Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.  Rom. 6:6  

For he that is dead is freed from sin.  Rom. 6:7  

Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.  Rom. 6:13  

For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.  Rom. 6:14  

Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?  Rom. 6:16  

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.  Rom. 8:2  

          In order to live and keep from dying, the body (flesh) must be bridled.  It must be controlled.   It must be brought under submission.  It must be mastered.  It must be disciplined.  It must be crucified. 

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.  Gal. 2:20  

          The body (old man) must be “put off” and the New Man must be “put on.”

Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;   Col. 3:9   

And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:  Col. 3:10   

Gal 5:19-21

Now the works of the flesh (body) are manifest, which are these:   

adultery   (unlawful sexual relations)

fornication   (all other unlawful sexual relations such as incest, homosexuality; lesbianism; etc.)

uncleanness  (impurity of conduct or thought, profligate living)

lasciviousness (unbridled lust, shamelessness, wantonness, filthy words, indecent bodily movements, unchaste conduct between the sexes)

idolatry   (the worship of false gods; extravagant admirations and ungodly longings of the heart)

witchcraft   (being addicted to drugs; sorcery; magical arts;  manipulating spirits)

hatred   (enmity, malice, dislike, aversion, resentment)

variance   (contention, strife, wrangling)

emulations (an envious or contentious rivalry, jealousy)

wrath   (anger that boils over; outbursts of temper, fierceness)

strife   (a desire to put oneself forward; contending against God)

seditions   (dissention; division; undercutting)

heresies   (choices and opinions that vary from the Truth)

envyings   (things that are prompted by envy)

murders   (manslaughter, taking the life of another)

drunkenness   (intoxication)

revellings   (feasts and drinking parties that indulge in revelry)

…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.   

But when we are judged, we are chastened (paideuo: to educate, instruct, teach) of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.  1Cor. 11:32  

That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, Eph. 5:26  

That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. Eph. 5:27  

          As you can see, the Bible has a great deal to say about the body.  The body actually belongs to God.  It is not ours, it is His (1Cor 6:19).

          It is referred to as flesh.  It is described as carnal.  It is wonderfully and remarkably made and is the crowning achievement of God’s creative work.  Nothing apart from God can adequately explain the wonders of such a miraculous creation.  Science cannot.  Physics cannot.  Evolution cannot.

          The Body is created after the likeness and Image of God.  We look like God and God looks like us.  Isn’t that something! The body was originally created to live and not die but last forever.  And it would have and could have if sin had not entered the human race.  With sin came disease and death. 

Death comes in stages.  In Adam, the blood line became polluted with all the contaminates of death… aging, bacteria, deformities, diseases;  the entire physical life-support system of the human body  became subject to death.  The air became impure.  The earth came under the curse.  Poisons and carcinogens were and continue to be released into the atmosphere. 

Even nature became influenced by the seed of death.  Killer storms, earthquakes, hurricanes, cyclones, tornadoes as well as floods, drought, famine and plagues were released to steal health and to destroy life. 

However, the human body and the earth on which it lives was originally designed by God to live and not die and to last forever.  Sin entered and death came by sin (Romans 5:12).

          In spite of the ravages of sin and the curse of death, Jesus came and redeemed us from the curse.

Christ hath redeemed us from the curse…  Gal 3:13  

The deliverance Jesus provides also makes it possible for the every believer to keep his body under control. 

The Problem we Face in the Natural World       

          The problem we face in the natural world, and in much of the church, is people have lost control over their bodies.   The world is primarily ruled by the flesh.  Governments are controlled by the flesh.  Our society is dominated by the flesh. 

There is no restraint.  There are no limits.  The moral boundaries have all been violated.  Wickedness, perversion, unbridled and uncontrolled appetites, desires and lusts are running rampant.  They are seen on television and in the movies as entertainment.  It is on the internet.  It is happening in the neighborhoods.  It is happening in the public schools.  Children are now killing children.  Teens are at war in violent and murderous gangs. 

Drugs and the violence related with them are now the norm and not the exception.  Society has been brain washed to believe that perversion is normal and OK and that sin is excusable.  Condoms are being freely distributed in many public schools.  Homosexuals and lesbians are assuming positions as role models for young people.  Some are being ordained and placed as pastors in some major denominations.  Same sex marriages are now recognized by many states and government agencies and the benefits that were reserved for heterosexual marriages are now available to the homosexuals.  The sanctity of the Biblical definition of marriage has been re-defined. 

Bodies are out of control.  When murder, rape, adultery, fornication, violence and brutality become entertainment, society is really sick. 

The underlying problem is that human bodies are out of control.  There is no restraint.  There are no boundaries.  There are no limits.   The Bible warns:

Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Rom. 1:21    

Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, Rom 1:22

And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Rom 1:23

Wherefore God also gave them upto uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves: Rom 1:24

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. Rom 1:25

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: Rom 1:26

 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet. Rom 1:27

And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them overto a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;  Rom 1:28

 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Rom 1:29

 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Rom 1:30

Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Rom 1:31

Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.  Rom 1:32   

Much of the world is at war because of the unscriptural demands and lusts of the flesh.  Starvation, poverty, disease and death are rampant in many third world nations.   Greed, selfishness, jealousy and envy are fueled by uncontrolled flesh.  When the unredeemed flesh is left in control, the inevitable result is always destruction and death.  And hell. 

A world without absolutes 

The appetites of the flesh and the lack of control over them have resulted in a rationalized morality.  This has given rise to situation ethics and outcome-based education.  This is a subtle characteristic of the New Age Movement.  There are no absolutes.  The “new normal” is, according to the Word of God, abnormal and perverse.

