Only the Spirit can manifest Christ likeness in you
The key words here are “so that you do not do what you want.” In essence if you are not
controlled by the spirit, you are controlled by the flesh and vice versa. There is no third option. There is no “I’m O.K. your O.K.” idea. God made Christianity to be lived in His power, not ours. He can allow life to come unglued at the seams to illustrate that point if he so chooses. How much time do we just coast through this life in neutral; not blatantly sinning, but not empowered by His Spirit to do his work? We naturally tend to gravitate to living as “mere men” like Paul says in 1 Cor 15.
Use this link for the NIV Gal 5:16-26 Highlight vs16,17, 22-25 This is the secret to the Spirit’s control and Christ likeness.
Who are you Lord?
I AM the God who calls you by my spirit to be holy as I AM holy. How can you do that in yourself without my power? Only as I control you and fill you with my person and Spirit can this be the case. Only when I make you holy will my presence be manifest to others through you. Only I can put a heart in you to obey me, a heart of flesh instead of stone. Only I can put my word in your heart where they can do you good instead of just hanging on the wall in your house as a decoration. I command that you be filled with the Holy Spirit. That means I want to control you always. There is no way you can love others without me, for I AM Love. There is no peace in your life without me, for I AM the God of Peace. You can “do” none of the fruit on your own – without me, particularly when it matters as in the heat of the moment. This is how I designed it. So I comes back to this. When you “Live by the Spirit, you won’t gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” The choice is yours. Remember that I see the heart and weigh your spirit.
It is difficult to sin without thinking of it first
The attitudes of the sinful nature may not be as obvious as the acts themselves. The attitudes underlying the actions are processes in the mind. When we act on them, they are obvious. We feel like yelling at people when they cut us off, but as the Holy Spirit takes control of that attitude, we can respond in love. Impure thoughts, hate, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, envy are all attitudes which we can choose to foster or yield to God in submission by crucifying them. Nobody knows them except for God. The point is, it is difficult to sin without thinking of it first. Just like you cannot let God control you without thinking of Him first. Which will it be???? To sin or not to sin, the choice is yours just like it was Adam’s choice with the fruit. Every day, every minute, every opportunity.
We will fail – daily. Christianity is not perfection.
God said so in Rom 11:32. Just like Adam we will fail so that God can show mercy on us and give more grace. And if we even have a desire to obey God , it is only because He brought us to that point. I always like to say, the only thing that I can do well is to sin. Only when my thoughts are on things above and I seek his face, does he give me the desire to choose to obey and walk by his Spirit. Set your hearts/ minds on things above. Whatever things are pure, lovely… think on these things. Take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. This is the only way to live victoriously in Christ. Consider, reckon, count yourselves dead to those temptations. Change your thoughts and set your heart and mind on things above. Look for ways to have Christ’s mind in you in each situation instead of letting your mind react.
All praise belongs to Christ.