Rom 8,12-14

“12 So then, brethren, we are debtors, but not to the flesh, that we may live after the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the works of the flesh, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God ”(Rom 8: 12-14).
Paul’s words in this short passage are clear: There are “sons of the world” in the world who are led by their own bodies. And there are “sons of God” in the world, led by the Spirit of God. Being led by one’s own body leads to death. To be led by the Spirit of God leads to life in God.
To fully understand these words, we must realize the exact meaning of the word “body” in this statement of Paul.
The Greek word “sarx” means the body in the sense of the material “box” of man. Therefore, some currents (such as Gnostics of the 2nd century AD) understood the phrase “works of the flesh,” “living by the flesh,” solely in terms of bodily needs and desires, and preached strict physical asceticism (such as Gnostic initiates were not allowed to eat meat, marry, and give up, and Come.).
But Paul understands the dualism of “body-spirit” as well as the whole Bible: as a contradiction and difference between what is human and what comes from man (and that means human instincts, feelings and reason at the same time) and what comes from God. For example, he says, “19 And the works of the flesh are manifest: fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 idolatry, enchantments, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, mischief, strife, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, revenge, and the like. Of this I say to you in advance, as I have said, that those who do such things will not attain the kingdom of God ”(Gal. 5: 19-21). Note that among the deeds of the body are also such “items” as envy, jealousy, idolatry, lines – that is, deeds that are certainly not based on the bodily needs of man, but are the fruit of his feelings, or reason and will!
In fact, this is a very simple thing for Paul, which we can all very easily understand:
1. It is about God to become like Him, to be like Him, and to live God’s life. Just as the life of a millionaire can only be lived by one who is a millionaire, so the life of God can be lived only by one who is God. Therefore, (St.) Grignion of Mont fort writes of this intention of God with man: “O what an admirable work: dust transformed into light, manure into purity, sin into holiness, creation into the Creator, man in God!”
2. God is different from any other creature. God’s Word says in Old Testament times, “7 Who is like the Lord in the clouds? Who among the sons of God is like the Lord? 8 God, who awakens in the congregation of the saints, is great and terrible against all who surround him. 9 Lord, God of hosts, who is like you? Thou art strong, O Lord, and the truth is with thee ”(Ps. 89: 7-9). Even if man did not sin, he would still be unlike God. How much more is then a man unlike God, who is sinful and prone to evil and selfishness?
3. If we are to become like God, we must become like God. We must become like God. But who knows the Holy Spirit, what is God like? Scripture says, “The Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God” (1 Cor 2:10). Only the Spirit of God can lead us on the path of imitation to God. Not to mention that only the Spirit of God can give us strength and grace to complete this superhuman and unseen work of deification of man!
And this is the meaning of Paul’s words:
When we think like people – whether our thoughts are turned to good or bad – we think humanly and are similar to other people. Our actions and decisions are subordinate to our small human forces and possibilities and are (compared to God’s work) very petty. Only when we abandon the thoughts and deeds of the “flesh” in the sense of what is human and allow ourselves to be led by the Spirit of God to the thoughts and deeds that are God’s will we begin to be likened to God in the same way that Christ – God was His perfect image. “In the dimensions” of man!
Here again, we come across a widespread mistake that we might summarize as “candy Christianity”:
• Many people imagine Heaven if it is a “place” where they get good for a reward – about the way a child gets candy for a unit at school. Hence, the conviction that if I do not commit any serious sins (“I did not kill anyone, I did not steal anyone”), I “cut” goodness (“I have nothing to do with anyone, I am not angry with anyone”) and I am good with God (“I go to church “I pray”), so God will somehow let me in there, and it will be.
• OR, BUT THERE IS NOT A PLACE BUT A STATE IN WHICH WE ARE AS GOD. Scripture says, “1 Behold, how great a love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we are called children of God, and we are children. Therefore, the world does not know us, that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are now children of God, and it has not yet been shown what we will be. But we know that when he appears, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is ”(1 Jn 3: 1n). Plus: Or it’s not a reward, on the contrary, it’s a gift: “I’m Alpha and Omega, Beginning and Ending. I will give the thirsty for free from the fountain of living water. ”(Revelation 21: 6b), Jesus says. Therefore, he says that he came to call sinners.

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