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Flesh vs. Spirit, part III

god stuff 4

Romans 7:24-25 (NAS): Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the BODY of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

 

Romans 8:1-2 (KJV): There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

 

Romans 9:6-8 (NAS): For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

 

In the above verses, we read, “body of death,” “the flesh is hostile toward God,” “the mind set on the flesh is death,” and “those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” DEATH and HOSTILITY are the themes of flesh, but LIFE and PEACE are the themes of Holy Spirit. The sooner God’s Kingdom heirs understand this, the sooner we’ll walk in the freedom Christ died to grant mankind.

Many versions of the Bible, including my favored NAS, remove the part of, “…who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” found in Romans 8:1-2. It’s crucial to regain this missing link because otherwise, “saved” people can’t understand why they continue to sin, or why they continue to feel condemned when Christ said there is no more condemnation.

Anything of the flesh is DEATH – no exceptions.

Anything of the Spirit is LIFE – no exceptions.

Simply dealing with individual sins such as lying, addiction, homosexuality, theft, greed, malice, gossip, malice, hatred, so on and so forth, is errant in so much as the sins themselves have become the focus. Since “all have sinned” there is no way anyone has the right to point at a neighbor’s spec with planks in our own eyes! God’s people are to correct fellow brethren, but most don’t understand how to correct properly. Correction led by the flesh simply breeds more death!

The Bible is clear that the afore mentioned and more are in fact sins and we shouldn’t give way to them, but the Bible also always redirects to Holy Spirit leading and dying to the nature of the flesh as a whole – this can only come from a Kingdom mindset. All are born naturally in sin therefore we shouldn’t be surprised when we are drawn to sin of any kind. The shame and condemnation are not in the temptation, but in the acting on the temptation. People act on the temptations because we simply aren’t following the lead of Holy Spirit because we don’t understand the Kingdom of God.

Holy Spirit and His Kingdom should be our focus, not the sins. The, “do this but don’t do that” is worthless instruction if we’re not taught to understand how to be led, not by the flesh, but by the Spirit of the Living God. The “do this but not that” is based on law – you know, that thing no one can fulfill – and Christ fulfilled the entirety of the Law in His death, burial and resurrection. When we base instruction on law, it’s formulated merely from a morality stance and anyone can easily find their happy “grey areas” and feel justified.

 

Hebrews 4:15 (NAS): For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

 

Stay tuned for next week’s Flesh vs. Spirit! If you’re interested in reading more, please go to my website and check out my books or my ministry Facebook page.

 

Peace and blessings,

 

Alexys V. Wolf

 

https://www.thefierysword.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/

 


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Flesh vs. Spirit, part II

god stuff 4

“For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please (Galatians 5:17, NAS).”

 

Self-discipline is a huge part of spiritual warfare. We have been given authority over demons, absolutely, but too often we focus more on that than learning to simply discipline our bodies so as to “make them a slave” as did the Apostle Paul (I Corinthians 9:27). After all, the first place one should take authority is over their own temple.

Time and time again we read that self-control is an attribute of the fruit of the Spirit. Just because we’re tired, angry, sad, mad, stressed, or whatever, does not give us license to sin. In fact, it’s in these tricky situations that God is actually at hand. He allows us to be tested so as to reveal to us our remaining ungodliness – not for condemnation, but for further refinement. God is not punishing us, He is perfecting us.

First, we need to correct an untruth. Many say, “Followers of Christ have two natures.” This is false. God’s people have one nature – God’s – Holy Spirit. Though we (the spirit) temporarily dwell in a compartment made of flesh, its nature does not belong to us. It’s like living in your house; you are not the house, you merely dwell there temporarily. If the house is old and creaky, that does not me you have to be. You must upkeep the earthen temple in which you dwell, but it isn’t who you are. It’s our downfall when we think, “Well, that’s just who and how I am. I can’t help it when I act this or that way.” Likewise, if it’s our downfall, it’s equally the downfall of the Kingdom of God because we represent the King and His Kingdom.

Secondly, emotionalism will always dictate “do whatever makes you feel better.” Truth will dictate the polar opposite. When I walk with God, I choose self-control when otherwise I want to use profanities, lash out at someone, or anything of the like. When I give in to emotionalism and conduct myself in a fleshly (evil) manner, I cease walking with God. Everyone’s trigger point is different and we need to be aware of what they are and purpose to surrender them to Christ.

