For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. – Romans 7:18-20 ESV
There are 2 schools of thought. Man is basically good, or man is basically evil. And your answer is based on your underlying vision. Do you believe God, or do you believe the world? There are so many people who call themselves Christians but yet, they believe what they want to believe instead of what God tells us. We want to march for Black Lives Matter, or for Women’s rights, we want to vote Republican or vote Democrat, people burning down cities and destroying businesses, killing children so as to dismantle systemic racism. We are looking for a FLESHLY solution to a SPIRITUAL problem. “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (Jeremiah 17:9, 1 John 2:15-16, 1 Peter 5:8) The Bible is clear, MAN IS THE PROBLEM. Technically, MAN, our race- we all have three enemies and not one of them is called TRUMP or BIDEN, white people or black people, it’s not the police or BLM. Our enemies are the FLESH, the WORLD, and the DEVIL.
Leader, the worst enemy you have is not your neighbor nor your bill collector, he is not your severest critic nor your most aggressive competitor. The enemy is yourself, he\she occupies the same skin that you occupy, uses the same brain, uses the same hands- the enemy is our flesh. I have met the enemy, and they are LIVING IN MY SHORTS! This is what Paul is talking about above; Consciously I know what I should do, but the ‘programming’ in the flesh makes me struggle at the point of decision. It is interesting how these enemies are identified through the struggles of the Israelites as they entered the promised land in the book of Joshua. Now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land that I am giving to them, to the people of Israel. Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised to Moses. (Joshua 1:2b-3) J Vernon McGee says that once in the promised land, that these three enemies foreshadowed the same three enemies that we have today as Christians. I love hidden mysteries of the Bible and Dr. McGee says that there is one of those mysteries in the meaning of the PROMISED Land and the first three battles that ensued. First Dr. McGee says that the Promised Land does NOT represent Heaven, like many believe. He says, Canaan represents the place where we should be living down here. Just like the Israelites, we are at choice; we can live in the wilderness, and many believers do, but we are to be living down here in Canaan. The Wilderness is NOT FUN, the wilderness march wasn’t easy. But in the land of Canaan that is where we are blessed with all spiritual blessings. Similar to today, when we walk with God and NOT THE WORLD, we are blessed with all SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS; Peace, love, mercy, Grace, Long-suffering, forgiveness….
Conduit, The only battle that the children of Israel lost in taking the Promised Land was a battle in which the defeat came, not from without but from within. And as God said- where you step, I will give you! In other words, if you want it, STEP INTO IT- ACT AS IF! Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30) Jericho, Ai, and the Gibeonites, these three enemies prevented Israel’s enjoyment and possession of the Promised Land. The Land was theirs, like many blessings that are ours on this planet, right now but we are not STEPPING INTO because of the FLESH, the WORLD, and the DEVIL. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. (John 14:27) Just Like God’s PEACE is given to us, the land was theirs, God had told them and God gave them the title deed when He said to Abraham: And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God. (Genesis 17:8) The three enemies of Joshua represent the enemies of the Christian today. 1– Jericho represents the world. 2 – Ai represents the flesh. 3 – The Gibeonites represent the devil. Today, as long ago, you and I have a threefold enemy robbing us of our possessions: the world, the flesh, and the devil. How do we defeat those three enemies? HIS WORD, HIS BLOOD and sharing OUR WALK. And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony. And they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die. (Revelation 12:11) Today consider there are many things far worse than death. In the Covid 19 era, when people will give up their rights, their freedom, and their country- just to keep alive. Without Jesus, all the good you do, just helps people comfortably go to hell. You might get someone free school, or more opportunities in this world, but what are you doing to help them into the PROMISED LAND?