“For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. v.14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.“
PRE-AMBLE by Robert.
In the last Article “GOD SAID WHAT IS THIS THOU HAST DONE?” It showed the importance of working out our Salvation and reconnecting with God. In this article we find the Holy Spirit teaching the importance of continued personal growth in our Salvation but points out, for it to show any value in God’s eyes, it must be shared. We must not let our flesh tempt us to become slack or overconfident in our walk. The previous article revealed the importance of reconnecting and obtaining God’s light as “Modern Day Disciples.” and reflecting it into the darkness of the world.
Adam Clarke (1760 – 1832) comments on the work God puts into our soul to demonstrate our obedience to His calling which sets the tone for this article. “Ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh – If the Spirit of God dwells in and rules your heart, the whole carnal mind will be destroyed; and then, not only carnal ordinances will be abandoned, but also the works and propensities of the flesh.”
Matthew Henry’s (1662 -1774) comments advocate Adam Clarke’s comments on Galatians 5 and reveal’s the depth and what must never go missing for us to function in the Spirit demonstrating our obedience to God’s calling. “Grace includes God’s good-will towards us, and his good work upon us; and peace, all that inward comfort, or outward prosperity, which is really needful for us. They come from God the Father, as the Fountain, through Yeshua. But observe, first grace, and then peace; there can be no true peace without grace. Yeshua gave himself for our sins, to make atonement for us: this the justice of God required, and to this, he freely submitted.“
OPENING PRAYER by Robert
Heavenly Father I want to thank you for showing us the real depth of our faith. I petition you, Father, for wisdom to be upon all those reading this article deepen their discernment and understanding. Bring unto them a spirit of calm that any decision they are about to make in respect to a spiritual walk with you Lord would be an informed one void of emotions and worldly desires. I ask Lord that you would guardedly open their minds to receive all information the Holy Spirit will reveal as the foundation for their future decisions. Father bring them the knowledge of the gifts of Heaven. And how to obtain the fruits of everlasting life. I pray this in your name in the name of Yeshua AMEN and AMEN.
OPENING STATEMENT by Robert
If we care to act under the guidance and power of the blessed Spirit, though we may not be freed from the stirrings and oppositions of the corrupt nature which remains in us, it shall not have dominion over us. Believers are engaged in a conflict, in which they earnestly desire that grace may obtain full and speedy victory. And those who want this to give themselves up to be led by the Holy Spirit, are not under the law as a covenant of works, nor exposed to its awful curse. Their hatred of sin, and desires after holiness show that they have a part in the salvation of the gospel. The works of the flesh are many and manifest. And these sins will shut men out of heaven. Yet, what numbers, calling themselves believers, live in these, and say they hope for heaven!
The fruits of the Spirit, or of the renewed nature, which we are to do, are named. And as the apostle had chiefly called works of the flesh, not only hurtful to men themselves, but tend to make them so to one another, so here he primarily notices the fruits of the Spirit, which are typical to make believers agreeable one to another, as well as to make them happy. The fruits of the Spirit plainly show that such are led by the Spirit. By describing the works of the flesh and fruits of the Spirit, we are told what to avoid and oppose, and what we are to cherish and cultivate; and this is the sincere care and endeavour of all real Believers walking as Modern Day Disciples. Matthew Henry (1662 -1774) relates to Modern Day Disciples who it is we are going to confront and what appears to them as an appealing walk through life.
Many excuse themselves from the work of religion, though they may make a show, and profess it. Imposing upon others, yet they deceive themselves if they think to impose upon God, who knows their hearts as well as actions; and as he cannot be deceived, so he will not be mocked. Our present time is seed time; in the other world, we shall reap as we sow now. As there are two sorts of sowing, one to the flesh, and the other to the Spirit, so will the reckoning be hereafter. Those who live a carnal, sensual life, must expect no other fruit from such a course than misery and ruin. But those who, under the guidance and influences of the Holy Spirit, live a life of faith in Yeshua, and abound in Believer’s graces, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. We are all very apt to tire on duty, particularly in doing good. We should carefully watch and guard against it. Only perseverance in well-doing is the reward promised. Here is an appeal to all to do good in their places. We should take care to do good in our lifetime, and make this the business of our lives. Especially when fresh occasions offer, and as far as our power reaches.
Adam Clarke’s Commentary on Galatians 5:19 -21 describes what we as Modern Day Disciples will face when encountering Satan’s prisoners. As well, we must ascertain, just how quickly we could fall victim to the temptations, Matthew Henry eluded to if we let our guard down. The Holy Spirit is going to lead us to these prisoners so we might demonstrate through our actions and examples within our walk how God’s love and compassion will open the door to eternal life with Him.
Now the works of the flesh are manifest. By flesh, we are to understand the evil and fallen state of the soul. No longer under the guidance of God’s Spirit and right reason. But under the animal passions; and they are even rendered more irregular and turbulent by the influence of sin. So that man is in a worse state than the brute. And so all-commanding is this evil nature that it leads men to all kinds of crimes. And among them the following, which are manifest – known to all, and most prevalent; and, though your law most solemnly forbids these, the observance of its ordinances gives no power to overcome them and provides no pardon for the guilt and condemnation produced by them.
