The Clash of Flesh and Spirit


Time Draws to a Close, Internal Battles Intensify (I Peter 4)

Two natures clash. Flesh against spirit.

Lust is a pain to conquer
It is ever present, ever tempting
Only if I endure can I prevail
Which means I’ll have to stop pleasing only myself

(v. 1) FOR WHOEVER has suffered in the flesh having the mind of Christ is done with intentional sin.

I’m reminded to be thankful
Grateful for the trial

How strange. I’m on the right track when things don’t go perfectly.

No room for blame 
No room for entitlement
Blame is a fleshly reaction
Entitlement is the world’s idea

(vv.4-5) OF COURSE, your friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you. But remember that they will have to face God, who will judge everyone, both the living and the dead.

I hear the call to humility
Take personal responsibility
Choose the narrow route
It’s steep and demanding

But never crooked

He makes my path straight

The end draws near so I cling to what is right

Whatever is good, I cling to that, too
Thankful in all situations

(1Peter and 1Thess) THE END of the world is coming soon. Therefore, be earnest and disciplined in your prayers.

“Love your brother deeply, intensely.”
Wait a minute. Seriously?

My brother annoys me
Love him? Why deeply?
My passion to cling to what is right veers off the straight path
Whatever is good retreats into the shadows

Blessings hide from me

Entitlement has awakened in my heart. Who knew it was there?

…two natures clash…

“Hatred stirs up contentions…” Help me to love. Truly love

(v.8) MOST IMPORTANT of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.

Practice hospitality
Be a lover of strangers
Foreigners. The poor
…flesh against spirit…
Do it ungrudgingly
As one who represents God

Oh, that’s right. I am an ambassador

Angels are walking among us?
Take the scales off my eyes so I can see the true adventure

 (1Pet and Heb) CHEERFULLY share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay.

I am an alien in this strange world
Treated as weird; insulted and mocked

The deeper I get into the Word, the more I’m insulted
I don’t need my brother kicking me

…two natures clash…

Love me deeply, brother
We need each other
Our love for one another expands who God is
In the eyes of the mocking world
Our love for one another glorifies the Creator

 (v.12-15) BELOVED, do not be amazed and bewildered at the fiery ordeal which is taking place to test your quality, as though something strange (unusual and alien to you and your position) were befalling you.

The Spirit within equips me to conquer
My helmet and breastplate are secure

This is an amazing truth to grasp:
I FIGHT FROM VICTORY, not toward it

…spirit over flesh…

Humbled, I submit and surrender
Raise my shield and sword
“Flee from me!”
Evil flees
I draw close to my God
He draws near to me (♣)
I am His
He is mine

I refuse to let the world corrupt me

How could I do less when I know my disloyalty pains the One who set me free?

Love is thankful
Love covers
Love wins

God is Love

The way of the Embattled Spirit
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