We don't want to go out our own ways in this life because our own ways always just lead to grief and tears in the end. That's why so many people have a lot of problems in their life. They feel suicidal some people do. Some people feel depressed and that they take all sorts of medication. They have all sorts of things happen to them because it's an evil day and in the end you know many people they don't feel right with the Lord and they feel that they've got a separation between them and the Lord. They feel separated. And so we're here to give ourselves to the Lord so that we're not living our own ways in all this grief and tears in those who follow their own way. And one thing I wanted to talk today about is making provisions for the flesh. So I want to read to you from Romans chapter 13 where it is written; put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts. Now making no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts, okay, that's what Paul warns in Romans 13. make no provisions for the flesh to fulfill its lusts. So clearly we have the flesh that has its lusts. Now lust is another word for desires or sinful tendencies. Things that we're born with. Many people have different lusts, different desires and different tendencies and people who come to Jesus they sometimes get tripped up, because they wonder; why I'm supposed to be holy through Jesus Christ but my flesh wants to fulfill its lusts still. And so many they lose faith and fall away because they think; well I'm not worthy of Jesus because of these things that are in my flesh. But that is not what Paul said. He said that the flesh will have its lusts as we all know. But he says make no provision for them. So Paul isn't saying that the flesh doesn't have any lusts after you come to Jesus. He is not saying that if you have a flesh that has its evil desires, it means that you're not saved or not following Jesus, no. that's not what he said. It is saying that we must not make any provision for the flesh knowing that it has its lusts and wants to fulfil them.
This can be liberating for some people because many feel that they should be perfect in every way before they can enter God's kingdom so they get these evil desires rise up and they feel; I've done it now how can I enter the kingdom if I have these evil desires inside. That's a lie, because that Jesus Christ died for us that we could enter the kingdom. So what we need to do is just put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts. Okay so we must not make no provision so, so what that these certain things rise up within us, we don't have to make provision for that. And when we don't follow the flesh and when we don't make provision for the flesh then the flesh cannot rule you and then you're abiding with Christ and stay with him. That's why Paul says verse 14 he says; put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts. So I want to read to you what Paul said about these things he says; you shall not commit adultery you shall not steal you shall not covet as it is written, however it is all summed up with this commandment you shall love your neighbor as yourself. Verse 10; love does not wrong a neighbor therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. Do this knowing that this is the time that is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep. For now salvation is near to us as we believed. Tonight is gone and the day is almost here therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave properly as in the day not in carousing and drunkenness and sexual immorality and sensuality strife or jealousy but put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its desires. Paul goes on to say that following the flesh leads to death but putting to death the deeds of the flesh daily and following Christ the spirit leads to life.
So I want to encourage anybody there who is struggling with the flesh and its desires, no matter what they are from the very least to the very greatest, to simply know that look the flesh is going to want to fulfill its lusts today. Yes it will. So it doesn't mean that you're not going to enter the kingdom just because you have a flesh that is so inherently wicked. No, because Jesus has given us the way to the kingdom so what we need to do is to simply put on Christ and make no provision for the flesh praise the Lord. And that's what Paul was talking about. Now I want to read you from Ephesians chapter 2 verse two; you were dead in your trespasses and sins in your old life in which you once walked following the course of this world following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now working in the world in the sons of disobedience among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh carrying out the desires of the body and the mind and were by nature children of wrath like the rest of mankind. But God in his great mercy and great love, even when we were dead in our trespasses, he made us alive together with Christ by grace that you have been saved and raised us up and seated us with him with Christ in the heavenly places so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace and kindness towards us through Jesus Christ. For by grace you have been saved not of a result of works of the law so that nobody can boast. For we are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works that God has prepared for us beforehand that we would walk in them. So you see that even though we used to follow the flesh, I know I sure did, I know you did at one time. Maybe you still do now. But we used to all follow the flesh and we used to do the deeds of the desires of the flesh. But now that we have come to Christ and been changed, I don't know about you but I've been changed through Jesus Christ, for me I must no longer make provision for my flesh which is still wicked, still wants to do many things that are ungodly. But I must make no provision for the flesh since I've come to know the new way of Jesus Christ and his wonderful grace through faith. Praise the Lord. Let us read on verse 17; now this I say and testify in the Lord that you must no longer walk as the heathen do in the futility of their minds. They are dark in their understanding and alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to their hard hearts. They have become callous and given themselves up to sensuality, greedy, every kind of impurity and works of the flesh, but that is not the way you learned from Christ. He is saying this is not the way you learn from Christ. So when Jesus comes into your heart when you get to know him, he teaches you. And the Lord Jesus taught me in my heart a new way. He brought a new way in the way.
