Text: Gal.5:23–24
Memorize This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
-Galatians 5:16 (KJV)
Scripture: Galatians 5:16; Philippians 3:3; Romans 8:4; Gal. 5:16; Gal.5:23–24.

In conversion, the Holy Spirit breaks this hold that sin has on us, but when we are not walking in the Spirit, our flesh can seize the law to encourage sin in us once more. If we have trusted Christ, the only way we can fight this is to “walk by the Spirit,” pursuing fruit such as joy, peace, patience, kindness, and self-control, among others Such things are possible only when the heart is content, so the pursuit of contentment is the best way to slay our urges to covet.

Scripture’s answer to the problem of covetousness in Christian hearts is not to abandon all desire. Neither is it to view material goods as evil and look down on those whom God has richly prospered. Instead, the Bible calls us to “be content with what [we] have” (Heb. 13:5). We are to cultivate contented hearts that are happy when others flourish and know that Christ Himself is sufficient whether we own many things or not.

All sinners can testify to this reality. There is just something about the wicked human heart that loves sin in itself and not simply the fleeting pleasures it provides. We sin simply because we can and because we enjoy it. Augustine captured this well in book two of his Confessions when he spoke of stealing pears as a youth. His “pleasure was not in those pears, it was in the offense itself.

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