These verses reveal that if we are going to defeat Satan and live godly lives in a fallen world, we are going to have to win the battle in our minds. If you are struggling with some kind of sin right now, in order to overcome it, you will have to take captive every thought that precedes the sin. If you don't, you will eventually act upon those thoughts. There's no way you can commit a sin without thinking about it first. When the thought of sinning is first introduced, if you decide it's not an option, you won't act upon it. Studying Scripture is essential because our minds need to be renewed. If they aren't, we will not be able to reject the thoughts we need to. Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will."
Every time you resist temptation, your flesh (sinful nature) gets weaker and your spirit gets stronger. That's why every time you resist, it gets easier to resist. But every time you sin, it can become easier to sin. 1 Peter 4:1-2 says, "Since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God." If you're going to overcome the sin in your life, you're going to have to suffer in the flesh. You'll have to think like Christ and be determined to do the will of God, instead of having your own way. Your flesh won't like it, and it will be tough at first, but it will get easier every time you succeed. Colossians 3:2 says, "Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things." You'll need to make a conscious effort to keep your mind off of worldly things. Here again, knowledge of God's Word is essential, as is prayer. You may have to do a lot of crying out to God in the beginning, but that's okay. He wants to help you win this battle. Finally, "walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh." (Galatians 5:16) You must determine to live your life being sensitive and obedient to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. This war is winnable. Take your stand and be victorious!
Prayer: Lord, I want so much to do Your will. Teach me to renew my mind and
walk by Your Spirit. Help me to spend time in Your Word and in prayer so
that I will not be a pushover for Satan. Show me how to capture every
thought and make it obedient to Christ. When I do sin, help me to be quick
to repent, and to renew my resolve to get back into the battle. Thank You
that You are on my side and with Your help, I can't lose!
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