For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.
In every believer’s heart there is a constant struggle between the old nature and the new. The old nature is very active, and loses no opportunity of plying all the weapons of its deadly armoury against newborn grace; while on the other hand, the new nature is ever on the watch to resist and destroy its enemy. Grace within us will employ prayer, and faith, and hope, and love, to cast out the evil; it takes unto it the “whole armour of God,” and wrestles earnestly. These two opposing natures will never cease to struggle so long as we are in this world. The battle of “Christian” with “Apollyon” lasted three hours, but the battle of Christian with himself lasted all the way from the Wicket Gate in the river Jordan. The enemy is so securely entrenched within us that he can never be driven out while we are in this body: but although we are closely beset, and often in sore conflict, we have an Almighty helper, even Jesus, the Captain of our salvation, who is ever with us, and who assures us that we shall eventually come off more than conquerors through Him. With such assistance the new-born nature is more than a match for its foes. Are you fighting with the adversary to-day? Are Satan, the world, and the flesh, all against you? Be not discouraged nor dismayed. Fight on! For God Himself is with you; Jehovah Nissi is your banner, and Jehovah Rophi is the healer of your wounds. Fear not, you shall overcome, for who can defeat Omnipotence? Fight on, “looking unto Jesus”; and though long and stern be the conflict, sweet will be the victory, and glorious the promised reward.
Three dogs in everyone: persevere in your training for reigning
There is the story of a man who performed tricks with two dogs. He will take them to a park and there instigate a fight between them. On lookers were to bet and guess who will win the dog-fight.
Now, this may sound distasteful to animal lovers, but the truth is that people have different tastes.
The owner of the dog usually predicts who will win the dog- fight and his prediction was always right, to the amazement of onlookers.
Someone in the audience was curious and enquired how he could predict the winner each time with such precision.
He was hesitant initially to let out the secret, but the spectator kept insisting. Then he told him, ‘It’s easy. The day before the fight I feed one of them and starve the other and the one I feed wins the battle.’
So what has that got to do with you and I ?
There are three dogs in everyone:
The spirit, the soul and the body.
And they are at war with each other.
But how do we know who will win?
That’s a very good question!
The one you feed more wins the war.
So let your spirit be the dominant dog.
Feed him fat with the word of God.
Give him a good walk-exercise in prayer.
Let him socialise, else he will be selfish.
So be wise and take him to church
There he will see the bigger picture
And will find out that iron sharpens iron.
As for the other dog, called the mind
My advice is that you mind your mind
He was awake in the world long before the spirit
Was woken up or regenerated- born again.
He walked in the way of the world
And thought in the way of the world
He needs rewiring, renewing, retuning;
He needs complete transformation.
You do this by exposing him to the word,
No just when you feel like it, but daily.
You chew it, digest it, meditate on it
Until it permeates you and propels you.
Yes, without a doubt it is hard work!
But you cannot afford to let the mind reign
He has to be subject to the spirit-man.
Believe me, it’s a struggle and a doddle
From the day you become a New Creature.
‘So, what about the third dog?’Good question!
This is the most unruly one amongst the three
So, should we just get rid of him by casting him out?
Unfortunately, that option is not available to us.
You need the body and all its ‘embodiments’
This dog has a place but he has to be subordinate.
Whereas in some people, the mind is stronger,
In others the flesh is the dominant force.
However, the spirit has to be the top dog
Therefore, the flesh has to be starved to death.
I know it sounds cruel, but this is the gospel truth.
The body remains with you, but for the spirit to reign,
He has to die daily like Paul said. That is the way out.
So, when you wake up in the morning
And your body is craving a cup of coffee
And tells you, ‘Coffee, please! I want it now, it’s urgent!
Tell him, ‘In this house, the spirit rules
And the agenda is: the word and prayer first,
Coffee can take a back seat, ok?’
The flesh may be cross, have withdrawal syndromes.
Never mind, know that you are training the old dog
And it will take some time before he learns a new trick.
It will not be days or weeks but many, many years.
But you have to persevere in your training for reigning.
Walking in the Spirit
16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness,
21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
8 Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, Matt3:7-8
I Never Knew You
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.
22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’
23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’Matt7:21-23
The Truth Shall Make You Free
31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.
32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John8:31-32
Striving for a Crown
24 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.
25 And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.
26 Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air.
27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified. 1Cor9:24-27
Teens charged with killing man over cigarette January 29th 2013
Two teenage boys were charged with the December beating death of a man on the West Side after an argument over a cigarette, prosecutors said.
Derrick Burns, 15, and William Davis, 16, were initially charged with aggravated battery as juveniles but the charges were upgraded to first-degree murder with the two now being charged as adults, prosecutors said in court today.
There is a story of a lady who was having a heavy row with another woman on a Sunday. One of them was a Christian. She looked her watch and saw that she was getting late, so she told the other woman: ‘ I am going to the service now, but when I come back we will continue from where we left off.’
There was recently another story of a man who shot another dead because he refused him a cigarette.
Not long ago, it was reported that two men decided to feed their flesh to the full by going to a restaurant which offered: ‘eat as much as you like’
They descended on the restaurant like eagles and wanted to come as elephants. They ate and ate and ate until the restaurant owners were furious and threw them out.