It’s simply being pro-active by knowing who we are in Christ and allowing Christ to overrule the flesh in everything. No one has perfected this, I certainly haven’t, but we need to purpose to strive toward the mark of Christ choosing to conduct ourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ always and in everything. When we falter, repent, receive forgiveness and begin again. His mercies are new every day! 

 

For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin (Romans 7:14-25, NAS).”

 

Stay tuned for next week’s part III! If you’re interested in reading more, please go to my website and check out my books or my ministry Facebook page.

 

Peace and blessings,

 

Alexys V. Wolf

www.thefierysword.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/


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Flesh vs. Spirit, part I

god stuff 4

“For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please (Galatians 5:17, NAS).”

 

There is an ongoing battle between the flesh and the Spirit. Satan wants to activate the flesh in all of its deadness because he strongly desires to make people act irrationally, unjustly, mercilessly, selfishly, foolishly – evil and against The Kingdom of God. Where God uses His Spirit to connect with our spirit internally, Satan uses the flesh to connect with us externally. The god of this world provokes us to evil through emotionalism.

Emotionalism stems from the flesh. Emotionalism, in whatever form it may present itself, causes us to act and react in an unholy manner and, when we do, we justify our poor conduct. Emotionalism causes us to rationalize bad behavior with “I’m tired, I’m stressed, I’m angry, I’m sad, I’m bored, I’m irritated, I’m right, I’m aroused, I’m hungry, I’m needy…I’m, I’m, I’m!” Notice the “I” which translates: I’m thinking only of myself (an idol set before God) and not of God who is my life. My fleshly thinking is more important that heavenly, spiritual thinking.

In this, our God-focus becomes buried under self-focus; and believe me when I say that I am not exempt! My child and I have simultaneously undergone much travail with our health the last two and a half years; stressful and exhausting does not begin to express this experience. We are both feeling much improved these days, but that is not the focal point.

The subject at hand is that situations such as this can gradually cause us to become weakened spiritually so as to awaken the fleshly nature – or rather, they cause us to recognize and face that which has not been fully consigned to Christ as we may have thought. I know for me at the worst of it, I caught myself saying things at the “slip of the tongue” (aka lack of self-discipline) that are not godly and have had to quickly consign myself back to Christ.

I have said for years that bad situations do not change people; they only bring about truth of who the person really is underneath the tidy veneer. It’s easy to walk with God when things are great, but turn up the heat and yikes – out comes all the junk! For me personally, I find that where patience would otherwise prevail, impatience and irritation with people and things tended to become more prevalent. When I stepped back and heard/saw myself, I was appalled, or rather; my spirit, Holy Spirit, was appalled at the flesh in which I reside. This is the battle spoken of in Galatians 5:17.

That which the flesh loves (self-desires), the Spirit hates and vice versa. As long as we live in this fleshly shell, there will be battle. There, of course, will be times where the battle seems less intense, but it’s there nonetheless and can do a sneak-attack if we are not on guard at all times. But we are not without hope, people of the Most High God!

Romans 7:14-25, NAS: For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.”

 

Stay tuned for next week’s part II! If you’re interested in reading more, please go to my website and check out my books or my ministry Facebook page.

Peace and blessings,

 

Alexys V. Wolf

 

www.thefierysword.com

 https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

 http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/


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MAINTAINING YOUR FREEDOM


by Neil Anderson

July 4

Galatians 5:1 
It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery
 
The Revolutionary War was a hard-fought battle, and many lives were lost in order to ensure the freedom of our country. There is always a price to pay for freedom, and the moment we take our freedom for granted, we run the risk of losing it.
 
Freedom in Christ from our sinful nature and the god of this world is the inheritance of every believer. Christ has set you free through His victory over sin and death on the cross. But if you have lost a measure of your freedom because you have failed to stand firm in the faith or you have disobeyed God, it is your responsibility to do whatever is necessary to maintain a right relationship with God. Your eternal destiny is not at stake; you are secure in Christ. But your daily victory in Him will be tenuous at best if you fail to assume your responsibility to maintain your freedom in Christ.
 
Remember: you are not the helpless victim of a tug-of-war between two nearly equal heavenly superpowers. Compared to Satan’s limited attributes, God is immeasurable in His omnipotence, omnipresence and omniscience–and you are united with Him! Sometimes the reality of sin and the presence of evil may seem more real than the reality and presence of God, but that’s part of Satan’s deception. He is a defeated foe, and we are in Christ, the eternal Victor. That’s why we worship God: to keep His divine attributes constantly before us in order to counter Satan’s lies. A true knowledge of God and our identity in Christ is the greatest determinant of our mental health. A false concept of God and the misplaced deification of Satan are the greatest contributors to mental illness.
 
