Our Father the Architect # 4
In the previous messages I discussed that God wants to build our lives to conform us to the image of Jesus (Rom. 8 v. 29). In 1 Corinthians 3 v. 9, the word says that we are Godís building! He is the ultimate Architect and is building our lives floor by floor. God is indeed the Architect building up our lives by tearing down the flesh! We also talked about Paul Ė he was mentioned in the same sentence as Jesus, as recorded in Acts 19 v. 15; the demons told the seven sons of Sceva that they knew Jesus and Paul but not them! The demons knew Paulís name! So, as a result, we started studying the epistles of Paul to see how he allowed the Spirit of God to change his life to conform to the image of Jesus. In Romans 8 v. 19 the word says that all creation is waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God. The Greek word for sons is huios, which means to be made in the image of the parent. So, God truly desires to make us into the image of His Son and all He needs is our cooperation.
In 2 Cor. 1 v. 4, the word says that the Father is our Comforter. When we are dealing with fleshly issues and temptations and are under attack, He will comfort us and encourage us. You can rest assured on this! He will never leave or forsake you so keep on the road to sanctification by letting the Holy Spirit mortify the deeds of the flesh (Rom. 8 v. 13). In Chapter 2 v. 10, 11 Paul talks about the importance of forgiving in order to not give an advantage to Satan. In v. 14, Paul mentions that in the battle against the flesh, God always causes us to triumph, which should encourage you greatly. There is an end in sight.
In Chapter 3 v. 2, Paul mentions that we are Godís epistle or letter which is known and read by all. This is why it is so important for the flesh to be crucified by the Holy Spirit. In v. 18, Paul encourages us to know that we can be changed into the same image of the glory of God by the power of the Holy Spirit. This is another reason to allow the Holy Spirit to complete His work in us and win the war against the flesh.
Paul mentions in Chapter 4 v. 2 to renounce the hidden things of dishonesty and not handle the word of God deceitfully. There are so many ministers doing this and one day God will remove them from influencing His children in a negative way. Letís not follow suit! Paul also mentions in v. 14 that the same power that raised Jesus up is also available to raise us up in ministry. In v. 16-18, Paul mentions not to be moved by the things that are seen in the natural but to be moved only by the things that cannot be seen in the supernatural. Please donít believe the lies of the devil.
In our war against the flesh, Paul mentions in Chapter 5 v. 7 to walk by faith and not by sight! Be patient with the work that God is doing in your flesh! In v. 17, this same truth is mentioned again; that we are new creatures in Christ, old things have passed away; behold all things are become new! The word "become" should have been translated "becoming." It is an ongoing process! Donít give up!
In Chapter 6 v. 4-10, Paul talks about the signs of a true ministry for Christ. It is not how many people they have in their ministry nor the amount of money coming in. The signs of a real ministry are patience, afflictions, necessities, distresses, stripes imprisonments, tumults, labors, watchings and fastings. When one gets passed these challenges they achieve the next level of pureness, knowledge, longsuffering, kindness, the Holy Ghost, love unfeigned, word of truth, power of God, the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left. The attacks before the next level after the previous are; being honorable but called dishonest, by having a good report but people lying on you, etc. Finally, one who pushes though these and other attacks achieve a level mentioned in v. 10 Ė possessing all things! So you see, the flesh really has to be crucified to achieve levels in God and can only happen by the power of the Holy Ghost transforming our lives! Another thing to remember in our war against the flesh is contained in v. 14-18; not to be unequally yoked together with unbelievers by coming out from among them. It is so important who you allow to be in your life. We need to recognize who is in our lives to hinder us and who is there to help us into purpose!
Paul encourages us again to allow the Holy Spirit to crucify the flesh by saying in Chapter 7 v. 1 that we need to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit and perfect holiness in the fear of the LORD! As we mentioned before we need to recognize who is in our lives to help and who is there to hinder. Paul reiterates this in v. 6 when he mentions how much Titus comforted him when he came!
In Chapter 8 v. 18 and 22, Paul talks about a man who helped so many churches without even mentioning his name or title. He was just called "the brother." So many in the church want the big title, but donít have the anointing to back it up.
In Chapter 9, Paul talks about sowing bountifully. He is not just talking about money but time and prayers. It is so important in the battle of the flesh to sow into other peopleís lives! Paul says that as a result, we can be enriched in everything to all bountifulness (v.11).
In Chapter 10, Paul talks about the war of the flesh and how to win it: cast down all imaginations and everything that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ (v. 5). The war to control the flesh is in the mind. We need to recognize this and heed the warning admonition above (v.5) to win the war!
In Chapter 11 v. 22-33 and 12 v. 10 Paul talked about the attacks that he had in the natural and how he realized in the midst of the attacks that when he was weak he was strong. He realized that when he had no power in the flesh, he especially had to rely on the spirit of God. The same holds true for us. In this battle against the flesh we really have to rely on the Spirit of God and not on our own strength. The victory and the spoils are so great- eternal life and eternal rewards.
Again, God is indeed the Architect building up our lives by tearing down the flesh!