In a world created with vast resources and splendor to provide for all our needs, physical comfort becomes attainable and sustainable by the things of the world. But after our death here on earth. How do we attain unto comfort when we leave the flesh and evolve to the spirit. This is the principal question behind this sermon. Spiritual comfort becomes the ultimate desire of everyone who aims to be a part of the kingdom of God. Spiritual comfort begins while we are on earth and lasts forever, it starts the moment we begin to live in Christ. Spiritual comfort helps a child of God to live happily in the joy of the Lord. When you are comfortable spiritually, it implies that you are able to do the will of God and sin does not in any way have rule over you. Any man that is in the valley of sin cannot boast of any form of spiritual convenience. Anyone who truly desires the kingdom of God but finds himself in the valley of sin can tell of the distress and sorrow of upholding the pleasures of sin within the knowledge of righteousness. Having a perfect understanding of the fact that anyone who wilfully sin is doomed for eternal destruction, but being over-shadowed by the power of sin, such a fellow still finds himself committing sin against God wilfully. This is a woe, a misery and the highest state of distress, the highest level of agony. Therefore, spiritual comfort becomes imperative for every child of God in order to live a happy life, filled with the joy of God and devoid of the agony of holding to sin in the midst of having knowledge of the difference between righteousness and unrighteousness, lust and love. For it is better for a man never to have known Christ than for him to know Christ and in the end, fail to do the will of God. Backsliding is at the door steps of everyone, I mean everyone, nobody is spared. And if it is allowed to take effect, it destroys both the body and soul. And in a desperate bid to ensure that the world doesn’t know of your secret sinful acts before the people that takes like a perfect man, you begin to tell lies, adding more sins. For every problem, there are solutions, as such, God has himself made solutions to backsliding. Whether you have backslidden or it is still knocking on your heart, their is a way out of it.
The very first thing you need to realize is that the power to do the will of God and understand his ways, is a benefit of having the holy spirit. If you do not have the holy spirit in you, you are a living ghost, and someday, sin will destroy you and send you into a state of oblivion forever. But when you receive the gift of the holy spirit, you change from being a living dead and you begin living in the love of God. Your craving and desire for the righteousness becomes high and you lose interest in the things of the world. You separate from all lusts and hatred. The Holy Spirit paves the way for righteousness but you begin to wonder, why some who have received the holy spirit sometimes fall off the grace of God, it doesn’t just happen to some, you are also on the verge of being a victim of this except you do something. Remember, the holy spirit paves the way for righteousness and without him can no man live a holy life. But, the flesh still remains present in you, that corrupted flesh whose works are that of unrighteousness and if not subdued, can lead to eternal destruction. So, assuming you have the holy spirit in you. The spirit of holiness is in you tending to spiritual comfort and the flesh is also present in you, tending to spiritual doom and physical pleasure. Here are two forces contending to rule over you, when the holy spirit rules you, you become holy but when the flesh rules over you, you become an sinner. Galatians chapter 5 is a sum total of this.
Gal 5: 17 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. 18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.
Having understood this, the solution to attaining unto holiness lies in our ability to subdue the flesh. Beware, at that moment when your mind is at rest, when you believe that you have killed sin in you. Sin never dies, it only becomes silent, it works may die, but would always attempt to make a comeback. It would bring up things that you might consider to be mild sins and with every fall on your part, it brings up a more grievous one until you are fully in the valley of sin, far apart from the way of God. Therefore, the mortification of sin becomes important in the lives of every Christian. It simply means killing sin, it is not something you do once, you must kill sin everyday. The greatest mistake many Christians make is that, they only kill sin once and then relax until sin comes back finding less resistance. John Owen(1616-1683) said “The vigour, and power, and comfort of our spiritual life depends on the
mortification of the deeds of the flesh.” He went further to put it in a simpler and more explicit way with these words,” Be killing sin or it will be
killing you.” Killing sin becomes a daily affair, a daily battle and a single moment of relaxing can destroy your soul. You must have been wondering how you can kill sin. The best way to kill sin is through commitment to doing the things of the spirit, preaching the word of God everyday kills sin, reading the bible everyday kills in, the bible will either separate you from sin or sin will separate you from the bible. Here are facts you need to know. Your mind must always be fully concentrated, every single day, no matter how busy you are, you must ensure you engage in things that can edify your soul. Constant edification is a key to killing sin. Many do not realize this fact, think of it, how often do you get so busy with activities tending to physical comfort in so much that you have absolutely no time to attend unto the things that bring spiritual comfort, at such moments, sin is just about to have an upper hand in your life. It is time for you to begin dedicating more time to the things that are good, the things that are spiritual and the things that are edifying, only then can you truly utterly destroy the influence of sin on you. Sin is a barricade between you and your glory. If you have been in sin before, this is the time to make a change in your life, pray to God for the holy spirit, and dedicate much of your time to the things that edify the spirit. Give sin no chance in your life. You do not need to think about your bad past, remember, ”Your vision is never clear enough to see your future glory until you clean off the tears of the past.”
The sum of all the acts of mortifying sin is summed up in the three fundamental principles of love.
1. Think no evil and think good.
2. Speak no evil and speak good.
3. Do no evil and do good.
(Derived from Romans 13:10 and expounded in “The Concept of Love ” by John Ishola Olafenwa)
When you wake up in the morning to read the bible as the first thing, spend much of your time reading edifying Christian books, write a sermon everyday, preach to your colleagues at work anytime you are opportune and sleep thinking about the things you read and wrote about the ways of God, in such, with the grace of God, sin cannot have dominion over you. Think all that is too much for you to combine with your daily studies or work? Hmmmm. Ask yourself this question, is it too much to spend half of your day on the things that edify or spend eternity wailing, gnashing your teeth and crying forever and ever more in the lake of fire? God placed before you, two choices, good and evil, choose wisely.