PAULFROMNYS

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Hosted by PAULFROMNYS|Malachi 3:16-18/Bible talk

Based on Malachi 3:16-18 I believe the Lord will harken to us as we consider his word together.

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The Spiritual man #32   Topics/belief

Started Jan-1 by PAULFROMNYS; 108 views.
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Jan-1

   From the letter of Paul to the Galatians, we once more can see that the flesh is capable of doing good. “Having begun with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh?” (3.3). God’s children in Galatia had descended into the error of doing good by the flesh. They had begun in the Holy Spirit; they did not continue therein to be made perfect. They wanted instead to be perfected through their righteousness, even the righteousness according to law. Hence it was that the Apostle put such a question to them. If the flesh in the Galatian believers could only do evil, Paul would not have needed to pose such a question, because they themselves would have known only too well that the sins of the flesh could not possibly perfect what was begun in the Holy Spirit. That they desired to perfect with their flesh what the Holy Spirit had initiated proves that to arrive at a perfect position they were depending upon the ability of their flesh to do good. They had truly made an arduous attempt to do good, but the Apostle shows us here that the righteous acts of the flesh and the works of the Holy Spirit are worlds apart. What one does by the flesh is done by himself. It can never perfect what the Holy Spirit has begun. In the preceding chapter the Apostle can be found uttering another weighty word on this: “But if I build up again those things which I tore down, then I prove myself a transgressor” (2.18). He was pointing at those who, having been saved and having received the Holy Spirit, still insisted on gaining righteousness according to law (vv.16,17,21) through their own flesh. We have been saved through faith in the Lord and not through our works: these are what Paul meant by the things torn down. We know that he always had thrown down the works of sinners, treating such deeds as absolutely valueless in anyone’s salvation. Now if by doing righteously we try to “build up again those things” which we have destroyed, then, Paul concludes, “we prove ourselves a transgressor.” The Apostle is hence telling us that inasmuch as sinners cannot be saved through their efforts, so we who have been regenerated likewise cannot be perfected through any righteous acts of our flesh. How vain do such righteous deeds continue to be! Romans 8 maintains that “those who are in the flesh cannot please God” (v.8). It implies that the fleshly have tried, but unsuccessfully, to please God. This of course refers specifically to the righteous acts of the flesh which utterly fail to please God. Let us become profoundly informed here of precisely what the flesh is able to do: it is able to perform righteous deeds, and to do them expertly. We often conceive of the flesh in terms of lust; we consequently consider it strictly defiled, not realizing that it includes more than the lust side.  

In reply toRe: msg 1
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Jan-1

   The Nature of the Good Works of the Flesh God opposes the flesh so drastically because He knows its actual condition thoroughly. He desires His children to be released completely from the old creation and enter fully upon the new in experience. Whether good or bad, flesh is still flesh. The difference between the good which proceeds from the flesh and the good which flows from the new life is that the flesh always has self at its center. It is my self who can perform and does perform good without the need of trusting in the Holy Spirit, without the necessity of being humble, of waiting on God, or of praying to God. Since it is I who 122 The Spiritual Man wills and thinks and does without the need of God and who consequently considers how improved I am or how truly a somebody I have now become through my own efforts, is it not inevitable that I shall ascribe glory to myself? Obviously such deeds do not bring people to God; instead they puff up the self. God wants everyone to come to Him in a spirit of utter dependency, completely submissive to His Holy Spirit, and humbly waiting upon Him. Any good of the flesh which revolves around self is an abomination in the sight of God, for it does not proceed from the Spirit of the life of the Lord Jesus but is of self and glorifies self. The Apostle protests in his Philippian letter that he “put no confidence in the flesh” (3.3). It tends to be self-confident. Because they themselves are so able, the fleshly do not need to trust in the Holy Spirit. Christ crucified is the wisdom of God, but how much confidence a believer reposes in his own wisdom! He can read and preach the Bible, he can hear and believe the Word, but all are executed in the power of his mind, without experiencing the slightest inner registration of a need to depend absolutely upon the instruction of the Holy Spirit. Many therefore believe they possess all the truth, though what they have comes merely from hearing others or from themselves searching the Scriptures. What is of man far exceeds what is of God. They do not have a heart to receive instruction from Him or to wait upon the Lord to reveal to them His truth in His light. 

