CONTRASTED LIFE (Part #1) 6-19-2011

posted Jun 20, 2011, 2:18 PM by Dale Barnes
“When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, your lives will produce these evil results: sexual immorality, impure thoughts, eagerness for lustful pleasure, idolatry, participation in demonic activities, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, divisions, the feeling that everyone is wrong except those in your own little group, envy, drunkedness, wild parties, and other kinds of sin.” (Gal.5:19-21 NLT)
“But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives, he will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” (Gal.5:22-23 NLT)

The first nature is the one we all inherit when  we enter this world.  It develops in different ways through different circumstances, but  the fruit is similar to the scripture mentioned above; it is very self-centered, and cannot please God.

The second nature mentioned is fruit that comes with the work of the Spirit of God.  The Holy Spirit is freely given by God to every true believer in Jesus Christ, his Son.  We are told not to grieve or quench the Spirit of God.

The Bible tells that these two natures are in conflict with one another. “For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature.” (Gal.5:17 NIV)   So the Apostle tells us, “...live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” (Gal.5:16 NIV)  So victory or triumph over the sinful nature is not a matter of strong self effort or obeying outward religious rituals.  It is a matter of allowing the Holy Spirit, who is in every true believer, to work and control our lives more and more.

Can the Holy Spirit accomplish this?  The apostle makes this statement; “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”  (Eph.3:20 NIV  His ability, his power can get the job done!  Does God want to do it?  Again, the apostle speaks: “...it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.” (Phil.2:13 NIV)  Yes, God wants to do it, and has freely given us his Spirit to bring it to pass.  The challenge is to trust him!

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