Lesson 5 -- second quarter 2005
April 3, 2005
© Copyright 2005, Christian Light Publications
Probing Your Own Heart
Are you purposefully walking after the Spirit, allowing Him to lead you?
Do you consciously put to death the world-bent desires of the flesh and deeds of the body?
Building on Some Foundational Concepts
Those who walk after God's Spirit do not live under condemnation.
Daily, despite my acceptance of the Spirit's leading and my walking after Him, I experience occasional stumbles and falls. Does this mean I should be insecure in my standing with God? No! "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit" (Romans 8:1). People who walk will at times trip up and fall down. Be challenged and encouraged by this reality: "For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again" (Proverbs 24:16). If you fall but get up and keep on walking after the Spirit, you are not under condemnation!
God's Son accomplishes God's righteousness in God's children.
Jesus came to effect God's righteousness in our hearts. He has given us His Spirit to empower us for living that righteousness. He cleanses our spirit of sin's discordance and tunes it to His own frequency. Thus the holy music of His own life begins to echo back into His ears from our lives.
Fixing our focus on the Spirit produces Spirit-living.
We need no direction in minding the things of the flesh because our focus is naturally on such things. That means minding (caring about and tending to) those things that pertain to the Holy Spirit does not come naturally to us at all. But when Jesus sets us free from ourselves by giving us a new nature, He frees us to fix our eyes on His Spirit. With that focus and that Leader, we will mind (care about and tend to) those things that interest and characterize Him. Our living in the flesh will be less and less after the flesh as it becomes more and more after the Spirit.
Questions and Responses
Can someone live after both the flesh and the Spirit?
No. How could someone be both condemned and not condemned (Romans 8:1)? How could someone be under both the law of the Spirit of life and the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2)? How could anyone walk in opposing directions at the same time? How could someone be both God's friend as well as His enemy? Clearly, living after the flesh excludes living after the Spirit, and vice versa.
But I do sin!
So do the rest of us. Just because a child has learned to walk does not mean he will never fall, even as an adult. Similarly, just because you have learned to walk after the Spirit does not mean you will never fall victim to the flesh, even as a mature Christian. So take heart! The reality that all of us at times make fleshly choices does not automatically indicate we have ceased to live after the Spirit.
What does it mean to be spiritually minded?
To be spiritually minded is to have the mind of the Spirit.
To be spiritually minded is to care about matters of the spirit.
To be spiritually minded is to pay attention to those things that interest the Spirit of God.
To be spiritually minded is to see and value temporal and eternal things as God sees and values them.
What assurance can I have of my salvation?
"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit" (Romans 8:1).
"For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God" (Romans 8:14).
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life" (John 5:24).
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