I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. (Galatians 5:16, NKJV)
I received a question from a subscriber of the 31-day KingdomNomics Applied devotionals about how to overcome a particular moral issue in his life that was defeating them.
Here are several steps an individual can take to overcome sin.
The first step is to confess: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous, forgivingus our sins and cleansingus from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Confession includes repentance from continuing or practicing the sin.
Second, ask God for the power to overcome temptation and sin by the work of the Holy Spirit: “Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live” (Romans 8:12–13, NIV).
We ask God to fill us with his Holy Spirit and to take control of how we think, feel, and act. We must remember that sin destroys our effectiveness to be a witness for the Lord.
Third, it is important to bring your thought life into captive obedience to Christ: “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5, NIV). Whatever controls our mind, controls us. God gives us the power to reject thoughts not in conformance with his will.
Fourth, take appropriate action. To the extent possible, remove yourself from the source of the temptation. Terminate any wrong relationship. Focus your mind on the good. Practice Soak, Sow, and Flow. Continue to do the next thing God wants you to do. In some situations, professional help should be sought.
Remember these important words from the apostle Paul: “You are God’s templeand that God’s Spirit lives in you” (1 Corinthians 3:16), and “I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. Sothe life I now live in the body, I live because of the faithfulness of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
Today, ask yourself:
What steps do I need to take to deal with sin in my life so that I can truly walk in the Spirit?