Tag: living by the Spirit

Live by the Spirit!

Scripture reading for December 1st: Galatians 1-6

Have you ever had a battle with your flesh?  Was your will power enough to win the victory?  Could the Law help you overcome your desire to escape the battle?  Paul wrote the letter to the Galatians to help them overcome some religious false teachers who wanted to mix the law with grace.   They felt that all bases must be covered to make God happy.  Paul had a simple solution.

“You were called to be free.  But don’t use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.  The entire law is summed up in a single command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”  If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.”  So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” (Galatians 5:13-16)

Paul encouraged the Galatians to live in freedom by living by the Spirit.  The Spirit indwelling us brings the life of God into our inner man.  We are not under the law, which can only reveal sin and stir up our flesh to break it.  As we live by the Spirit, we live a life of love, serving God and others.  We put off the acts of the sinful nature that used to plague us and ultimately would keep us from the kingdom of heaven.  (Galatians 5:18-21)

We allow the Spirit to develop fruit in our lives. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  Against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-24)  The Spirit is in harmony with God the Father and Jesus Christ and produces no conflict or division with man or God.  When we live by the Spirit, the sinful nature doesn’t have a place in our life.

Living by the spirit brings a harvest of eternal life!  God cannot be mocked, what we sow we certainly will reap.  (Galatians 6:7-10)  Doing good and seeking unity and restoration will produce a good reward.  We don’t work for the reward, but are assured of a harvest if we don’t grow weary.  This requires faith and patient endurance.  Living by the Spirit is the positive antidote to trying to keep the law to earn our freedom.  One leads to eternal life, the other to condemnation!

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