Galatians 5:16-25 16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
In Galatians 5:16-25, the Apostle Paul teaches us a lot about how we are sanctified, how we grow to be more like Jesus. As Paul writes to these churches in Galatia, we learn that we grow as we battle, what the battle looks like, and how we can wage our battle. Our growth is a battle because our still sinful desires are pulling us toward sin while the Spirit is pulling us toward righteousness (v 16-18). But if we “walk by the Spirit, we will not gratify the desires of the flesh” (v 15). The battle is seen clearly when we see Paul contrast the “works of the flesh” with “the fruit of the Spirit” (v 19-23). The works of the flesh are what our sinful desires pull us toward and the fruit of the Spirit is what God produces in us by grace. But how do we wage our battle? There are at least three ways: We walk by the Spirit as we 1) remember we already belong to Jesus, 2) take our sin and sinful desires to the cross, and 3) study the Word of God and respond through prayer.
1. Was there anything from the sermon, big idea, or Galatians 5:16-25 that stood out to you, challenged you, or confused you?
2. What is going on inside every Christian (v 16-17)? What is encouraging about this truth? What is challenging? 3. Look at the “works of the flesh” that Paul mentions in verses 19-21. Which ones do you most struggle with? How does the gospel free you from “gratifying” these desires?
4. Which of the “works of the flesh” are most common, and most acceptable, in your culture?
5. Pick a couple of the aspects of the fruit of the Spirit from verses 22-23. How are these things products of believing the gospel? How are they aspects of serving others in love?
6. Which aspects of the fruit of the Spirit are least noticed and celebrated within your culture?
7. What would these fruit of the Spirit look like in action?
If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. (Romans 8:11)
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