By MYRA D. COLGATE
CHEROKEE PENTECOSTAL HOLINESS CHURCH
St. Paul wrote of his own life experience:
“…But sin, seizing the opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of wrong desires. For apart from the law, sin is dead. And I was once alive apart from the law, but with the coming of the commandment, sin became alive and I died. So I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life brought death! For sin, seizing the opportunity from the commandment, deceived me and through it I died. So then, the law is holy and the commandment is holy, righteous, and good.
Did that which is good, then, become death to me? Absolutely not! But sin, so that it would be shown to be sin, produced death in me through what is good, so that through the commandment sin would become utterly sinful.
“For we know that the law is spiritual—but I am unspiritual, sold into slavery to sin. For I don’t understand what I am doing. For I do not do what I want—instead, I do what I hate. But if I do what I don’t want, I agree that the law is good. But now it is no longer me doing it, but sin that lives in me. For I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my flesh. For I want to do the good, but I cannot do it. For I do not do the good I want, but I do the very evil I do not want! Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer me doing it but sin that lives in me.
“So, I find the law that when I want to do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God in my inner being. But I see a different law in my members waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that is in my members.
“Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.”
Romans 7:8-25 (NET) (GSB)
“For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came about through Jesus Christ. “No one has ever seen God. The only one, himself God, who is in closest fellowship with the Father has made God known.”
John 1:17-18 (NET) (GSB)
Has this same type of conflict arisen between what you have understood with your mind and what your life experience has taught you? Has this been your conclusion in trying to live the Christian life?
I do know this certainly has been my experience. We pretty much all can consider ourselves to be in very good company if Paul himself felt led to write this out for all believers, as well. It must actually be so we can know we are not the only ones having these kind of problems. What this really shows me is that we all will come to this understanding of how much we need Jesus and the Holy Spirit to understand what happens as we mature and grow in this new life. We cannot grow up as we should without the help of Jesus and the Holy Spirit and their Supernatural guidance of each of us.
First of all, it helps somewhat if we understand from the beginning that we will not be perfect on this side of life. We have been told that Jesus is Finisher of our Faith in Him. However, we can mature in living this life with The Lord’s help and correction of the Holy Spirit when needed, along with our willing obedience to make the corrections shown to us. Jesus is the only perfect man out of all of mankind. While we live in this flesh, the only hope we really have is to live more “in the Spirit” than “in our flesh.”
Secondly, it is really necessary to pay attention to His instruction and or correction and give heed to what He asks or tells us to do moment-by-moment, so we won’t forget any portion of what He asks of us. It only gets hard if we are slow in giving Him our undivided attention or not being quick in following His leadership and instructions. He only wants the best for us and desires the best out of each of us as we grow.