The Holy Spirit makes the difference
The Bible is very clear on the life that must be lived by Christians. In many portions of the Bible, especially in the New Testament, we see many scriptures admonishing us to live in a manner that testifies of the Love of God. We are told in the Acts of the Apostle how the name Christian came about. And the sentence in scripture that speaks of this says that, it was in Antioch that the believers were first called Christians (Read Acts 11;19-26).
Reading from the very beginning of the Book of Acts, it’s worth noting the life that characterized the early Church. These believers practically lived in a manner that spoke Christ very clearly and audibly to the world.
And it was very clear that the life of the believers were directed by the Holy Spirit just as Jesus Christ had told them in John 16:5-15. And indeed, when the Spirit came, there was a clear difference in the ministry that followed. Before the Holy Spirit came, most of them were filled with fear and confusion. But when the Spirit came upon them, they received courage to speak the gospel with all boldness not being afraid of anyone.
As believers, our lives ought to be lived in conformity with the Word of God and the dictates of the Holy Spirit. Any kind of life not motivated or controlled by the Holy Spirit will only be drawing us away from God. It is probably why I sincerely believe when we read Romans 8:1-17 we should also look at the clear contrast of our old nature and the new to help us live according to the Spirit.
Living by the flesh against Living by the Spirit
Here are just a few distinctions between living according to the dictates (control) of the flesh and living according to the dictates (control) of the Spirit.
- Those who live their lives according to the flesh are always thinking about desires of their flesh. What this means is that their thoughts and emotions are set on the desires of the flesh. The danger here is that, living this way only leads to death. On the contrary, when you live your life being dominated by the Spirit, your mind is set on the things of the Spirit and your thoughts on Spiritual things. And that is the kind of life that brings peace. So, if you desire to know peace, to enjoy real peace, then what you need is a new life dominated by the Spirit, that is to say that you must be born again.
- The life controlled by the flesh is always hostile to God and cannot obey God. This is very true. Its like a slave and the master; the slave has no other choice but to obey the master. Therefore, should you choose to live your life dominated by the flesh, your obedience will be to the flesh; you will only obey your master, hence you cannot obey or please God. But the life that is controlled by the Spirit does what pleases God. This is because you are actually living God’s Will when you allow the Spirit of God to control you.
So, what kind of life are you living?