So it's no longer fulfilling my mind. Chasing my sensualities and ways of the heart. Let us read on; assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him as the truth is in Jesus, (okay assuming that you already know the Lord and you've turned to him now) verse 22; put off your old self which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupted through deceitful desires… okay so put it off. We've been changed anew. I don't know about you but I've got a new way where I can see that I don't have to follow my sin anymore because the Lord set me free from that sin. It is true. I used to sin habitually and without effort. But now that the Lord came into my life because I found the Lord for me his wonderful grace, he came and he did indeed set me free. So Paul is warning people like me that now that you've come to know the Lord that you learned from him (verse 21 assuming that you have heard about him and been taught his truth) and so forth, he says; 22: put off your old flesh that belongs to the former manner of life, the old life. Put it off it is corrupt through deceitful desire, be renewed in the spirit of your minds and put on the new self created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness…. So Paul is warning here very specifically for people like you and me who have come to know the Lord, to put off that old self. Now if you are still your old self and you are in bondage to these sins and the ways that lead to death then today is the day to call on the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ, so that he can bring you this new way inside that he has given me and then once you are walking in that new way and that wonderful forgiveness of sins that comes when you cry out the Lord Jesus Christ, then continue to put off the old way knowing that you can follow the new way and you don't want to follow the old way anymore.
Very clear isn't it! Now let us not be discouraged dear brothers and sisters about the ways of the flesh. We read clearly in Romans chapter 13 that the flesh does have its desires that it wants to fulfil. That should keep us all from pride thinking that we are pretty righteous because while we have these evil things rising up from the old way, we can only thank God that he is going to allow us into heaven despite our flesh. So what we need to do; DO NOT follow it. Because if we do follow the flesh don't be deceived you won't inherit the kingdom of God. Even that we think that Jesus will still cover for us while we follow our flesh. So let us put the flesh off, the old way. I am talking about those old ways. When you look back in your old life and these little desires and these little ways come back into your heart from all sorts of things that you used to be in, we don't have to follow those things anymore. We can put those sorts of things out of our life and its former ways. And so when the flesh rises to bring you down today or tomorrow or whenever, well that is the day that we don't fulfill the lusts of the flesh. Reading back in Romans chapter 13 verse 14; but put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts. And that's what we've got to do today dear friends. Let us make no provision for the flesh. And so what happens is a lot of us get set free from sin and the way that leads to the fire and some of us then expect to become completely free of any kind of way of the flesh and become like Jesus Christ. That is what we expect some of us. So when the flesh rises up one day and tries to fill its lusts within us, we get very discouraged and Satan starts telling us; look you are not even worthy for the kingdom, look what's in you… And so we have these the doubts and fears and we start to get all worried and we can't approach the Lord we start getting into doubt. But that's not what we are here to do. We are instead to simply make no provision for the flesh and its ways that will rise up inside, and instead we put on Jesus Christ.
That means we put our minds on the Lord and start praying instead. Now on the other side people can go another way. They can feel the holiness of Jesus in them and the new way, but then they start to think it's all of their own willpower and strength that they overcame their sins. So they start to think that; Hey look I'm very holy and I'm a holy person and I don't have these desires like some people do… and start to become like the Pharisees. And they start to take the credit for their righteousness instead of remembering that it was Jesus who gave them that new way. And so what happens is they start to get proud and they forget who they used to be and when you're in pride, you can't see the ways of sin rising in your flesh and you think that you are being righteous and so you don't see what's really going on in your flesh and that's when prideful people start or fall to real sin and they are somehow able to condone those sins and think that they are being holy. And so Jesus is far away from them because they fall to pride and other sins. But we are not here to be in either of those situations, because if we only looked into ourselves when those times of the flesh rose up, we can know that we can't have any pride because God doesn't have to let a person like that into his kingdom who has a flesh that wants to lust or lie or steal or whatever. And many of us have many different diverse desires and ways for the flesh that it wants to fulfil. And how can we enter heaven with those of the things dear friends, if Jesus Christ didn't allow us a way! So how can it be of our own way our own holiness. That should block our pride very quickly. That should cause us to lose our pride because we realized hey you know if Jesus doesn't give us the grace, a flesh like that isn't going to inherit the kingdom. And so luckily Jesus does give us grace to those who make no provision for the flesh.
