Recovery For Abused Women

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“Spirit, Soul, Body” by Andrew Wommack Quotes Chapter 16, “Spirit vs. Flesh”

Once you’re born again, the rest of the Christian life is learning to walk in the spirit. It’s letting what God has done through the new birth dominate you more than your physical, emotional realm. That’s really how simple the Christian life is!

It may be simple, but it’s not easy! One of the hardest things you’ll ever do is learn how to turn from your natural self-rule and let who you are in Christ dominate instead. Why is it so difficult? You must perceive your spirit by faith in God’s Word because you can’t see or feel it. Jesus’ words are spirit and life (John 6:63). When you look into God’s Word, you’re looking into a spiritual mirror (James 1:23-25). The only way to really know what is true about who you are in the spirit is by believing God’s Word. You must shift from walking by sight (sense knowledge) to walking by faith (revelation knowledge) (2 Cor. 5:7). All you have to do is start basing your thoughts, actions, and identity on who you are in Christ.

As long as your flesh is contrary to your spirit, you’ll have conflict. “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law” (Gal. 5:16-18). “Contrary” means they’re “opposed, enemies, adversaries.” This conflict between spirit and flesh is your true spiritual warfare!

Each and every day of your life, the battle lies in whether you’ll be dominated by your flesh or your spirit. Your flesh gravitates toward what it can see, taste, hear, smell, and feel. Therefore, it leans toward the influence of satan and his kingdom, which operates in the physical realm. The devil is flesh-oriented, working through carnal, natural things. He tempts you to not believe God by things you can see and feel. On the other hand, the Lord operates in the spirit realm, primarily through His Word. Due to the nature of this intense, continual, inner conflict, you can’t just do what you want to do. Either your spirit will dominate you or your flesh will instead! You cannot please God in your flesh. “So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God” (Rom. 8:8). It’s not just hard—it’s impossible. This means you must identify the flesh and deal with it!

Not “Sinful Nature”

Living after the flesh brings all forms of death. “Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” (Rom. 8:12-13). This not only means ultimate physical death (when your spirit and soul separate from your body) but includes everything that leads up to it. “For the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23).

 

Biblically speaking, any result of sin is a form of death. Depression, discouragement, anger, bitterness, fear, worry, sickness, poverty, loneliness, etc. are all death. If you live after the flesh, you’ll—be sick, impoverished, depressed, angry, etc.—die. Your flesh is satan’s inroad to bring death into your life. As a born-again believer, your flesh is made up of your soulish and physical realms. However, before you were saved, it also included your fallen human spirit. My study of the New International Version of the Bible (NIV) has shown me that it almost always substitutes the phrase “sinful nature” for what the King James Version (KJV) translates “flesh.” This interpretation may work to a certain degree, but I’ve found it misleading in many places. For instance, in Romans, the flesh basically refers to either someone who isn’t born again or a born-again believer who isn’t living under the control of the Holy Spirit. The phrase “sinful nature” does not accurately convey this truth.

Newness of Life

As Paul taught how God now deals with people based on His grace, not their performance, this raised the question in Romans 6:1. “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?” The answer, of course, is, “God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” (Rom. 6:2). Your spirit is the part of you that’s dead to sin. Your body and soul can still do sinful things, but the born-again part of you cannot. “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?” (Rom. 6:3). This is talking about being baptized into the body of Christ with the Holy Spirit being the baptizer—not water baptism (1 Cor. 12:13).

There are different baptizers and different elements you’re baptized into. After professing faith in Christ, you should follow the Lord and be physically dunked under water as a symbol of what took place at salvation. Also, Jesus will baptize you in the Holy Spirit. But Romans 6:3 is referring to how, when you’re born again, you are placed in Christ and He in you. You receive the Spirit of Christ, and He receives you. When this baptism took place, you were baptized into His death.

Notice how being baptized into His death is automatic but walking in newness of life isn’t. “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4, emphasis Andrew’s). Manifesting newness of life is something that should happen. But it depends on how you renew your mind. “For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this” (Rom. 6:5-6). Your spirit died to sin, cannot sin, and has no desire for sin, but this doesn’t automatically mean that your soul and body will reflect that change. Your walking in resurrection life depends upon you “knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth, we should not serve sin” (Rom. 6:6).

