16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. 17 For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law. 19 Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. – Galatians 5:16-21
All of that comes from self. Satan’s fall was of self: “I will exalt my self above” (Isaiah 14:13). Self is the great enemy of God. Everything of evil had its beginning in self. That doesn’t deny the fact that there is a devil who started it all, but even that was by the rising of self. Man’s propensity toward self has created its own evil. The world is presently filled with it, and worse, the heart of man is filled with it. This list in Galatians is the fruit of what’s called the flesh. A fraction of the fruit of the self life is listed here. The full list would be virtually endless. Simply stated, flesh is all that is not God, all that is not light, all that is not love. If the devil was taken out of this earth, you wouldn’t know the difference because of man’s self life. Self is self, no matter what being it is in. Adam became equal or beyond Lucifer in his ability to create and unleash evil. That’s why, in the process of God getting us to eternal plan and purpose, there is such focus upon death working in the self life that the life of God may come forward.
As the priests of the Old Testament moved from the outer court to the inner court, one of the things they approached was the laver filled with water which showed them a reflection of themselves. There is a difference between morbid introspection and being able to see, without condemnation, truly and factually, where we are in the Lord and how much He is possessing us. There is a morbid introspection which is a trap and can be quicksand to us, but there is a seeing of the Lord whereby see clearly where we are and what the Lord is trying to accomplish in us through restraint of the self life.
Every day of our life is a wonderful opportunity for God to deal with our self life. The events orchestrated by God around us are purposeful and not accidental. That irritating person that you hate to see coming is being pushed your direction by the Holy Spirit. What a wonderful journey we are on of discovering the distinction between Christ and self, the distinction between our conception of Christ that has been handed to us through years of religious activities versus the truth. We have been handed elements of Christianity without the whole, which is the person ever coming rightly and completely and fully into view.
The works of the flesh are evident (Galatians 5:19). Anyone who claims to know the will of God and be under the hand of God and yet does not believe He will absolutely deal with these things is kidding themselves. You cannot define God by evil or its absence. God cannot be defined that way. You cannot define God at all. Anyone who says, “Well, I’m walking in the light, but I think these things are ok in my life,” is lying to themselves. If you’ve been told it isn’t a big deal, you’ve been lied to. You have believed a lie, and you are lying to yourself. Self-life is a big deal. Ask Lucifer.
Self is primarily what God’s dealing with in me. How about you? Honestly, stand at that laver made of silver that reflects your image back and understand that if you cannot see yourself clearly, there’s no advancing to the holy place. Let me say that again. Without properly seeing your flesh, there is no rending of the veil to enter into the next phase of God’s dealings.