There are a lot of cravings among believers in the days which we live. There are cravings for food, drink, love, popularity, riches, fame, attention, pleasure, and power. I cry every time I see a believer overcome by these cravings and walk away from the Lord.
Many times the cravings and lust in the heart for the world, the things of the world, and personal satisfaction exceeds thirst for the things of God and for His truth. Those who give in to the lust of the heart use justification and every possible excuse outside of themselves for why they are where they are emotionally, relationally, spiritually, financially, socially, and mentally. We live in a day of excuses and the victim mentality.
I have seen believers ask God for the right thing morality, socially, and spiritually and then when they receive it they use that very thing which was an answered prayer, as an excuse to be a victim to it. We are called to walk in the Spirit without excuses. My spouse, my children, my job, my church and my health cannot be used as an excuse for us walking in the flesh and making decisions outside of the will of God.
It states in the book of James that all lust starts in the heart of man.
James 1:13-15 ESV Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God," for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. (14) But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. (15) Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
When we are not in the Spirit we are in the flesh and fulfilling the lust of the flesh. This is the root of wars and fighting among believers.
James 4:1-3 ESV What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? (2) You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. (3) You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.
When we walk in the spirit we are pleasing the Father and doing His will. When we are walking in the flesh we are fulfilling the lustful desires of the flesh. These fleshly lusts war against our soul, which is the way we think (our thoughts), the way we feel (our emotions) and the way we choose (our will).
1 Peter 2:11 ESV Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.
1 John 2:15-17 ESV Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. (17) And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
How I long to see the Body of Christ to thirst after God and make the hard decisions to deny self. I cry out for the command of our Lord in Revelation to be a reality within the lives of many believers before it is to late.
Revelation 3:17-18 ESV For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. (18) I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.
ENTERING AND EXITING MANY DOORS:
When I go into someone's house they go out of their way to make me "feel at home." Debby and I try to do the same when we have guests in our house. We show them where everything is in the kitchen, how to operate the internet and TV and we instruct them to "feel right at home." However, as believers it really is hard to feel totally "at home" in our body when we know that heaven is our home and we are only passing through here on earth.
Our Lord Jesus Christ took on the form of man and entered into a body. He knew He came but for a short season and we can see in Scriptures that our Lord was always at home in the Spirit. Our Lord Jesus Christ has already passed through the experience of death and was victorious over it and the grave. He has ascended back into heaven and sit down at the right hand of the Father.
The message Jesus gives to the Christian is that since He has passed through the experience and stands on the other side, He declares that death itself is harmless to the believer and should not be feared.
Our Lord is also ready to open up the mystery of death to those who are willing to follow Him in it. When we gave our lives to the Lord Jesus Christ in our salvation experience we exited the door of our lives and entered a new door to eternal life. One day each of us who are believers will exit the door of our physical life and enter the door of the presence of God and stand with our Lord Jesus Christ on the other side of the grave.
An old man of 80 years was asked one day how he was doing. He replied that he personally was doing well but that the house which he dwelt in was not. He stated that his house, referring to his earthly body, was becoming quite unlivable and that he would be moving out one day very soon. “But in spite of this”, spoke the old man; “he was just fine”.
TRUTH ABOUT THE BODY: The old man was teaching a great lesson. It was the same lesson one could learn at a funeral. At a funeral when you stare into the coffin at a Christian friend, realize that you are only looking at his old home. The friend is gone; he is no longer there. The home laying before you is completely empty.
I know that it is hard to picture a person without his body. That is because we are taught to think that the person and the body are the same. We think in physical concrete terms, therefore, we see a person as we would see his body. The great mystery is to start seeing people apart from their bodies. See people completely separate from their physical bodily home. See yourself as a Spirit, that has a soul, and is trapped in a body. Once you can wrap your brain around this truth you will not feel at home in your body but you will feel at home in your spirit-man. It is your spirit that is seated in heavenly places with the Father.
Ephesians 5:18-21 ESV And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, (19) addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, (20) giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, (21) submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
The Holy Spirit dwells within every believer. Some may be immature, weak and imperfect, but if we have been “born again” of the Spirit (See Jn.3:3-7), the Holy Spirit dwells in us (See 1 Cor.6:19, Rom.8:9).
It is one thing for us to have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, but does the Holy Spirit "have us" that He may fill us with abundant life? The abundant life is not found in environment or circumstances, or in the things we may possess. It is found in the infilling of the Holy Spirit. “Be filled with the Spirit" (See Eph.5:18) is a command.
We may be filled many, many times. To be filled with the Holy Spirit is to be Spirit- possessed, Spirit-empowered, Spirit-led and Spirit–controlled. It is a yielding up our lives daily as we die to self and living according to God's will and ways.
1. We are filled with the Spirit that we might have joy.
2. We are filled with the Spirit for service.
3. We are filled with the Spirit for power to be a bold witness.
4. We are filled with the Spirit for the hour of persecution.
5. We are filled with the Spirit that we may “walk in the Spirit” and not fulfill the desires of the flesh.
6. We are filled with the Spirit that we may be led by the Spirit.
7. We are filled with the Spirit that we might have a song in our hearts.
8. We are filled with the Spirit that we might submit to one another.
How can we be filled with the Holy Spirit?
First: We must desire Him to fill us.
Second: We must ask Him to fill us.
Third: We must believe that He does fill us.
Fourth: We must yield up control of our mind/thoughts, emotions/feeling, will/choices, and our physical body to the will and ways of the Holy Spirit. This is called "dying to self." Paul said, "I die daily."
The Law of the Spirit: The Life of Christ.
Romans 8:2-4 ESV For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. (3) For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, (4) in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
We find our true victory over the curse of sin and death in the Law of the Spirit. The Law of the Spirit is the life of our Lord Christ Jesus.
It is the privilege of the child of God in the power of the Holy Spirit to have victory over sin every day, every hour, and every moment. It also gives us freedom over death and the grave. As a Christian, we can no longer use the excuse “well, I am just a sinner, I can’t help but to sin.” We are no longer “sinners” bound by sin, for we have been freed from the Law of Sin and Death.
My Biblical and spiritual position is that of being a saint that occasionally sins. Even though we will son, we should not live our lives expecting to sin. Typically we expect to sin during the day and are greatly surprised if we don’t. We should not be surprised when we don’t sin. We are children of the Most High God with the Person of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. We should have great expectation each day of walking in righteousness and holiness and be surprised when we don’t.
This is the authority we have with our new birthright and living under the Law of the Spirit. Also, as we learn to walk out the Law of the Spirit we should not expect, nor confess, that we will physically “fall apart” as we get older. The Scriptures state that life and death are in the tongue. It also states that we confess blessings or curses. We need to stand in faith in the Law of the Spirit and confess a blessing and confess life over ourselves and our love ones.
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.