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The Spirit And The Flesh

The English word "flesh" originated from a Germanic word, fleisch, which meant the part of physical bodies other than the bones. The English word "carnal" originated from a Latin word, carnalis, which also meant the part of physical bodies other than the bones. "Flesh" and "carnal" have identical meanings.

"Flesh" or "carnal," and variations of them (i.e. "fleshly," "carnality") are both used in the New Testament to translate a single Greek word, pronounced sar-kee-cos, which means raw meat, and by extension, carnal nature (i.e. "human" nature) that serves only the various "appetites" of the flesh. The English word "appetite" originated from a Latin word, appetitus, which simply means desire - to "have a "taste" for something, whether a particular kind of food, or a particular kind of behavior - it affects not only the body, but the mind.

All humans were created of flesh; the Messiah Himself was as "human" as any other. But the Christ overcame dead-end carnality - He literal rose above it, by means of the Holy Spirit that liberates all humans who accept it into their "hearts of flesh."

"1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." (John 1:12-14 KJV)

"Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak"

The human "soul" is itself flesh (see Dead Souls; see also Circumcision to understand how Abraham was righteous before he was circumcised "in the flesh").

The Holy Scriptures

"2:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as Strangers And Pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul" (1 Peter 2:11 KJV)

Jesus Christ taught that the Spirit of God in His people, when they accept it into their "hearts," provides the means of living a righteous life, until the Spirit that engenders God's children will bring about their birth in due time (see Conceived Again; also Could Christ Return Tonight?).

"6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life." (John 6:63 KJV)

"14:38 Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak." (Mark 14:38 KJV)

Living a true Christian life (see Christian Living) is a spiritual battle in which the battleground is the flesh. Christians can view part of the battle from above, "for though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh." Christians must "rise above" where the battle is happening, "for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal."

"10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 10:4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 10:6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

10:7 Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? If any man Trust to himself that he is Christ's, let him of himself think this again, that, as he is Christ's, even so are we Christ's." (2 Corinthians 10:3-7 KJV)

The apostle Paul, like all true Christians, experienced the war from within and from a distance.

"7:14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I [see Concupiscence]. 7:16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. 7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. 7:19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. 7:20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

7:21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me [see also Paul's Thorn]. 7:22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 7:25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin." (Romans 7:14-25 KJV)

Fact Finder: What is it that enables humans to "rise above" their minds of flesh?
See The Cure For The Carnal Mind; see also A Brainwashed World


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