Summary: How do I not give in to physical desires? How do I discipline myself? What is "dying" to fleshly desires?

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How to keep the body from winning over the heart…

Ever felt like you wanted to do right, but your physical desires were so overpowering, it was hard or impossible?

 Diet vs. eat

 Getting up vs. sleep

 Obedience vs. sin

 Purity vs. immorality

 Clean mind vs. lust

 Drugs vs clean

 Alcohol vs sobriety

Song in the 70s disco era - “my body keeps changing my mind/changing my heart”

Bottom line: If you allow fleshly hunger to dominate your life, it will crowd out and kill spiritual hunger.

First, I want to make sure that you understand I’m not down on the body – like somehow sin lives in your physical self.

Gnostic controversy

We don’t believe the body is __evil____.

In the Scripture, these two words are often used when talking about the

Flesh (sarkos) vs. body (soma)

From the Fall From Creation

Sinful nature Physical body

Dangerous Neutral

Wants to be master Wants to be pampered

Commanded to starve it Commanded to care for it

Hate it Be suspicious of it

Must be put to death Must be controlled

Kill it Discipline it

How to keep from being controlled by fleshly desires:

1. Discipline your body.

1 Corinthians 9:26 Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.

27 No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

The body is a good servant, but a terrible master.

Ways to discipline your body:

 Go crazy on ____fighting your weak areas._____.

Matthew 18:8 If your hand or your foot causes you to sin cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire.

9 And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.

Let’s get this out of the way: You have weak areas. You have areas that you’re vulnerable to temptation and sin. I know that’s shocking… I know you were unaware… but you do. What are you going to do about it?

Jesus isn’t literally commanding us to slice and dice our bodies. (Notice he says “if” your body causes you a problem…) However, he’s making a point in a very shocking and memorable way:

It is better to hurt the body than to lose your soul. If it’s soul vs. body in any area of your life, make SURE the soul wins. You would literally be BETTER OFF without an eye than in hell.

If something is continually causing you to sin, some area in which your body is weak and soft, and you can’t discipline yourself, it’s better to get rid of the possibility entirely.

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