As we’ve been going through the book of Romans, we’ve seen that the Holy Spirit is responsible for accomplishing the change that’s needed in our lives. Having this access to God, through the Holy Spirit, is a very powerful thing. It affects our lives in a number of ways if we’re willing to walk in it.
According to the Apostle Paul, this knowledge should have an effect on us.
Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation — but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it.
This verse literally says that we don’t owe anything to the flesh. We’re under no obligation to keep it happy and comfortable. To have the best life, I must cultivate my spirit.
I talk a lot about the need to pray in the spirit. When I pray in the gift, I build up my most holy faith (Jude 1:20). This is the faith that’s resident in my spirit. It’s a faith that goes beyond what I know about the Scripture or the situation I’m in.
There are times when there may not even be a Biblical verse that covers my situation. What do I do then? I pray in the Spirit. This helps me to trust God when there seems to be no earthly reason to put my faith in Him. It’s a faith that goes beyond what my mind can understand.
This is the kind of faith that’s needed to allow the changes to take place in me.
For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live…
This is a very interesting verse. If you just skim through it you’ll miss what it says. We need to remember what Paul has taught us thus far.
We understand, according to the Scripture, that we’re dead to sin and alive to God. Elsewhere in Romans we’re told to count ourselves dead.
This is based upon the truth that we were crucified with Christ, and this death separates us from the dominion of sin. That’s NOT what the above verse is telling us about. This verse is very different because it contains the word, “if”. This verse is telling us something we either could do or we could choose to ignore.
There’s a battle that rages in my being. Even though I’m saved, my flesh is still subject to its sin nature. I find that even though I’m dead to sin in Christ, I continue to fall to the temptations that come before me. Paul wrote about this struggle that we all face. How do I overcome this dilemma?
Many people try differing methods to bring about the victory. Some try to live right in their own strength. I’ve found that if I live trying to use my flesh to overcome my flesh, by shear will power, I’ll fail miserably. The above verse tells us that if I use my flesh, then death will reign in me. The problem is, to use a computer term, there’s a virus in the software.
The good news is that I can use the power of God’s network. I can use my spirit to put to death the misdeeds of the flesh. This is a truth that we’ve missed in the modern church. You can use your spirit to change your flesh.
In simple terms, you can download God’s anti-virus program and it will change the way you live. This is a powerful change because you’re allowing God to change you from the inside out.
We have to come to the understanding that I can take authority over the flesh by the power of the spirit. This is the key to a whole new level of living.
Question: How has prayer in the spirit changed the way you live?
© 2021 Nick Zaccardi