if we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. [galatians 5:25]
reality -> action
if we live by the Spirit refers to something we either are, or are not. if we are believers, then we who were dead in our sins now live by the Spirit! nothing can take that away; it simply describes our new reality. but given that we already have the Holy Spirit, should we use that gift to be complacent about it? by no means!
here’s a similar way this verse could be written about marriage. if we are married, let us also keep in step with our spouses. if you are married, you’re married! according to scripture, a married couple are one flesh, and nothing you can do will change the reality that the two separate people who decided to get married are gone forever! but now that we are married, let us also keep in step. the way a couple spends money, pursues the Lord, interacts with other people, raises their children, and does everything else need to be in step with one another, so that in unity they may live together in a complementary harmony!
so what does this have to do with the Holy Spirit? our relationship with the Holy Spirit is more like a relationship with a spouse than it is like any other. it is intimate, constant, and life-altering. every thing that we do is either in step or out of step with the Spirit, just like everything we do is in step or out of step with our spouse. we are either partnering in harmony with the Holy Spirit, or we are opposing him.
the Spirit abides in us all the day long. while we read our bibles, he is gently leading us into the truth of scripture. while we decide how to respond to an infuriating coworker, he is there encouraging us to be patient. when the joys of life come, he rejoices with us! but when our flesh leads us to desire sin, he throws up the warning signs, and if we give in he brings conviction. it is only by the Spirit that we are able to obey God’s will!
he is there every moment, in every decision—are you listening?
~ stephen hall