Adultery – Μοιχεια· Illicit connection with a married person. This word is wanting in this place in the best MSS., versions, and fathers; the next term often comprehending both.
Fornication – Πορνεια· Illicit connection between single or unmarried persons; yet often signifying adultery also.
Uncleanness – Ακαθαπσια· Whatever is opposite to purity; probably meaning here, as in Romans 1:24; 2 Corinthians 12:21, unnatural practices; sodomy, bestiality.
Lasciviousness – Ασελγεια· Whatever is contrary to chastity; all lewdness. Verse 20 Idolatry – Worshipping of idols; frequenting idol festivals; all the rites of Bacchus, Venus, Priapus, etc., which were common among the Gentiles.
Witchcraft – Φαρμακεια, from φαρμακον a drug or poison; because in all spells and enchantments, whether true or false, drugs were employed. As a drug, φαρμακον, might either be the means of removing evil, or inflicting one, etymologists have derived it from φερον ακος, bringing ease, or φερον αχος, producing pain. So spells and incantations were sometimes used for the restoration of the health; at others, for the destruction of an enemy. Sometimes, these φαρμακα were used to procure love; at other times, to produce hatred.
Hatred – Εχθραι· Aversions and antipathies, when opposed to brotherly love and kindness.Variance – Ερεις· Contentions, where the principle of hate proceeds to open acts; hence contests, altercations, lawsuits, and disputes in general.Emulations – Ζηλοι· Envies or emulations; that is strife to excel at the expense of another; lowering others to set up one’s self; unholy zeal, fervently adopting a wrong cause, or supporting a good one by cruel means. Inquisitions, pretending to help true religion by torturing and burning alive those who both profess and practice it.
Wrath – Θυμοι· Turbulent passions, disturbing the harmony of the mind, and producing domestic and civil broils and disquietudes.
Strife – Επιθειαι· Disputations, janglings, logomachics, or strife about words. Seditions – Διχοστασιαι· Divisions into separate factions; parties, whether in the Church or state. Heresies – Αἱρεσεις· Factions; parties in the Church separating from communion with each other, and setting up altar against altar. The word, which is harmless in itself, is here used in a wicked sense. Instead of αἱρεσεις, the Slavonic has σκανδαλα, scandals, offences or stumbling-blocks.
Envyings – Φθονοι· “Pain felt, and malignity conceived, at the sight of excellence or happiness.” A passion the most base and the least curable of all that disgrace or degrade the fallen soul. See on Romans 13:13.
Murders – Φονοι· Similarity of sound to the preceding seems to have suggested the word in this association; it wants in several MSS. Murder signifies the destruction of human life; and as he who hates his brother in his heart is ready to take away his life, so he is called a murderer. After all the casuistry of man, it does not appear that the right of taking away a human life on any pretense, except for the crime of murder belongs to any but the Maker and Judge of all men.
Drunkenness – Μεθαι· Taking more wine or any inebriating liquor than is necessary for health; whatever unfit for public, domestic, or spiritual duties; even the cares of the world, when they intoxicate the mind. See on Romans 13:13. Revellings – Κωμοι· Lascivious feastings, with obscene songs, music, etc. See on Romans 13:13.
And such like – Και τα ὁμοια τουτοις· All that proceeds from the evil passions of a fallen spirit, besides those above specified; and all that the law of God specifies and condemns. Of the which I tell you before – When I first preached the Gospel to you. As I had also told you in time past – When I paid my second visit to you; for the apostle did visit them twice. See Acts 16:6; Acts 18:23.Shall not inherit – They are not children of God, and therefore cannot inherit the kingdom which belongs only to the children of the Divine family. Now that we have knowledge of what it is we are actually confronting.
Adam Clarke describes the fruits of the Holy Spirit and the overall effect they will have in our lives as Modern Day Disciples when used as part of our demonstrated walk.
But the fruit of the Spirit – Both flesh – the sinful dispositions of the human heart and spirit – the changed or purified state of the soul, by the grace and Spirit of God, are represented by the apostle as trees, one yielding good the other bad fruit; the productions of each being according to the nature of the tree, as the tree is according to the nature of the seed from which it sprung. The bad seed produced a bad tree, yielding all manner of evil fruit; the excellent seed produced a good tree, bringing forth fruits of the most outstanding kind. The tree of the flesh, with all its evil fruits, we have already seen; the tree of the Spirit, with its excellent fruits, we shall now see.
Love – Αγαπη· An intense desire to please God, and to do good to mankind; the very soul and spirit of all true religion; the fulfilling of the law, and what gives energy to faith itself. See Galatians 5:6.
