The third in a series of 12 blogs answering anticipated objections to material set forth in A Way of Escape, i.e., the third in a series of 12 blogs answering anticipated FAQs.
OBJECTION #3 (of 12)
“So mister smarty-pants. You expect us to believe that you have come up with some revolutionary new way of escape that the Church has overlooked?” the reader asks. “The New Testament is nearly 2000 years old. If what you are claiming in your book has any merit, surely a few others would already be teaching it by now. Why aren’t others teaching wholly Spirit-led escape from those hard-to-eradicate lingering sins of the flesh?”
Others are teaching wholly Spirit-led escape from those hard-to-eradicate lingering sins of the flesh. Some very prominent others. And they have been teaching it for a number of years. We have just been slow to listen. And perhaps also unsure of just how to apply what they are teaching. Hear again what three of America’s most beloved pastors have to say on this matter of lingering sins of the flesh, and God’s provision for eradicating them.
HOLY SPIRIT THEOLOGY
1) In a 2015 sermon entitled “Walking in the Holy Spirit,” Charles Stanley had this to say with regard to the Holy Spirit’s power to deliver believers from lusts of the flesh (Galatians 5:16):
He came to do in us, and through us, and for us, what you and I could never do ourselves .
2) In his 2009 New York Times best-seller, Forgotten God, Francis Chan lists a number of things that should be a part of the believer’s life if the Spirit dwells within. Pertinent to the present discussion, he had this to say with regard to the power of the Spirit to put to death the misdeeds of the body (Romans 8:2-4, and Romans 8:12-13):
The Spirit sets us free from the sins we cannot get rid of on our own .
3) In his 1991 New Testament Commentary on believers fulfilling the righteous requirements of the law (Romans 8:1-4), John MacArthur likens God’s saving of a sinner to a courtroom transaction. As the saved sinner exits the courtroom, God hands him the Code of Life, and says:
“Now you have in you My Spirit, whose power will enable you to fulfill My law’s otherwise impossible demands ."
Three of America’s most beloved pastors are teaching their flocks that it is not so out of the ordinary to have a lingering sin or two that requires the help of the Holy Spirit Helper (John 16:7) to eradicate. Game-changing Holy Spirit theology for the genuinely born-again believer still struggling to fully overcome an addiction. Game-changing Holy Spirit theology—with the promise of a life-changing walk—if followed through to its logical “Galatians 5:16 conclusion.”
I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16).
HOLY SPIRIT THEOLOGY—APPLIED!
In A Way of Escape, readers learn how to apply this Holy Spirit theology in their war against the flesh. Readers learn how to step up the degree to which they “walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:16). They learn how to build a library of Spirit-anointed apps for the shutting down of the flesh. Apps that are custom-fitted to them, and their unique Spirit-filling triggers (Ephesians 5:18b-19).
The still-struggling now have another option. The still-struggling now have fresh hope for discovering that long-sought-after way of escape from sin and temptation (I Corinthians 10:13). A way that—because it is wholly Spirit-powered—does not require enlisting the aid of an accountability partner or group. Truly, a game-changer!
1. Stanley, C., “Walking in the Holy Spirit, In Touch Ministries, https://youtube.com/watch?v=r-9L2-aVR4I at the 22:18 mark, 2015
2. Chan, F., Forgotten God: Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit, First Printing, David C Cook, Colorado Springs, CO, page 75, 2009
3. MacArthur, J., The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Romans 1-8, First Printing, Moody Publishers, Chicago, IL, Pages 411-412, 1991