Because The Carnal Mind Is Enmity Against God
"Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be" (Romans 8:7). The flesh cannot please God in any capacity. It is faith alone in Christ and The Cross that pleases God (Hebrews 11:5-6). Let us say it again, the carnal mind is the mind that is fastened onto that which is not Christ and The Cross. One might say that the weapons being used by such a believer are his willpower or even spiritual things that are good within themselves but will not perform the intended task of freedom. Even though the believer does not think as such, attempting to use his willpower to overcome sin constitutes a carnal mind. It would actually be the same were he using quite legitimate principles, such as confession, the laying on of hands, etc. One can name several other great Biblical principles also. We are certainly not saying that these Biblical principles are wrong. In reality, they are right and even very much right. However, to use such attributes in the capacity of that which we speak – to overcome sin – even as valuable as they are, is the same as a carpenter attempting to use a handsaw instead of a hammer to drive nails. It simply will not work because the handsaw was not made for that purpose. Satan tricks us by these things simply because they are very good and actually bless us greatly, but, sadly and regrettably, we find that they do not bring us the victory that we seek and, in fact, must have. Yet, the reader must ask, how could these things that are so right within themselves, even though used wrongly, be declared as enmity with God?
For It Is Not Subject To The Law Of God, Neither Indeed Can Be
In the Greek, the word enmity is echthra and means "hostility", in this case, hostility against God. The reader who is caught in this trap might quickly exclaim that he has no hostility against God but, rather, the very opposite. That is correct but, at the same time, incorrect. The answer is found in the following. It means that whatever is being done, whatever it might be, is not in God's prescribed order and, therefore, presents the person not going God's way, which generates hostility, whether intended or not. Our Lord has gone to tremendous trouble, to say the least, to afford redemption for mankind. It cost Him His life given over as a sacrifice. In other words, the price was paid at Calvary's Cross. That is the answer – Christ and The Cross. When we try to go another way, whatever that way might be, it should be obvious why it angers God. In the first place, it won't work. In the second place, we are actually forcing ourselves against God, in other words, against His will. His will is Christ and The Cross and none other. Anything else, no matter how right it may be in its own way, angers Him, and it should be understandable as to why.
What Is The Law Of God?
Paul said that the carnal mind "...is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be." The law of God, I think, could possibly be divided in two ways:
Ergo, God's plan is The Cross of Christ. He cannot sanction another plan and cannot condone another plan. Anything that is of another way, no matter how sincere the person might be, presents itself as hostility toward God. We don't think of such in that fashion, but that is what it is, and, to be sure, it is very serious. It doesn't matter what it is, if it's not Christ and Him crucified and our faith in that finished work, whatever it is, it is wrong. God can never sanction such.
So Then They Who Are In The Flesh
"So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God" (Romans 8:8). The flesh is that which operates outside of The Cross. Such a direction cannot please God. As we have explained, the flesh is that which is indicative of a human being. It refers to our self-will, education, motivation, personal talent, willpower, etc. That is what Paul means by "the flesh". Please understand that the flesh can be very religious and, thereby, very deceitful. The idea is that everything that God gives mankind is that which He originates. God cannot accept anything that man originates, and I mean, nothing. The idea is that sinful man simply cannot originate anything that is Godly or holy, no matter how hard he tries. This is man's great failure. We think we can, so we keep trying, even as we keep failing. God has a way of salvation. It is simple faith in Christ. When we try to come another way – by fashioning something else, belonging to a certain church, or performing certain good works – it is hostility toward God, which God can never accept. These works are the bane of humanity. It's all flesh and not of God. Everything that is of God is faith, and we speak of faith in Christ and what Christ has done for us at The Cross.
Cannot Please God
It is to the point and designed to be that way. Anything and everything that's of the flesh, no matter how religious it might be, simply cannot please God. God does not look for ability, talent, resources, or self-will in man as a requirement but, rather, the very opposite, which is a brokenness before Him. In effect, this says that man knows that, within himself, he deserves nothing good from God (Isaiah 66:2; Luke 18:14). Actually, a Biblical faith does not really function very well outside the sphere of Biblical humility.
