Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely. And may your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
Everyone has three “parts”—spirit, soul, and body. The question is, which part is dominant? It can either be your spirit or your body. Evan H. Hopkins explains what happens when the flesh comes first. You are “no longer spirit, soul, and body, but rather body, soul and spirit, the order being reversed, the lowest principle becoming dominant” (Hopkins, The Law of Liberty, p. 48).
As a born-again believer, you can remain carnal or regress to a carnal pattern of life if you focus on fulfilling the body’s desires.
When Paul urged the Philippians to imitate him in pursuing the goal of “the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus” (Phil 3:14), he recognized that not every believer would do it:
“For I have often told you, and now say again with tears, that many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction; their god is their stomach; their glory is in their shame; and they are focused on earthly things” (Phil 3:18-19).
Even if Paul was referring to the Judaizers, in doing so, he implied believers could fall into that same destructive pattern.
So where will you put your focus? Are you occupied with Christ or with earthly things?
Don’t expect to be filled with the Spirit if you’re focused on filling your belly.
Send your questions or comments to Shawn.
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