“Old man” refers to the spirit you had prior to salvation. It’s your spirit realm that was dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1). Your old man no longer exists because it’s been crucified, has died, and was buried with Christ. The way some people teach the Scriptures would lead you to believe you have up to four spirits all living somewhere inside you at once (old spirit, new spirit, Spirit of Christ, and Holy Spirit). That’s worse than being schizophrenic—it’s multiple personalities! God’s Word doesn’t teach that! Most Christians today believe they have an old nature and a new nature. That’s wrong because your old man died, and your new man is now who you are in the spirit. I’m not going to verify this any further here because my focus is showing you how to overcome the flesh.

Spooked!

The NIV translates “flesh” as your old “sinful nature.” That’s just too much interpretation! At the new birth, your old nature is crucified, dead, and gone. In its place, God gives you a brand-new spirit, and you become a new creature. That spirit is so united with Christ that there is actually no difference between your born-again spirit and the Spirit of Christ, which was sent into your heart. You literally became one with Him (1 Cor. 6:17). Your born-again spirit is identical to Jesus. The two of you have become one, making a brand-new person. Then, your spirit was sealed, surrounded, and encased by the Holy Spirit!

People embrace this concept of having an old nature that drives them to sin because it logically explains their continued propensity for it. But Romans 6:6 explains what you need to know to be free. Your old man was crucified with Him. Then, the body of sin has to be destroyed!

When you die physically, you leave a body behind. “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also” (James 2:26). Physical death occurs when your spirit leaves your body. It takes a period of time for your body to begin deteriorating and decaying. Even though your spirit is gone, your physical body can look exactly the same as it did during life for a brief period of time.

Many years ago, my friend worked in the morgue on the 13th floor of Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas. One time, he pulled a man out on a slab who was already dead and in there for an autopsy. When my friend turned around to do something, this guy sat up with his mouth open wide and arms dangling at his side. Completely spooked, my friend almost jumped right out the window! Running down the hall, he dragged somebody in to check this man’s vital signs. Dead! After pushing the corpse back down, the medical professional explained, “Sometimes when a person has just died, there will still be electrical impulses in their body. Their muscles contract, and they can sit up like that, but he’s not alive.” The body still had some of life’s mannerisms, but life itself had departed.

One Nature, Two Minds

When you were born again, your old sin nature left behind a body. That’s why you still feel a drawing toward sin even though you’re dead to it. Your old man was crucified, has died, and now is gone, but its effects are still being felt through your physical body and unrenewed mind. Your natural mind was programmed to act like the child of the devil that you were before receiving the Lord (Eph. 2:1-2). You were taught how to be selfish, angry, lustful, critical, greedy, bitter, and to do all the other sins that you did. But now that you’re born again, your heavenly Father has adopted you into His family and given you a brand-new, righteous nature. However, your old man left behind a body. This means your physical mind will continue functioning like a computer under its prior programming until you renew it to God’s Word!

You have one nature but two minds. If you think you have both the old nature and the new one inside, you’re going to think you are two different people at once. That’s schizophrenic! You only have one nature—the new one. But you do have two different minds—the unrenewed mind (flesh) and the mind of Christ (spirit). The key is to reprogram your physical mind to agree with your spiritual mind. Your spirit is always for God, always thinks on who you are in Christ, always considers what you have in the Lord, and always believes what you can do in Him. As you renew your natural mind to think like your spirit, you’ll experience the life and power of God within you.

Simple, But Not Easy

It’s that simple, but not that easy. If you tapped into the spirit realm as a brand-new believer, only listened to who you are in Christ, and let the Holy Spirit instruct you without any negative outside influence (human, religious, or demonic), you would naturally start radiating and manifesting the life of God in your thoughts and actions. However, life’s just not that way. You’ve been programmed wrong and need reprogramming. The enemy lies to you, and friends, family, and religious people say, “Oh no, you don’t have the nature of God! You’re just an old sinner saved by grace. You can’t do these things!” These voices constantly challenge you not to believe what your spirit is saying. Due to this, you manifest the life of God from your spirit only to varying degrees, depending on how well you renew your mind.

Your physical mind decides whether you’ll be dominated by your spirit or your flesh. If you don’t renew it with God’s Word, your natural mind will automatically gravitate toward what it can see, taste, hear, smell, and feel. You must get into God’s Word and mix it with faith in order to be led by your spirit. “Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh” (Gal.5:16).