The Flesh And Displeasing God
As we have stated, flesh basically speaks of man's frailty, inability, and weakness – even impossibility regarding spiritual things. In as much as humanity has fallen, that means that, within the flesh, man has nothing good, can do nothing good, and cannot come up with anything that pleases God, as should be obvious. Yet, we keep trying. The whole idea is that, if man tries anything within himself, whether a believer or otherwise, God simply cannot accept such. This is at least one of the reasons that God hates self-righteousness to such an extent because it originates with the flesh and man's self-efforts or self-will. Consequently, it is coming from a poisoned source, which can never be accepted by God. As well, if self-righteousness becomes the attitude of a believer, the flesh from such a source is just as hateful to God as it is in an unbeliever – and actually far worse. In the first place, the believer should know that anything he has that is any good has come from God and originated totally with God. This means that God does not need any help. In fact, if man, even converted man, attempts to help God in these areas, which all of us have tried to do at one time or another, it only tends to frustrate the grace of God and, therefore, sully that which The Holy Spirit is attempting to do within our hearts and lives. What we're speaking of here is the sanctification process. The godliest believer in the world cannot sanctify himself. It simply cannot be done. Wemust go God's way, and that way always is Christ and The Cross. As the flesh keeps much of the human family from coming to God, likewise the flesh is the greatest hinderance to the believer. The temptation is always very heavy to add something to what Jesus has already done, to take away from what He has already done, or to substitute something altogether in its place. However, no matter how consecrated such an effort may be, it does not please God and, in fact, cannot please God in any capacity.
The Personal Experience Of Paul
When Paul wrote these words, he was writing something of which he knew firsthand. For a particular time in his Christian life, he attempted to overcome sin with the efforts of the flesh, his own willpower, ability, etc. It did not work, even as it cannot work. So, he knew firsthand of the terrible dangers and the futility of such an effort and, as well, how it displeases God for His children to attempt such. I look back in my own life, and I tend to grieve when I realize how I have personally fallen into this trap so many times and how it caused me so much heartache, troubles, and difficulty. Even though I did it in ignorance, the result was the same, great hurt. Paul learned, as so many others have, that every effort by the flesh – no matter how well-intentioned, motivated, or loaded down with Scriptures and religious effort – only tends to make the situation worse, with sin even more pronounced. In other words, instead of climbing out of the hole, we tend to sink deeper (Romans 7:15).
There Are Many Reasons For This
First of all, as we have stated, when one tends to make this effort, one is attempting to solve the problems of the flesh with the flesh, which is impossible. He is attempting to assuage a poisoned situation with water from a poisoned spring, so to speak. Irrespective of that, even if it was not poisoned and polluted, man simply does not have the strength to overcome sin within himself. It just cannot be done due to the fall. The problem is of far greater magnitude than any human being could ever begin to realize. It is so bad, in fact, that God had to become man, literally become a human sacrifice, i.e., a sin offering, in order for the terrible sin debt to be paid and its dominion broken. As well, what Jesus did at Calvary completed the task of victory and deliverance over sin totally. Nothing can be added as nothing needs to be added. In fact, when we try to add something, as previously stated, we insult God.
To use a crude analogy, let's say that a man owed a million dollars at a bank and, being flat broke, had absolutely no way to pay this terrible debt. Then, a wealthy benefactor stepped in and paid the entirety of the debt. He also deposited a billion dollars in cash in the same bank and told the bank administrators that the man who had formerly owed this terrible debt was now free to write checks to his heart's content on this new account. Of course, the man was now very elated that this terrible debt had been paid and him no longer owing anything. As well, he was told of the tremendous amount of money that was in the bank and that he was free to write checks on that account for whatever he needed. Then, the man had to purchase a piece of land that cost a million dollars. To purchase this land, he went to the bank, opened a new account, and deposited ten dollars, which was separate from the huge account that was already available to him in the bank. He wrote a million dollar check on his new account that he had just opened, when, in reality, he only had ten dollars in it.
The banker said to him, "Why are you doing this? Your ten dollars in the bank will not cover a million dollar check. Besides, you don't need to do this considering that we have a billion dollars in this bank on which you can write as many checks as you like. I have also been told by your benefactor that, if you exhaust this billion dollars, he will instantly replenish it with as much as is needed." Considering what the benefactor had done for this man, I should think it would be obvious that he would not be too very much pleased at the foolish personal actions of this individual regarding finances. It is the same way with The Lord. Even though our illustration is very crude, this is exactly what believers have done many times. We have tried to take our two cents and purchase what only a billion dollars could obtain, which has already been provided, at least if we are allowed to use such an illustration. Everything we need has already been done by Christ, so why do we insult Him by attempting to do it all over again ourselves, which is impossible anyway? The problem, in most cases, is ignorance. In other words, the believer simply does not know or understand the part that The Cross plays in our sanctification, so he tries other methods, which never work. Then, we have a problem of unbelief. Believe it or not, there are many Christians who simply do not believe that The Cross of Christ plays such a part in their everyday experience with The Lord, so they attempt to assert other things. Either way, the end result is going to be wreckage. If we do not do it God's way, which is the way of The Cross, it simply will not get done. This disproves the notion that ignorance is bliss.
