How can you experience the transforming work of the Spirit?
1. Admit and take ownership for the spiritual struggle within you
18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23 but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
• Here is Paul admitting to his inner spiritual battle
• This is the struggle of the believer with indwelling sin
• Flesh, sin that dwells in me, sin that dwells in my members, body of sin, flesh; these are terms that are used interchangeably
• We have a new nature in Christ, we are indwelt with the Holy Spirit but we also have the flesh
• The flesh cannot please God, can only sin and can be religious or pagan but it is still the flesh
2. Consider as true all that the Holy Spirit has made true
8 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
I. No condemnation in Christ
II. Set free from the law of sin by the law of the Spirit of life
III. God did for us what we in the flesh could not do trying to keep the law
IV. The righteous requirement of the law fulfilled in us who walk in the Spirit
V. We are indwelt by the Spirit and belong to Christ
VI. The Spirit is life
VII. Indwelt by the Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead
VIII. The Spirit who indwells us will give resurrection life to our bodies
• This is all true because God says it is true
• This is what the Holy Spirit has done and will do for every believer
• We need to consider to be true because it is true; i.e. live by faith!
• We either accept God’s interpretation of reality or we make up our own
• Receive it, thank God for it, pray specific prayers in light of it, step out in obedience on the basis of it
• Consider as true what the Holy Spirit has done and will do and step into the reality of His work
3. Renew your mind with the Spirit’s thoughts
5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7 For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. 8 Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
• Phroneo: to set your mind on something; phronema: what the mind is set on: between the two words they are used 5 times
• There is a contrast between the flesh and the Spirit and this contrast is seen in the mind
• There is a mind set on the Spirit and there is a mind set on the flesh
• The fleshly mind cannot please God and is death; the Spirit controlled mind is life and peace
• The fleshly mind leads to living according to the flesh and the Spirit controlled mind leads to living according to the Spirit
• We are transformed by the Spirit when we yield our minds to the Spirit and think the thoughts of the Spirit
• This is both proactive and reactive: Scripture meditation, Bible intake, worship, godly conversation, etc. and bringing every thought captive
• Develop spiritual habits that will help you set your mind on the Spirit
4. Surrender to the Spirit’s control and obey the Spirit’s leading
12 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God
• We are not obligated to live according to the flesh
• Life is when we put to death sin in our lives by means of the Spirit
• As sons of God we are to be led by the Spirit of God
• Make a decisive decision to surrender, make a daily decision to surrender; make moment by moment decisions to surrender
• What is the Holy Spirit prompting you to do? Do it!
• Step away and step out
5. Listen to the Spirit’s voice
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
• We have received the Spirit of adoption or sonship
• Huiothesia: adoption as sons
• There is no fear but intimacy, we cry abba, daddy, papa, Father
• The Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God
• We need to hear the Spirit’s assuring voice
• So much noise around us that the Spirit’s voice gets lost in the clutter
• We need to spend time with God so that we are familiar with His voice and we need to anticipate hearing it
Be still, and know that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!”
“Step out of the traffic! Take a long,
loving look at me, your High God,