TUESDAY August 29, 2017
Contending with Compromise
So I contended with them and cursed them, struck some of them and pulled out their hair, and made them swear by God, saying, “You shall not give your daughters as wives to their sons, nor take their daughters for your sons or yourselves.” - Nehemiah 13:25
Making a stand is not a popular thing to do, but Nehemiah forcefully did just that! He even went as far as to strike some of the Jews and pull out their hair! Can you see this picture? He gave some of them a beating so they would get the point! Nehemiah, from then on, made them promise to keep God’s Word. They would no longer make arranged marriages between their children and the pagan men and women.
The Apostle Paul is a good example of someone who contended with himself: But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified (1 Corinthians 9:27). Paulkept his body under subjection. Literally, the word discipline, in the Greek, gives to us the picture of a boxer who buffets his opponent. Paul disciplined his flesh––his body appetites, as if to beat his flesh black and blue.
Christians need to deal with their flesh––their fleshly desires, every single day. How is the victory won over their flesh? They need to walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh to gain the victory. Paul explains:
I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish (Galatians 5:16-17).
The key to walking in the Spirit is to remember that our flesh has been crucified: And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires (Galatians 5:24). Remember, the cross is the instrument of death.
“Whoever desires to come after Me [Christ], let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.”
For more from Raul Ries, please visit Somebodylovesyouradio.org!