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October 11, 2021 7:00 pm
Dr. Steve Pettit continues a series entitled “Walking in the Spirt” with a message titled “The Works of the Flesh pt. 1” from Galatians 5:19.
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 biblical preaching from the University Chapel platform today on The Daily Platform were continuing a study series entitled walking in the spirit which is a study of Galatians chapter 5. Let's listen to today's message were Steve will begin teaching about the works of the flesh from Galatians chapter 5 you take your Bibles this morning a turn with me please to the book of Galatians Galatians chapter 5 as we are continuing our study in the theme of walking in the spirit and we have already seen that Paul has emphatically declared that walking in the spirit is the only way to live the Christian life and nothing else is going to work and he's also told us that is the only way to overcome our sin nature overcome our flashing Paul is going to make beginning today the next couple of messages. As we look at these points that he's going to make it very crystal-clear because he describes the various ways that our sin nature are flash is evident and how it comes out of us and all of us have the flash and it always has a tendency to come out notice to read beginning this morning. In verse 19, where Paul says these words, he says now the works of the flash or manifest which RVs and he gives here a list of 17 different manifestations this morning because of our time. We are only going to look at for those notice what he says. He says adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Paul says the works of the flash are manifest. What is that mean it means that they are easily and plainly recognized their obvious you can't miss it.
You say well if the works of the flesh are so obvious then why does Paul feel like he needs to put them in a list and name them all. I think as we begin this morning.
It's important to understand that all of us have a flash sin nature in it does come out, but we need to constantly be exposed to those sins. Why, because it is so easy for us as believers to be deceived.
Hebrews chapter 3 verse 13 says exhort one another daily, while is called today lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
Paul writes in Galatians 67 be not deceived, God is not mocked. For whatsoever a man.
So with that shall he also reap. As we been studying the book of Galatians we learned about the problem in the church where they had varying extremes with regards to salvation. One was a legalistic work centered works-based approach to salvation and then the other one was swinging the pendulum and going into. I will we call an anti-know me and or libertarian position and what could've been happening to some of the believers in the churches of Galatia is that their view of Christian liberty had or could have been leading them to believe that they were free to live a self oriented lifestyle. So what is Paul do. He clearly shows the difference between the works of the flash and the fruit of the spirit and what we see at the very top of the list is, he exposes the works of the flash, he lays out for CNN's that are sexual sins in nature.
You say, why would he put these sins of the very top of the list and one writer said it this way because their prominence is due to their prevalence in society that is sexual sins have always been a primary part of fallen, sinful, corrupt human society. And sadly, not only is it a part of fallen humanity, but it is also evident in the lives of believers who are not walking in the spirit so this morning as we look at these manifestations of the flesh as it is comes out in sexuality. I think it is important for us to remind ourselves, especially in light of our wonderful message yesterday that the sexual relationship between a man and woman is something that is God designed it is God honored and it is God blessed in its rightful place.
Mr. Dalton yesterday preached from Hebrews 13 for the marriage is honorable and the bad is undefiled but horrid mongers and adulterers shall be judged. The writer of Hebrews and the apostle Paul is letting us know that the divine way of sexual satisfaction is through the covenant of marriage between a man and between a woman. However, our sin nature are flash seeks sexual fulfillment without regards to the divine design and so Paul describes the various ways in which the flash can corrupt the blessing of the sexual relationship. One of those manifestations. Notice what he says now the works of the flesh are manifest, which of these and then the first word is the word adultery what is adultery well it's various acts of marital infidelity or unfaithfulness. This can and this could include a voluntary intimate relationship with another married or single person with the most horrendous notorious sin of adultery in the Bible is the sin of David, the king of Israel with the wife of one of his loyal soldiers. His name is Uriah's wife's name is Bathsheba David and Bathsheba.
Adultery also includes marrying a divorced person. We see this in the story of the woman who met Jesus at the well in Samaria. You remember the story when Jesus said, go, call your husband and she says well I don't have a and Jesus said, well, your answers correct. You had five husbands, and now you're living with a man is not even your husband and so either the first five men died or she divorce them, and now she's living with another man she gave up her marriage. She just didn't give up all men she commit committed adultery. Jesus also identifies the act of adultery can be committed in our thought life. He said if a man looks at a woman and he lusted after her.