But when we are in pride or in doubt, we are not in Jesus Christ and he will not allow us into his kingdom while we are living in these fleshy ways. Prideful people don't enter the kingdom. If we are starting to think; hey you know my righteousness is from myself…and you can't know longer see when your flesh rises up within you to do evil things because of pride, then it starts to block your view so you don't understand. Like the man who walks away from the mirror (and forgets his image) No you won't enter the kingdom, and the same goes for those who listen to Satan and not prideful but they listen to Satan and he tells them look you've got these evil ways rising up in your heart, your not worthy for the kingdom. And so they lose their faith they doubt and so they give up. I've seen a lot of people they give up and they go back to the former ways because they feel they are condemned anyway and they feel they weren't worthy and don't have faith in Jesus. A doubting man is unstable. They end up going back to sin and sadness and the devil gets a hold on them, and they end up in the fire too because they didn't stay with the Lord. They didn't put on Christ. But that's a trick from the enemy. Both of those are a trick from the enemy; Pride and doubt. Satan is the father of pride and he knows how to make us prideful given the right situation. And many fall to both of those sins. But we are not here to fall to pride nor to doubt. We're here to realize that we are to put away the old nature and no longer fulfill its desires that it continues to have, and not be condemned within ourselves knowing that though we have a flesh like this we have salvation through grace if we would only walk in that grace. So once we were dead through our trespasses and sins, but now that we are in the new way of Jesus Christ, that is any of you who have prayed to the Lord and got his new way, now that we're in that way let us not walk after the flesh once more where we once used to walk and let us be separate from it. Now I want to read to you from verse 25: Ephesians chapter 2 verse 25: therefore put away any falsehood and let each one of you speak the truth with his fellow brother and neighbor for we are members of one another. Be angry and do not sin, and give no opportunity to the devil and do not let the Sun go down on your wrath and let the theif no longer steal, but rather let him labour and do honest work with his own hands so that he might have something to share with anyone in need. Let no corrupt talk come out of your mouth but only such as is good for building up as fits the occasion that it may give grace to those who hear and do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God by whom you were sealed until the day of redemption. So let us put away all bitterness and wrath and anger clamor and slander, put it away from you and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. That's what Paul wrote. And so now that we know that we have come to know the Lord Jesus Christ those of us who have got into prayer, sought the Lord until he has given us this peace and forgiveness, now that we know that we are forgiven through Christ, and now that we have this new way in our hearts those of us who have Christ, I want to warn you DO NOT make provision for the flesh and its desires and when its desires surely come, don't fall into doubt because of them and listen to Satan.
These evil things rise up and Satan will tell you; you're not worthy for God, look what's in you. And you might start to think these things and fall away from your faith. When what you really should be doing is saying; I will make no provision for the flesh to fulfill its lusts but put on Jesus Christ whom I have been sealed until the day of redemption.. that is what Paul warns. Now how about you who are doing the sins of the flesh. How about any of us who are actually fulfilling our lusts, living in immorality, living in shameful deeds, living in the way that leads to condemnation. How about us who still follow our desires and chase the world, still chase after attaining our goals and dreams and we're really interested in living for ourselves in this world. How about us? How about people like this? I want to warn you that people like this, they don't know Jesus. If you know Jesus, you wouldn't go that way. But there is hope for us if we are like this. If we are indeed chasing our ways today and living in these desires, if your flesh is actually ruling your life today where you are not only getting a lustful desire but you're also going and fulfilling that desire in ACTION, you are not only getting evil ways coming to your heart but you actually going out into the world and DOING those evil ways, you're hurting people, you're getting money dishonestly, stealing off the Internet, many kinds of false ways, how about you? Paul says that for people like that they are on the path to destruction. And it is these people that need Jesus Christ today. So if we are living after the flesh today even if we are Christian and we do say we're Christian and all these sorts of things, I want to warn you that you actually don't know Jesus and you are going to hell. It is a sad truth you are going to hell. And so we have the wonderful hope today that even though we are living after our desires and we're headed to hell and condemn which you are if you are living after your desires, we have the wonderful hope today that Jesus died for you for the ungodly as it is written, he died for those who are ungodly living in their sin, that if you repent and if you turn to him, he is going to change you and make you a new way. Isnt that wonderful. And so it all comes down to whether or not you want to repent today. Do you want this new way. Are you ready to turn away from your flesh today. That's what I ask people, are you ready? Are you ready to stop doing your desires? People say I've got such a problem I'm so addicted to porn and all these other things. I want to ask you today if that is you, if you're addicted to sin doesn't have to be porn it can be all sorts of sin, if you're following your own way and you know you don't know the Lord, I want to ask you are you ready to turn away from it today.