"For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit" (Romans 8:5)
For They Who Are After The Flesh Do Mind The Things Of The Flesh
While, of course, Romans 8:5 can apply to the unredeemed, Paul is speaking to the redeemed. He is portraying the struggle between the flesh and the Spirit and how the believer is in one or the other or somewhere in between. The Greek has it this way, "For those who are habitual dominated by things of the flesh do put their mind on the things of the flesh." The flesh, as it is used here, pertains to the ability of the human being – education, motivation, personal talent, personal ability, or self will. In other words, it is what a human being can do. Unfortunately, due to the fact of not understanding The Cross of Christ relative to our sanctification – how we live for God on a daily basis – virtually the entirety of Christendom is trying to live for God by means of the flesh. Consequently, their entire thought process functions in that capacity. In other words, they function with more and more flesh. In the Greek, the word mind is phroneo and means "to exercise the mind or have a sentiment or opinion". Consequently, it means that the believer who functions in the flesh has an improper understanding of the Word of God concerning this tremendous problem. Therefore, he is attempting to gain victory in all the wrong ways. He is not necessarily doing it purposely orintentionally. Nevertheless, the end result is the same, domination by the flesh, i.e., the sin nature. Yet, many simply do not believe what Paul is saying here, which means that unbelief characterizes their thinking. This is more predominant than most realize – unbelief.
But They Who Are After The Spirit The Things Of The Spirit
The heading presents the very opposite of the previous phrase, that which is after The Spirit is that which is after The Word of God. This pertains to The Cross of Christ, which pertains to the way The Holy Spirit works. He cannot nor will The Holy Spirit function except according to the blueprint, which is The Word of God. While He will definitely help the seeking believer find The Truth, He will not force such upon the disinterested or those who function in unbelief. The question becomes, what are the things of The Spirit? In the Greek, the word things is logos and means "something said, including the thought by implication, a topic (subject of discourse), also reasoning (the mental faculty), or motive and, above all, the Divine Expression, i.e., Christ". So, Who Jesus is, what Jesus said, and what Jesus did is the eternal Logos, i.e., the things of The Spirit. Even though it pertains to all things relative to Christ, more particularly, it refers to the great truths of Him breaking the dominion of sin. If the believer sets his mind upon this of which Jesus has done and believes it with all of his heart (and we continue to speak of The Cross), he will receive the things of The Spirit, which will fall out ultimately to total victory, in this case, victory over sin. While the word things has the same connotation or meaning concerning the flesh, it is here inverted. It presents the believer who should be speaking the words of Christ or The Spirit instead of speaking words of the flesh, which pertains to error and, most likely, religious error. It is difficult to explain, but in its most simplistic form, it means that the believerspeaks the words of Christ versus the believer who does not. However, the manner in which Paul made these statements needs more explanation.
It is possible for a believer to know this truth as laid out in Romans but actually knows it only in his or her intellect. Consequently, he gives a mental assent or affirmation to this truth but really does not know it experientially. In other words, it is not in his heart and, consequently, will bring forth few results, if any. To be frank, there are many who mistake mental affirmation to faith and are confused when it does not bring forth positive results. True knowledge of the things of God pertains not only to a knowledge of the intellect but, as well, that which gets down into one's spirit. This is how true faith springs forth. So, the favorite statement of many people – "I've tried that, and it doesn't work" – is the tip off that true faith is lacking with the individual only giving mental assent to the subject at hand. Many people attempt to learn the things of God and, above all, The Word of God, even as they would learn arithmetic, but it is not to be learned or understood in that fashion. It is only by revelation, and, many times, revelation comes by desperation. Jesus, the eternal Logos, must become part of one's very spirit and being. In fact, when one has true faith in God, which refers to faith in Christ and The Cross, it is quite possible for him to exhibit faith but little explain what he is exhibiting. On the other hand, oftentimes those who have a mere mental assent can, in fact, properly explain what they believe but obtain few results.
