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Why Does the Bible Tell Us to "Mortify the Flesh"?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
February 26, 2024 4:30 pm

Why Does the Bible Tell Us to "Mortify the Flesh"?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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February 26, 2024 4:30 pm

Episode 1432 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

 CoreChristianity.com

    1. Does having denominations cause division within Christianity?   2. Is Satan being shown mercy by being loosed for a thousand years?   3. Why does the Bible tell us to mortify the flesh?   4. If I never marry in this life, will I get a second chance in heaven?   5. Did Moses and the elders see God in Exodus 24:9?     Today’s Offer: Why Would Anyone Get Married?   Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.   View our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.

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Why does the Bible tell us to mortify the flesh? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity.

Well, hi there. This is Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. Our phone lines are open right now, and you can call us for the next 25 minutes and talk live to Adriel. Here's the phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. We're also live on YouTube right now. You can check out our YouTube channel, and you can send a message, send a question to Adriel through YouTube. And of course, you can always feel free to email us. Here's our email address. It's questionsatcorechristianity.com.

First up today, let's go to a voicemail from one of our listeners named Christina. My question is more of what's not in the Bible. In today's world, with all the different divisions in religion, maybe Catholic, Baptist, Christianity, Pentecostal Mormon, and so forth, is that not a division among God's people?

Because in my recollection, I never recall hearing or reading anything where it says to be one or the other, just to know in your heart what's best with your mouth. Thank you. Hey, thank you for that question.

And honestly, this is one of the things that over the years has really grieved me as well. And you look out at the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ today, and you see so much division, so much doctrinal division. Now, you included in that group Mormonism, and I wouldn't include Mormons among Orthodox Christians. I think we can differ as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ on a number of things, and yet still affirm one another as brothers and sisters in Christ, whether we're Baptist or Presbyterian or Pentecostal.

But Mormonism rejects many of the key tenets of the Christian faith, rejects core Christianity. And so there are some errors that put us outside the bounds of Christianity. And realizing that, doing a little bit of theological triage, we might say, helps us to be more charitable to one another, so that even though there are divisions on some of these points, whether it's a point of baptism or something else, we can say that there really is one Church, all those who profess the true faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, who call upon His name, together with their children. This universal body of believers made up of all those, as I just said, who call upon the name of the Lord, not just now presently alive on earth, but even those who have gone before us, the saints who have died, you know, with faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, who are presently with God in heaven.

We refer to that sometimes as the Church triumphant, and we here on earth are the Church militant. But, you know, those divisions that we experience, right, we can be charitable with one another, but we ought to still dig into the Scripture, search the Scriptures, because we want to align our lives with the teaching of the Bible. And the divisions aren't something I think that the Bible says, hey, that's fine, it's okay for us to have different views of baptism or whatnot.

No, we ought to believe whatever the Bible teaches, and that's why we need to reason together to study the Scriptures. The issue is, the problem is not with Scripture, it's with us. It's with our sinful hearts, with our clouded minds, the fact that we oftentimes reject the truth of God's word or twist God's word or don't fully understand God's word. And that's why we see the divisions that we see. It's rooted in ignorance or human pride, and that's where we all as Christians need to humble ourselves and say, okay, let's search the Scriptures, let's dig into the Word of God, and let's pursue unity with the body of Christ as much as is possible. But then, of course, as I said, there are some things where it is important for us to divide over, and things that it is important for us to call out and say, okay, that's outside of the bounds. If you reject the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, if you reject the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, if you reject salvation by grace alone through faith alone, okay, now we're talking about two different religions here. And so God help us, God help us as Christians to be humble, to be charitable, and to let the Word of God above everything else shape our life and what we believe.

God bless. You know, along those lines, Adriel, in recent years the word tolerance has been redefined. There's the Christian view of tolerance, which is to be kind and understanding and compassionate, but still hold to biblical values. But today, tolerance means something very different. It means if you don't endorse my moral choices, then I disagree with you, you're hateful, you're a bigot, et cetera, et cetera. And within the church, within the Christian church, we have denominations that may hold to many of the tenets of Scripture, but on the issue, let's say, of homosexuality or transgender issues, they have a completely different view.

How should we handle that? I think you're totally on to something, Bill. I think we really need to look at that word tolerance and say, okay, there are instances where it's good for us to be charitable to one another within the body of Christ, but there are certainly things that we as Christians should have no tolerance for. That might sound shocking to you, but think about what Jesus says in Revelation chapter 2.

