A Matter of Maturity
Do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. Romans 8:4 (NKJV)
In Romans Chapter 8, there's an undeniable emphasis on the Holy Spirit and walking according to His work in our lives. But Paul doesn't just tell us what we should do. He goes on to give four reasons why we should do it. The first reason is that we owe God:
Therefore, brethren, we are debtors; not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. (Romans 8:12 NKJV)
Jesus suffered and died in order to own us, to purchase us by His own blood. So when we put our faith in Him, when we surrender to His ownership, we owe Him for what He's done for us. We're indebted, not to the flesh and sin, but we're debtors to the Lord and should live for Him. The next reason is that it's smart:
For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit…you will live. (Romans 8:13 NKJV)
This isn't a deep mystery. Who wants to die? Just keep on walking in sin. Now who wants to live? Just keep on walking in the Spirit. See how simple and smart it is? Next, we're to walk in the Spirit because we're family:
As many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God…by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father." (Romans 8:14-15 NKJV)
The Spirit enables us to know God as our Father and to be part of His family. Deep down, everybody wants to be part of a family, to belong to something where there's security, love, wisdom, and resources. What better family could we belong to than the family of God? The final reason is that it brings eternal reward:
We are children of God… and if children, then heirs; heirs of God… (Romans 8:16-17 NKJV)
When we add it all up, we see that walking according to the Spirit is a matter of maturity that isn't optional in our Christian walk.
Think about it…
What does this passage reveal to me about God?
What does this passage reveal to me about myself?
Based on this, what changes do I need to make?
What is my prayer for today?
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17 (NKJV)
Consistency breeds security. If you're an employer, you take comfort in knowing that you have consistent employees working for you. If your car needs to be fixed, you're going to take it to a mechanic who has consistently performed well. And if you're a coach, you'll probably draw up a play at the end of a tight game that puts the ball in the hands of your best and most consistent player.