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Ephesians– overview of 3:1-9; The Secret of the Ages, part 25 (Overcoming sin and suffering).

EPHESIANS-1-190915
length: 80:39 - taught on Sep, 15 2019
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Class Outline:

Sunday September 15, 2019
 

ROM 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

 

ROM 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.

 

ROM 8:3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,

 

Christ did what the Law could not do - dethrone sin by condemning it to death.

 

ROM 8:4 in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

 

ROM 8:5 For those who are according to [present participle - consistently] the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit [qualities of the Spirit], (set their minds on) the things of the Spirit.

 

The things of the flesh are the various sins that result from lusts and desires of fallen mankind that oppose the good that God is. Paul’s point is that those who are still married to their flesh, unregenerated by rejecting the gospel of Christ, are constantly according to these various sins and are minded, or set their minds on them. Some of these things are more obvious than others, and the hidden ones can be the most damaging to life, but all of them are dark and evil.

 

Those who have believed in Christ, and so have had their flesh crucified, and are now married to Christ are all indwelt by the Holy Spirit and born-again by the power of God as those who walk by the Holy Spirit and set their minds on the things of the Holy Spirit.

 

It is obvious in the Scripture that our conduct, our thinking is not always aligned with the Holy Spirit, i.e. we can still sin, and we can still have systemic and cyclic patterns of sin.

 

These patterns must be broken by the power that God has so graciously given us.

 

The revelation of this wonderful truth does not guarantee that we will walk by the Spirit or set our minds on His mind. The revelation of Rom 8 is that believers have been made alive by the Spirit and so are created for the purpose of being filled with the Spirit and walking by means of the Spirit.

 

Righteous thoughts and actions do not become automatic, if that were true, we would lose our self-determination. Righteousness is now the very real option that was not available before, and with the Spirit within, being the sons and daughters of God that we are, equipped with the word of God, the mind of Christ, it is not a pie in the sky dream, in fact it is a reality to all who will put their faith and therefore their lives into the hands of God.

 

Life in the image of God is the only dream that will come true. It is the only life promised by God.

 

All other dreams are too low.

 

It is also a continual source of disappointment that the dreams and desires of people do not come true. Over and again, people work and strive in the pursuit of some dream, and even if they reach their objective, which they so often do not, they find that the objective did not fulfill as they hoped. Eventually, over time, the dreams of a person die away and life falls into the mire and muck of day to day details, moving from one thing to the next, one chore to the next, one errand to the next enveloped in greyness and tediousness.

 

But, for the believer, the dream is always alive in them, and the promise of God is that they will have it. Only this dream, beyond what we could ask or think, life in the image of Christ, is promised by God. He will not lead you or empower you in any other direction.

 

Every believer is made a creature that is to walk and live by the Spirit of God.

 

But the point of being made about being such new creatures is living as them. We are not to live in sin or under the power of any sin.

 

PSA 32:3 When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away

Through my groaning all day long.

 

PSA 32:4 For day and night Thy hand was heavy upon me;

My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer.

Selah.

 

PSA 32:5 I acknowledged my sin to Thee,

And my iniquity I did not hide;

I said, "I will confess my transgressions to the Lord";

And Thou didst forgive the guilt of my sin.

 

David was hiding a sin from God and it caused his mind and body to waste away. We are not to make a treaty with our nature of sin and live in any one sin. Our hearts were made (born again) to be clean. We must search our hearts for any sin that may be deceiving us, and the indicator that such a state is in existence is that you lack joy and peace and that you cannot love others. When we discover what it is, we can confess it to God and seek His wisdom and power to overcome it. So often, we need to find the root cause of a systematic, repetitive sin. We need to be humble before God to find it.

 

PSA 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;

Try me and know my anxious thoughts;

 

PSA 139:24 And see if there be any hurtful way in me,

And lead me in the everlasting way.

 

The question for each of us is do we really want to know of anything in our hearts that is sinful, no matter how subtle it may be or how firmly we want to keep it alive?

 

2CO 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

 

There are more references in Luke’s gospel to the Holy Spirit than Matthew and Mark combined. This could be because he was a close traveling companion with Paul for years.

 

Born by the Spirit, baptized by the Spirit, empowered by the Spirit, finding joy in the Spirit; Jesus has sacrificed Himself so that we will live and walk by the Holy Spirit.

 

LUK 24:44 Now He said to them, "These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled." 

 

LUK 24:45 Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures,

 

LUK 24:46 and He said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day;

 

LUK 24:47 and that repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.

 

LUK 24:48 "You are witnesses of these things.

 

LUK 24:49 "And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you [the Holy Spirit]; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."

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