Joy – Χαρα· The exultation that arises from a sense of God’s mercy communicated to the soul in the pardon of its iniquities, and the prospect of that eternal glory of which it has the foretaste in the forgiveness of sin. See Romans 5:2..Peace – Ειρηνη· The calm, quiet, and order, which take place in the justified soul, instead of the doubts, fears, alarms, and dreadful forebodings, which every true penitent less or more feels, and must feel till the assurance of pardon brings peace and satisfaction to the mind. Peace is the first sensible fruit of the forgiveness of sin. See Romans 5:1.
Long-suffering – Μακροθυμια· Long-mindedness, bearing with the frailties and provocations of others, from the consideration that God has borne long with ours; and that, if he had not, we should have been speedily consumed: bearing up also through all the troubles and difficulties of life without murmuring or repining; submitting cheerfully to every dispensation of God’s providence, and thus deriving benefit from every occurrence.
Gentleness – Χρηστοτης· Benignity, affability; a very rare grace, often wanting in many who have a considerable share of Christian excellence. Good education and polished manners, when brought under the influence of the grace of God, will bring out this grace with great effect.
Goodness – Αγαθωσυνη· The perpetual desire and sincere study, not only to abstain from every appearance of evil but to do good to the bodies and souls of men to the utmost of our ability. But all this must spring from a good heart – a heart purified by the Spirit of God; and then, the tree is made good, the fruit must be good also.
Faith – Πιστις, here used for fidelity – punctuality in performing promises, conscientious carefulness in preserving what is committed to our trust, in restoring it to its proper owner, in transacting the business confided to us, neither betraying the secret of our friend nor disappointing the confidence of our employer.
Meekness – Πραοτης· Mildness, indulgence toward the weak and erring, a patient suffering from injuries without feeling a spirit of revenge, an even balance of all tempers and passions, the complete opposite to anger.
Temperance – Εγκρατεια· Continence, self-government, or moderation, principally concerning sensual or animal appetites. Moderation in eating, drinking, sleeping, etc. Several very respectable MSS., as D*EFG, with the Vulgate, most copies of the Itala and several of the fathers, add ἁγνεια, chastity. This we are sure cannot be separated from the genuine Christian character, though it may be included in the word εγκρατεια, continence or moderation, immediately preceding.
Against such there is no law – Those, whose lives are adorned by the above virtues, cannot be condemned by any law, for the whole purpose and design of the moral law of God is fulfilled in those who have the Spirit of God, producing in their hearts and lives the preceding fruits.
The gospel is a doctrine according to godliness, 1 Timothy 6:3, and is so far from giving the least countenance to sin, that it lays us under the strongest obligation to avoid and subdue it.
Matthew Henry (1662 – 1774) explains “The apostle urges that all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. If believers, who should help one another, and rejoice one another, quarrel, what can be expected but that the God of love should deny his grace, that the Spirit of love should depart, and the evil spirit, who seeks their destruction, should prevail? Happy would it be, if Believers, instead of biting and devouring one another on account of different opinions, would set themselves against sin in themselves, and in the places where they live and worship?
Believers are not to suppose that religious knowledge, or Christian privileges, gave them any right to despise unbelievers, or to disobey lawful commands, or to expose their faults to others. And such as enjoyed the privilege of living with believers, were not to withhold due respect and reverence, because they were equal in respect to religious privileges but were to serve with double diligence and cheerfulness, because of their faith in Yeshua, and as partakers of his free salvation. We are not to consent to any words as wholesome, except the words of our Lord Yeshua; to these, we must give unfeigned consent.
Matthew Henry (1662- 1774) continues “Commonly those are most proud who know least; for they do not know themselves. Hence come envy, strife, railings, evil-surmisings, disputes that are all subtlety, and of no solidity, between men of corrupt and carnal minds, ignorant of the truth and its sanctifying power, and seeking their worldly advantage.”
Thus we’re shown who and what we are being presented and in that knowledge recognize the Holy Spirit is with us and to use demonstrations and examples as the Spirit is not there for them, to decipher spoken truths.
CLOSING PRAYER by Robert
Heavenly Father, hear our cries for your instruction and heavenly gifts to prepare us to be compelling examples of your love and compassion. Bring unto us a clear mind and vision to see the seeds of temptations standing before these prisoners of Satan. That we will use your sword of truth to sever all the bindings from them. Give us the strength and knowledge to demonstrate your truth as a light for them to find your path to eternal life and peace. We pray this in your name Yeshua. Amen and Amen.
CLOSING COMMENTS by Robert Isn’t our Lord a fantastic leader who brings us all we need to recognize who and what we are about to be confronted with and how to deal with it effectively. As I ponder how Yeshua took the time from the multitudes to deal with just one person I begin to recognize the significance of grace. We have been shown how our enemy has and is stealing Grace from the worldly churches. I am closing with Matthew Henry’s (1662- 1774) comments “Those that make a trade of Christianity to serve their turn for this world will be disappointed; but those who mind it as their calling will find it has the promise of the life that now is, as well as of that which is to come. He that is godly is sure to be happy in another world; and if contented with his condition in this world, he has enough; and all truly godly people are content.“