Are you ready to give it up and repent? Because if you are then the good news is for you too. And the good news is that Jesus Christ has indeed given us hope. A new way to enter the kingdom of God that everybody who believes in him and turns away from their sins, they're going to have this grace I was talking about today. They are going to have this grace and then you will also be able to walk the new way in life. Put off the old flesh daily. But dear friends, if you are living the old flesh, how can you put it off if that is who you are. If you are your desires and your dreams and your pursuits, how can you put on Christ if you don't even have him. That is why I say turn to the Lord and repent. Because the truths that I was speaking today, these truths in Ephesians, this isn't for people who don't know Jesus and still live in sin. Even you may know the Bible and even you go to church or you say you are Christian, even so this truth isn't for you in that case because it doesn't apply as you're just living in sin and you're already condemned under the law. No this truth only applies to people who have come out of the way of sin like I did and I found the new way and I prayed and I repented and Jesus put the new way in my heart and he set me free from doing sin. I no longer followed my old ways and I ceased my sins, that I was so habitually bound to, through the power of Christ. That is why I preach Jesus Christ, because it wasn't me who set me free. It wasn't me who is somehow so wonderful and strong in my self will that I could somehow turn out all my sins making myself Holy before God. No, the only thing I could do was to cry out to the Lord in repentance and say sorry I don't want to do this anymore and turn away from it in my heart. And Jesus did the rest. He came into my life any changed me and he gave me power to turn away from my sins and live a new righteous way. And so now that I'm living this new way, the devil will try and trip me and any of you who are living this way, with these different traps. The first one I talked about was about was falling to doubt, the second one was pride. And so today I was talking to you believers who may be struggling with your flesh coming against you and I want to encourage you don't follow it. Know that it's going to do that but just don't follow it like Paul said.
Just put it out and put on Christ and don't give provision for its fulfillment of its lusts. Paul is acknowledge that yes it will have its lusts still, the old way. And I was also telling you believers who Jesus has saved and you got the new way in your heart, don't get prideful and think that you're the one who's freed yourself. Because if you do you're forgetting how Jesus set you free and your forgetting how your flesh is evil you need to turn it out. But for those of you who actually are doing sin and you're actually following your lusts and that is who you are still, you need Jesus. You need to repent today and do the first works. Go and have faith in Jesus that he has died on the cross for you so you can get the reality of him in your heart. This isn't just words you know I'm talking about experience. The Lord set me free it is an experience. He's real he does indeed set us free from sin. It is a real life experience. He's not a myth nor legend, if you call out to the Lord and you repent of your sins and you will find him. You will get this new way. That's what happened to the believers in the book of Acts. Peter called out to them he said; brothers cry out to God and repent of your sins and turn from your sins call out to the Lord to be saved… and a lot of them did and they changed that day.
They went a new way. They had a supernatural change in their heart. Isn't it wonderful that the Holy Spirit fell on a lot of them that day. They became followers of Jesus. But that's what I was wanted to talk about today is to be aware that we don't fall asleep. If we fall asleep and we start to go back to the former way, the old way again. Or pride, then we are falling away from our salvation in Christ and we're giving a foothold for the enemy and he will come and devour you and you'll end up dead. Your seed will die like Jesus said about the parable of the seeds. The seed died. And what happens is once we are dead then we are withered branches, and we get cut off and we end up in the fire. So today is an important message that for one if we are still in sin, I urge you to repent and call out upon Jesus to be saved and be serious, dedicate to him. If you've already have done that and you do have the new way in your heart then I urge you not to make provision for your flesh and fall away from the faith but instead put away the flesh and its desires daily and follow the spirit daily. And if pride comes and you start to think that it's all your own works that made you this new way well repent of that and start to remember how evil your flesh really is and put it out for pride is a dangerous sin. Let us be serious about the path we are on today and let's take a deep look at ourselves amen.......