Summary: Fighting the war of spirit vs. flesh
(Romans 7:14-15 NIV)
Sometimes you feel like Dr. Jeckyl and Mr. Hyde.
One minute you’re this wonderful Christian that wants to love the Lord, and please God in everything you do.
But then there’s this old “you” from years ago.
The one who thinks he can do everything himself.
In the book, “Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” Dr Jekyll says, “Of the two natures that contended in the field of my consciousness, even if I could be rightly said to be either, it was only because I was radically both.’
When you try to overcome sin in your own strength, confusion reigns.
The second reaction we have when we try to follow the law of God in our own strength is that we get frustrated.
"For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out!" (Romans 7:18 NIV)
Struggling with sin is frustrating…You want to change…But you just can’t.
You have the motivation…But you don’t have the determination.
You have the desire to do what is right…But for some reason, you can’t do it
“…no one will be declared righteous by observing the law, rather, through the law, we become conscious of sin” (Romans 3:20 NIV)
But it won’t do you any good just to get confused and frustrated over sin.
Hopefully confusion and frustration will lead you to desperation which is the third thing it produces.
You need to get desperate if you want to have a win over sin.
If you go down to verse 24, Paul came to the place in his life where he just couldn’t take it anymore.
And he cried out, "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God - through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 7:24 NIV)
It all boils down to this: Are you willing to stop trying to fix everything yourself?
If you are willing - and ready to do that, then here’s how.
It’s a co-operative effort between you and Jesus.
Jesus part is this:
1. Forgiveness - If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9 NIV).
2. Empowerment - continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose (Philippians 2:12-13 NIV).
Your part is this:
1. Surrender – give up…let go…are you tired of struggling with it?
Matt 11:28-30 Jesus said “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
2. Guard your heart and mind….
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me
(Psalm 51:10 NIV).
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:1-2 NIV).
You will continue to struggle as long as the OLD MAN is stronger than the SPIRIT MAN!