Overcoming The Flesh – Walking in the Spirit – Part 2

The heart’s desire of every born-again believer in Jesus is to please God. Our new spirit, given to us by God now delights in the things of God. Jesus said, “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” As believers we still face the weakness of our flesh, even though our spirit wants to please God.

“…let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.” (Galatians 5:16-17 NLT)

The Holy Spirit Does Not Condemn Us – He Helps Us!

God has given us His Holy Spirit to come to our aid in this war between our flesh and our spirit.

The flesh will do whatever it is trained to do. Overcoming the weakness of the flesh comes by retraining it in the things of the Spirit. The flesh acts through habit. It is re-trained by hearing and obeying the Word of God, the Bible. An athlete trains himself in his sport through practice. That is what we as believers learn to do. We spend time with God and reading and meditating on His Word. By applying God’s Word in our life as we learn it, we grow our spirit and train our flesh.

As God’s Spirit inside us reinforces our spirit with God’s power, our spirit begins to dominate our flesh and demand that it obey God. The Apostle Paul wrote, “Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16 NKJV)

Satan uses the weakness of the flesh to keep us weak spiritually, to keep us in sickness and to keep us in sin. This hinders us from walking in the power of God and fulfilling the will of God in the earth.

We have the ability to tap into the realm of the Spirit. The weapons of this spiritual warfare are not physical weapons, but mighty through the Spirit of God to break down strongholds of the enemy, like bad habits and sins we struggle with.

Sowing God’s Word Into Our Spirit

We put those weapons into operation by “sowing God’s Word” into our spirit. When we feed on God’s Word and fellowship with God in prayer, God’s Spirit in us grows our own spirit. If we expose our flesh to the things of God it will learn to obey the Spirit. The more our flesh is exposed to the Holy Spirit, the more its desires subside and the more difficult it becomes for Satan to obtain a foothold in our lives.

In The Book of Romans, chapters 6-8, God teaches us about overcoming the weakness of the flesh. In the eighth chapter, we learn that “praying in the Spirit” (in tongues) will cause the inner man (our spirit) to rise up and take its proper place of authority. Our spirit will demand that our flesh respond and obey. Jesus was tempted in all things in the flesh, as we are, but the Holy Spirit in Jesus gave Him the power to never sin.

God is calling us to lay aside the sins that so easily tempt us, and to walk with Him in the realm of the Spirit so that He can demonstrate His power in our lives. Let’s grow our spirit and retrain our flesh through the practice of reading and obeying God’s Word. As we walk more and more in the Spirit, we will see more and more of the supernatural happening in our lives and in the lives of those we touch every day.

“So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15 NLT)

To Review:

1. The flesh and the spirit in us war against each other
(a) The spirit of every believer in Jesus desires to do the will of God
(b) The flesh will do whatever it is trained to do
(c) We overcome the flesh by sowing God’s Word and retraining the flesh to walk in the Spirit
(d) The believer’s goal is to be controlled by our renewed spirit, not by the flesh

2. The Holy Spirit is our Helper (read Romans 6-8, I love Romans 8. It’s so full of great promises.)
(a) The Holy Spirit comes to our aid in overcoming the flesh
(b) The Holy Spirit helps us yield our body to do what is right, not to give in to sin
(c) When we “sow to the Spirit” it puts us in contact with God’s Holy Spirit. We do that by praying in
tongues, talking to God, and meditating on God’s Word.

3. God is calling believers to lay aside the works of the flesh and to walk in the Spirit. Then we will experience His power and His blessings.

 

Here are some Questions which are answered in this Study of Walking in the Spirit:

1. As a believer, what part of your total being desires to do the will of God?

2. Explain Galatians 5:17.

3. What should be the goal of every believer?

4. How can you overcome the weakness of the flesh?

5. List three things that you can do to sow to the spirit rather than to the flesh?

 

More teaching on Overcoming the Flesh, by Pastor Vlad Savchuk

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