Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Saturday, June 27, 2015
What’s the most powerful part of your body? If you have an answer in mind, consider next how you use that power. Is it for your own good? Is it for the good of others? Regardless of how you use it, ask yourself what the source of that power is – you may be surprised. As a notorious television character once said, “Power is not something you’re given, it’s something you take.” If you feel you have power in your life, from where did you take it and what does the power mean to your life?
One powerful man in the Bible was Esau, Jacob’s older brother. Esau derived much of his power from his family (Genesis 36:1-30) and taking was a part of his success. First, he took wives. Then he took control of his family and others around him. These actions set the stage for his next acquisition for power – he took a powerful fortress in the hill country of Seir (Genesis 36:8). Esau, having started life as a powerful hunter (Genesis 25:27), was now a forceful man to be reckoned with.
Seir is the home of the city of Petra, or “rock”. Most of us have seen pictures of this beautiful and impregnable fortress, which is bounded on all sides by high, solid rock walls. Control of Petra and its environs guaranteed a stranglehold on the great east-west trade routes. Whoever held Petra could defy brigades and invaders and impose whatever toll he wished on passing caravans. Esau had become a very powerful man because he took control of this fortress.
Esau’s power is indicative of the power of sinful flesh. You may consider someone in your life the most powerful force you face, but you are wrong. Your flesh, with all its selfish, self-centered lusts, is the most powerful spiritual enemy you face. In fact, the flesh is so powerful you cannot possibly conquer it on your own. The only possible way to conquer your flesh is through the intervention of the supernatural power of Almighty God in your life.
Before you claim otherwise, ask yourself whether you have ever tried to change an old habit or reform an old pattern of living, only to backslide within a few weeks. Just in case you need your memory refreshed, think about your New Year’s resolutions – most of us have failed in implementing our commitments at some time in the past.
The syndrome is widespread. We’ve all known people who have said, “I want to quit cussing,” and they tried and failed. We’ve all known people who tried to quit alcohol, tobacco or drugs, only to fail repeatedly. We’ve all known people who have tried to give up pornography, only to draw back to its seductive, alluring snare in a short time. We’ve all known people who have tried to control their temper, only to blow their stack time and time again. We’ve all known people who have tried to stop cheating, lying, or stealing only to go back to their old deceitful, dishonest ways of life again and again – Esau’s brother Jacob struggled with deception for much of his life.
The point is, the flesh is too powerful for you to conquer on your own. You can never, ever possibly change without a life-transforming experience with Jesus Christ. To conquer your flesh and change your life you need a mighty infusion of the resurrection power of Jesus. With the power of Jesus, and only with the power of Jesus, you can conquer your flesh.
Alcoholics have been saved and, through the power of Jesus, have walked away from the bottle and never touched it again. Life-long smokers can throw down their cigarettes and never light up again, through the power of Jesus. Porn-addicts can gain the ability, through the power of Jesus, to put it away and never look at it again. Husbands and wives who fought like cats and dogs get saved and, through the power of Jesus, they love one another.
The flesh is powerful, too powerful for you to conquer on your own. Galatians 5:17, says “For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary the one to the other, so that you cannot do the things that you would.” But, Galatians 5:24 states, “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” Paul tells in Romans that his struggle against the powerful flesh was perpetual, and futile without Jesus Christ (Romans 7:15-25).
Your flesh is far too powerful to conquer on your own. You can try to change, but you will never be any different than you are without Jesus. Esau relied on the rock of Petra for a time, but he was eventually defeated. Today we have something much more powerful and long-lasting – The Rock called Jesus Christ. If we are to prevail against the power of the flesh, our only chance is through our Savior Jesus Christ.
It is normal to take power if that power comes from God. Jesus Christ comes from God and is God, now and forevermore. Taking power typically sounds greedy, but it is normal to want to grab all the power Christ has to give you. He will never give you the wrong power, only the perfect power to be obedient to Him. If you are searching for a way to conquer your powerful flesh, look no further than Jesus Christ. You can rely on His power. He is the only power and Rock you’ll ever need.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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