Are you walking in freedom today?
 
Prayer: I praise You, Lord, for the awesome freedom I enjoy in Christ. Strengthen my will so I may choose to walk in freedom daily.


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PRESERVING UNITY


by Neil Anderson

 

June 25
 
Ephesians 4:3 
Being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace
 
I really don’t mind taking a stand on biblical grounds and living with the conflict that comes from those who oppose the gospel. I think that is part of our calling. What grieves God is when our ministry and work is stopped because well-intentioned people resist the inevitable and needlessly fight change.
 
I tell my students that the greatest asset they will have in their early years of ministry is older, mature saints in the church. The greatest liability they will have is old saints who have stopped growing years ago. All these saints do is censor. They reflect no more love or kindness now than they did 20 years ago. They don’t worship–they critique the worship service. They no longer sit under the judgment of Scripture–they sit in judgment of the pastor. They no longer bear fruit–they actually prevent it. They insist that they are right when what they need to be is holy.
 
Mature saints have learned to restrict their freedom for the sake of weaker believers. Their faith doesn’t rest in traditions, so they gladly accept changes in style of ministry that will reach the younger generation.
 
Another problem arises when young Christian leaders act impulsively as change agents without giving thought to what the consequences will be to the fellowship. Any movement forward that results in the loss of fellowship is not an improvement. We must be diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit. Such change agents seem to be unaware that patience is a fruit of the Spirit. The modern generation wants it now. They seem to have forgotten the fact that God does everything decently and in order. He is not the author of confusion.
 
Prayer: Father, please don’t allow me to sit, soak and sour, but to remain open-minded, lighthearted and nonjudgmental.


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IN THIS FREE LAND, BY THEE OUR LOT IS CAST

In This Free Land, By Thee Our Lot is Cast

 

I love Memorial Day and all holidays patriotic! I have great memories, just like you, of barbecues, running in the sprinklers, and knowing summer has just begun!  But I also have always been taught and reminded the significance of what these holidays mean.  Coming from a family with many that have served and are serving our country, and being married to a former marine, I know firsthand-as many others do-what our soldiers sacrifice.  Though I have not felt the sting of losing a loved one from war, I have a deep sense of gratitude to those who have fought and died for the freedoms that I enjoy.  But, as I have grown older and grown deeper in my relationship with God, I understand even more how precious this freedom is and how important it is to recognize that freedom comes with a cost…and a cross.  We don’t all need a history lesson today, but it is important, as we are remembering, to note that our country was based and founded on the Word of God.  It was the love for God and the desire to have the freedom to worship Him that caused our founders to fight for independence and to be willing to lay down their lives.  Because of their love of God, they surely were reminded of the One who was willing to lay down His life for them.  They knew that Jesus willingly went to the cross, in obedience to the Father, to make them free.  Free from the bondage of sin.  Free to love and serve Him because of the righteousness of Christ.

Today, as you gratefully remember our heroes that have fallen, do not neglect to give thanks to the One who made and has sovereignly ruled this land.  Who places kings and rulers and holds them in derision. Who raises up the soldiers and gives them the courage to fight.  The One who gives us hope because of Jesus Christ.  Hope not based on the security of our nation, our freedoms, or peace.  Hope based on the atoning work of Jesus Christ.

Remember, as the early hymn-writer did, the source and reason for our freedom:

 
God of our fathers, whose almighty hand
Leads forth in beauty all the starry band
Of shining worlds in splendor through the skies
Our grateful songs before Thy throne arise.
 

 
Thy love divine hath led us in the past,
In this free land by Thee our lot is cast,
Be Thou our Ruler, Guardian, Guide and Stay,
Thy Word our law, Thy paths our chosen way.
 

 
From war’s alarms, from deadly pestilence,
Be Thy strong arm our ever sure defense;
Thy true religion in our hearts increase,
Thy bounteous goodness nourish us in peace.
 

 
Refresh Thy people on their toilsome way,
Lead us from night to never ending day;
Fill all our lives with love and grace divine,
And glory, laud, and praise be ever Thine.

Daniel C. Roberts

http://www.livingoutgodsdesign.blogspot.com


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SATAN’S PRIMARY STRATEGY


by Neil Anderson

 

May 20
 
Acts 5:3 
Why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit?
 