Society has shunned the reality of right and wrong.  All things are relative.  Right may be right in one instance and not right in another.  Wrong may be wrong in one instance and not wrong in another.  Where there are no absolutes, the world lives in a lie.  Paul admonishes us to put away The Lie.   The LIE is the modus operandi of Satan.

Wherefore putting away lying, (the  Lie)  speak every man truth with his neighbor: for we are members one of another.     Eph. 4:25  

          A world with no absolutes also means that there is no such thing as truth.  Truth in this kind of environment is relative.  It may be true in this instance but a lie in another.  This is what the Bible describes as a reprobate mind… calling good evil and evil good. 

And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind,to do those things which are not convenient;  Rom. 1:28  

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!  Isa. 5:20   

          A world with no absolutes is a world that is continually committing the unpardonable sin.    If you are not sure about what is right and what is wrong, you will be in danger of committing sin without knowing it. 

If you think that evil is good you will commit sin and not be aware of it.  If you commit sin without knowing it, you will not be able to repent.  If you do not repent, you will be held accountable for your sin and you will die unforgiven.  To die unforgiven means spending eternity in hell. 

          We are now living in such a society.  The political world, the entertainment world, the social world, the economic world; are all functioning in an environment without moral absolutes.  Our culture is in a self-destruct mode.  And we all are paying dearly for it.

This is a sure sign of the end of this age. 

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 2Tim 3:1

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 2Tim 3:2

Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 2Tim 3:3

Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 2Tim 3:4

Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. 2Tim 3:5

Life without restraint   

Living a life without restraint is living a life that is out of control; a life with no self discipline; a life that seeks to gratify every desire of the flesh and fulfill every lust of the eye.   It is living with no concern for self, for others or for decency.  It is precisely here that much of modern culture fits.   Here is the drug culture.  Here is the “baggy-pants bunch.”  Here are the alcoholics and the addicts.  Here are the perverse and the unnatural.  Here are the selfish, lazy, entitlement crazed and irresponsible members of our society. 

 …..heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; .

   Unfortunately, this is where the world is living today.   Take a look at the public school system.  See the lack of control.  See how undisciplined children and young people are making public education a near impossibility.  Teachers are fearing for their very lives.  Metal detectors are in the halls.  Drug sniffing dogs are on campus.  Guns, knives, and gangs are in classrooms.  Free condoms.  No limits.  No restraint.  No discipline. 

Consider the illegal gun problem.  See the problem of sexual promiscuity and teen-aged pregnancy.   Why has there been over one billion babies aborted worldwide since 1980?  And nearly 55 million babies have been murdered (aborted) in this country since Roe vs. Wade in 1973.   It has been estimated that more than 46% of American women will have had an abortion by the time they are 45.   The reason is lives are being lived without discipline and bodies are given to unrestrained appetites.     This is life with no limits and life that has no moral compass.  This is the catastrophic result of bodies that are not being kept under control.   And it is the footprint of our culture today.

Society without responsibility 

Who is responsible for what?  Where does the buck stop?  Who pays the bill?  Who even cares?    There is a tendency in today’s world to refuse to accept responsibility for one’s actions.  The welfare and entitlement mentality has pervaded modern society.  Most people want something and a lot of it for nothing.  They want pay without work.  They want privilege without responsibility.  They want recognition without accountability.

 The Answer

          Making Jesus Lord and conquering the flesh is the answer.  Overcoming the flesh is the answer.  Bringing the flesh under the control of the recreated, born again human spirit is the answer.  Making the flesh line up with the Word is the answer.  Crucifying the flesh is the answer.  Burying the flesh is the answer.  Keeping the flesh “under” is the answer. 

Apart from God, this is impossible.  Without personally making Jesus Lord, this is impossible.  Without the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, this is impossible.  Without commitment and consistency in your Christian walk, this is impossible.  Without an established relationship with a strong Word teaching, Word preaching, Word living Church, this is impossible.   But it can be done!  It must be done!  It must be done NOW and it must be done by you and me!

But I keep under (hupopiazo: to buffet or disable an antagonist as a boxer; to subdue) my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. 1Cor. 9:27  

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Rom. 12:1  

          It is possible.  It is reasonable.  It is logical.  It can be done.  All of flesh can be “kept under” control.  If your flesh is out of control it is because (1) you want it to be (2) you like it that way or (3) you allow it to be.  You can do something about it. 

Your body is subject to your will.  If you will it to be loose, it will be loose.   If you will it to sin it will sin.  It you will it to be restrained, it will be restrained.  It you will it to be controlled, it will be controlled.  Your body will do what  you will it to do.  If you let it run wild, it will run wild.  Whatever you will your body to do, it will do.  Your flesh wars against your spirit.  It is contentious.  It is demanding.  It is unreasonable.  

          Change must begin with the Church.  Change  must start with us.  Crucified flesh and controlled physical appetites must be the characteristic of the New Creation.  Being dead to sin is being alive unto God. 

          Let’s take a little test:

FIRST:  Are you where you need to be in God?

SECOND:  Do you have problems controlling your body?

THIRD:  Will you do something about it TODAY?

FOURTH:  Then let’s do it NOW!!

          “Lord Jesus, I bring my body to your right now.  I crucify my flesh and I bring my appetites and desires to You and ask You to help me keep my body under control.”

Here’s a promise teens, young people and singles can make to God:  

          “I vow to keep my body sexually pure from this date on.  I will keep my body under control and reserve it for my future life mate.  I will not allow myself to indulge in premarital sex or any other sexual activity that God has reserved for the marriage bed.  I will keep myself pure and reserved for my future  (husband) (wife).”

Let our prayer be for God to help us maintain a pure and dedicated life for the Kingdom of God.  Let’s pray for our nation and the nations of the world.  And let’s believe for a global Great Awakening that will usher in our Coming King…..

Then we will Live and be Kept from Dying…..

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