Monthly Archives: March 2012

Obligated to the Spirit and not the Flesh

The flesh nature is a difficult challenge in the life of a believer.  We all struggle with its influence daily.  Paul , the writer of Romans, addressed this fact in chapter 7.

Romans 7:18-24 “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.  For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.  For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?”

The key to our victory over the flesh nature and its influence is learning to yield to the Holy Spirit of God that indwells every born again believer.  The yielding process begins by understanding that our obligation is no longer to the flesh nature but to the Holy Ghost of God that dwells within us.

Romans 8:9-13  “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.  And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.  Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.”

Being obligated to the flesh will lead to destruction and death.  The devil would love for us to remain blind to the fact that have been set free from this bondage.  The truth of the matter is that our obligation should be to the indwelling Holy Spirit who gives life and adopted us into the family of God. The following are a few reasons why we are debtors to the Holy Spirit:

  • The Holy Spirit convicted us of sin.
  • The Holy Spirit showed us our need for the Savior.
  • The Holy Spirit imparted saving faith
  • The Holy Spirit implanted the righteousness of Christ.
  • The Holy Spirit created the new nature of Christ.
  • The Holy Spirit gave life.
  • The Holy Spirit seals us and keeps us until the day of redemption.
  • The Holy Spirit is our teacher, companion, and comforter.
  • The Holy Spirit speaks on our behalf when we cannot pray ourselves.
  • The Holy Spirit produces fruit: love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.
  • The Holy Spirit gives daily witness that we are the children of God.
  • Daily the Holy Spirit endures our carnality, self-centeredness, and sin – and grieves over us – yet He loves us.
  • Christ died for us – but the Holy Spirit LIVES IN US

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

God’s Boundaries

The boundaries God gives in His Word are often viewed by sinners and unlearned believers as a hindrance to having a good time and a good life. When in fact, and with a little keen observation, it can be clearly seen that those boundaries are given that we might have a great time and a great life! Our Creator knows what is best for us. As a loving Father, He desires to help us, not hurt us. When we choose our own path and think we know better than God we are headed down a path that will ultimately bring heartache and failure. Remember the admonition of Proverbs 3:5-6. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto things own understanding. In all thine ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.”

Thoughts on Revival

2 Chronicles 7:14 – If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

1. Revival is needed. It is needed in our churches, our communities, our country, and our world. The second half of Romans chapter one describes the condition of man apart from God, left to himself, doing things his own way, and according to his own wisdom. This is clearly demonstrated and seen each and every day in our own community. Indivdually and collectively – We need revival!!!

2. Revival is the responsibility of God’s people. The call for revival is squarely placed on the shoulders of the saved. This is not the responsibility of the ungodly in our world or the lost in our communities. It is our duty to seek after God. The conditional “if” clearly refers to the saved. A lack of revival is not the fault of my lost neighbor, it is my duty to seek it.

3. Revival requires action from God’s people and four things are listed in this passage:

The first is humility. 1 Peter 5:6 says, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time…” Humility is laying aside our pride and placing ourselves under the will and ways of God.

The second is prayer. Prayer is simply talking with God. Have you talked to the Lord and asked Him to send revival? Have you asked Him what you need to do in your own life to prepare for it? Perhaps we do not have true revival because we have not asked for it.

The third thing listed in our main passage is seeking the face of God. I believe this seeking refers to a person’s desire to have the favor of God upon his or her life. As the Lord looks upon our life, is our life pleasing to Him? You are not going to be seeking God’s face if you have no desire to please Him.

The fourth is repentance. This means to make a complete change, reverse course, or make a 180 degree turn. Repentance is seeing our sin as God sees it and then turning from it. True revival will not come if we do not repent.

4. God desires revival. How about you?

Lamar Powell
Prepared for Teen Church
February 29, 2012