It is said that man is a spirit that has a soul and lives in a body. He is made of two parts- the spirit and flesh. The flesh of man was formed by God from the dust of the ground while the spirit in him which is the image and likenesses of God was given to him as “the breathe of life, and man became a living being” Gen. 2:7
The spirit and the flesh mutually benefits from each other by living together. The flesh is a good host to the spirit and in turn the spirit sustains the flesh.
Though they have a symbiotic relationship, the spirit and flesh are exact opposite of each other in deeds and desire. “The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants…” Gal 5:17
The flesh was made by God from the dust of the earth. It has lustful desires and its works are against the laws of God(Gal 5:19–21). On the other hand, the spirit of a man is the very breathe of life from God that gives life to the flesh. It has the nature of God and therefore acts as a check on the flesh from being content with its lustful desires(Gal 5:16)
It is our spirit that links up with God’s Spirit. The Bible says: “God is Spirit, and His worshipers must worship in the spirit and in truth.” John 4:24. When our inward man is active, then we can desire to live a righteous life and be able to express our devotion and reverence to God.
It can be so frustrating for a Christian to fight off the desires of his canal flesh particularly if his spirit is weak. In Romans 7:13–24 Apostle Paul felt very distressed and worthless trying to subdued the evil desires of his flesh. He was so wearied by the constant conflict between his spiritual inner being and his canal flesh, so much that he cried out! “What a wretched man I am!” Rom 7:24
We must note that Apostle Paul was both spiritual and active in his inner being. He finds joy and fulfilment in obeying the laws of God, and yet it wasn’t very easy for him to subdue the desires of his flesh! The question is, if a spirit-filled Apostle Paul found it not so easy to control his flesh, what would then be the fate of someone who is weak in the flesh and dormant in the spirit?
Our spirit have endured a raw deal of neglect by man. From when we were born, the whole of our interest is usually focused on how to develop our physical body and an enhanced mental acuity to the total disregard of our spiritual wellness. Oftentimes we tends to forget that just as our physical body, the spiritual being needs to be taken care of, fed for growth, and exercised for strength.
The Bible says we should earnestly desire the pure milk of the word of God by which we may nurture the spirit to growth.(1Peter 2:2). How well and healthy we live might as well depend on the extent we feed our spirit with God‘s principles as found in His Word.(Psalms 119:92,93).
To exercise our spirit, we need to observe fasting and prayers from time to time. We have to discipline our physical body to keep it under control(1 Cor 9:27); this will have the effect of reducing the dominance of the flesh over our spirit man. It helps for an increased spiritual awareness.
“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the fresh.” Gal 5:16(NKJV). Apostle Paul made us to understand that though its difficult, but possible to be a good Christian by yielding to the leading, control and guidance of the Holy Spirit. When we do that, the evidence will be visible in our life as its reward. Such a one would be guiltless and cannot be accused of sin nor of breaking any of God’s laws(Gal 5:22,23,).
Remember that in Psalms 82:6 it says ” You are gods; indeed, all of you are children of the Most High.” So we should not continue to live our lives like mere men by failing to care for our spiritual development