And as soon as you brought this word up, Bill, I knew I wasn't going to go here. Revelation chapter 2 in verse 18, this is how it begins, and to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, this is Jesus speaking to the church, the words of the Son of God who has eyes like a flame of fire and whose feet are like burnished bronze, I know your works, your love, faith, service, patient, endurance, and that your latter works exceed the first, but I have this against you, that you tolerate that woman Jezebel who calls herself a prophetess and is teaching and seducing my servants to practice sexual immorality and to eat food sacrificed to idols. He's like, look, I'm going to commend you for some things, you church in Thyatira, but I have something against you, and you know what I have against you? It's this tolerance that you have, this tolerance that you have for false teaching, this tolerance that you have for sexual immorality, and the tragedy is in the church we're seeing this today in various places where churches are wanting to tolerate, to embrace, you know, the world's definition of sexuality, the world's definition of any number of these things, and so this is where we have to say, no, actually Jesus stands against that, and we're called to be faithful to him. So again, Bill, I like that you brought that up, we got to distinguish between showing charity to one another as Christians where we differ on issues that don't strike at the vitals of our faith, but not showing charity towards or tolerance towards sin, rebellion against God, but calling it out and repenting of it.

So well said. Thanks for that, Adriel. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you've never called in before with a question, we would love to hear from you. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE. That's 1-833-843-2673. We'll be taking your calls for the next 15 minutes or so, so now is the time to call. Let's go to Sally in Missouri. Sally, what's your question for Adriel? Hello, thank you guys.

I listen to you all the time. Why is Satan loosed after a thousand years? Is he being given mercy?

Thank you for that question. Yes, so we're talking about Revelation chapter 20, the binding of Satan, really probably the most controversial passage in the book of Revelation, because this is where we get the idea of the millennial reign of Christ, and that's where, you know, you have all sorts of differences among, I think, you know, Christians who are who are well-meaning, and we were just talking about the importance of searching the scriptures and letting the word of God shape our beliefs, and this is one of those areas where Christians have differed. But your question isn't necessarily about, you know, what or when is the thousand year reign, you know, this period where Satan is bound so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, but why does God let him out? Why does God allow him to be loosed again? Revelation chapter 20 verse 7, when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle. Their number is like the sand of the sea, and they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. So right there it's, okay, well they're not given mercy.

It's not like they're, you know, being extended some charity here. No, this is a part of their condemnation, and specifically, you know, in answer to the why question, why does God allow Satan to be released from this binding? It's to gather the nations together.

He deceives the nations again. He gathers them together for the final battle, the war of Armageddon, we might say, and so he's using, in one sense, Satan for his purposes to bring about this final judgment, and that's why the Lord allows it. You know, we don't always understand the ins and outs of why God gives Satan permission to do certain things, and that's just a part of being a creature this side of heaven. We don't see everything in the same way that God does, but we do know that God is sovereign over Satan, and that he can use even the evil one to accomplish his purposes, and that's precisely what's happening here is Satan is instigating this final battle, and God is shown to be victorious. God comes in judgment, and Satan is fully and finally judged there, as verses 10 and following say, and so it's not an act of mercy.

It's essentially, you know, giving Satan the noose to hang himself, and so I appreciate this question, and again, wonderful to get into the book of Revelation, one of those books that isn't studied very often by many Christians, but we really need to spend time there, I think, and receive the comfort that the Lord has for us in that book. Amen. Sally, thanks so much for your call. Thanks for listening to Core Christianity. We really do appreciate you.

Love to hear from you. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, here's our number, 833-THECORE. That's 1-833-843-2673.

You can also leave us a voicemail at that number anytime, 24 hours a day, with your question for Adriel. Well, we've had some issues with marriage in our culture over the last generation or so, and the view of marriage has changed pretty dramatically for many people. What does the Bible have to say about marriage, and why should anyone get married?

Well, we actually have a resource for you on that topic. Yeah, especially today, as Bill was just referencing, this is one of the areas where, culturally, as a society, we've totally lost sight of what the Bible says, what God has revealed in His Word, about marriage. I mean, why should we get married? What is marriage all about? And so, we have this resource called, Why Would Anyone Get Married? I mean, it says it right there in the titles, and that's the question that we're answering here, and part of the reason why we're tackling this—I mean, it might sound like a simple question, but the fact of the matter is, you think about the world today, and it's not such a simple question. There are a lot of people that are confused about this, and so I hope that you'll get this resource, because it'll encourage you and build you up in what the Word of God says about this very important subject.

Once again, it's called, Why Would Anyone Get Married? You can find that by going to corechristianity.com forward slash offers. By the way, if you're a regular listener to Core Christianity and you appreciate what we do, you find our content valuable, you like the answers that Adriel provides, and it's helpful to you and your faith, we would ask you to prayerfully consider making a gift to this ministry. We are completely listener-supported. We don't get money from a church or denomination.

