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Spirit Versus Flesh

It is written that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, (1 Corinthians 15:50) which makes these words an imperative to understand. From the scriptures we learn that God created man in his own image and in that his image was formed from the dust of the earth in his likeness.

The verse above describes the how the flesh of man was made from the dust of the earth and then the breath of life was breathed into man. In other words we could easily say man is a spiritual being clothed with flesh as if it were a robe from Godís sight. We could also say that man is an animated being of flesh made in the image of God. However this image of God can be seen and touch with the flesh made from the dust of the earth. To wrap up this description the flesh was made from the dust of the earth and the spirit that rules the flesh came directly from the mouth of God.

The two words ďimage and likenessĒ are only found in two verses of the bible.  The first describes the creation of man (Genesis 1:26) the second is the birth of Seth (Genesis 5:3.) These two verses give a definition from the way they are used above theological definitions. These two verses may give an idea that the creator wanted man to know what he looked like. Secondly, God may have wanted man to understand him as the father of mankind.

Letís also consider the visions of God that was seen by Ezekiel and was described in these words.

Man has one thing in common with God man displays the form of God. The bible tells us that God is a spirit being and man is a spirit being clothed with flesh. These are spiritual terms used in the Christian community to explain the two-fold nature of man and stating a reality that he or she is a spirit being. At the same time we may want to consider why God does not look at the outward appearance of man. Is it that he is more concerned with the spirit of man and the character that will inherit his kingdom.  

To understand the difference between the flesh and the spirit of man, Paul writes that the flesh cannot inherit the kingdom of God. At the same time the bible says you must be born of the spirit. The desires of the flesh can rule the spirit of man but God wants the spirit to rule both the spirit and flesh. Being a king in the earth realm may be nothing more than ruling our body that was made from the earth.

A king makes billions of decisions in his lifetime most of which affect another person. It is these decisions that God is concerned with. Any decision man makes fall into two categories, those that affect his life directly and those that affect another person. The outcome of those decisions can be seen as sin or as good deeds. And the spirit of man can control every deed, good or evil in the initial stage where thought is conceived.

Thoughts are conceived in the mind and then send its orders through the nervous system to the parts of the body that actually do the work. Jesus said in affect that itís not what goes into man but itís what comes out that determines his true nature of man whether good or evil. For the most part Godís word deals with issues that instruct men and women ways to make good decisions and ways to avoid sin.

Paul writes

 Paul a leading prophet of God found himself in a predicament in that he wanted to submit to the spirit but sinned instead. He summarized up his situation by saying that he was in the middle of a spiritual war that struggled for the control of his spirit. In this war Satanís tactic is to divide and conquer and he specializes in inciting Christians to act according to what they desire rather than what the spirit wanted to do.

Every Christian receives a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline for God did not want his children to be timid. (2 Timothy 1:7) Ezekiel 36:26 says I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you. John 3:6 tells us that Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. So why is important for the Christian to understand? The bible gives the answer.

The flesh lives from what the earth produces and when the flesh can no longer function and dies it is buried. The body remains in the earth realm buried in a grave, but the spirit separates from the body and returns to his or her maker.

Just as the spirit of man came from the mouth of God so the spirit lives by every word that comes from the mouth of God.  Our life came from God and will return to him as the fruit of the earth. However the standard practice in harvesting is to sort the good from the bad before keeping the good.

Those who have the hope of going to heaven need to learn how to think and act in a godly manner. Therefore it requires us to renew our mind or in other words to rebuild the foundation of our thoughts or intellect with Godís word. The reason is obvious as the outcome of rebuilding the mind with spiritual principles give us the ability to know and test the will of God.

The earth was designed and covered with living creatures made from the common elements that the earth was made with. The flesh was no exception as man was also made from dust of the earth and the breath of life from God. However, the flesh is just an outer garment that the spirit dwells in.  In heaven the saints of God will be given fine linen, bright and clean similar to the wedding garments such as those seen in the marriage banquet.

Letís remember that sin is a response to satisfying the desires of the flesh. The cravings of the flesh are selfish and will demand that its passions be met. As Christians we learn that when the desires of the flesh are not met it often responds by cursing God in anger. Our human cravings if not controlled cause trouble because our desires outweigh common sense and practicality. The spirit demands a disciplined mind before it destroys anything you have planned for in your future. This includes going to heaven to be with God.

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