“Beloved, I urge you, as sojourners and exiles, abstain from the passions of the flesh that wage war against your soul.”
What is your strategy to abstain? Get wholly excited about the gospel, that you have been justified by Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection; that you were in darkness but now you’re in the light; that death once reigned in you but now death has died; that you were once separated from God but now you’ve been brought near. Think of the utter impossibility of having God as your Father; think of the absurdity of being his child; think of the insanity of being forgiven by such a holy God—and then marvel at the breathtaking love that he has accomplished all this for you. He has shown all who believe his love—that while they were still sinners, enemies, rebels, haters, Christ died for them. You are God and God is yours. Did you hear that? God is yours. Marvel at this, O sinner! Be stunned and amazed at this great mystery. And never lose sight of it. Gaze continually into the depths of the gospel, as angels do, and be enthralled at all that God has for you. If you do this, your zeal will not go. Your fervor will not cease. You, like Moses, will die with your eyes undimmed and your zeal unabated. Sin will lose its sway. The passions of the flesh will be replaced by the passions of the Spirit.
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I can’t wait to preach this Sunday night.