We don't play commercials or get money from a radio station. It's pretty much done right here in our offices, and if you, again, feel led to give a gift, we'd love to have you do that, and you can also join what we call our inner Core, people who contribute to make a gift on a regular basis to our ministry. You can find out more about that at corechristianity.com.

Well, we do receive voicemails here at the Core, and here's one that came in from one of our listeners named Christine. My question is, when you accept Jesus and the Holy Spirit comes into your heart, the struggle is between the flesh and the Holy Spirit, and when you have a habit like food, how do you get past one to get the other? Thank you. So you're talking about the very real struggle that every one of us experiences, and I love that you got solid theology there. You see, when we accept Jesus, when we believe in Jesus, we're filled with the Holy Spirit. Paul says in Ephesians 1, you've been sealed by the Spirit. The moment you believed in Jesus Christ, such a wonderful promise, the Spirit of God sealed us for the day of redemption. Now, as those who have been sealed with the Holy Spirit, we're called to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Paul gives that exhortation later in the book of Ephesians, to walk in the Spirit, he says in the book of Galatians, in Galatians chapter 5, so that we don't give in to the desires of the flesh, the sinful desires of the flesh. He recognizes that there's still this battle that's taking place within us, where we have temptations. And the encouraging thing here is, I think sometimes Christians, believers in the Lord Jesus, filled with the Holy Spirit, can question their salvation because they think, boy, why do I still feel the way that I feel sometimes, or think the things that I think, or desire the things that I desire? And we say, well, am I really saved?

And that's where I think you point to these passages and say, no, there really is a war that's taking place. Galatians chapter 5, that doesn't mean that those desires are okay. No, we confess them to the Lord and say, Lord, save me, wretched man that I am.

Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ, as Paul says at the end of Romans chapter 7. And then going into Romans chapter 8, he talks about what it looks like to walk in the Spirit. And it does entail, by the Spirit, putting to death the sinful deeds of the body. He says in verse 12, this is Romans chapter 8 verse 12, So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 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. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 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. The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. What wonderful promises we have there in the Word of God. If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, you have been sealed with the Holy Spirit, adopted into the family of God, and the Spirit of God lives in you. And that's how, why we cry out Abba, Father. And that same Spirit leads us, guides us, and by the Spirit we're being sanctified. The deeds of the body, those sinful deeds of the body, are being put to death.

And so how does that happen practically? I think it happens as we seek the Lord, as we pray to him, as we study the scriptures, as we are shaped more and more by the Word of God, and not by the the voices that are running out around in our heads or, you know, just out there in the world. We're letting God's Word shape us, but it's a process. And I know it's easy to get discouraged in that process of sanctification. Continue to offer yourself up to the Lord and know that he is for you, and that the same God who has justified you by faith in Jesus Christ, counted you righteous in his sight, is also at work in your life, molding you more and more each day into the image of Christ, so that you might glorify him.

And so don't be discouraged. And most importantly, I would say, you know, I talked about the importance of being in the Word, of praying, but you need to be in a good church too. You need to be in a good church where the Word of God is faithfully preached, and where there are others, brothers and sisters there, who are encouraging you and holding you accountable in your walk with the Lord. These are the ordinary means, the ordinary ways that God shapes us and molds us more and more into the image of Christ, so that we walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh. God bless.

Really beautiful explanation there, Adriel. I'm so glad you mentioned the body of Christ, because I think there are some people who feel like, okay, the sanctification process is instantaneous, you know, the Holy Spirit zaps me and I'm somehow sanctified, versus what actually happens as we grow in the faith. And part of that is what happens in the body of Christ.

That's right. I mean, who of us doesn't want to just be Holy Spirit zapped so that we never sin again, right? Like if there was a button that I could press that would get, which is all the struggle, is not going to, I mean, yes, that'd be wonderful, but that's not how the Lord typically works. Now, in one sense, we have been, you know, like that justification is a definitive act of God. You were, in one sense, zapped. I mean, you were justified.

That happened. But now, in our sanctification, that is a process, a difficult process at times, but nevertheless, through that process, God is shaping us and molding us and helping us to reflect his beauty, his love, his goodness more and more to the world. And so we submit to that process. We submit to the Lord in it. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, you can call us 24 hours a day and leave your voicemail for us. Here's the number.

It's 833-THE-CORE. You can also send us an email at questionsatcorechristianity.com. Let's go to Dominic, who's calling in from Canada. Dominic, what part of Canada are you in? Hello? Hey, Dominic.

