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This Conflict

This Conflict

14 March 2009

Scripture:

The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, and your choices are never free from this conflict. (Galatians 5:17 NLT)

Observation:

Paul is clear in his writings here and in Romans 7 and 8 concerning the conflict that rages inside a Christ-follower. There really are two natures inside me – a Spirit nature that desires to follow Christ and is prompted by God’s Spirit, and a sinful or flesh nature that desires gratification and is stirred by human desire and Satan.

Each choice I make is the end product of a battle between the two natures!

Application:

It encourages me that Paul understood the “two-natures” conflict that goes on inside me. It doesn’t solve anything or make the battle easier to win, but at least I’m not the only one!

Here’s a couple of things I’ve learned about this conflict:
• The nature I feed most tends to get stronger.
• Establishing habit patterns will work for me or against me, depending on which habits I form.
• Even in the best of circumstances, I’ve got to be alert to external influences and on guard against internal desires.
• It doesn’t appear that my sinful nature is going to disappear this side of the grave.

Prayer:

Father, I thank you for the discipline and practice of daily Bible reading and journaling. It gives me an opportunity to feed the Spirit-nature early in the day. I sure need a lot of help during the rest of the day, though!

5 O God, you know how foolish I am; my sins cannot be hidden from you. 6 Don't let those who trust in you stumble because of me, O sovereign Lord Almighty. Don't let me cause them to be humiliated, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:5-6 NLT)

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