"After the Spirit" is a way of life. That's the reason Paul used the term, "dominated by The Spirit." The word after should have been translated dominated, for that is the actual Greek word used here. Consequently, it should be translated, "For they who are dominated by the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they who are dominated by the Spirit do mind the things of the Spirit." However, there is a difference in the way in the word dominated is used. The domination of the flesh, sooner or later, goes into compulsion. In other words, the individual is compelled by this domination to do those things that are wrong, which outlines the 7th Chapter of Romans. However, the word dominated as it is used concerning The Holy Spirit is the exact opposite. While The Holy Spirit will definitely dominate the believer, it is only when the believer freely gives control to The Spirit. In essence, the Spirit will never force a believer to give Him control. As well, The Holy Spirit dominates the believer only in the sense of that which is good for the believer, which is the very opposite of the flesh. He has our good at heart and constantly pushes forth toward the realization of such good. How wonderful it is to be led by The Spirit, guided by The Spirit, empowered by The Spirit, taught by The Spirit, and to be "after The Spirit." Let us say it again, The Holy Spirit works exclusively within the framework of the finished Work of Christ. He will not work outside those parameters, so to speak. This means that The Cross of Christ gives The Holy Spirit the legal means to do all that He does. It requires of us that our faith ever be in Christ and The Cross and ever maintained in Christ and The Cross, and then The Holy Spirit will work mightily within our hearts and lives. Otherwise, we greatly limit Him by placing our faith elsewhere.
For To Be Carnally Minded Is Death
"For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace" (Romans 8:6). To be carnally minded is to trust in that which is of the flesh, which means that it is not of Christ and Him crucified. To be spiritually minded is to place one's faith exclusively in Christ and The Cross and maintain it exclusively in Christ and The Cross. This brings back to the flesh in Romans 8:5. In the Greek, "carnally minded" is "phronema tes sarkos" and means literally, "the mind of the flesh." Again, flesh refers to the evil or sin nature. While they are not the same, when a person functions in the flesh, the sin nature is going to rule such a person. The word death speaks of spiritual death, i.e., separated from God. So, the question becomes, can the believer continue indefinitely following after the flesh? Yes, a believer can continue indefinitely following after the flesh, but such proves to be a miserable existence. If the believer does not understand The Cross of Christ relative to sanctification – how we live for God, how we order our behavior, how we have victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil – then such a believer is going to function after the flesh. There are only two places – the flesh and the Spirit. Let us say it again, if The Cross is not properly understood, then the flesh is the only other alternative. The truth is that most Christians, and I speak of those who truly love The Lord, have never really known what it is to experience Biblical Christianity. They are struggling with problems in their lives and have done so almost the entirety of their Christian experience. That is not God's way, but it is the way of those who function outside The Cross.
The Flesh And Death
What did Paul mean by the statement, "For to be carnally minded is death"? To be carnally minded means that a person is not being led of The Holy Spirit. This means that his faith is in something other than Christ and The Cross, which means that such a person is going to be constantly failing The Lord. He will find that death is attached to everything he does. His plans die. His efforts are wrecked. Instead of victory, it is defeat. Satan steals, kills, and destroys, and we must never forget that. If the sin nature is ruling, death is always attached to the word sin. That means sooner or later, whatever it is that we touch, and I mean whatever, ultimately dies. Let me say it again, there is only one way for the child of God, and that is the way of The Cross. If we try any other way, no matter how religious it might be, it will result in wreckage, i.e., death. Please understand that when Paul uses the word death, he is speaking of destruction as it regards every single thing that the carnal mind does. As previously stated, it all leads to wreckage, hurt, pain, suffering, and, ultimately, death. Of course, satan wants such a believer to just give up, quit trying to live for God in any fashion (which many do), and ultimately die and go to hell – the ultimate death. But it doesn't have to be that way. God's way is The Cross, and, when you begin to make The Cross of Christ the object of your faith exclusively, you will find things beginning to change for the better. It will be a struggle because satan does not want you going in that direction. But if you will persist – meaning that you won't give up and you won't throw it over – then, you are going to find victory.
But To Be Spiritually Minded Is Life And Peace
This presents the most glorious, wonderful, and fulfilling life that one could ever know. This is what living is really all about. This is that which only God can give, and He reserves it for those who love Him and believe in His great and glorious Name. While it is for anyone, still the requirements of faith must be met. The words "spiritually minded" in the Greek are "thronerma tou pneumatos" and means literally "the mind possessed by The Spirit". That is the mind controlled or dominated by The Holy Spirit. Such a person possesses the life that God is – life and peace. The word peace, as it is used here, means "to bind together that which has been separated". Thus, the believing sinner is bound together with God and His life after having been separated by sin. Please remember that the only place for sin, and I mean the only place, is The Cross. The life and peace spoken of here cannot be purchased with money, attained by education, discovered through scientific theory, or earned by religious works. It is a free gift from God but only when our faith is properly placed. Never forget that! Our faith must be in Christ and what Christ has done for us at The Cross. Then, The Holy Spirit will work mightily in our hearts and lives, giving us victory at every capacity, which He alone can do. However, it's all predicated upon our faith in Christ and what He has done for us at The Cross. It is The Cross of Christ, meaning what He there did makes everything possible. This is what opened the door to the treasure house of God, The Cross, The Cross, The Cross!