Buttoning my shirt was a problem for me until I reprogrammed my mind. I’m not sure why, but when I was a kid, I had a hard time buttoning my shirt. Every time I started, I’d get it wrong. When I got down to the bottom, I’d realize I buttoned it incorrectly and had to redo it. Yet today, I have no problem buttoning my shirt. I wear buttoned shirts often and button them correctly the first time without even thinking about it. Buttoning my shirt has become “second nature.” You can mistake something that comes so naturally to you today as your “nature,” when in reality, it’s something you learned. The reason you still do some of the things you do is because you haven’t renewed your mind. Your old sin nature isn’t in there forcing you to do things like before you were born again. You’ve just acted on these negative things and had them reinforced by the carnal world around you so often that they’ve become established patterns of thinking and acting. If you’re born again, you’re not evil inside! You just need to reprogram your mind to God’s ways of thinking and acting!

Jesus has set you free! There’s no sinful nature inside of you that you’re warring against. That old man is dead and gone. The only reason you aren’t manifesting your freedom in every area of life is because you’re ignorant of it. You haven’t renewed your mind, and your flesh still dominates you in different ways. Personally, I’ve experienced a tremendous amount of victory, but I’m still in the process of renewing my mind just like anybody else!

Spirit = spirit

The “flesh” is not really describing a “sinful nature” after you’ve been born again. Rather, it more accurately refers to every thought, emotion, desire, and part of you that isn’t under the control of your brand-new righteous spirit. Technically speaking, what’s true of the Holy Spirit is also true of your born-again spirit because they are one. “But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit” (1 Cor. 6:17). There aren’t capital letters in the Greek. Translators decided from the context of a passage whether to render it “Spirit” or “spirit.” Either way—Holy Spirit or born-again spirit—the same point is made. “Walk in the Spirit [spirit], and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh” (Gal. 5:16, brackets Andrew’s).

The thoughts, desires, patterns, and habits that were established in you through the old sinful nature will begin to diminish as you choose to be dominated by your spirit instead. You don’t have to continue in bondage to lust, alcohol, hatred, drugs, strife, gossip, depression, sickness, discouragement, disease, poverty, etc. You can break all of those things off because in your spirit, you’re already free. It’s just a matter of renewing your mind and beginning to see who you are in Christ manifest. As that happens, you won’t fulfill the lust of the flesh. Awesome!

(END OF ANDREW’S QUOTES FOR CHAPTER 16)

 

Are you ready to change your life? If so, here is the link to start – you can study on your own, by clicking here to go to the teaching of, “Spirit, Soul, Body,” on Andrew’s website. Once on the site, you can choose if you want to listen via audio or watch the videos. Or study with a group, like I am doing, by going to this link, creating an account, and finding an online or local study – the materials are furnished for you – there is an outline teaching, questions, and Scriptures, on the website, that you download after logging in and finding your study.

Here is the link for the group I am in – you can go to the link and register, but to download your class materials, you must create an account, and sign in (the material information is on top of the page).  Then contact the Leader, Dennis Kerr, and let him know you just signed up for the class and ask him to send you the Zoom link for the class (although Dennis will receive your registration, I would contact him also). We currently meet on Tuesdays at 4:00pm EST (Dennis is in Arizona and his local time would be at 2:00pm for the study) – this Chapter 16, “Spirit vs. Flesh,” is the current chapter according to the “Spirit, Soul, Body” book.

However, our lesson in the study guide we will study on April 19, 2022, is Lesson 16, “Releasing the Mind of Christ,” from the “Spirit, Soul, Body” book’s Chapter 14, which has the same title, “Releasing the Mind of Christ” – this will be our sixteenth meeting.

Click the link below to review all study materials, which is the same as the first link on Andrew’s website, for “Spirit, Soul, Body:” All “Spirit, Soul, Body” Resources

NOTE: Wherever there is bolding in this document and is not specified that Andrew did it, it was added by me. Also, highlighting, underlining, and Scriptures were bolded and linked to the text by me.

Click Here For PDF Version of “Spirit, Soul, Body” by Andrew Wommac...

Click Here for Link to "Spirit, Soul, Body" Chapters 2-15

 

God’s BLESSINGS to you all and your families!!

In Father’s Service,

Rev. Dr. Dorothy E. Hooks, PsyD

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