Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Avoid the Way of the Flesh by Following God

Good morning, Happy Souls!

Bill Keller wrote a wonderful devotional today
that I highly recommend to you. He has given
me permission to copy his e-mails, and I'm sure
he would be happy if you would share this with
people you know as well.


( Romans 7:18, 25, 8:8,13,Galatians 5:17, 6:8,
1 John 2:17)

The battle with the flesh, the allure of this
world, versus the desire to please God. I
believe that by God's grace, I just summed up
the struggle every Christian faces each day in
those first 16 words. The never ending battle
with our flesh, fighting the allure of this
temporal world that we live in for this brief
season, overlaid with our desire to honor,
please, and follow God. It is the classic
struggle of giving into our will and desires or
surrendering to God's will and desires. It is
those many choices we all make each and every
day to either honor God or rebel against Him.
It is walking in the flesh or walking in the
Spirit. This is a battle that EVERY follower of
Christ fights every day. It is a battle that the
men and women of God in the Bible fought, it is a
battle that every follower of Christ these past
2000 years has fought, it is a battle that you
fight, and it is a battle that I fight.

Throughout the Old Testament, we don't get much
instruction on fighting this battle we all face
each day. We are given the Law, the commandments
from God Himself and told to follow them or there
would be consequences. We read the Biblical
accounts of men and women from Adam and Eve
through the prophet Malachi 400 years before the
birth of Jesus. We clearly see the struggles
many of them had in following the God of Abraham,
Isaac, and Jacob versus giving into the lusts of
their flesh and the desires of this world. We
also clearly see the blessings that came from
following God, as well as the great price paid
when living in disobedience to God.

As we read the Gospels, we hear Jesus laying
down those classic challenges to "pick up your
cross and follow me," that "whoever loses his
life for Me gains it," and "what does it profit
a man to gain the whole world yet lose his
soul." Jesus preaches the message of giving
your life completely to Him, of surrendering
your very life to follow Him. This was a
foreign thought in His day just like it is a
foreign thought today. The world clearly
teaches that you should have all the money,
pleasure, and things that it can offer. It is
the eat, drink, and be merry mindset. So many
come to faith in Christ having lived many years
according to the world's philosophy that says
"deny thyself no pleasure," when they are now
being told by God's Word to deny your very life
and give it to Jesus.

It is in Paul's letters that we get the most
insight into the practical application of how
to fight this battle we each fight every day.
Paul was dealing with the reality of bringing
people to faith in Christ that were used to
dealing with life in a carnal way and were now
being asked to deal with life in a spiritual
way. That really is the bottom line to this
war we are each in. A battle between living life
in the flesh and living life in the Spirit.
Walking after the desires of our flesh and the
temporal things of this world that can have such
a hold on us, and having a deep desire for the
things of the Spirit and keeping our focus on
the eternal things of God. Paul even details
this classic struggle of the flesh versus the
Spirit in those verses in Romans 7 where he
states that, "for what I want to do I do not do,
but what I hate I do."

Many of Paul's writings dealt with this struggle
between our carnal nature and our spiritual
nature to help us understand it. So today, I
want to do my best to help you with this battle
we all face. Whether you have been saved for 2
minutes or 70 years, whether you are seeking God
for what you are to do to serve Him or you are a
highly visible man or woman that has served God
faithfully for many years, please understand that
NOBODY is immune from this battle of the flesh
versus the Spirit and it is a battle you will
fight until this brief journey though life is

The most effective way I have found to fight
this battle each day, and most important to WIN
this battle, is through my relationship with
Christ. You have got to understand that when
Christ died on the cross, He died so that you
could live in VICTORY, not defeat. His victory
on that cross 2,000 years ago insured you would
be able to live in victory too; victory over
death, victory over this temporal world, and
victory over sin. The key to you seeing
victory each and every day is to walk in the
victory Jesus won on the cross, and that means
walking with Him each day.

This is why I implore you so often to be in the
Word, to be in prayer every day. Our walk with
Christ is not an hour a week on Sunday morning.
Our walk with the Lord is literally 24/7/365.
If we are to live in victory over the flesh,
over our carnal nature, deny the temporal
pleasures of this world, we have got to have the
strength that only comes from Christ and that
is why being in His Word and in prayer each and
every day is so critical The closer you are to
Christ, the stronger you are to withstand the
temptations of this world The way you become
closer to Christ is through the Word and prayer.

The other way you keep walking in victory each
day is by staying busy. Did your mother ever
tell you that an idle mind is the devil's
workshop? Sadly, most days I end up dealing
with pastors or people in the ministry who
have fallen into sexual sin. One of the things
I have noted over these many years is that a
common element to most of these stories is the
church or ministry was doing well and the
person who fell had lots of free time on
their hands. The reality is, when you are
growing a church or a ministry, finding enough
hours in the day to sleep is a huge challenge,
let alone finding the time to get involved in a
relationship outside of God's will.

However, with success often comes a season where
things are not as frantic every day, there isn't
as much pressure, and there are now free hours
during the day that didn't use to be there. It
is often in those seasons when things are going
well that most pastors or people in ministry
tend to fall. Look at David. It was during a
time of rest, of relative peace that he fell
with Bathsheba. So it is critical to live in
Christ's victory over the flesh to stay busy, to
have things to do. There is nothing wrong with
being busy throughout the day. The more you
have going on in your life, the less time you
have to be tempted by your flesh and by the
things of this world.

Of course, the best way to keep busy is by
serving the Lord. After all, our purpose in
this life is to serve and glorify God. So while
we have many things to do in our life, when you
need something to do to stay busy, find ways to
serve God! Jesus said the harvest is plentiful
but the laborers are few. There is so much work
to be done, and too few willing to do the
work. So I would encourage you to make the
time and effort to look at your daily schedule
and try to find places in your week that you can
devote to serving God. You will not only be
fulfilling your purpose, but taking another
step in winning the daily battle of honoring God
with your life.

I love you and care about you so much. The battle
we face with our flesh, with the allure of this
world we live in, versus our desire to please
God with our lives is something every follower of
Christ has to fight every single day. Please
don't underestimate satan and his goal to kill,
steal, and destroy YOU! He knows your flesh is
weak. He knows you love the things of this
temporal world He also knows you love the Lord
and want to please Him. That is why he attacks
you. He wants you to fall, to see your
testimony ruined, to bring shame upon God
through you. He is waiting for you to get away
from the Lord by not praying every day, by not
reading the Word every day, and by not serving
Him. He knows the further away from the
Lord you get, the easier a target you become.

I will be praying for you today. Praying that
you will walk in the victory that Jesus won on
Calvary's cross 2,000 years ago. He died so
that you could live your life in victory and not
defeat. By putting your faith in Him, you have
the assurance of spending all eternity with Him
when this brief journey is over. It also assures
you that you can live THIS LIFE in victory as
well. Victory over the desires of your flesh.
Victory over the temptations of this temporal
world we live in. Victory by living a life
that is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord and
fulfilling your ultimate purpose in bringing
glory to God through your life!

The battle lines are drawn. It is a battle each
follower of Christ must fight every day. The
lusts of our flesh and the things of this world
versus pleasing God with our life. May you stand
in VICTORY today as you defeat the flesh, say no
to this world, and please God with your life!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,
Bill Keller

***I can help you in any way you can contact me
through my personal email at

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(C) Copyright 2005, Bill Keller Ministries.
All rights reserved


May God bless you as you learn from this message!

Donald W. Mitchell, Your Dream Concierge

Copyright 2005 Donald W. Mitchell


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