Satan’s primary strategy is deception. He will introduce his thoughts and ideas into your mind and deceive you into believing that they are yours. It happened to King David. Satan “moved David to number Israel” (1 Chronicles 21:1), an act God had forbidden, and David acted on Satan’s idea. Did Satan walk up to David one day and say, “I want you to number Israel”? I doubt it. David was a godly man and he wouldn’t have obeyed Satan. But what if Satan slipped the idea into David’s mind in first-person singular? What if the thought came to David as “I need to know how large my army is; I think I’ll count the troops”?
 
If Satan can place a thought in your mind–and he can–it isn’t much more of a trick for him to make you think it’s your idea. If you knew it was Satan, you’d reject the thought, wouldn’t you? But when he disguises his suggestion as your idea, you are more likely to accept it. That is his primary deception. If you knew where the thought came from, you wouldn’t be deceived.
 
I don’t think Judas realized that it was Satan’s idea to betray Jesus (John 13:2). It probably came to him as a way to prompt Jesus to deliver Israel from the Romans. Ananias and Sapphira might have thought that it was their idea to withhold some of their offering while getting the strokes and attention from others who believed they had given everything. If they knew that it was Satan’s idea, they probably wouldn’t have done it (Acts 5:1-3). If Satan can get you to believe a lie, he can control your life. That’s why it is truth that sets you free (John 8:32).
 
There is one common characteristic shared by everyone in bondage: They all lie. The alcoholic lies about his drinking. The anorexic lies about her eating. The first step to recovery is to get out of denial, stop lying and start telling the truth.
 
Prayer: Lord, I really want Your truth and the freedom it brings in my life at all times. Help me face up to the truth, receive it and act on it today.


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Kingdom of God: Authority and Power, part I

god stuff 4

“I will GIVE YOU the KEYS OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN; and whatever YOU bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever YOU loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven (Matthew 16:19, NAS).”

“And He called the twelve together, and gave them POWER and AUTHORITY over ALL the demons and to HEAL diseases…to PROCLAIM the KINGDOM OF GOD and to PERFORM HEALING…He began speaking to them about the KINGDOM OF GOD and CURING those who had need of HEALING…allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and PROCLAIM EVERYWHERE the KINGDOM OF GOD.’ Another also said, ‘I will follow You, Lord; but first permit me to say good-bye to those at home.’ But Jesus said to him, ‘No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the KINGDOM OF GOD (Luke 9:1-2, 11, 27, 60-62, NAS).’”

 

You, blood bought child of the King and Bride of Christ, possess in your inner man the keys to the Kingdom, to rule on earth on behalf of the King with intense power! God has given us His name (authority) through Jesus so that we are equipped to speak and function here on earth as though it was God Himself (power)! Ambassadors speak in foreign lands on behalf of their king and kingdom allowing them to carry the power of the royalty who sent them. From a heart of love of and loyalty to the King, obedience to God through Christ is what ushers the authority to utilize all the power and tools that God has laid before us from His Kingdom. We are strangers in the land called Earth.

In Luke 9, Jesus was asked about “saying goodbye” but He tells them, “Once you start your journey with God’s Kingdom, looking back to the dead or the living is disobedience and you are not fit!” Set your gaze upon the Kingdom of God and purpose in Christ’s strength to never look back. This Kingdom-walk is the most amazing, unearthly relationship with the King of kings; it is unequivocal! Why would any man, woman, boy or girl look back at that which is temporal when we have been given that which is eternal?

Once we’re established, we are to allow Christ, the true Testimony, to exude through our mortal bodies. Our relationship with Him should never be forced or some grueling task as denominational churches have made it. It should never be something based on shame, guilt or condemnation. Romans 8:1-5, KJV reads: “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do NOT walk according to the FLESH, but according to the SPIRIT…He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but ACCORDING TO THE SPIRIT”

“No more condemnation” comes exclusively through ceasing the lusts of the flesh and seeking the Kingdom of God, His righteousness. He condemned sin therefore, when we are conducting sin (external or internal), condemnation is an automatic reaction. The only exit from it is repentance and forward movement.

Religion brings condemnation even when good intentions are at the heart because its foundation is built on the criteria of the traditions of man instead of the government of God; it leaves God’s people powerless. Love, mercy, grace, self-discipline and things of the like are of the Kingdom of God; they empower God’s holy people.

