Christians have two natures, one at war with the other. We have our sinful nature, which the Bible often refers to as “the flesh”, and we have our reborn spiritual nature that longs for the things that pleases the Lord. If we are going to grow closer to God, and look more like Christ, we must learn to say NO to the flesh, and YES to the Holy Spirit who lives inside us.
Lets take a look at what the scriptures have to say.
Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
1 Peter 2:11 – Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul.
Ephesians 4: 22-24 – You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Romans 13:14 – Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.
Luke 9:23 – Then he (Jesus) said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me”.
1 Corinthians 9:27 – No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
For more on this topic, please take the time to listen to these sermons.