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  • William T. Howe Ph.D.

November 29, 2021

Daily Reading: I Corinthians 1-4

I Corinthians 2:14

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

No wonder those in the world think those in Christ are foolish. They are natural, not spiritual. But who are these that are spiritual? What makes them spiritual? Biblically speaking, a person who has the Spirit of God is spiritual. The Spirit of God is the Holy Ghost of God, or the Holy Spirit. He lives inside those who have been born again into the family of God. How are they born into this family? Through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. He is the “agent of the new birth.” He gives individuals the faith to believe the Gospel, He convicts of sin, He instructs in the ways of righteousness, and He seals the believer unto the day of redemption.

He is Spiritual. All in Christ have Him as an indwelling possession. Therefore those in Christ are also spiritual beings. Those without the benefit of the Holy Ghost of God in them are natural only. Those with the benefit of the Holy Ghost in them are both; natural and spiritual. Therein lies the problem. These two natures conflict one with another. This is why so many believers in Jesus Christ live in conflict. The natural part of them leads them naturally. The spiritual part of them leads them spiritually. Galatians 5:17 speaks of this conflict: For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. The “flesh” is another term for natural.

Paul faced this conflict and was brutally honest and transparent about it concluding with this statement: O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the Law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. Romans 7:24-25

Just know this. Before the Lord God Almighty there are natural beings and spiritual beings. The natural think the spiritual are foolish. The spiritual individual has both the natural and the spiritual influences. To which will they yield? It depends upon which they feed. Feeding the natural man strengthens the natural. Feeding the spiritual man strengthens the spiritual. Why does it matter? Because of Romans 8:8. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. If a person desires to live a life that is pleasing to God they must overcome the flesh (or natural) and become spiritual. Meaning not only being born of the Spirit of the living God into the family of God, but living every day in light of spiritual teachings instead of purely natural tendencies. This is conceptually simple, but practically difficult. Even the great Apostle Paul struggled with this, and so will I, and so will you.

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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