When our foundation is the Kingdom of God, we will never be destroyed by the destroyer, try though he may. Christ and His disciples preached the Kingdom, not salvation. Salvation is only a part of the sum of the Kingdom. When we pigeonhole ourselves into teaching mere fragments of the Kingdom, we miss the power, the authority, the blessings, and the peace that can stem only from understanding and functioning through the Kingdom of God. When operating in and through God’s Kingdom, we speak things into existence as prompted by the Spirit. Not merely by saying, “I bind…I loose…” but in our everyday language because we speak the language of our Kingdom which is not of the earth.

What language are YOU speaking? What power is moving through you? Do you operate under the power of Holy Spirit of the nature of the old natural man? The choice belongs to you.

I hope you’ll come back next week. If you’re interested in reading more, please go to my website and check out my books or my ministry Facebook page.

Peace and blessings,

Alexys V. Wolf

 www.thefierysword.com

 https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

 http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/

 


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Forgiveness and Humility

ImageMatthew 5:25: Make friends quickly with your opponent at law while you are with him on the way, so that your opponent may not hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you be thrown into prison.

 

Just as pride comes before the fall, humility comes before honor. There is no honor without humility first. Humility dictates that a person demands to be judged and reckoned by others. If outward humility is not the result of inward humility, it is very dangerous because it becomes an outward display of deception. To put it another way: the outward expression of humility must always be a result of inward grace at work. Humility is the direct nature of God therefore we are advised to take advantage of every opportunity of humility.

Jesus was humility made manifest in the earth. We all know that if we are accused of something for which we are guilty, we must confess, apologize and make it right – and that’s difficult enough! If we are wrongfully accused, what then? Do we have the right to jump into a debate with someone, yelling (or calmly stating) how wrong they are about us? Absolutely not! Rather, instead of arguing, we should respond by apologizing to them for having given them the impression that we did or said what they think we did or said. Ask how we can make it right. When your opponent is faced with your humility, how can they successfully come against you? This is walking in a perpetual condition of forgiveness before someone offends.

We need to get it in our spirit-man that our Defender is far greater than the offender (Satan). We are never to defend ourselves. Walk away if you must, but don’t get into a showdown of words trying to convince someone they are wrong. When has that ever accomplished anything good? When someone thinks something in their heart, no amount of words you speak can turn them away from their opinion. Only God can change a heart. Don’t waste time and energy, and for heaven’s sake, don’t jeopardize your personal walk with God because someone thinks something incorrectly about you. It isn’t worth it.

God will prove them wrong in time; you needn’t concern yourself with such petty matters because truth will always surface in due season. Keep integrity intact and it will protect you in the long run.

 

Peace and blessings,

 Alexys V. Wolf

www.thefierysword.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/


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FREE TO LIVE

By Neil Anderson

Neil Anderson

February 24

Galatians 5:18
If you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law

 
Paul said that walking according to the Spirit is not license: an excessive or undisciplined freedom constituting an abuse of privilege. As a Christian you may see the phrase “You are not under the Law” in Galatians 5:18 and exclaim, “Wow, I’m free! Walking in the Spirit means I can do anything I want!” Not at all. In the previous verse Paul wrote, “You may not do the things that you please.” Being led by the Spirit doesn’t mean you are free to do anything you want to do. It means you are finally free to live a responsible, moral life–something you were incapable of doing when you were the prisoner of your flesh.
 
Once I was invited to speak to a religion class at a Catholic high school on the topic of Protestant Christianity. At the end of my talk, an athletic-looking, street-wise student raised his hand and asked, “Do you have a lot of don’ts in your church?”
 
Sensing that he had a deeper motive, I answered, “What you really want to ask me is if we have any freedom, right?” He nodded.
 
“Sure, I’m free to do whatever I want to do,” I answered. “I’m free to rob a bank. But I’m mature enough to realize that I would be in bondage to that act for the rest of my life. I’d have to cover up my crime, go into hiding, or eventually pay for what I did. I’m also free to tell a lie. But if I do, I have to keep telling it, and I have to remember who I told it to and how I told it or I will get caught. I’m free to do drugs, abuse alcohol, and live a sexually immoral lifestyle. All of those ‘freedoms’ lead to bondage. I’m free to make those choices, but considering the consequences, would I really be free?”
 
What appears to be freedom to some people isn’t really freedom, but a return to bondage (Galatians 5:1). God’s laws, from which we seek to be free, are not restrictive, but protective. Your real freedom is your ability to choose to live responsibly within the context of the protective guidelines God has established for our lives.
 
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the privilege I have to choose to live in freedom. Help me not to abuse that privilege today and find myself in bondage.