Life in the Spirit

Read: Romans 8:1-8

Those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. (v. 5)

The word “spirit” is used no less than twenty-two times in Romans 8, though not always in the same sense. We can distinguish three different spirits here: the Spirit of God, the human spirit, and the spirit (or attitude) that resists God’s Spirit. In verse 5 it’s clear which spirit Paul means when he urges us to “set [our] minds on the things of the Spirit.” In a world where bombs explode, poverty exists, oppression happens, injustice occurs, and sin in its multifarious expressions shows up in every life, Christians are urged to focus on the things of the Spirit. The things of the Spirit are: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Gal. 5:23-23).

Life in the Spirit begins with God’s work of redemption through Christ. But it grows in us when we actively set our minds on the things of the Spirit. If we think about love we are more likely to love. If we think about joy we are more likely to be joyful. If we think about peace we are more likely to be peacemakers. We pursue life in the Spirit by intentionally focusing our thoughts on the things of God.

Ask yourself: what do you spend most of your time thinking about? Where is your mind set?

As you pray, ask God to free you from distractions and help you set your mind on the things of the Spirit.

About the Author

Jonathon Brown is the lead pastor of Pillar Church in Holland, MI.Jon and his beloved wife, Kristyn, are the proud parents of four daughters.

This entry is part 5 of 13 in the series In Christ