A typical prisoner is held behind bars or in certain circumstances can be placed under house arrest. This fate is a result of breaking the law, caught by authorities or brought in for questioning and possibly held overnight as a possible suspect of a crime. Unfortunately, many people find themselves held hostage by an invisible force. Beyond the physical realm, demons, powers of darkness and evil spirits are on the prowl, seeking to pounce upon weakened souls, 1 Peter 5:8. Anyone who lacks self-discipline could be the next victim, a prisoner of your own appetite.
Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace, Romans 8:5-6.
According to the apostle Paul, the human flesh has a mind of it’s own. Like a stubborn child, the sinful nature is in a constant state of want. I can picture an infant screaming for food or toddler throwing a temper tantrum. These fits of rage are signs of the flesh at an early stage of development. As time goes by, outbursts only intensive, especially when lust within human hearts goes unsatisfied. The more the average person feeds these cravings, the flesh can get out of control. When selfishness is unleashed, even the strong may find themselves a prisoner of their own appetite.
The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God, Romans 8:7-8.
If you read between the lines of Romans 8, Paul is imploring burdened souls that you don’t have to do this anyone. You don’t have to continue living in bondage to your sinful nature. However, transformation begins within your mind. Like any enemy, whispers of doubt consume those attempting to break free. Thus, if you are serious about changing, you must ignore whispers from the Devil. In this transitional period, you will likely experience withdraw, internal pressure to return to pleasing your flesh. Yet, if you seek an accountability relationship, devote your life to prayer and submit to God, freedom is within your reach. The journey is long, but don’t give up hope until victory arrives.
by Jay Mankus