Galatians 5:16-18 NIV
“So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the
Spirit, you are not under the law.”
Christians are instructed to “walk by the Spirit” we are to follow closely to Christ and listen and obey the voice of the Holy Spirit as He speaks to us. His voice us recognised by us as we know the mind and heart of God as we study and meditate on His Word. The more we do this and the longer we are on the road, the closer we follow; the more we recognise Him; the more ready we are to believe and obey; and the more like Him we become.
So, the life of the Spirit in us increases and the life of our fleshly desires decreases. The flesh wants the opposite to what God’s Spirit wants, and as we seek God, there are huge battles in our souls and minds. My natural self craves all for itself, but the work of the Spirit is to subdue self and live life in obedience to God.
Conversely, if we subjugate self and live for God in the power of the Spirit, we are actually made free from law, because we are walking with Christ in the power of the Spirit and in obedience to the Father. The desires of the natural self fade away and the desires of the Spirit grow. The conflict within is fought with increasing strength and so faith, love, joy and peace also take hold, and the fruit of the Spirit’s work becomes the daily life and service of those who belong to Him.