Apostle Paul wrote to the believers living in Galatia, explaining how believers should live. One of his instructions is found in chapter 5, verse 24:Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there.
So….. what’s that mean? We don’t get to walk back to Jesus’ cross and nail our passions and desires to it.
Let’s break it down a little by understanding some of the phrases:
Belong to Christ Jesus = those who believe in Jesus as Jesus Christ for salvation. This behavior is not expected of those who haven’t committed life and soul to Him.
Passions probably doesn’t mean what you think. It’s not those things we’re crazy about. Here, the word is akin to the words used to describe Jesus’ suffering on the cross. In the Greek, it means “a suffering, something endured, mourning… passion.”
Desire = lust, covet, passionate longing, craving.
Sinful nature is talking about not only the physical nature of humans, but the psychological and sexual nature of them. The natural state outside of God’s guidance.
The most interesting word to me is what we see as have nailed. We usually see this as crucified which gives the connotation of the cross of the Lord, but there’s so much more! It can mean a stake stood tall, a person standing against wrong and evil, and to fence with stakes.
So, when we’ve looked deeper, we see so much more in this verse than a church service where we write our issues on paper and nail them to a cross at the front of the room. We see that WE (believers) are the stake standing tall. We are standing FOR Christ and AGAINST the passions and desires that drive humans instead of the Spirit of God.
We also see that the passions are not the things we want—that would be redundant with desires. No, this means that our mournings can also take us from following Him as we should. This in NO WAY means we’re to deny the fact of these feelings. This means we see them, recognize them as real, then we deal with them and make the choice to follow Jesus in spite of them. We do not let these feelings, mournings, or endurances become our focus.
Every powerful desire or mourning that draws you away from the Savior gets put into that fenced in backyard. It’s still there, but your heart, mind, and soul are protected from it’s driving force so that you only have One guiding you, that being the Holy Spirit of God.
Believer, you ARE able to put all those distractions into that fenced-in place, keeping them from drawing you into behaviors and words that are not pleasing to God. Having those painful things that take you down a depressive spiral put away behind the unbreakable fence God provides can free your mind and heart to love and live more fully as Jesus designed you.
Those cravings you struggle with can be placed in there too, so they no longer drag you to places you don’t want to go.
Today’s the day. Examine yourself and find every passion (mournful, suffering, endured) and put each one inside the fenced-in space of your mind’s backyard. See the fence so high and thick that you can’t even hear those things calling to you. Then visit with each desire that captures you and put it behind the fence, too. Every time one of these pops up, drop it behind the fence.
Believer, make today the day that you put away all the things that keep you from living the life you were designed to live in Him and step into the faithwalk He has prepared for you!
Coffee, Bible, Journal.
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