Hebrews 10:7 – Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.
Matthew 26:42 – He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.
Psalms 40:8 – I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
Psalms 143:10 – Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness.
1 John 2:3 – And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. 1 John was written so that we might know we have eternal life, and whether we keep God’s commandments or not is one of the ways we can know whether we are saved or not. Keeping God’s commandments is an indicator of our salvation because our flesh does not want to keep his commandments. Only God and the individual knows the truth of whether they are saved or not, as both believers and unbelievers can live in disobedience to God’s commandments. This message is not for the self righteous, or for me to tell you whether you are saved or not. The Bible says let every man examine himself. Your salvation is between you and God. It is important to note that we do not keep God’s commandments to be saved, but rather we keep his commandments because we are saved. Keeping commandments follows salvation, it does not precede it. To be saved, we must receive the Lord Jesus Christ’s death, burial, resurrection in our place by faith. And it is because of the grace, mercy and love of God. Salvation is a free gift. It can be freely received by anyone.
The Bible is clear that when we are born into this world, we are born in sin. Our flesh, which is our first nature, our old man, takes after our spiritual father. It takes after the devil. What he does, we also do. This is typified in the Bible through Cain coming first, Ishamael coming first, Esau coming first. Studying these characters helps us to understand our first nature, the flesh. Our flesh takes after the devil. This is why all unbelievers, and also believers who are living in the flesh do the works of the devil. They hate, they steal, they kill, they commit adultery, they turn to idols, they take the Lord’s name in vain. They cannot but break God’s law. They cannot keep his commandments. The flesh is utterly corrupt, utterly sinful, and is never repaired, and never saved.
1 John talks extensively about the children of God and the children of the devil. When we are saved, truly saved, when we are born again of the Spirit of God, God does not overhaul our flesh. Our flesh is utterly corrupt and condemned. It cannot be salvaged. This is why God births a new creature in us. This is when 1 John makes complete sense. One does not need to learn Greek, or go to endless commentaries, or seek private interpretations for understanding. It is very simple, God makes things simple for us, the Holy Spirit guides us into truth, and teaches us all things. The new man born in us is perfect, sinless, incorruptible. It is born of God, born of incorruptible seed, it cannot sin – 1 John 3:8. Our flesh, our old man, remains. It is under a death sentence. It is utterly sinful and condemned. Our flesh does not know God. Our flesh cannot comprehend God. Our flesh does not receive God. We are released from the flesh forever at death. This is why the believer has battles, we have spiritual warfare. We war with Satan and his angels. Satan does not want to let his children go. As Pharaoh asked, so Satan asks, Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us? Satan and his followers fight believers. We wrestle not against flesh and blood. We also have warfare inside us. The flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh. They are contrary. As Balaam caused the children of Israel to commit sin and bring God’s wrath upon themselves, so Satan tricks and deceives us and tries to lead us into sin and disobedience by exploiting the lusts and pride of our flesh.
So we have established that a believer has a dual nature. An unbeliever, someone not saved, not born again, unregenerated by the Spirit of God, only has one nature. Both unbelievers and Christians sin. Christians sin when they yield to their flesh. Our flesh remains after we are saved. Christians do not become better or superior to unbelievers. Both have the flesh. The only difference is that believers have a second nature, a new nature, which is born of God at salvation. We do not have a say in it either. God does the work. We do not assist God to birth us again. It is a gift. The difference between and unbeliever and a believer is that Christians are freed from the power of sin, from the power of the devil. We now have a choice whereas unbelievers cannot but sin. Unbelievers have no power to resist the devil, because they have not received Jesus. It is Jesus that has authority over the devil. Believers are victorious, because we have Christ in us. Jesus is God. Jesus has defeated the devil. He has destroyed the works of the devil. We do not need to do the devil’s works anymore.
When we learn more about Satan, we learn about our flesh. Our flesh, our first nature, which we are all born into the world with, takes after our spiritual father, the devil. We are children of wrath. We are children of disobedience. We are born in sin. Satan was originally called Lucifer. He was a created being, he was the anointed cherub, and he was perfect until he sinned. Isaiah 14 shows us that Lucifer had ‘I will’ in his heart. He was selfish. This is where we get this from. Our flesh is I will, just like Lucifer’s was. Our flesh is selfish. Our flesh is self motivated. Our flesh is independent. Our flesh does not look to God for the answer, for help, for hope, for mercy, for grace. Our flesh proposes that we have the answers to our problems ourselves. This is the danger of self help and when people say that you have the answers, that you have what it takes inside yourself. The world says that we have the answers, we just need to unlock or reveal it. Satan said to Eve that ye shall be as gods. The flesh wants to be god.
Satan hates God, and wants the glory for himself. Similarly, our flesh does not want to give God glory. Our flesh is proud. Our flesh resists God. Our flesh is deceitful. Satan is the deceiver. We have inherited the ‘I will’ mentality that Lucifer had. As Lucifer was selfishly motivated, similarly we are selfish, sinful creatures. Our lives revolve around what we want to do. Our lives are about self interest. We serve ourselves by nature instead of God. This is what evolutionary religion teaches – survival of the fittest, passing your genes to the next generation at all costs, looking out for number one. Evolution is nothing more than man trying to be god. There is nothing new under the sun. Ye shall be as gods. Man progressing to enlightenment. Man attempting to progress towards being God himself.
