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July 20, 2020 7:00 pm
Dr. Steve Pettit continues a chapel series entitled “Walking In the Spirit.” Today’s scripture passage is Galatians 5:25.
Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. The school was founded in 1927. The evangelist Dr. Bob Jones Senior's intent was to make a school where Christ would be the center of everything, so he established daily chapel services today.
That tradition continues with fervent preaching from the University chapel platform today on The Daily Platform work, including a study series entitled walking in the spirit which is the study of Galatians chapter 5 through the study will see how believers can have freedom in Christ as they walk with him each day.
If you would like to follow along in the study booklet you can get one on Kindle or you can order a printed copy from the website. The Daily Platform.com.
Let's listen to today's message for Steve will discuss the resurrected life from Galatians chapter 5 when I ask you to please take your Bibles this morning and turn with me to the book of Galatians chapter 5. Well, we have spent the entire semester in our chapel on and off working through the theme of walking in the spirit. We've actually had 10 messages and this is the last and final of the messages of our theme walking in the spirit.
I don't know has been for you but for me it's been personally enriching to work through all of these sacred taxes been a wonderful blessing, just a few reminders we began in Galatians chapter 5 verse 13 We Worked Our Way down to the passage in verse 16 we find were Paul commands believers that they are to walk in the spirit is right here.
We realize that walking in the spirit involves an active engagement of the will, the obedience of the believer. Then in verse 18. He says that we are to be land of the spirit. And here we came to realize that is not just an active obedience, we can say this way. It's a passive dependence on the Lord so you could sum it up even in the song trust and obey. There's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but do trust and obey. That's really what's involved in walking in the spirit. However, it's not until we get down to verses 24 and 25 were Paul really tells us how this works and he tells us that the key to understanding how this works is described in two events that we all know well the crucifixion and the resurrection of Christ, and since we are united to Christ, since we are in Christ, then for since believers walking in the spirit involves both the crucifixion and resurrection. As Jesus was nailed to the tree and rose from the grave. So we as believers are to experience both in our own life a painful crucifixion and also a powerful resurrection. If we walk with him so you may not remember it very well but a couple weeks ago we started out with the crucified life of the believer.
As verse 24 that is what it says and they that are Christ crucified the flesh with the affections and lots walking in the spirit involves a dying experience. It starts at the moment of our salvation when we choose to die to ourselves to crucify the flesh with the affections and laws simply, that means that we are dying to our self-centered desires. That's what happens when you get say you are turning from self and sin to Christ. But although this begins at salvation.
It has to be lived out.
What is Christian living. It's living out the crucifixion of Christ. Day after day, as I choose to say no to myself and yes to Christ and Paul used the term that we looked at last time. It's the word mortify it refers to the action of the believer towards us in Romans 813 for if you live after the flesh, you shall die. But if you through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body. You shall live. Is John Owen put it this way. He said kill sin or it will be killing you for us as believers. This involves a ruthless attitude towards our own sinful thoughts and desires.
It includes cutting off supply lines that feed your loss. Paul writes in Romans 13 do not make provision for the flash to fulfill the lusts thereof. I am sure in the last five days you have had plenty of opportunities to say no to the flash and yes to the Lord because Christian living is an intentional separation from sin.
That's the crucified life of the believer this morning. I'd like us to continue on in verse 25 of that fall, and now we turn to the resurrected life of the believer. The believer's life that is lived in the power of God and let let's look at verse 25 and notice what Paul says.
He says if we live in the spirit, let us also walk in the spirit. Now notice the opening statement. He says if we live in the spirit. This is what we call a statement of fact, it means this if we really are living in the spirit. The ideas that we really do. You could translate it this way since we are presently alive in the spirit. Since we right now are new creations in Christ, since we have God's Spirit indwelling us with the dynamic power of God, since you are alive in the spirit. You have been resurrected for the moment that you were saved. Not only did you die, but as Paul says in Ephesians 2 we are made alive. We are quickened with Christ we are alive in him and then he goes on to say that in addition to this, he says if you are alive, and let us wall in the spirit. Now the first thing I think you should note is that the word wall here in verse 25 is actually a different word than what we find in verse 16 in verse 16 it means to behave as one in whom the Spirit dwells live out your life walking in the spirit. But in verse 25.
It's very different.
It means to keep in step with the spirit. It's a military term.
It's like marching in a platoon to the cake to the cadence of your platoon leader when he calls you to attention and then he says far forward March and accounts out one do three more and and and yours is stepping out and with everyone else you're keeping it means to get in line and a stay in line with God's spirit it means to persist in us in a certain way.
It's like taking a class in keeping up with your assignments, and if you have ever gotten behind as the confession I'm just asking the question and most of us learned in college that one of the keys to good grades is just staying up keeping up.