Hi there. I have a question for Pastor Adriel. I'm from Vancouver, and I really like your show on marriage. I'm sorry, I'm a bit nervous right now. I've never been on air on a radio show.

My question to you is over the air. If a true Christian, I've been a Christian since 2017. If a true Christian really desires to have a marriage in this life with someone, and they don't get that chance for whatever reason, whether it's constant rejection or like, whatever, can God give them a second chance in heaven, or is there no chance to to meet a partner in heaven at all, as Matthew 24 says? I think that was the verse, right? Hey, Dominic.

Thanks for calling from all the way from Canada, and I'm grateful to hear that you appreciate the broadcast. You know, to desire marriage is a good thing, a wonderful thing, and I don't know if you're speaking for yourself, but I do pray that the Lord blesses you and grants you the desire of your heart as you seek him and as you submit your life to him. Of course, we know in Scripture, you know, for believers we're called to marry in the Lord, and so, you know, again, as we as we seek the Lord, as we pursue him, as you get to know, you know, someone in Christ, you know, that's ordinarily how God works. I don't believe on the basis of what Jesus taught in Matthew 22, I think that was the text you're referring to, that there's there's another opportunity for marriage, you know, after we die and go to heaven or in the new creation that people are going to be meeting and getting married and that kind of a thing. Again, Matthew chapter 22, Jesus speaking, verse 30, for in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like the angels in heaven. Now, the reason for this in one sense in one sense is because marriage here on earth is a picture of the marriage, the ultimate marriage, that exists between Christ and the church. So there is, we might say, a marriage in heaven, it's the marriage supper of the lamb, the reality that our marriages here on earth point towards. But I hope that that doesn't discourage anyone who's listening because the reality is the love and the longing for companionship that we have here on earth, and even that we have some taste of fulfillment of in earthly marriages, in heaven, in the presence of the Lord, that's going to be eclipsed by the greater joy, the greater companionship, the greater love that we experience in heaven and then ultimately in the new creation. It's hard for us to imagine that now, but let me just say there's not going to be anyone walking around in the new creation discouraged or feeling like, man, I really missed out.

No, I mean, we're going to be overwhelmed with the presence and goodness of the Lord. But again, I do pray for all those who are longing for a spouse, that the Lord in his kindness and mercy would provide the perfect person, the right person for you, and that together you could grow more and more into the image of Christ and honoring him. God bless, and thanks again for reaching out. Thanks, Dominic, for calling all the way from Vancouver. We really appreciate you. By the way, we have that great resource available to you called Why Would Anyone Get Married?

A great question and some great answers. You can find that at corechristianity.com. And Adriel, you know, I was just thinking in the news, of course, we've been hearing about this young woman, this college student in Georgia who was tragically murdered, and she was a strong believer, and her sister said this, she is now in heaven with the man she loves the most. And I just thought that is so powerful. Yeah, I didn't even hear about that, Bill. It sounded tragic.

I'm sorry to hear that. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Let's go to Matt from Nebraska. Matt, we've just got about a minute left. What's your question for Adriel? Matt, are you there? I think we lost Matt, or Matt's having some issue with the delay there. Let's go to Viola in St. Louis.

Viola, can you give us your question real quickly? Yes, I just wanted to ask Pastor about Exodus 24 verses 9 and 11 where it says, and they saw God, the God of Israel, and I'm like, and even in verse 11 it says, they saw God, and I thought no one saw God in this, so can you explain that? Yeah, great, great. I mean, there are instances in the Old Testament with Moses and with others where it talks about them experiencing the divine presence in a very powerful way, but, and then even using the language of seeing God, and then of course there are other passages in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, but God, not, you can't see God. He's a spirit. Understanding or seeing God as he is in his essence would vaporize you, you know, that kind of a thing. So we have to understand this, I think, in its context, and typically what we have in these passages is a picture of God's condescension. It's God revealing himself, of course, not, you know, the comprehensive vision of himself, we might say, where it's, you know, they saw him perfectly or they grasped his essence, but God condescending through his revelation so that they might truly know, so that we might truly know who God is and how to worship him. And of course, God has done that for all of us.

In the person of his Son, Jesus Christ, we might know him as he's revealed himself in Jesus. God bless. Thanks for listening to Core Christianity. To request your copy of today's special offer, go to corechristianity.com forward slash radio, or you can call us at 1-833-843-2673.

That's 833-THE-CORE. When you contact us, let us know how we can be praying for you and be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's Word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-26 19:37:54 / 2024-02-26 19:48:34 / 11

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