Abstain from Sinful Desires
1 Peter 2:11
“Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul.”
Whether you are in prison or in the free world, after we are born again, we are to view ourselves as citizens of another Kingdom. We are no longer “of this world”; rather, we are “foreigners and exiles” just passing through on the way to our permanent home.
While we are still on this earthly plane, we should separate ourselves from “old people, places and things” so that we are not so easily surrounded and tempted by former sinful desires. Because we are a new creation in Christ Jesus (see 2 Corinthians 5:17), it is very possible to abstain from sinful desires and no longer practice sin (see 1 John 5:18-19). This is only achieved by choosing to be led by the Spirit instead of the flesh, and by the power of the Holy Spirit living in us.
Our soul, that is, our mind, will and emotions, must choose continuously between our flesh and our human spirit which, when we are born again, is influenced by the Holy Spirit. So, in a sense, our soul is subject to be in a constant “tug of war”. We must decide to follow the Leadership of the Holy Spirit who will empower us to say “no” to temptation.
God will not let us be tempted beyond that which we can bear, but will always provide a way of escape (1 Corinthians 10:13), and that way is always Christ.
Tell the Father that you want to abstain from sinful desires. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you say “no” to temptation today. Follow His leadership.
Dive Deeper: Study 1 Peter 2; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 John 5:18-19; 1 Corinthians 10:13.