How does God want us to live? Number 4 in our “We are saved…now what?” series. When we are saved, we are now apart from the world. We are a new creation, we have been set free, God has a plan for us, let us be an example, a testimony to those around us.
- Do not love the world. Overcome the temptations of this world and your flesh.
1 John 2:15-17
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world — the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
What’s it mean when God says, “do not love this world?” The world has many temptations that lead us away from God. We need to go toward Him. We need to honor Him.
1 Corinthians 10:31
Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
I once read that if you question whether something is right or wrong, it is probably wrong. I think another question to ask as you live your life, whatever you may do, does this honor God? or, would you do this if Jesus was standing right next to you (by the way, He is!)? Do not forget that the Spirit lives in you and can help you overcome temptation. Read God’s word so that you know what His will is and what is right.
See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.
Remember that we are redeemed by Jesus’ death and resurrection. When we accept Jesus into our lives, we are a new creation. Our old self is gone. Let us put those things that separate us from God behind us. Let us live for Him.
Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not! Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
We will struggle. Even Paul struggled. We all have weaknesses and none of us are perfect (or even close). But as we mature as believers, as we read His word, as we pray, as we surround ourselves with other believers and not hang out with those who are bad influences or be in places where we ought not be, as we serve Him He will give us the strength and our desires will align with God’s will.
For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.
(I used the New American Standard Version here because it is a little less confusing in this text than the New King James).
There is still that battle inside of us as we live as believers and strive to live righteously. But, thanks God for His grace. Thank God that Jesus came and took our sins away. There is no room for guilt. He has set us free!
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
Those of us who have accepted Jesus Christ as our LORD and savior, the Spirit lives in us to guide us and give us strength. We are His. God is with us. Thank you, Jesus!