(069) – THE FLESH

 

  1. The flesh is the source of corruption: “…flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable” (1 Cor. 15:50).
  2. The flesh is a putrid matter: “…save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh” (Jude 23).
  3. The flesh is filthy: “Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit” (2 Cor. 7:1). “…and specially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires” (2 Pet. 2:10).
  4. “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh shall from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit shall from the Spirit reap eternal life” (Gal. 6:7,8).
  5. What is this corruption that the person who sows to the flesh gathers? “Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, fractions, envyings, drunkenness, carousings, and things like these, of which I forewarned you that those who practice such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (Gal. 5:19-21).
  6. The flesh is, therefore, garbage. Let us read the words of Jesus: “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life” (John 6:63)
  7. The Apostle Paul declared: “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh” (Rom. 7:18).
  8. The lusts of our own flesh want to destroy our soul forever. Peter warns us: “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul” (1 Pet. 2:11).
  9. The flesh is an enemy of the Holy Spirit, and is opposed to the work of the Spirit in the life of the Christian, to destroy him. “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh, for the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please” (Gal. 5:16,17).
  10. “…because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so” (Rom. 8:7). We understand by this text that every carnal person is, in their works, naturally an enemy of God.
  11. To walk in the flesh, to live in the flesh, and to enjoy the flesh is like signing the eternal death sentence. “For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace” (Rom. 8:6). “For if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God” (Rom. 8:13,14).
  12. Those who are born of the flesh, that is, from the carnal intercourse, are all slaves of the flesh. The two wives of Abraham, Hagar and Sarah, are a figure of the flesh and of the Spirit. Hagar is the flesh, and Sarah, the Spirit. Paul reveals: “For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman and one by the free woman. But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and the son by the free woman through the promise” (Gal. 4:22,23). “But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now also” (Gal. 4:29). When the Spirit begets the Christian, that is, Isaac, he is born unto God. Ishmael, that is, the flesh, persecutes Isaac to destroy him. This is what we find in Gal. 5:16,17 and Rom. 8:13.
  13. The carnal people, that is, those who walk according to the inclinations of the flesh, as much as they wish, cannot please God (Rom. 8:8).
  14. Everyone who walks according to the flesh is not a child of God, but a child of wrath. “…you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest” (Eph. 2:2,3).
  15. The Apostle Paul prescribes one only medicine for the curse of the flesh: “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires” (Gal. 5:24). This is possible through the virtue of the Holy Spirit.
  16. Our hair stands on end when we realize that everyone who is born in the flesh is born of Jehovah. “Moreover, you took your sons and daughters whom you had borne to Me, and you sacrificed them to idols to be devoured” (Ezek. 16:20). “For they have committed adultery, and blood is on their hands. Thus they have committed adultery with their idols and even caused their sons, whom they bore to Me, to pass through the fire” (Ezek. 23:37). “Then you shall eat the offspring of your own body, the flesh of your sons and of your daughters whom Jehovah your God has given you” (Deut. 28:53). “But you shall serve Jehovah your God, and He will bless your bread and your water; and I will remove sickness from your midst. There shall be no more miscarrying or barren in your land” (Ex. 23:25,26). “Moreover, may your house be like the house of Perez whom Tamar bore to Judah, through the offspring which Jehovah shall give you by this woman” (Ruth 4:12). “Behold, children are a gift of Jehovah; the fruit of the womb is a reward” (Ps. 127:3). And more, Jehovah himself made the following statement: “BEHOLD, I AM JEHOVAH, THE GOD OF ALL FLESH” (Jer. 32:27). “Who among all these does not know that the hand of Jehovah has done this, in whose hand is the life of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind?” (Job 12:9,10). Jehovah is the god of the flesh, and Jesus is the God of the Spirit. Those born of Jehovah do not enter the kingdom of God, but only those who are born of the Holy Spirit (John 3:3-6; 1:12,13).

By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira

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