|“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do…I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out…. So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me…. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God –through Jesus Christ out Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.” –Romans 7:15-25
I am sorry for the length of the verse, but it was necessary. Can’t you just relate to what Paul writes in the verses above? When I read this verse again recently, I was brought to my knees with frustration! Why is it so difficult to live this righteous life that we want so badly to live? Why is it so difficult to do those things that we know we ought to do? To make those decisions that we ought to make? Why do we end up doing those things that we know we shouldn’t be doing? Why do we seek God’s forgiveness for the same thing over and over again?
These questions led me to 2 Peter 4:1-2; Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin. As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly live for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God.
Many of us are defeated in the battle against sin because we do not want to sacrifice anything in battle. We want to serve God, but at the same time, we want to satisfy our flesh. This can’t work! The commitment that we are called to have is nothing compared to what Christ suffered on our behalf, so we ought to arm ourselves with his attitude. He decided that he was going to come into this world and die for us in spite of the things we did and the persecutions he was going to face.
Have you decided in your heart what you want to do during your days on this earth? Are you going to serve God or are you going to serve your flesh? If you say that you want to serve God, then you need to make a commitment to him today. You need to make a commitment and stick to it in spite of everything. You need to tell God that, "even when things aren’t going the way I want them to; I am going to serve you." "Even though everything in me wants to commit this sin, I am going to serve you." Commitment requires sacrifice, and if we can’t sacrifice then we can’t commit to God and if we can’t commit to him, we can’t consider ourselves to be Christians.
Serving God is not an easy task, and as we can see from Paul’s words, it can get extremely frustrating! Our spirit is in a constant battle against our flesh every day, and in every situation, WE have to decide who wins that battle. Jesus went through it, and his Spirit won. Paul went through it; although his flesh won many battles, his Spirit won more, and ultimately won the war. If you have been allowing your flesh to win battles, it is time to turn things around. The war is almost over! The Day of Judgment is upon us, who are you going to allow to win the war? Make that decision today. Make that decision everyday. The choice is yours…who are you going to allow to win the war?
Stay blessed and spread the word.