He's committed adultery already in his heart.
Now that's a statement that bring stinging conviction to all of us here because this is not a sin that anyone here is free. The word for lust is the same word in Galatians 516 and 17, where it speaks of strong evil desires, the lust of the flesh, so Windows lost turn into a sin, the line between the desire and the sin is crossed when you begin to set your passions on another person.
Like what one old preacher said. He said you can't keep the birds from flying over your head but you don't have to let them build a nest in your hair when your unrestrained imagination begins to create sexual scenes and your passions are being inflamed through that then you're sinning against God.
Jesus said for from within, and out of the heart of men, proceed evil falls adulteries fornication. So what Paul does is he brings to the top of the list. The works of the flesh, and he exposes it in fallen corrupt human sexuality. There's a second word, and that the word fornication. This is a word that was used to refer to prostitution. The Greek word cornea in ancient times, immorality was a vital part of idolatrous worship, temple prostitutes, both male and female would sell their bodies for sexual favors to support the worship of their idle and time the word came to mean unlawful sexual relationships and included in this in the word fornication is the word adultery, incest, sexual relationship between those who are uncommitted to the covenant of marriage. So that would be sex between singles and included in this was homosexuality in first Corinthians 7 number seven Paul warns the unmarried not to get involved sexually. They should do nothing that would cause them to heat up with passion or as Paul says to burn it is extremely important that you recognize the absolute necessity to control your body to bring under the lust of your flash and walk in the spirit this word pretty is also the word that is a part of the word pornography cornea graph. A the riding of immorality.
This would include writing about or showing pictures of harlots trafficking with them. That is with these pictures makes you all poor Monger.
That's what Hebrews 13 for condemns. Then there's 1/3 word here that's uncleanness. This deals with that which is dirty or defiled, like when somebody stains their closer religiously. They may touch a dead person or disc disease person in the Old Testament, they would be considered unclean in here, Paul is referring to the moral defilement the country sexual scenes is particularly seen in the influence of visual stimulation and of course today that's found in magazines, movies, DVDs, Internet television on your cell phone. This includes also verbal conversation that's either joking or talking about sex and also is involved in just the sheer physical involvement where a man and a woman began to romantically and physically get involved and they begin to stir up passions that cannot be righteously satisfied for the only way that that can be satisfied is in the bonds of marriage, uncleanness, in the fourth word is the word lasciviousness.
Paul hears warning against the disregard for standards of sexual purity in public in this disregard includes both actions and appearances. It would be things that are immodest or things that are sensual or the idea we use a public language that sexy is a lack of a sense of public shame towards evil is interesting.
Jeremiah writes in chapter 6 and verse 15 of his prophecy were they ashamed when they committed abomination.
They they were not at all ashamed. Neither could they blush all of us should be ashamed when we see things that are improper number of years ago we had our team over to our fifth wheel trailer owns Sunday night after church we would always always pile in and we would have food and fellowship and we had the television known. I think there was, you know the NFL Sunday night football game on in a commercial came own and typically we change the channel muted.
Do all that. But somehow it came on. We didn't get to the mute button time and it was it was really an improper commercial.
What was so wonderful was to watch the response of the team members as guys turn their head as our girls went.
That's the right response because God is called us to moral cleanness and to holiness or sanctification is crucial that we address modesty issues and are sensual society and of all people and planet Earth. That should be modest. It is the people here at Bob Jones University where we are called believers and we are walking in humility before God. So these four kinds of sins.
Paul declares that they should never be mentioned even in situations taking place among the people of God.
These things should not even be a part of who we are when we are walking in the spirit. These things will not be happening among God's people so in light of Paul's identification of these works of the flesh.
I think the two important questions we have to ask this morning. The first question is this. Is there forgiveness for sexual sins of the past and number two is their victory over sexual sins in the present.
