But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.) And Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you life because you have been made right with God. The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus from the dead, he will give life to your mortal bodies by this same Spirit living within you. Romans 8:9-11 [NLT]
Remember that this set of verses is preceded by these 2 verses:
For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will. That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.Romans 8:7-8 [NLT]
I think the ‘Active’ word in the passage for today is “living”. “You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God LIVING in you.”(emphasis added) The scary thing is the sentence in parentheses right after – “(and remember, that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to Him AT ALL.)” (emphasis added) The Spirit gives us life even though our bodies will die because of sin, because we have been made right with God.
The most interesting thing that is said here is that both the Spirit of Christ AND the Spirit of God lives in us believers. Righteousness and Life are only available to us as gifts from God when we accept his Son. The same Spirit of God that raised Jesus from the dead will raise our mortal bodies as well so that death and sin have no semblance of winning even when our spirit is released from the body to be with Christ when we die. Our mortal bodies will be glorified in the day of the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I continue to see the reinforcement of the fight to remain true to the Spirit of God living within me. Spiritual warfare is really the relationship between 3 things:
- The ruler of this world, satan
- The world itself
- The flesh
The best way I have heard this relationship explained is that satan is like a radio station owner who manages and dictates the programming and content (lies, evil, destruction, pain, conflict, etc) of that station. The world is like the station workers who implement the programming, generate the content, and curate the message. The flesh is a radio receiver that is tuned into that station receiving all of that programming and content. So, the battle with the flesh that is tuned into the station of the world, is with our new creature who has a resource (the Spirit of God) that is the ABSOLUTE TRUTH. The battle is over Truth versus territory. The Word of God in our hearts imbued with the power of His Spirit is how we fight the flesh, the world, and satan. The trick is that we must be consistently filling our hearts with the TRUTH so that every moment of the day that we are fighting the flesh, we wield the weapon to slay sin, and the armor to defend against the temptations, lies, guilt, shame, and misery coming across the airwaves.