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Showing posts from April, 2016

“Flesh” in Scripture

The Bible has a lot of negative things to say about the flesh.  Paul’s letter to the Galatian church illustrates this powerfully.  After passionately urging these believers to not return to a legalistic approach to God, Paul begins to wind down his letter with a warning about the flesh.  In Galatians 6:8 he contrasts the flesh with the spirit, and warns his readers to not sow to the flesh or they would reap corruption. Here the word flesh clearly refers to man’s sinful nature.
It would be easy for Christians to see the many warnings in scripture about our sinful nature and conclude that anything that appeals to our flesh should be avoided. However, such a worldview, if followed consistently, leads to asceticism.  If anything that appeals to our senses is bad, then I should only wear cheap clothes and never paint my house. And forget about fresh coffee and air conditioned churches; those appeal to my flesh as well! Fortunately, there are several good reasons to avoid such a conclusion.