Day 36 - walk with the Holy Spirit
In your own words ask God to help you hear and understand what He’s saying through His Word, and give thanks for the Holy Spirit that is empowering you to walk with Him after this devotional is done. Then read these verses (out loud if you are able).
Galatians 5:16-21 (ESV)
16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Before Jesus we were dead, dead in our sins, unable to know a Holy God. We still had a natural life, with desires, longings and actions, but spiritually we were dead and separated from God. Even our attempts to do good were under the law and of our own efforts, unable to meet God’s righteous standard. This natural life is what Paul means when he speaks of the flesh. It is all the things in our lives that originate with us. These desires left unchecked lead to broken and unrighteous choices. People who only have this kind of life are not participating in or inheriting the Kingdom of God.
When we came to faith in Jesus and trusted Him alone for the forgiveness of sins, we were given the gift of the Holy Spirit and a new life. The Spirit makes us alive to God and the things of God. The kingdom of God is our inheritance, and the Spirit is a seal guaranteeing that for us. We also receive new desires by the Holy Spirit, desires that are completely opposed to the things that our flesh wants.
Those of us who know Jesus now find ourselves with the capacity to go in two different directions. Paul says in another letter that it’s like there’s a war raging within us. So how do we make the right choice? Our invitation is to walk by the Spirit. Relationship with God’s Spirit is the key. We’ve been redeemed so that we may now live a new life. There are new desires at work within us. We can yield to the Spirit’s leading and pursue the things the Spirit desires. We don’t have to take part in things that are dead, sinful and broken anymore. Jesus has freed us from those things and given us His righteousness! We are no longer under the law. Rather, if you know Jesus, the Spirit of God is in you and leading you today. Walk with Him.
Look again at Paul’s list of works of the flesh. If you know Jesus none of those things or any other works of the flesh have to be a part of your life any longer.
Worship God for freeing you from the works of the flesh. Praise Him for the Holy Spirit that was given to you and the new desires that are now at work in your life. Confess any ways that you have been living by the flesh instead of the Spirit as sin to God and thank Him for His forgiveness and righteousness. Invite the Spirit to lead you and ask for the grace to say yes to Him as He leads.