“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).
The most brilliant minds on earth debate what walking in the Spirit means, but it is in the faith like a child that the saint simply does it.
Learning to walk in the Spirit is not a matter of salvation, but sanctification. This is not a matter of making it into heaven, but determining your position once you get there.
Walking in the Spirit is for all, not just some. “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all” (1 Corinthians 12:7). Different gifts, yes, but the Spirit is given to all believers, and all can walk in the Spirit.
Surrendering to the Spirit:
Walking in the Spirit is not something you do by your effort, but by your surrender.
Walking in the Spirit is not gaining power, but relinquishing power, relinquishing your right to you. Yielding produces, it allows. No fruit grows unless there is first a yielding over from the ground from which it must come. “…the land shall yield its produce, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit” (Leviticus 26:4).
It is not overcoming something beyond you, but something beyond you overcoming you.
Surrendering yourself to God never requires a lesson, but a decision. All your studying is simply the diversion to delay what you know must be done.
There can only be spiritual victory where there has been a natural defeat. Paul wrote: “For he who has died has been freed from sin” (Romans 6:7). Dead men don’t sin.
It is never a question of you being unable to walk in the Spirit, but if you would surrender to the Holy Spirit that He would reign in you.
Just as it takes the power of God to make man, it takes the power of God to change him. The Lord said, “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them” (Ezekiel 36:27). Walking in the Spirit is better stated as the Spirit walking in you.
The reason so few walk in the power of the Holy Spirit is not the scarcity of all that God has, but the scarcity of those willing to live the life that they could receive all He would give them.
Growing in the Spirit:
To grow in the Spirit, you must first be born in the Spirit. If you are born, never think you will grow apart from food. You need the Word. If you are not in the Word, the Word is not in you. If the Word is not in you, it cannot change you.
I cannot tell you how many weak and broken Christians I have counseled, and when I ask them, “are you in the Word”, the answer is always “no”. You must get in the Word, that the Word would be in you.
To grow spiritually you must shrink naturally. The natural is the hindrance to the spiritual. This is often why the highest in the natural struggle the most to grow spiritually.
Growing spiritually has to do with yielding ground not gaining ground. And walking in the Spirit is only done once there is ground relinquished upon which you might then walk.
You cannot be led by the Spirit unless you are walking in the Spirit. “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God” (Romans 8:14). You learn with your mind, but you follow Christ with your heart.
Do not just get knocked down by the Holy Spirit, but get back up and walk in it.
You do not grow spiritually by your natural efforts, but by the Holy Spirit. Paul wrote, “and be renewed in the spirit of your mind” (Ephesians 4:23). Spiritual change requires spiritual work. It is the Holy Spirit alone qualified to do this work. Your only task is to let Him have His way in you.
From the natural to the spiritual
Your spiritual journey is not a natural path.
Walking in the Spirit does not come naturally. Your spiritual growth is hindered by all your natural efforts. “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14).
You cannot walk in the flesh and expect to walk in the Spirit.
You will only trip over the natural things in this world if you are walking in your natural flesh.
The beginning of walking in the Spirit is in realizing you can never do it in your flesh.
You will never get closer to God walking on natural paths. You cannot learn spiritual truths by natural study methods. It is into your spirit “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him” (Ephesians 1:17).
In the flesh we gravitate towards that which satisfies the flesh. The same is true in the Spirit.
We desire to walk in the spirit, yet we think we can do so by natural means. We are all just naturally proud. It is in our natural efforts where we build the natural walls that hinder our spiritual growth.
I am convinced the higher faith quickly loses the masses, not because they are too weak, but too strong. We must be too weak, that it would be His strength that rules within us. “Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10).
It is always in the reasoning of man that you will be limited in the power of God.
You cannot ascend spiritual mountains burdened by your natural self. Your natural mind can never understand this. Your spiritual mind requires no further explanation.
The Lord said, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26). Your stony heart is the stone tablet of the law. You couldn’t keep the law. The heart of flesh is the Spirit of Christ in you. He can keep the Law. This is how you can walk in the Spirit and thus not fulfill the lust of your flesh.
Blessings to you,
11 thoughts on “Walking in the Spirit”
Praise God great teaching! We in ourselves get in The way of the spirit
Thank you! We do get in the way, but when we finally get out of the way, it all changes, and we kick ourselves for not having done it earlier!
“It is not overcoming something beyond you, but something beyond you overcoming you.
Surrendering yourself to God never requires a lesson, but a decision.” <3 love this
Thank you Gail! I am always amazed at the simplicity of faith, and how if we would not try to make it so hard, we could get so much further.
The ever challenging balance act… trying to please God and not mess up, not wanting to disappoint Him… while trying not to lost in legalism, berating ourselves, or simply getting lost.
I am convinced that I can’t be obedient on my own power. I am convinced God knew this. And that is the beauty of Ezekiel 36:26-27, He puts His Spirit in me to do what I can’t! Oh what freedom we have when once the Holy Spirit reigns in us!
Everything is impossible without Him <3
Php 2:12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,
Php 2:13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Thanks Dan, great verses. We are so blessed that we have a God that will do such a great work in us!
Might I suggest that it’s not a second experience, but God’s working in every believer?
Well for sure it is by God working in us that we can be changed! I don’t think it is a second experience as much as a progressive one. Some barely progress and live mostly in their flesh throughout their Christian life. Others progress more, not of their own power, but by their surrendering to God to do the work in them. But i do agree with you that we do not need a special second experience by which we would start this progression in our sanctification.