The Holy Spirit: Walking In The Spirit

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Proverbs: A Strong Man Is Wise.

In the journey through a believer's spiritual life, there exists a continuous tug-of-war between two compelling forces: the flesh and the Spirit. And I believe liberation can be found because of two things — the saving liberation of sin by Jesus and the sustaining liberation of sins by the Spirit. But to know this liberation, we must submit our lives to Jesus and the Spirit. And we do this by learning to walk by the Spirit.

Today, we will read one of my favorite scriptures written by Paul. There is so much packed into these ten verses. They are from Galatians 5, but they teach us so much about walking in the Spirit.

"But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another." — Galatians 5:16-26

So, here are some key observations from this text:

  • There are two desires — desires of the flesh and desires of the Spirit.
  • These desires come from two different sources — from you or the person of the Spirit.
  • Your desires and the Spirit's desires will always be in constant conflict.
  • Your desires have fleshy outcomes, and the Spirit's have spiritual outcomes.

This conflict between us and the Spirit is our primary conflict. We will live with this conflict for the rest of our lives. And Jesus knew this. He knew his saving power was enough to provide salvation but that we would need the sustaining power of the Spirit for this ongoing battle. And to live a liberated life, we must learn to walk, be led by, live by, and keep in step with the Spirit, as Paul states here.

But many believers don't do this because they do not know how. It's not like walking in the flesh, which is not something you have to teach anyone. We all know how to walk in the flesh because we are all concerned about ourselves and have selfish desires with sinful ends. We are born in the flesh, feed the flesh, live in the flesh, train the flesh, and know the rewards of living a fleshly life. Walking in the Spirit is an entirely new way to do things.

So how do we do it?

Based on this text today, I would like to walk you through it in a few steps.

First, walking in the Spirit is a walk. Walking is an activity done slowly and progressively, unlike fleshly desires that are quick and fast with short-lived selfish gains. So first, you have to change your mindset about the speed of spiritual living. Begin by slowing it down and understanding the believer's life is one long obedience in a godly direction.

Second, walking in the Spirit is walking away from sin. It involves putting distance between you and your fleshly desires. It is to turn your back on your fleshly urges and former behaviors. Remember that we live in a world full of fleshly vices and sin. They are not going to stop enticing you and pursuing you. So, for the remainder of this life, you will have to persistently and continually walk away from them.

Third, walking in the Spirit is walking with a leader. The leader is the person of the Spirit. He is doing the leading. He is always with you. He never leaves you alone. He is always prompting, convicting, and guiding. This means he is the leader, and you are not. You must submit to him as the leader, and you merely follow. This leads nicely to the next point.

Fourth, walking in the Spirit is living by His desires. This means your desires cannot compete with the Spirit's. As Paul said, you can no longer reward them and must crucify, destroy, and kill them. Entertaining your desires, thinking about your desires, and dwelling on your desires is not an option. If you do, your will will compete with his will. At first, walking with him will mostly be his desires, acting on your will until you learn his wishes and let his will work on you. Which again leads nicely to the next point.

Fifth, walking in the Spirit is continually being threatened. Paul mentions three threats — conceit, provoking, and envying. Sometimes, a selfish and fleshly mood will rise in us. But the believer who walks in the Spirit will recognize these moments. They will not always respond perfectly, but they will acknowledge, confess, and correct them. They are threats to us and our community. We should become more proficient at seeing these threats the longer we walk with the Spirit and get more sensitive to forecasting their attack.

So today, embrace your liberation secured by Jesus and sustained by the Spirit. Take deliberate steps, turn away from sin, follow the Spirit's lead, align your desires with His, and guard against threats. Enjoy the liberation and leading of walking with the Holy Spirit.


  1. In your journey as a believer, how often do you grapple with the tug-of-war between your fleshly desires and the Spirit's promptings? What steps can you take to strengthen your commitment to walking in the Spirit and experiencing lasting liberation?
  2. Consider aligning your desires with those of the Spirit. Are there areas in your life where your desires conflict with what the Spirit desires for you? How can you actively crucify your fleshly desires and allow the Spirit's desires to shape your thoughts, actions, and decisions?

DO THIS: Walk with the Spirit.

