
We have daily choices to live according to God's righteous desires, and deny sin. When we use our power to choose God's way instead of sin's way, we crucify our flesh.
God helps us crucify our flesh through the Holy Spirit so that we may live in the newness of the Spirit.
The desires we must crucify include fornication, covetousness, stealing, and lying plus follow the rest of the ten commandments.
As we put these things to death, we are able to then put on the new man, renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created us.
1 Peter 4:1-2 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
When a man is crucified, he dies. And when you die, you're dead.
Therefore those of us who belong to Jesus need to crucify the flesh so that we become dead to the flesh, dead to our passions, and dead to our desires.
Galatians 5:24 And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
Now if this is true, why do we still have ungodly desires, and why do we still yield to the flesh and it's passions?
Also since these things still bother us, does that mean that we are not one who belongs to Jesus?
Are we failures as Christians? Do we really belong to satan and not God?
Have I struck a nerve? Perhaps you've pondered over these exact same questions.
I suspect that all of us may have felt this way at one time or another.
Rest assured, you are still a child of the King if you have excepted Jesus Christ as your lord and savior.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
God paid a high price for you. He sent His own Son to die in your place.
Therefore the intent of (Gal 5:24) is not to discourage, but to encourage us to resist these fleshly desires and passions.
What is dead is the strings that attach us to sin that no longer bind us because they were cut loose and destroyed by the Blood of Jesus and the Word of God.
Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
So what we need to do is commit to responding to the flesh in different ways than how we used to by choosing to be a living sacrifice to God and by being obedient to him.
Romans 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
For example: If your flesh wants to look at a person to lust after, look the other way. Or if your flesh wants to take someone else's valubles when they leave you alone in the room, you should change your thoughts to something possitive.
Another one could be if you know you're going to be alone tonight and will be able to surf for porn on the internet, you could invite a friend over so you don't have the opportunity to get into trouble.
Keeping your mind off of your own desires by helping others is another good way to keep from fulfilling the lusts of the flesh.
Galatians 5:13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.
Crucifying your flesh does not mean that your life will lack pleasure. God is the author of true pleasure that is not tainted with sin in any way.
Matthew 13:44 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field."
In fact, God provides perfect pleasures that bring lasting satisfaction and joy, unlike the temporary pleasures that selfish sin could ever offer.
David Hopkins is a "Christian Article Writer" who specializes in helping people remember to glorify God in everything that they do, so they don't miss out on any of His wonderful blessings.
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