It's like a person who joins a GM and they want to get in shape and they want to look good and they want to feel good. So they go and join a local gym and to get a trainer and the trainer comes walking out. He looked like he was in a magazine anything Allah look like that guy but after 30 minutes of exercise. You're not so sure you will look like they got the key to getting in shape is keeping up staying with it and what Paul is saying is this, that walking in the spirit involves a continuing perseverance in your walk with God. We are not only to obey God and depend on God.
But we are to persevere with God. So how does the believer keep in step with the spirit book that I read as a young Christian was entitled by JI JI Packer. It was entitled knowing God. Packer writes about a personal experience that he had as a young Christian when he picked up a copy and I mentioned it last time of John Owen's book on the entitled of the mortification of sin in believers and he makes this statement about how to keep up with the spirit, he said, I chanced upon a mini treatise by the Puritan John Owen and here was God's chemotherapy for my cancer and soul reaching across three centuries. Owen showed me my inside my heart, as no one had ever done before sin. He told me is a blind anti-God egocentric energy in the fallen human spiritual system ever fomenting self-centered and self deceiving desires and ambitions purposes, plans, attitudes and behaviors. Now that I was a regenerate believer born again, a new creation in Christ. Sin that formally dominated me had been dethroned but it was not yet destroyed. It was marauding within me all the time bringing back sinful desires that I hoped that I'd seen the last of and twisting my new desires for God and godliness, out of shape so that they became pride perverted to lifelong conflict with the besetting sins that besetting sin generates was what I must expect. In other words, is that I didn't think I could ever get victory. So what do I do here was Owen's answer. In essence, he said, have the holiness of God clear in your mind.
Remember that sin desensitizes you to itself watch that is prepared to recognize it and search it out within you by discipline, Bible-based spirit led self-examination focus on the living Christ and on his love for you on the cross, pray, asking for strength to say no to send suggestions and fortify yourself against bad habits by forming good ones, contrary to them and ask Christ to kill the sinful urge you were fighting does it work yes 60 years own. I can testify to that. How do we walk in this resurrected life number one. It involves absolutely a discipline pursuit of God.
The Bible says exercise yourselves under godliness that word exercise and for first Timothy 47 comes from the word Jew loss from which we would get the word gymnasium is the idea of training or conditioning or getting in the shape, the word has the smell of the gym moment. Have you ever been in a gym that smelled of ever been in a smelly men's locker room were guys that come in pouring sweat and they throw their clothes in the locker and it smells like a locker room. The idea is that sweating is good. I grew up in South Carolina. Some of you are from the West and you don't like humidity, you're used to dry weather. I love humidity.
I love sweating when I was a kid I used to love walking out in July and August and feeling that he'd attacked you just start sweating as I felt like I was doing something even though I wasn't doing anything. The idea here of exercise is directing your spiritual sweat toward spiritual growth there's no godliness where there's laziness, God's people are diligent people, and this includes disciplining yourself in the various means by which we get grace what is grace God's power.
God's enablement, but where does grace come from what's the means of grace. It comes from his word. It comes from praying in the spirit. It comes from the fellowship of God's people and worship in God's house and the taking of the Lord's supper. We are not spiritual, but just because we have disciplined ourselves to do our duty and reading our Bibles but rather we become more spiritual because we are consistently drinking from the fountain of grace, so if you are inconsistent in in unveiling yourself to those means of grace, then you are being overrun by your flash because you cannot control the flash by your own self effort. The only way to kill.
Sin is God's way and so as we consider the fruit of the spirit. The qualities of Christ. Or you could say the fruit of the spirit is a definition of what holiness looks like love and joy and peace, goodness, gentleness, meekness, temperance, faithfulness, long-suffering, all of these put together that describes what Christ is like that defines what holiness is. But that does not come without habits is why Paul says in Galatians 6 a for he that so it through his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption, but he that so into the spiritual of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
The selling process is decision-making with where the will is choosing to follow the flash or follow the spirit in us in the present is what I'm doing right now. He says let us not be weary in well doing, what is it mean to be where you know what it means to be weary, if you crash during your vacation. Anybody crash I did I would I was I was worthless on Wednesday and Thursday of last week totally worthless. I said there my children all think I'm a zombie, because I am worn out the word weary means to lose your motivation to accomplish your goal, you lose your heart you lose your drive in the Scripture says don't be weary in well doing what is that well doing it selling to the spirit is developing in your life.
Christlike character and so therefore we must be intentional, but if we will be faithful if we will persevere, then we will change and we will grow and become more like Christ. So number one. It involves a discipline pursuit of God and secondly it includes up a spontaneous response to God were not robots their spontaneity in our life. And that's true in our spiritual life, I heard many years ago, Dr. Les Ola say that revival is obedience to the initial promptings of the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit works. Revival is when you instantly obey and by the way, that also includes a discipline getting used to that. I wondered, is that true that really what revival is. Years later, as I was studying the text in Philippians 2 verses 12 and 13 were pulses were for my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God which worketh in you both are willing to do of his good pleasure.
