The Lusts Of The Flesh. 07/26/2014 (Morning thought)

Galatians 5:19 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.

This passage of scripture enumerates the lusts and works of the flesh, which we cannot continue to indulge in, if we expect to be granted entrance into God's kingdom of glory. The list is not given at random, but rather begins with the most prominent problem that affects fallen man, for adultery stands as one of the most potent and detrimental evils to be overcome by the Christian. However, Paul also speaks of drunkenness and revelling, which refer to partying, to which many people, both old and young have fallen prey.

In the island of Trinidad, and also in Brazil there are annual festivals that promote the type of "Revelling" that Paul is referring to, better known as "Carnival" or "Bacchanal time", a period in which people are given to unrestrained indulgence of many of the lusts Paul mentions in Galatians five. During these periods of festivity, history has shown that unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases of all kinds, spike dramatically, and after the "Partying" is over, then those who were given to moral abandon, are often awakened to face the cold realities of disease and unplanned parenthood.

There are certain activities that as Christians we should avoid at all costs, even though it may mean surrendering some prominent aspects of our culture and national heritage. When we give our lives to Christ, we become citizens of that heavenly country, wherein dwelleth righteousness and no evil thing defileth, and that's the reason why we are called Christians first, and then Trinidadians or Jamaicans etc next. Let's read:

Hebrews 11:14 For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. 15 And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. 16 But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

In our day, a lot of emphasis is placed on national heritage and culture, and these things are not bad at all, once they are kept within their proper sphere, and once they do not encourage the indulgence of any hurtful lusts. However, our national culture should not be permitted to displace Christianity, neither should our earthly heritage usurp that heavenly heritage that has been given to us as a precious legacy through the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary. Regardless of the country in which we were born, one thing we do know, that Christ has gone to prepare a place for those who have gotten the victory over the lusts of the flesh, and if we rightly esteem what has been accomplished on our behalf, we will be more than willing to have Christ take precedence over all national and cultural interests.

We therefore end with a passage of scripture which reminds us that our focus should be in heaven, on the work of salvation, for the sum total of Christianity, is to restore God's moral image in man, and to reunite us with our Creator. Let's read:

Philippians 3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: 21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

May we ever live and work towards this end. God bless!