Walking In The Spirit
We all have a responsibility to think, speak, and live in a certain way. The Apostle Paul said believers were to “Walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work...” The scripture says, “Walk in the Spirit and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” How we walk (live) is directly linked to how we think. The Bible tells us that we are capable of two types of thinking, spiritual and carnal.
Spiritual thinking leads to life, carnal thinking leads to death. Spiritual thinking requires daily self-discipline, which is not easy to do! Carnal thinking requires no discipline, and it is easy to do! There are many dangers associated with carnal thinking. To think carnal thoughts is our natural tendency. Peter warned the church to, “...Abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.” What are the fleshly lusts and desires Peter was referring to? Here is a partial list of thoughts to consider:
- Impure thoughts (sexual in nature)
- Selfish thoughts (greed, ambition, impatience)
- Jealous thoughts (revenge, self-pity)
- Covetous thoughts (sinful desires, discontent)
- Prideful thoughts (arrogance, vanity, self-promotion)
- Fearful thoughts (worry, doubt, unbelief, anxiety)
- Critical thoughts (judging, gossip, slander)
How do we overcome carnal thinking? I believe it starts with a strong desire to be an over-comer. We all choose how we will walk. If we choose the path of least resistance, we will never be able to walk in the Spirit. So, how do we begin walking in the Spirit? The first question every individual must answer is, “Do I want to be spiritual or carnal?” Unfortunately, many people answer that question wrong. In our culture, most people say, “I just want to be happy.” But what they really mean is, “I want to fulfill the desires of my flesh, and somehow not offend God.” They are saying, “I want to be spiritual and carnal; I want to walk in the Spirit and the flesh.” That, of course, is impossible.
We must understand that our carnal thinking separates us from God. “Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” “The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be.” Whenever our thoughts are carnal (not spiritual in nature) we begin to violate God’s laws. We sin against His holiness. That should motivate us to make a decision to walk in the Spirit everyday! Doing so, will require dealing harshly with our flesh. We must learn to say “no” to our natural tendencies. All “walking” begins in the mind. Remember, the mind is the battlefield! Paul spoke of “dying daily” in reference to controlling his carnal desires, and walking in the Spirit everyday. That can only be accomplished by filling our minds with the truth of God’s Word, meditating on it day and night as the Psalmist wrote, and communicating with God in prayer throughout the day (Pray without ceasing). Doing so will bring a new awareness of God’s presence in every aspect of our walk with Him. Make a decision, today, to put aside all carnal desires and begin walking in the Spirit.