The church in Ephesus was doctrinally sound, patient, and worked hard for the Lord, but Jesus comes on the scene to rebuke the church for something they lacked: staying in love with Him. For the church then and now, Jesus helps us to understand that He’s much more concerned with our relationship and fellowship with Him, rather than the works that come from having a relationship with Him. This rebuke from Jesus allows us to repent and to run back to Jesus, our true and only first love, our Messiah, the One who saved us from the Lake of Fire and gave us eternal life with Him.
In the last part of the mini series on “The Flesh vs The Spirit” we learned that the Holy Spirit wants to bring spiritual fruit in a believer’s life. He comes and makes His home with you and desires to fellowship with you. Paul lists 9 different characteristics that the Holy Spirit will bring about in a born again Christian’s life. We find that the first fruit on the list is “love” which is essential for all believers to understand before attempting to pray about having the other fruits come forth in their walk with the Lord. If we have no understanding of the love of God, how will we get to know the other 8 fruits listed in Galatians 5:22-23?
We learn in Galatians 5 that we need to walk in the Spirit but most Christians cannot describe it. We find that born again Christians need to first have faith and believe that the Holy Spirit dwells in them. We need to understand that we are owned by God and He lives within us to help and guide us. Paul tells us “And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires” (Galatians 5:24). The Holy Spirit is going to continue to take the spiritual nails and hammer to crucify our flesh as we walk with the Lord, and no Christian will escape Him unless they choose the road of disobedience and rebellion.
Paul teaches us that no one can add or take away from the grace of God. We as Christians need to understand that our flesh is at war with the Holy Spirit who dwells in us as born again Christians. We tend to try to lean on our flesh to walk with the Lord, which is legalism, but Paul tells us that we are free in Christ and need to live free for the Lord and not for our fleshly desires. Paul gives us a list in Galatians 5:19-21
Paul teaches in his letter to the church at Ephesus that they, as Christians, need to first know important doctrine about Jesus Christ. In chapter 4, we read Paul’s instruction about church life within the body of Christ. Paul teaches us to walk worthy of our calling within our local fellowship and gives us great practical ways on how to do it. He instructs the Christian to bear with one another in love, so that we may endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, and not give in to the devil’s tactic, which is disunity.
The tongue, although small, cannot be tamed. Listen in for a teaching on James 3:1-12.