March 16, 2021

Day by Day with Martin Luther

Read: Numbers 24:1-25:18 Luke 2:1-35 Proverbs 11:14

“Do Not Deceive Yourself”

“Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
[Galatians 5:24]

No one should deceive themselves. Whoever belongs to Christ, says Paul, “crucifies the flesh with all its diseases and faults”. This takes place when they not only repress the wantonness of the flesh by fasting or other kinds of discipline, but when, as Paul says, “they walk in the Spirit”; that is, when the threat that God will punish sin severely warns them, and frightens them away from sinning; and when, instructed by the Word, by faith, and by prayer, they refuse to yield to the flesh. Dressed in the armor of God, with faith, hope, and the sword of the Spirit, [Ephesians 6:11-17] they fight back against the flesh; and with these nails they fasten it to the cross, so that against it’s will it is forced to be subject to the Spirit. Eventually, when they die, they will put it off completely; and in the resurrection they will have a flesh that is pure, without any passions or evil desires.

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