Living Verses Walking in the Spirit
By David J. Stewart
"If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." —Galatians 5:25
Galatians 5:25 is one of the most interesting Scriptures in the Bible, and often overlooked. The Bible makes a clear distinction between LIVING in the Spirit of Christ, verses WALKING in the Spirit of Christ. The Spirit of Christ is of course the Holy Spirit of God—they are one and the same (Romans 8:9). Most Christians today are not walking in the Spirit—they are saved, i.e., they live in the Spirit; but they are not exemplifying Christ in their personal life.
Lordship Salvation is a popular heresy these days, and it has crept into many of our churches. It's amazing how the simple Biblical teaching of salvation has been perverted in so many different ways. It is obvious that many professed "Christians" today are as phony as can be; but as a tragic result, some foolish people have started teaching that a person must turn from their sins to be saved. This is a lie of the Devil. God only requires that a person realize their GUILT (Romans 3:19).
In Mark 1:14,15 we read, "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel." Jesus DIDN'T say... "repent and turn from your sins." No, rather, Jesus said... repent ye, and believe the gospel. Please read, What is Biblical Repentance?
It is very possible for a genuine born-again believer to live in Christ's Spirit, while simultaneously refusing to walk in Christ's Spirit. In other words... they are saved but living in sin. This describes most believers today. Our greatest sins in America, as believers, are: indifference, apathy, pride, cowardliness, selfishness, and complacency. It is a sin for a believer not to serve God. While tens-of-millions of babies continue to be slaughtered by abortion, our churches have become silent. Why? It's because today's believers have the Spirit of Christ within them; but they are NOT walking, i.e., yielding, to Christ's Spirit. This doesn't mean they're not saved, it simply means they're backslidden. Certainly, many professed Christians today are not saved; BUT, that doesn't give anyone a right to require lost sinners to turn from their sins to be saved, in order to appease one's sanctimoniousness. Is there a Christian without sin? No!
Oh!, that believers would walk in the Spirit, and obey the Scriptures!
The unbeliever has not the Spirit of God (Romans 8:9). God's Holy Spirit comes to indwell each and every believer at the time of salvation. Thus, the Catholic teaching of Confirmation is unbiblical. Only a genuine born again Christian has the Spirit of God, i.e., God within us. If we so LIVE in the Spirit of God (Christ), then we should also WALK in His Spirit.
"This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh." —Galatians 5:16