By: Waylon Bailey
What’s the answer to our problem with sin? How do we get unstuck from a life of rebellion? How do we get rid of things in our lives that harm our families and our very lives?
The Bible gives a simple, consistent answer.
“So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not fulfill the desires of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16). The flesh refers to all those things that are opposed to God. The answer is to walk or live in the Spirit.
Paul encouraged the Ephesian church to “be filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18), a phrase meaning to be under the control and influence of the Spirit of God.
How do we come under the Spirit’s control?
First, you must desire to be filled with the Spirit. I fear many Christians do not want to be controlled by the Spirit, fearing that God might ask them to do something they don’t want to do. No wonder we have weak and ineffective churches and lives. As long as we exclude God’s plan of empowering the church, we will be left only with what we can accomplish.
Second, saturate yourself in Scripture. The Holy Spirit inspired the Scripture. He works in Scripture. If we are biblically illiterate or lacking in basic knowledge of God’s Word, we are restricting the Spirit’s power. We must be people who hear, read, study, memorize, and meditate on Scripture. The Bible is fertile ground for the Spirit to grow His fruit.
Third, deal with the sin in your life. The Holy Spirit is a sensitive Spirit. Our sin grieves Him and keeps us from the real power we need. We must confess, repent, and ask forgiveness for the Holy Spirit to truly work though us.
Finally, pray to be filled. Ask God to fill you. When Paul told us to “be filled with the Spirit,” he used an imperative command that means to be continually filled. Let us ask for the Spirit’s power. If you do, you are sure to receive it. Jesus said: “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:13).
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Have a great week!