There are two wills contrasted in Romans 8:5-8, the will of the carnal nature and the will of God. The carnal will being independent of God's will is, consequently, hostile to it and cannot be otherwise. Therefore, all who are governed by the carnal will cannot please God so long as they are thus governed, be they ever so religious, moral, cultivated, or noble. It's not that God takes no pleasure in noble actions performed by unconverted men, but it's that He cannot take pleasure and accept religious worship and meritorious actions designed to purchase His favor, which are prompted by the carnal mind. Hence, He rejected Cain's worship and offerings. All who are controlled by the carnal will set their affections upon gratifying it. The opposite is true in the case of those controlled by the divine will. Control by the one ends in death, the other in life.
But You Are Not In The Flesh
"But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his" (Romans 8:9). God's way is The Cross of Christ. He has no other way because no other way is needed. Everything was addressed at The Cross, not only sanctification but justification as well. In one sense of the word, the heading is asking the question, "Since you are now a believer and no longer depending on the flesh, why are you resorting to the flesh?" Unfortunately, virtually the entirety of the church world, and I speak of those who truly love The Lord, are operating in the flesh. The question becomes, how do I know that? If the believer does not understand The Cross of Christ relative to our sanctification – how we live for God on a daily basis and how we have victory over sin – then such a believer is going to function in the flesh. There are only two ways that he can function, the flesh or The Holy Spirit. As we have said several times in this volume, the modern church simply does not know how to live for God. I realize that's quite a statement, but, sadly and regrettably, it is true. To understand how to live for The Lord, one must, without fail, understand The Cross of Christ relative, not only to his salvation but, as well, to his sanctification. To be frank, most believers have never heard of The Cross of Christ relative to sanctification. So, as already stated, they resort to the flesh.
But In The Spirit
The phrase, "but in the Spirit," is, in effect, saying, "You now have The Holy Spirit to help you." As we have previously stated, The Holy Spirit does not require much of us, but He does require one thing, and, on that, He will not bend. He demands that our faith be exclusively in Christ and The Cross, and then He will work mightily within our lives. The Holy Spirit is God. There is nothing that He cannot do. However, He will never violate the free moral agency of anyone. As a believer, if you desire to resort to the flesh, He will speak to you and deal with you, but He will not force the issue. Due to the fact that the way to victory, which is The Cross, has been so little preached in the last several decades, most Christians simply do not know what the Bible says about the matter (Romans 6:3-4; 1 Corinthians 1:17, 18, 23; 2:2; Colossians 2:10-15). Before The Cross, The Holy Spirit could not come into the hearts and lives of believers to abide permanently. He could come into the hearts of certain individuals, such as the prophets, to help them carry out that which they were called to do, but, when that was finished, He would leave.
It was because the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sins (Hebrews 10:4). And, with that being the case, the sin debt remained, which, of course, greatly hindered The Holy Spirit. Likewise, before The Cross, when a believer died, his soul and spirit could not be taken into heaven but, rather, was taken down into paradise, which was very close to the burning side of hell. Actually, they were only separated by a great gulf (Luke 16). Once again, it was because animal blood was woefully insufficient. However, when Jesus paid the full price on Calvary's Cross, this changed everything. Now The Holy Spirit can live permanently, which He does, in the heart and life of every believer (John 14:16-17).
If So Be That The Spirit Of God Dwell In You
The heading, in essence, says "provided that" or "assuming that" – assuming that The Spirit of God dwells in the believer, which He most definitely does. In the Greek, the word dwell is oikeo and means "to live or dwell in a certain place as your home." The Holy Spirit is not only resident in the believer in the sense of position in him, but He is actively at home in him, living in him as His home.
