I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill (give into) the lust (desires) of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. Galatians 5:16-18
I’m just getting myself round to really studying the bible again and this was the scripture that I was given this morning.
It’s amazing how we can flip through scripture and scan over things and miss out on so much! Taking a look at the above scripture we could read it and think, “Yep, I need to stick close to God and not do wrong stuff” and then go off and make a cuppa and not think much of it again, I’ve done that plenty of times too! However, this morning was different, I wanted to get as much out of that scripture as I could because I knew it was something God wanted me to know.
I’ve started being really posh and looking up words in Greek and Hebrew to see how certain words can be translated, for example:
Walk in Greek means peripateo – pronounced (per-ee-pat-eh’o), this means, to tread all around, walk at large (especially as proof of ability); figuratively, to live, deport oneself, follow (as companion or votary): go, be occupied with.
You see that? Follow as a companion! To walk with the Spirit means to follow the spirit, or the guidance of the Spirit like you are a companion of the Spirit! I think that’s great!
By the way, I didn’t know until today that The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the New Testament was written in Greek – there you go, only been a Christian for 20 odd years.. what do I know!
Here is the thing, basically, what we are being told in that scripture is, if we do not follow the Spirit like He is our companion, it is likely that we are going to desire things and give in to things that are not of God. If we do not have a close relationship with God through the Holy Spirit, then the temptation do to something that God doesn’t like is going to be hard to resist, in other words, you’re going to find it hard to say NO to yourself when you are tempted to do something you should not be doing, you end up doing it because in your world, what you want is greater than what God wants.
Flesh vs Spirit
However, if we walk in the Spirit as a companion and be occupied with the Spirit then the desires of the flesh (me, myself and I) will weaken and you will become stronger when you are faced with temptation to do something you know God wouldn’t like.
The flesh or the self-life (me, what I want) wants what the Spirit does not want. The flesh and the Spirit are like opposites who want different things, so the more we live in the Spirit, the more we will want the things of God and the more we can refuse to give in to what we want and do what is right.
If you look into the meaning of this scripture, you will see that what God is basically saying is GROW UP! Grow up, walk in the Spirit and become strong so that you will have more self-control when it comes to saying no to the things you should not be doing.
Here’s the other thing, if God has got a calling on your life (If God has given you a specific job to do), then you need to be in a position to be faithful to God in that calling. If we are weak in the flesh, then how can we fulfill that calling? We need to be strong in Christ so that God can help us move into the calling He has placed on our lives, otherwise we can’t work how God wants us to.
To walk in the Spirit helps us to grow and mature in our relationship with God, we become more stable. When we are at the point where we want more of God in our lives and less of ourselves, then maybe God can trust us with the calling he has put on our lives.
He who has no rule over his spirit, is like a city that is broken down without walls. Proverbs 25:28
What does that mean? Well, it means a few things, (probably more than I am about to tell you).
Can you imagine a castle that was under threat yet the castle had no walls? How could the castle be protected? If you have no rule over your spirit and keep giving into the desires of the flesh, then you are not protected from attack! More and more temptations are likely to come your way which seem so appealing that it becomes harder and harder to say no. Then the more you give in, the more of a failure you will feel and the more difficult it is for you to draw close to God. The devil loves it and the Holy Spirit grieves (ouch).
So the thing to do is Walk in the Spirit! The more we walk in the Spirit and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit the easier it becomes to resist temptation because you simply will not want to do the things anymore that do not please God. We are likely to more desire the things of God than the things of the flesh.
Remember, this is what God wanted me to read this morning! If your on the same road as I am, then I imagine it’s gonna be tough one, but what a great journey it will be to be able to draw closer to God and live how He want’s us to live and stop getting into dodgy situations because we can’t say no to ourselves!
Staying close to God is really vital! Taking time out each day to spend with God in prayer, listening to Him, reading the bible. This way, we are always with God, learning, growing and becoming more like Him!
Woohoo! I know that’s what I want.