Monday, March 8, 2010

Learning to "Walk by the Spirit"

Last week we started talking about "sanctification"; our journey after salvation, with the Holy Spirit, to be conformed into the image of Jesus. Salvation transforms our spirit. We become alive in Christ, yet we still live in the same physical body and we have the same soul, which is our mind, will, and emotions. After salvation, our spirit desires to be at one with the Holy Spirit. Leaving our old ways of thinking and doing things may be our desire, but it may not always be easy.

Version: NAS

Galatians 5:16-18
16. But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. 17. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. 18. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.

Romans 8:12-13

12. So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh-- 13. for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

There are two main elements involved in gaining victory over "walking according to the flesh". From living according to the flesh to "walking in the Spirit".

1) The first is that we need to learn to condition our behavior to our new man, our new self which is infused with Jesus Christ. We need to learn how to "walk in the Spirit".

Galatians 5:16
But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.

2) The second is that we allow our old patterns for thinking and responding to our sin-trained flesh, be transformed by the renewing of our mind.

Romans 12:1-2
1. I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, [which is] your spiritual service of worship. 2. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Walking by the Spirit may seem like a mystery. What exactly does it mean and how do we as believers attain that "place"?

Let's start by looking in Acts Chapter 1, as Paul recounts Jesus and the disciples in one of their meetings before He ascended into Heaven. This was after His crucifixion, but before He left earth. There was a period of 40 days in which Jesus is speaking to them about what is coming, and gives them instructions for Pentecost. Pentecost falls 50 days after Easter, or Resurrection Sunday.

Acts 1:4-8
4. And gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, "Which," [He said], "you heard of from Me; 5. for John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now." 6. And so when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, "Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?" 7. He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; 8. but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth."

Luke 24:49

"And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."

John 14:25-26
25. "These things I have spoken to you, while abiding with you. 26. "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.
We are going to be looking at the concept of "walking by the Spirit" for the next week or so. I wanted to share the previous scriptures before we get started. Before Jesus died on the cross the disciples of Jesus were "saved", but they found their salvation under the Old Testament covenant. Jesus had not yet been crucified, and in so doing, He had not yet fulfilled the requirement for New Testament salvation. Jesus had spoken to them about the Holy Spirit who would come and be with them. Under the Old Testament the Holy Spirit "visited"  a person, but under the New Covenant the Holy Spirit "indwells" a believer. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit brings God's power into our lives and enable us to live a life unto God.

Wednesday we will start looking at the three kinds of "man" Paul talks about, the "natural man", the "spiritual man", and the "fleshly man" and how each one interacts with God and then his relationships with others.

The topic of "walking by the Spirit" can be a pretty far reaching subject, and also the "Baptism of the Holy Spirit". I want to stick with the book for the next few days, but if you have questions or ideas I'm open for them. I'll do my best to find Biblical answers.

If you read the comments from the last post, you have read the insightful and personal thoughts from a young friend of mine, Cassandra. She is an amazing young woman who I have known for the last few years. Reading her comment was such a blessing to me. I encourage you to go back and take a minute, you will also be blessed.

love to you all,


  1. Thank you Debra, for sharing one of God's great gifts the Holy Spirit. Blessings to you. sandi

  2. Beautiful post Debra...can't wait to read more...blessings on your week....

  3. Thank you for continuing to direct us toward HIM....and all HE has for us!
    Blessings, andrea

  4. Good Morning Debra,
    Thanks for being here this morning, a good reminder to take charge of the day and bless the Lord - oh my soul and all that is within me!
    I have a dentist appt today and it tends to rule my day - fighting a little stress but I choose to walk by the spirit!

  5. Wonderful post , sister!

    There is nothing like His Word revealed by the Holy Spirit!! Bless you!

    Have a wonderful week!

    Sweet Blessings!

  6. that's the ticket, isn't it, to walk by the Spirit.

    i started to leave a catty comment on a fashion
    blog, but the Spirit convicted me.

    you might ask, "why do you even go there?"

    because He sends me. :)


  7. In each comment I could tell you all are like me and KNOW that walking in the Spirit IS a decision, each day, choosing to let the Holy Spirit lead us. Sometimes it's hard when faced with a tough situation. I'm a person that always wants "justice", so frequently I would "overide" the leading of the Holy Spirit to do what I thought was best. Listening is so important.

  8. This is such a wonderful post. Such a good reminder that this is a daily decision and takes daily dedication. But what lessons we learn from it. Thank you for reminding me that I have to consciously choose each day.

    Hugs...Tracy :)

  9. Beautiful post Debra...can't wait to read more...blessings on your week....


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