A Ministry To Perform
It further means that The Holy Spirit is not in us just to be there but, rather, has a ministry to perform in the believer, namely to give the believer victory over sin and produce his own fruit. He gives the believer victory over sin by making real to him and energizing within him the great truth and fact of what Christ did at Calvary. This – together with the presence of the imparted divine nature in the believer and the fact that God has broken the power of the evil nature – puts the believer out of the sphere of the evil nature and within the sphere of The Holy Spirit. Consequently, the believer is, therefore, not in the grip of the evil nature but under the control of The Holy Spirit as he yields himself to Him. However, these things that we have said are ideal, meaning what is supposed to be. Too often, the believer does not know the full truth of what Christ has done for him at Calvary, which gives The Holy Spirit little to work on and with. As well, most believers do not yield to The Holy Spirit very well either, thus, taking control out of His hands. So, the truth is that The Holy Spirit, in most believers, can only do and be to a limited degree in comparison to what really can be done. In other words, most of us live far beneath what we can truly be in Christ. We tie the hands of The Holy Spirit, grieving and wounding Him and actually allowing Him very little latitude within our lives. That's the reason we have said that His work is potential – only what we will allow Him to do, which, too often, is not very much.
Now If Any Man Have Not The Spirit Of Christ, He Is None Of His
This refers to The Holy Spirit. In other words, it is not possible for a person to be truly saved without The Holy Spirit dwelling in him. Some have thought that the "Spirit of Christ" referred to Christ's personal Spirit, but that is incorrect. Paul is merely saying that The Holy Spirit coming in to dwell within the heart and life of the believer is made possible only by what Christ did at Calvary. There, Jesus satisfied the terrible sin debt, which meant that satan no longer held a claim on anyone who evidenced faith in Christ. Consequently, since the day of Pentecost, The Spirit of God does not merely come to be with believers but, rather, to dwell in believers (John 14:17). So, Paul is saying to failing believers that if they claim The Holy Spirit is not within their lives helping them, then that means they are not even saved because, if they are saved, The Holy Spirit is there and is ready to do what He is there to do.
The Twofold Work Of The Spirit
The Holy Spirit is meant to function in every capacity of our lives and living, giving us leading and guidance – especially guidance into all truth – with the fruit of The Spirit being developed. However, the greatest work that He performs in this capacity is to give us victory over sin. He does this by and through our faith in Christ and what Christ has done for us at The Cross. In other words, it is The Cross of Christ that gives The Holy Spirit the legal means to do all that He does (Romans 8:2). While the Bible does not teach sinless perfection, it most definitely does teach that sin shall not have dominion over us (Romans 6:14). The Holy Spirit alone can carry this out. In fact, The Holy Spirit is jealous over any territory in our lives occupied by the evil one.
To Earnestly Or Passionately Desire
James said, "Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain (James was quoting several Scriptures [Genesis 15:6; 49:10; Exodus 17:6; Psalm 78:16; Ezekiel 47:9; Joel 2:28-29]), The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy? (This refers to The Holy Spirit, which means that the word spirit should have been capitalized. The word "lusts" here means 'to earnestly or passionately desire'. Of what is He envious and what does He passionately desire? The Holy Spirit is envious of any control the fallen nature might have over the believer and is passionately desirous that He control all of our thoughts, words, and deeds. He is desirous of having the believer depend upon Him for His ministry to him so that He might discharge His responsibility to the One Who sent Him, namely God The Father)" (James 4:5).
The Baptism With The Holy Spirit
After the believing sinner is saved, meaning that The Holy Spirit has regenerated such a person, then that believer should go on and be baptized with The Holy Spirit, which will always be accompanied by the speaking with other tongues (Acts 2:4). It must be understood that there is a great difference in being "born of the Spirit" than being "baptized with The Spirit". The baptism with The Spirit is to help the believer carry out the work of God – to help the preacher preach, the teacher teach, the singer sing, and to help us in our worship. If you are a teacher, He'll help you to be a better teacher, a better truck driver, a better accountant, a better painter, etc. As well, he gives us the power against the forces of darkness that would attempt to stop our work for God. Without the baptism with The Holy Spirit, there isn't going to be much anointing of The Spirit, if any. So, The Holy Spirit functions in two capacities, power for service and power in our lives for victory over sin. Regrettably, He is given very little latitude in the hearts and lives of believers to do anything. This is sad but, oh, so true.
Glory Hallelujah, I shall not be moved;
Anchored in Jehovah, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that's planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved.
In His love abiding, I shall not be moved;
And in him confiding, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that's planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved.
Though all hell assail me, I shall not be moved;
Jesus will not fail me, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that's planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved.
Though the tempest rages, I shall not be moved;
On the Rock of Ages, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that's planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved
How The Holy Spirit Works
The Flesh & The Spirit