Sunday, February 11

Romans 8:13

Romans 8:13 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.

In verses 1-9 of this chapter, Paul makes it clear that those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on the flesh, and to set the mind on the flesh is death. In addition, they are hostile to God, do not submit to God’s law, and indeed cannot please God. Here, in verse 13, this principle is repeated yet again. Paul has made it very clear that if you live according to the flesh you are not in Christ and you are under the condemnation of God. There is no wiggle room to claim Christ but live according to the flesh. It is the same message that is in James 2:14-26 where he asks the rhetorical question, “Can such a faith save him?” Paul is saying that you will die if you live according to the flesh. He has made it clear that one who lives according to the flesh does not have faith. They may profess and claim faith, but they do not have it. This death that Paul has carefully described in these verses is the eternal death that results from not being in Christ.

However, if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. A redeemed person is not a puppet that does nothing in putting to death the deeds of the body; but, he is enabled and encouraged by the Holy Spirit to respond to this divine grace and willingly participates in his own sanctification. Just as the window in the photo above is not perfect, and reflects some of the light rather than letting it through, a redeemed person does not perfectly live according to the Spirit; however, such a person is in Christ, and verse 1 affirms that there is now no condemnation of those that are in Christ. The victory is assured through the power of God the Holy Spirit.

Praise God for the enabling work of the Holy Spirit.

5 comments:

bluecollar said...

"A redeemed person is not a puppet that does nothing in putting to death the deeds of the body; but, he is enabled and encouraged by the Holy Spirit to respond to this divine grace and willingly participates in his own sanctification. Just as the window in the photo above is not perfect, and reflects some of the light rather than letting it through, a redeemed person does not perfectly live according to the Spirit; however, such a person is in Christ, and verse 1 affirms that there is now no condemnation of those that are in Christ. The victory is assured through the power of God the Holy Spirit.

Praise God for the enabling work of the Holy Spirit."

Wayne, that was perfect! Our surrender to Christ is not perfect, but the Holy Spirit causes us to yearn for the things of Christ. Your window picture is right on. The window is not perfect in letting all the light through, and so it is with us showing Christ to the world; we are not perfect representations of Christ (unfortunately) but, though that be true, there is no condemnation for us either.

jazzycat said...

Mark,
Thanks. I think I can have a post ready for Tue. or Wed. If your e-mail is still down just leave a comment on an old post and I will get a automatic notification.
wayne

jazzycat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Craver VII said...

I read your post and my mind started wandering. I’m reflecting on “living by the Spirit.” I’ll try not to sound crazy, but it may be too late for that. Okay, here it is…

Delving into the world of fiction, I need to paint a picture first. I’m thinking about Superman. He has “super” powers. He’s faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. These things are beyond the scope of natural ability, hence the name: Superman.

Here’s the tie-in… He doesn’t turn off his super abilities and turn them on later. He’s always incredibly strong, even if he’s handling a newborn kitten. It’s just that the circumstances determine the need to show what is always there. Even as mild mannered Clark Kent, he still has the full potential of the bird… no, plane… no, it’s Superman! I realize that’s fiction, but maybe it illustrates what I was pondering on.

With the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, shall we say that we are under the influence and power of the Holy Spirit only when we love the unlovely? Or do we say that everything we do is by the power of the Spirit? Even brushing our teeth?

Am I rambling or does any of this make sense?

jazzycat said...

Craver,
That is an interesting thought. IMO, I think the Spirit in giving the new birth, gives what amounts to an attitude adjustment. Since it happened rather late in my life, I began to notice that I had new desires, new things I liked, etc. I also lost interest in things I used to love, and so on.

I would think the new creation attitudes would be with us even while brushing our teeth since even our thoughts are on things above. This would mean the H.S. could use this time to lead a Christian to doing this or that to accomplish his will.