I realize that God works. First, God is the first cause of all things. God is working in you is prompting you stirring your heart he's convicting your conscience. He's challenging your faith he's illuminating your mind.
All of this comes through his word.
The means of grace, but as a believer. My will must be surrendered to instant obedience to the spirit of God. When God speaks my will is in submission and then daily that Liz lived out as I walk in obedience to the leadership and the guidance of the spirit of God and is this obedience that God empowers God animates us to accomplish his purposes, so only consider the resurrected life.
It's not a passive do-nothing life, but it is live that is filled with the grace of God is we discipline our habits and as we respond to the working of God in and through our life. This is the way that we walk in the spirit so let me conclude this morning with just three big reminders of what we have learned over the semester and were not going to retain everything but three big things. I want you to remind remember as we finish up this set this whole study on walking in the spirit. First of all let me first of all say that walking in the spirit is the only way to live the Christian life and nothing else is going to work. I hope that's clear. We learned earlier that Christian liberty is freedom from guilt through the cross and freedom from loss through the spirit. The flesh is deceitful. It will lead you to a religious self effort that leads to self-righteousness or the flesh will lead you to loose living totally rejecting the constraints of the law, you could say it real simple with two terms libertarianism or license and legalism. But in the middle is liberty like driving down the highway in Louisiana. You don't want to get off the highway because you can end up in the swamp. The only way for the Christian life to more is for the believer to walk in the spirit. I hope you understand that and I hope you're striving by God's grace persevering to keep up with the spirit. Number two I want to remind you that the desires of the flesh and the spirit are mutual opposites, and they are in continual conflict with one another.
It's a civil war going on in your soul. You cannot follow one of the other and and in the same time follow the other. You cannot be a fan of the flash should be a fan of the spirit which team are you all who are you following and the difference. Paul spells out between the two are clearly evident when we saw the works of the flesh, the darkness and then we saw the fruit of the spirit is beauty, the wonderful truth is this the power of the Holy Spirit is greater than the power of your flesh, you may feel at times that you were sinking into a vortex that you cannot get out, sinking into temptation, but I want you to understand that Christ rose from the dead, and his resurrection power is in the heart of every believer and we can overcome sin.
God is given us that do not walk away from this school thinking that the sin of your past or the experiences of your life have made you a victim and you are in slave to those things you are not a victim in Christ. You are a victor in and finally spiritual living involves an active daily engagement in the crucifixion and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. We live in Christ, so therefore there's no instantaneous sanctification. Boy I sure wish there was one it be a blessing if I can give an invitation this morning and say all of you that want to be instantly sanctified imperfect come Ford.
How many of you would come Ford I will not be the first free from temptation free from known struggles of my own heart living imperfection before our God, but it doesn't work that way. There's nothing that you can do that will bring instantaneous sanctification.
However, we can have ongoing growth and overcoming victorious power over the sins of our flash as we mortify the flash and obey the spirit and walk in the spirit we have to be in gauge and it is going to require this of you.
Here's my concern for many of you is that you are in a spiritual environment. Unengaged you're not getting up in the morning reading your Bible, you are not putting on the armor of God so that to go out and fight the sin because we really, really a Bob Jones is there like really sin really, because we are sinners. The problem is not out there. The problems in our own heart and we have to be engaged so that when Tim Tatian Rye is this. We cry out to God for strength and choose to obey.
My concern is that you develop passiveness of a pet 17 about your spiritual life. So there there's not that trawling from the means of grace that enables you to change and grow and and suddenly you graduate and not only are you not any better, but in some ways you're worse because you deceived yourself thinking you're okay. In reality, you're not. So make God grant us the help that we need in the promise that he is given his people is still true today when he penned it 2000 years ago that if we walk in the spirit we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh in all God's people said amen by listening friend. Can I ask you a question. Have you received the crucified resurrected Jesus as your own personal savior.
No doubt God is speaking to your heart. There's a knock on the door of your heart and he's asking to come in. Would you personally individually right now call upon the name of the Lord ask Jesus to be your savior for whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Let me urge you to do that right now.
May God bless you.
You been listening to a sermon from the study series in Galatians chapter 5 by Dr. Steve Pettit, president of Bob Jones University. For more information on Dr. Pettit series, visit our website The Daily Platform.com you can get a copy of Steve's study booklet entitled walking in the spirit. The Kindle version is also available. Thanks for listening and join us again tomorrow as we study God's word together on The Daily Platform