Posted by Mark Labuschagne on Tuesday, January 8, 2013
I get to deal with many Christians who seem to have an endless struggle with the "desire's of the flesh" and find it hard to deal with these struggles once and for all.
The word of God tells us in Gal 5:16 So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. Today. I would like to try and help you deal with the issues you struggle with. I truly believe, before we can experience the healing power of Christ in this and every area of our lives, we MUST earnestly desire change. There are hundreds upon hundreds of born-again believers who continue to struggle with acts of the sinful nature, despite having accepted the grace that comes through Christ. Dealing with these acts has now become paramount (a matter of chief importance) to our walk.
The only way to overcome the corrupt desires and propensities (a tendency to behave in a certain way) of our nature, is by submitting (to give over or yield to the power or authority of another) to the influences of the Holy Spirit. Friend if you struggle with the acts of the sinful nature, it simply means you remain submissive to its influences. In order to change we have to learn to submit to the power and influence of the Holy Spirit.
Understanding that we do not have to deal with sin, but, rather see ourselves as victorious over sin because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, is where our salvation lies. He remains the power in us who believe. 2 Cor 10:4-5 "We use God's mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God". We capture these rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ. The strongholds of philosophy, paganism, and every act of the sinful nature should be demolished, and all the opinions, plans, and purposes of the world should become subject to the all-conquering Redeemer.
By and through submission we actually acknowledge our utter dependency on the Holy Spirit and the power that has been granted to each and every one who believes. The power to overcome all things already reigns on the inside of each one of us, it now remains a matter of submitting our will to that overcoming victory or surrendering to the acts of our sinful nature, the decision is ours.
Gal 5: 19-20 The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. I WARN YOU, this my friend is not something to be taken lightly, in other words, by submitting to the sinful nature (the works of the flesh) and all that it represents, Paul says, will NOT inherit the kingdom of God. The human heart must be changed and Jesus Christ became a sacrifice for many so that NO one should perish.
May our hearts remain submitted to the leading of the blessed Holy Spirit and in doing so, walk in the new life that Christ guaranteed on the Cross of Calvary for everyone that would believe.
The plan of the Cross was that man would be saved, and the condition for salvation is confession and faith (Rom 10:9). If we believe in our heart that we have been saved, then the effects of the Cross must be demonstrated (Evident) in the believers heart. If we are saved, then we no longer surrender to the works of the flesh, but if we are submitted to the Spirit, and our lives will exhibit this fruit. Gal 5:22 - 25 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
"If it be our desire to act under the guidance and power of the Holy Spirit, even though we may not be freed from the stirrings and oppositions of the corrupt nature which remains in us, it shall not have dominion over us. Believers are engaged in a conflict, in which they earnestly desire that grace may obtain full and speedy victory. And those who desire to be led by the Holy Spirit, are not under the law as a covenant of works, nor exposed to its awful curse. Their hatred of sin, and desires after holiness, show that they have a part in the salvation of the gospel. The works of the flesh are many and manifest. And these sins will shut men out of heaven. Yet what numbers, calling themselves Christians, live in these, and say they hope for heaven! The fruits of the Spirit, or of the renewed nature, which we are to do, are named. And as the apostle had chiefly named works of the flesh, not only hurtful to men themselves, but tending to make them so to one another, so here he chiefly notices the fruits of the Spirit, which tend to make Christians agreeable one to another, as well as to make them happy. The fruits of the Spirit plainly show, that such are led by the Spirit. By describing the works of the flesh and fruits of the Spirit, we are told what to avoid and oppose, and what we are to cherish and cultivate; and this is the sincere care and endeavor of all real Christians. Sin does not now reign in their mortal bodies, so that they obey it, Rom 6:12, for they seek to destroy it. Christ never will own those who yield themselves up to be the servants of sin. And it is not enough that we cease to do evil, but we must learn to do well. Our conversation will always be answerable to the principle which guides and governs us, Rom 8:5. We must set ourselves in earnest to mortify the deeds of the body, and to walk in newness of life. Not being desirous of vain-glory, or unduly wishing for the esteem and applause of men, not provoking or envying one another, but seeking to bring forth more abundantly those good fruits, which are, through Jesus Christ, to the praise and glory of God." Matthew Henry's Concise Commenary