Walk It! Don’t Just Talk It!

Romans 8:1-14 ESV

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

“So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.”

Jesus Christ did not die on that cross just to forgive us our sins and just so we can go to heaven when we die. If this is the extent of the gospel you are being taught, then you are not believing the truth of the gospel. For Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness (1 Peter 2:24; Romans 6:1-23). And he died that we might live for him and no longer for ourselves (2 Corinthians 5:15) and that we might now honor God with our bodies (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

So, we are not “in Christ Jesus” just by a mere verbal confession of him as Lord and as Savior of our lives. We are “in Christ Jesus” via dying with him to sin (Romans 6:1-23), by his grace, and via now walking (in conduct, in practice) according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. For if we continue to live according to the flesh, and thus our minds are set on the flesh and not on the Spirit of God, this ends in death, not in life everlasting with God. For those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

So, how do we know if we are walking according to the Spirit or according to the flesh? If we are walking according to the Spirit we are walking in obedience to our Lord, not necessarily in sinless perfection, but lack of perfection is never to be used as an excuse for deliberate and habitual sin. And walking according to the Spirit means we are living to please God with our lives and so we are walking in holiness and in righteousness and sin is no longer what we practice, but godliness is what we practice.

But if we are walking according to the flesh, it means we are continuing in deliberate and habitual sin and we are not walking in holiness and in righteousness in obedience to our Lord. Sin is what we practice and righteousness and obedience to our Lord are not our practice. This would be people who are addicted to pornography or other sexual sin, or to lying, cheating, stealing, slandering, drunkenness, and hating others, etc. And so they keep choosing their pet sins over God and over loving others.

For their minds are not set on the Lord and on purity of devotion to Jesus Christ, but their minds are set on gratifying the sinful cravings of their flesh. And many of them who are still living as slaves to sin are professing faith in Jesus Christ with their lips. But they are giving lip service only to God because their lifestyles are opposed to the Lord. So they are rejecting the Lord and they are refusing him in order to gratify their sinful and fleshly lusts. And for many of them their lives are all about self and not God.

So, we need to understand here that a profession of faith in Jesus Christ will not secure heaven for us if we do not die with Christ to sin and live to God and to his righteousness. For if we live according to the flesh we will die in our sins. Heaven will not be our eternal destiny. But if by the Spirit we are putting to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live with Christ for eternity. For it is not all who profess faith in Jesus who are the children of God, but it is all who are being led by the Spirit who are God’s children.

[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

Have Thine Own Way, Lord

Words by Adelaide A. Pollard, 1907
Music by George C. Stebbins, 1907

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Thou art the potter, I am the clay.
Mold me and make me after Thy will,
While I am waiting, yielded and still.

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Search me and try me, Master, today!
Whiter than snow, Lord, wash me just now,
As in Thy presence humbly I bow.

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Wounded and weary, help me I pray!
Power, all power, surely is Thine!
Touch me and heal me, Savior divine!

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Hold o’er my being absolute sway.
Fill with Thy Spirit till all shall see
Christ only, always, living in me!

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