I want to assure you this morning that there is forgiveness so if you've come with a wicked past things that come to your memory that are very shameful and you feel bad about first John 19 is a great comfort that we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Believers are promised of the removal of guilt and the restoring of fellowship with God. We see this in a Beautiful Way in John chapter 8 where woman is brought to Jesus and she's called in the act of a cult of adultery. They wanted to stoner Jesus said he that is without sin among you, letting first cast a stone at her. The Bible says that they were all convicted in their conscience from the oldest to youngest and there was only one left his conscience was not offended, who was able to cast a stone and did not, that was Jesus, the pure son of God, and he looked at the woman he said, I do not condemn you go and sin no more. In first Corinthians chapter 6 verse nine Paul speaks about the fact that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God and he says do not be to see people that are sexually immoral people who are adulterers, idolaters and even men who practice homosexuality shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But then he says to those in the church and such were some of you but you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and Christ in the spirit of God. There is salvation there is cleansing for those who have fallen into sexual sins of the blood of Jesus.
And here we see both the beauty and the ugliness of the cross. When Christ was nailed to the cross.
All my sins were laid on him. That includes my adultery and fornication in my pornography. All of my uncleanness. Jesus took them upon himself. Think about that. The pure holy spotless Lamb of God who knew no sin took upon himself all of your sins.
All of them. He bore the guilt he took your shame and he paid the penalty on the tree and the beauty is that our past is forgiven and we are freed by the love of God. That's the forgiveness that God gives.
Let me remind you of something that when you fall into sexual sins. The pain of your memory is not immediately removed. We still remember the past.
Secondly, the power of your your lust is not immediately diminished. Just because you forgiven Doug been forgiven doesn't mean that those old passions cannot be inflamed and thirdly the shame of your actions will not immediately go away.
Proverbs tells us that who so committed adultery with the woman lacks understanding, he that do it, that shall destroy his own soul, a wound and dishonor Shelley get in his reproach shall not be wiped away. Nobody here is free from just a clean slate as if it never happened. It doesn't work that way. So understand. Yes, there is forgiveness. Yes, there is a restoration of fellowship with God. But there are many many things that do not go easily away, especially in the matter of the sin now with regards to victory.
Can we be freed. We have to be enslaved by our lust. I think without a doubt that one of the greatest struggles there that we are facing today within the student body and within Christian young people today. Growing up in society is that it that is not is not that you don't have the normal lust that others have, but for many of you those lust have been inflamed for years because of the things you've seen are things you been involved in is their victory and I want to state emphatically this morning. The answer is absolutely yes it says if you walk in the spirit, what will happen.
You will not fulfill the lust of the flesh. One writer said it this way and nothing did.
Early Christianity so thoroughly revolutionized the ethical standards of the pagan world. As in regard to sexual relationships. So how can I experience victory throughout history there always been ways for people to overcome sexual desires. Even today, you can go on the Internet and you can Google sexual addiction and you can find advice of what to do and generally in the advice you're going to hear or read is number one abstinence number two adherence to laws or number three. Become aware of the problem of your actions and what one of the consequences whether it sexually transmitted diseases or unwanted pregnancy or problems in relationships and those answers have been used for 2000 years, but I would like you to know that the apostle Paul when he addressed this issue did something different, something that had never been done in history and that is his entire approach in dealing with sexual immorality is totally spiritual. If you have your Bibles I want to turn with me to first Corinthians chapter 6.
As we finish up this morning and we look at Paul's approach to how do you face immorality. This is going to be one of the greatest struggles of your life.
But there is victory in God's promise that victory. What we say. Beginning in first Corinthians chapter 6 in verse 13 when Paul writes the word means for the belly and belly for the meets but God shall destroy both it and them. This is simply wasn't was was a slogan or what we would call a catchphrase which was used in that day for the prevailing attitude of the day and Paul is that what you did with your body does not matter, a needs for the belly belly for me there ought to be destroyed. Doesn't matter what you do in your body and of course that it transferred over from not just food but also the sexual activity but notice Paul's direct statement he says now the body is not for fornication. Paul does not divide the body from the spirit, but in reality states that the physical body is actually considered spiritual your body is considered spiritual. So the first thing we learned from Paul is that the Christian body is spiritually connected to Jesus Christ. Notice what he says. He says the body is not for fornication but for the Lord and the Lord for the body was the Bible say about your body. It's God's instrument is an instrument of righteousness in the God is not an instrument under sin. God wants to take your mouth your mind your ears your hand your feet your eyes, and he wants to use them for his purposes, not for your own purpose. So what are we to do with our body. Romans 12 one would've presented to God.
