Coming Out of the Flesh!
by Mike Wells

Gal. 5:19 "Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality."

The flesh: a condition of being under the influence of something other than the Spirit of God, and a condition into which every person is born. All humans have lived life in the flesh, uniquely expressing it with differing levels of intensity. 

Flesh is flesh and is hostile toward God. The condition of flesh is man doing what he wants and hating what he is does. The fleshly person is ingrown, wrongly sensitive, and angry, believing that the reason flesh does not satisfy flesh is simply that others have erected various obstacles. The root of fleshly living is pride. Pride says, "I know what I need." 

The lengthy process of coming out of the flesh could not be accomplished by any man, no matter how great his intellect, powerful will, or passion. Rather, the process is built into the very nature of things. All creation works along the lines of freeing man up from the flesh. The world does not keep man in the flesh, but rather makes man sick unto death of the flesh. 

Man is spirit living in a body; the spirit has needs that only God can meet. Looking to the flesh to fulfill the desire of the spirit leads to frustration as man becomes undone with the awareness of his condition. He is empty! He sees he needs something different than what his senses perceive. 

A revelation may come from the spirit, "I need the Lord" The spirit of man has been crying this out since its abandonment in the Garden of Eden. The experiences in the world testify to that truth, the Bible witnesses to it, others explain it, and in the fullness of time, when it becomes revelation, clearly seen, a person is prepared to accept Jesus. He so fills the spirit that with joy and gladness the believer lays aside the empty deeds of the flesh, happy to say goodbye to them. No longer thinking in those terms, the deeds of the flesh are laid aside naturally! Without effort! The Christian may shake his head in bewilderment at those who still struggle. Why even look to those things, when Jesus meets the need? "My bicycle has been taken, but I don't care! Someone gave me a car!" 

It is important to note that at this point in the believer's life, he has laid aside the deeds of the flesh not because he wanted to or chose to, but because they were replaced by a divine act of the Holy Spirit. When a person is starving, the dog food looks good, but then if someone sets a steak in front of him, he forgets the dog food and his past attraction to it in light of what he now sees. It does not mean that he now understands the flesh, walking in it, its attraction, the pride that held him to it, or the momentary satisfaction that comes from it. These questions are not central in light of what he sees and the satisfaction he feels deep within. A conscious decision to lay aside the flesh was not made; it was an unconscious decision in light of what was seen. A conscious decision must come. But what is this decision? The only decision that must be made from that point forward is the decision to abide! If we simply abide we remain full, and attraction to the flesh is lost.

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