In the Book of Judges, God says that every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Our flesh wants to make our own laws. We like to say what’s right and wrong. Not God. We can put our righteousness above God’s. We have the audacity to put our righteousness above God’s righteousness. For instance the rapid acceptance of sodomy and the legalization and recognition of same sex sodomite ‘marriage’ is man putting his righteousness ahead of God. It is man saying that God really doesn’t know what he’s doing. It is man putting man’s way above God’s way. That’s what our flesh does. Our flesh hates God, despises God, despises everything God is. Fleshly love is distinct from God’s love. God is love, but God is holy first and foremost. Love is not an excuse for not dealing with sin. It is also God that is love. He is the definition of love. 1 John 4:10 – Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. If we love God, we keep his commandments. No Christian can say he truly loves a sodomite if he excuses their sin, if he is accomplice to their sin, if he doesn’t love them based on the truth of God’s word. Or are you more righteous and more loving than God? Are you a hypocrite that condemns sodomy while being a fornicator and an adulterer yourself? 2 Corinthians 6:17 – Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.
It is necessary to note at this time that keeping God’s commandments is not about self righteousness. It is not about pride, and boasting, and good works to earn favor. It is not about being better than someone else, about feeling superior, about feeling more godly. Self righteousness and living in the energy of the flesh is so so dangerous. It is because self righteousness can be so deceitful. On the outside we can do seemingly noble things, we can be upstanding citizens, we can be devoted to good works. Many unbelievers can live better, cleaner, more disciplined lives than believers. However, this does not mean you are going to heaven. It only means you are deceiving yourself. You are greasing your slide to hell. The Bible says all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags. The Bible says that in us dwells no good thing. Jesus said that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees you will not enter into the kingdom of God. Satan knows how to take you to hell. Satan can appear as an angel of light, and his ministers as ministers of righteousness. He can fool you. The flesh will fool you. We need Christ’s righteousness. But that takes humility. The flesh is not humble, the flesh does not care for Christ’s righteousness.
Although the flesh says ‘I will’, we do not have to be slaves to this mentality any further. When we are saved the power of the flesh, the world, and the devil is broken. When we die, when we leave this world, these will have no more reach on us. God leaves our flesh in this short life here on earth to prove us after we are saved, to test how genuine our faith is, to purify us. Jesus came to earth and abolished the ‘I will’ mentality. The Lord Jesus Christ is the answer to the flesh. The Bible says Jesus has destroyed the works of the devil. 1 Corinthians says that charity seeketh not her own. Jesus is true charity. Jesus came to do the Father’s will. He came in the Father’s name. He made himself of no reputation. He humbled himself. He took the form of a servant. All this is more incredible because Jesus is not only the Son of God, he is God. If anyone had a right to have the ‘I will’ mentality he did. After all he is the ‘I am’. He is God. But Hebrews 10:7 – Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Jesus said, Not my will, but thine.
When we are saved we are set free from the ‘I will’. We can still go back to this mentality, because we have the flesh still. We do not have to though. If we are truly saved, we will not want to obey the flesh anymore. We see the filthiness and vileness of sin. We repent and ask for forgiveness and mercy when we fall into sin. God chastises us when we sin, because we are his children now, and he chastens his children. If you are truly saved, you cannot go on living in blatant sin and disregard for God’s commandments. If you can, you are not truly saved, the Bible calls you a spiritual bastard. You claim to be a son of God but you are not. Salvation is not a license to sin. When we are saved God’s commandments become our delight, our life, our love. His commandments are not grievous. His way is the way of life. But we will be tested. Ours is a life of faith. We are not in heaven yet. We still have our sin cursed body. But our redemption draweth nigh. This life is but a few short moments in the scope of eternity.
We do not have to be a slave of Satan anymore. We do not have to be a slave of the flesh. Jesus came to set the prisoners free. Now we can both know and do the Father’s will. We can keep his commandments when we walk by faith. But this only happens when we put on the new man. We love his commandments now. We meditate in his law. We delight in his law. We love God. We can go about the Father’s business. The blessedness of such a life contrasts the destruction that the ‘I will’ mentality brings. We destroy our own selves when we live in the flesh. The fruit of the flesh is death. Sow to the flesh, and we reap corruption. Lucifer fell because of ‘I will’. He lost everything. He is going to hell. He started out in such a privileged, exalted position and look where he ends. See and consider. The flesh destroys us. The flesh corrupts our soul. It brings us into captivity. Unbelievers go to hell with the ‘I will’.
You do not have to go to hell. You do not have to be a slave to your flesh anymore. You can be set free. You can be saved today. The Lord Jesus Christ is the answer. Believe him. Receive him. Have faith in him.