In reply toRe: msg 2
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Jan-1

   Christ crucified is also the power of God. But how much selfreliance obtains in Christian service. More effort is exerted in planning and arranging than in waiting upon the Lord. Double is the time expended on preparing the division and conclusion of a sermon than on receiving the power from on high. Yet not because the truth is unproclaimed or the person and work of Christ is unconfessed or the glory of God is unsought do all these works become dead before God, but because there is so much trust in the flesh. How we stress human wisdom and strive for satisfactory arguments in our messages: how we use appropriate illustrations and diverse other means to stir men’s emotions: how we employ wise exhortations to induce men to make decisions! But where are the practical results? To what degree do we rely upon the Holy Spirit and to what degree upon the flesh? How can the flesh ever impart life to others? Is there actually any power in the old creation which can qualify people to inherit a part in the new creation? Self-confidence and self-reliance, as we have said, are the notable traits of the good works of the flesh. It is impossible for the flesh to lean upon God. It is too impatient to tolerate any delay. So long as it deems itself strong it will never depend upon God. Even in a time of desperation the flesh continues to scheme and to search for a loophole. It never has the sense of utter dependency. This alone can be a test whereby a believer may know whether or not a work is of the flesh. Whatever does not issue from waiting upon God, from depending upon the Holy Spirit, is unquestionably of the flesh. Whatever one decides according to his pleasure in lieu of seeking the will of God emanates from the flesh. Whenever a heart of utter trust is lacking, there is the labor of the flesh. Now the things done may not be evil or improper; they in fact may be good and godly (such as reading the Bible, praying, worshiping, preaching); but if they are not undertaken in a spirit of complete reliance upon the Holy Spirit, then the flesh is the source of all. The old creation is willing to do anything—even to submit to God—if only it is permitted to live and to be active! However good the deed of the flesh may appear to be, “I”, whether veiled or seen, always looms large on the horizon. The flesh never acknowledges its weakness nor admits to its uselessness; even should it become a laughingstock, the flesh remains unshaken in the belief in its ability. 

Fred (fnorthrup)

From: Fred (fnorthrup)

Jan-2

W. Nee said:

   From the letter of Paul to the Galatians, we once more can see that the flesh is capable of doing good. “Having begun with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh?” (3.3). God’s children in Galatia had descended into the error of doing good by the flesh.

The flesh is used by the old man for his expression. Due to eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, fallen man, the old man, has both a good side and an evil side. If a person robs the bank, that is the flesh. If the same person decides he will "go to church" and volunteer in the soup kitchen, that is still the flesh.

To "receive the Spirit" in Galatians 3:2 is to receive God into our spirit and be begotten of God to be children of God. From the moment we believe, another Person comes to live in us. This is completely different than a person deciding to do good.

Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Jan-2

   Yes, I thought on the above comments of Watchman for awhile and it was very edifying.  As TAS says over and over, our death is an ongoing reality from newbirth forward, in tandem with our maturing in Christ Jesus. We must believe for the death of self in lieu of our stated desire through the gospel to be found in Christ through His absolute enthronement.  It's like love and marriage, you can't have one without the other.  The Word of GOD discerns what is from self enthroned as opposed to what is in Christ, even though the outward actions may be exactly the same. 

Fred (fnorthrup)

From: Fred (fnorthrup)

Jan-2

PAULFROMNYS said:

The Word of GOD discerns what is from self enthroned as opposed to what is in Christ, even though the outward actions may be exactly the same. 

There is a verse which says that exact thing. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and operative and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit and of joints and marrow, and able to discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

Notice that in this verse there is our spirit, soul, and heart with it's thoughts and intentions (will)

PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Jan-2

    Exactly, amen.  It is good in helping us in our desire to enthrone Christ, and totally dispose of our personal dominion over the life given us of GOD; wherein we all like sheep cannot but go astray.

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