Updated: Jun 21, 2021
STEP 1 - Read Galatians 5:13-26
(13) You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh (Sarx); rather, serve one another humbly in love.
(14) For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (15) If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
(16) So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh (Sarx). (17) For the flesh (Sarx) desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
(18) But if (since) you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. (19) The acts of the flesh (Sarx) are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; (20) idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions (21) and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.
I warn you, as I did before,
that those who live like this
will not inherit the kingdom of God.
(22) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. (24) Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh (Sarx) with its passions and desires. (25) Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (26) Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
STEP 2 - Reflect
Yesterday we saw how obviously wrong the acts of Sarx are (Sarx, remember is the Greek word for ‘flesh,’ and is a good nickname for the old sinful parts of yourself that keeps trying to pull you back into sin).
It’s easy to think of sin as something that’s keeping you from reaching your full potential, as if the only reason God hates sin is because He wants you to be as awesome as possible.
But today we get a stark reminder of how serious our sins are: people who live like this [in these obvious sins] will not inherit the Kingdom of God! Persistent sin is an eternal problem! God has no tolerance for sin, and He won’t tolerate anybody who remains in sin.
You might think sin isn’t that big of a deal, because after all, you’ve been forgiven! Your sin has been paid for, right? Absolutely! The sins you’ve committed are no longer hanging over you. Because of Christ, you will inherit the Kingdom of God.
This passage is aimed at people who seemingly have accepted the gospel, but yet continue living sinful lifestyles and don’t even care. In their case, the way they’re living overrides what they confess with their mouth. They’re saying to Jesus, I don’t really care that you died to pay for sin. I don’t love you enough to change my behavior.
There are two reasons to focus on this passage today. First and foremost, don’t let this be you. Flee from sin. When you do end up succumbing to temptation, repent immediately!
Second, as you read this today, begin to think of the people you know who continue to live in your sin, and let your heart ache for them knowing that they will be shut out from God’s kingdom. Let this realization drive your ambition to share with them the good news of salvation.
STEP 3 - Respond
STEP 4 - Reach up in prayer
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father in heaven whose name is holy (holy = pure and separate from sin)
ALIGN YOURSELF WITH GOD'S WILL: Ask God to make sin repulsive to you so that you flee from temptation.
ASK FOR WHAT YOU NEED: for what you need today