A living sacrifice, but notice he also says that our body is a part of Christ salvation that we will be physically raised from the dead, and we will worship and serve God forever. He says and God have both raised up the Lord and will also raise up us by his own power. The body that you're living in is good to be raised is going to be glorified and you will worship God forever and ever, both in body and spirit in the notice. Thirdly, he said our body is a part of Christ Church know you not that your bodies are members of Christ and this is more than just a mystical spiritual union. Your physical body is actually connected to Jesus Christ, so notice what he says shot then take the members of Christ and make them the members of a harlot God for bid. What know you not, that he which is joined to a harlot is one body for the two shall he say if he shall become one flesh. He's talking about the sexual union of a man and a woman.
But he that is joined to the Lord is one spirit, we put it this way when a man and woman come together in sexual union.
There is also for the believer, a spiritual connection all that and when you are involved in immorality. What you doing you are absolutely disrupting your whole relationship with the Lord.
I have two very close relationships in my lot in my life. Number one is my relationship with my wife.
I am closer to my wife than anybody else on planet or but I'm closer to my Lord than I am. My wife, because everywhere I go, my Lord is with me and if I'm on a plane or if I'm in a car I'm driving by myself permit home by myself. One thing that is true.
The Lord is there with me when you are involved in sexual activity, and you bring somebody else in your life that is not a part of the covenant of marriage you are disrupting your spiritual life. That is why you can not be spiritual and be involved in sexual immorality at the same time is virtually impossible. So what is Paul tell us to do. He says flee fornication. It's in the present.
It means keep on running.
Do you know anybody in the Bible who was tempted with adultery and he ran away. Who was it, if you've ever said sermons about Joseph. Joseph is the illustration of what to do. He did not stand there. He did not fight with her because she would whip them.
He did not flirt with her because she would burn him but he did exactly what he should. He ran away flat and so we have to understand that our bodies are spiritual didn't notice.
Secondly, very quickly. The Christian body is also viewed as sacred pulses. Every sin that a man does is without the body, but he that committed fornication. Sin is against his own body. As I said the idea was what you do in your body doesn't matter in sexual immorality is a sin against your body and notice what he says what know you not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, would you have of God and you're not your own for your ball with a price.
Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God, what is he saying. First of all, the body of the believer is the holiest place on planet Earth because it is the temple of God, the holy of holies because just like God dwelt with the children of Israel in the temple so God's chosen to dwell within your body and in secondly, what is he say here. He says that your body has literally been purchased with a price God is put the highest price on planet Earth in one commodity and that is the body of the believer, and what was the price it was made it was the blood of his own son his own sacrifice. Do you know how you can kill lust every time it works everything that the moment my mind and my heart is inflamed with passion and at your age 18 to 25 hello what kills lust every time the recognition that God lives inside of me and the remembrance of the cross and the blood of Christ in every time. Lust comes, if you will put in your mind the presence of God in your body and the blood of the cross the temple in the blood. What will that do, it will kill lust and that's why he Clute concludes by saying so glorify God in your body. Dedicate yourself to God in his standards of purity walk in the spirit. What is that mean this is exactly what walking in the spirit is, is when your mind and your heart set on things above and not on things of the earth you were dead. Your life is hid with Christ in God. And when you focus on him. You walk in the spirit and what do you do, you do not bring to fulfillment those laws that are already in your heart but you rise above you fight the battle, but you don't become a prisoner of war. May God grant you the grace to have sexual purity. Father, thank you. Grant us grace. May the sins of been mentioned here not be named. Once among us, we assess in Jesus name, amen.
You've 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 where 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 is we study God's word together on The Daily Platform