Have you ever felt torn in you desires to do things that would be considered sinful? I picture the cartoon angel and devil in the right and left shoulder whispering in your ear. But here Paul tells us that it is up to us to decide who we let guide our lives. The sinful nature has a strong pull in us, the Holy Spirit has a desire for us to accept his wisdom and follow his lead. The devil has been our hostage taker since the beginning and we have become so accustom to the life with him in charge it makes it difficult to ask for help and break free.
“So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives.
Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.
The sinful nature wants to do evil,
which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants.
And the Spirit gives us desires that are the
opposite of what the sinful nature desires.
These two forces are constantly fighting each other,
so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.”
Galatians 5:16-17 NLT
If you are wondering what some of the sins the sinful nature is working at in your life do a little reading at verse 19-21 of ch 5 in Romans, on your own time, you will see a list that Paul shared of some of the things that were happening then. Reading that last and looking at today’s society, you will see a shocking parallel. We may have upgraded our lives and lifestyles in the last 2000 years, but the sinful nature remains the same.
If the two sides are in constant struggle with one another what hope do we have? We must side with whom we want to live our lives with. It is a choice between the devil and his obsession with sin and keeping us away from God. Or with Christ who has already defeated the devil and it is only a matter of time before He fulfills His promise to rid the world of his existence. It may seem like a no brainer yet the majority of society has believed the lie of the devil and knowingly or not they have allied themselves with him. The shackles of sin hold them back from experiencing the love that God has for them and blinds them to the truth. Many have come to the point where they attack the foundation of Christianity out of fear and confusion because they cannot understand what it means to feel His love. I have said this before, but it is very much like Stockholm syndrome where the hostage becomes emotionally connected to the hostage taker to the point of defending their actions.
Is it possible then to break free from this bondage? Jesus has provided a way to free you from this bondage of sin, His sacrifice on the cross was the key to freedom. We must only accept it and repent of our sins only then can we truly walk in freedom with Him. Jesus promised we wouldn’t have to face this world alone, He sent the Holy Spirit to help us. We must accept the Holy Spirits guidance, correction and will. This will give us the edge and power needed to withstand the temptations of the sinful nature. If we daily commit to following him, we will stand a better chance of reaching others with the love of Christ. I have heard it said, “Free people can free people”.
Have you received Jesus as your savior? Asking him to free you from the bondage of sin? Only then can we be able to withstand what the devil throws our way. Have you accepted the Holy Spirits guidance in your life? If we want to be effective in showing this world who Jesus is and the relationship God wants to have with them, we must accept the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
Jesus, I ask forgiveness for allowing the sinful nature use me. I commit myself to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, guide me, correct me and use me. I want to reach others with your love. Thank you for sending the Holy Spirit to be here with us until your return. I want to love the people of this world like you do, because they matter to you, and they matter to me. Amen