PRAY THIS: Holy Spirit, guide me on this journey of walking in alignment with your desires as I yearn to overcome the conflicts within and embrace the liberation only you can provide. Empower me to continually submit to your leadership and walk in step with your prompting.

PLAY THIS: Stay Strong.

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49 thoughts on “The Holy Spirit: Walking In The Spirit

  1. Chad Husted says:

    I’m a few days behind, but this is just what i needed to hear today. thx Vince!
    Chad Husted, Temperance, MI

  2. Brian Fautch says:

    I really got to learn how to walk in the Spirit by getting together and sharing our walks with each other, seeing that walk in action. More than reading or practicing on my own. Being corrected by seeing, being encouraged by seeing others do the same!

    Brian Fautch
    19250 Leyte St NE
    East Bethel MN 55092
    [email protected]

  3. Michael B says:

    Vince, awesome talk today. You are so good to teach the truth. Leaning into the Holy Spirit is so important in the Christian crusade in life. Walking away from the fleshly desires and staying with the Christ is a life at peace.

  4. Steve says:

    This is so relevant in men’s life the struggle between flesh and the Spirit. Choosing to walk and live in the Spirit is to submit myself to his leadings each day for this ongoing battle in me.

  5. Ezra Hostetler says:

    Unfortunately the devil also promts us to try to get us to walk in the flesh, he even goes as far as trying to make us believe it is the spirit prompting us, we have to prayerfully discern the prompting we receive and the holy spirit will reveal the true prompting of God.
    I truly am enjoying this series about the Holy Spirit. Thank you and God Bless.
    Ezra Hostetler
    Middleburg, Pennsylvania.

  6. Brad Plumlee says:

    It’s so easy to be distracted by this life and strive to do things under our own power. May the Holy Spirit help us to keep our eyes open and on the goal.

    Brad Plumlee
    Gallatin TN

  7. Ruben T. Garcia Sr says:

    Praise the Lord we have the spirit to keep us honest. We need to daily walk in the spirit.

    Ruben T. Garcia, Sr

  8. Rick says:

    Thank you Vince!!
    Very clear direction of Walking in the Spirit of God.
    I confess that I am struggling a whole lot in doing this day in and day out.
    Thank God for your devotional each day.
    God bless you!

  9. jeff garwood says:

    Thanks for such a regularly uplifting, thoughtful and teaching devotional. My pastor provided idea this a year or so ago, we meet each tuesday for breakfast … always a great discussion. thanks

    Jeff Garwood, 55 tabby circle, Daufuskie Island sc 29915 … you would be welcome to attend First Union African Baptist Church here on Daufuskie where Aaron Crosby is the pastor referenced above. a long and exciting history as it was built by freed men, right after civil war … a God fearing, Bible studying group of roughly 50 to 60 attend each week (on an island of 5 miles by 3 miles). thanks again

  10. Jeff Kuhn says:

    Well said Vince. I’m really enjoying these mornings reading about the Holy Spirit.
    Can’t wait until tomorrow.
    Be blessed.

  11. Chris Caliguire says:

    I was introduced to these versus several years ago when God gave me a contrite heart, longing to figure out obedience. The bad versus became my new commandments as I was consistently guilty of all for about 20 years. And I mean ALL. My drinking, drug, sex infused lifestyle was ridiculous. And then I’d attend Church every couple of months and feel soooo guilty. I wanted to wipe my slate clean yet sometimes feel if I do a bad item I’m not really saved . In the past few months I’ve learned that’s untrue because I fight these items tooth and nail and no longer “practice them” ESV. I’ve also come to accept that’s its not me “shaping up”, it’s trusting that Jesus shaped me up. The trusting is the hard part because I still get stuck in “sinless perfection” saves me, which leads to depression and arrogance, depending on the day. I pray we all can truly trust that we don’t know the spiritual realm where God exists and if He set it up this way, we trust in Him. Thank you Pastor Vince. This was well explained and has become my goto chapter time and again ❤️

    • hank cunel says:

      hey Chris, great truthful ongoing testimony..Any unusual suggestions on how stay on the narrow path especially when it comes to womanizing? thanks

      • Chris Caliguire says:

        That’s been easy for me, as I just don’t go to bars or concerts nor attend a large Church which stereotypically has a lot of nominal attendees. I also watch a lot of you tube videos regarding porn and maturation and one that has really clicked with me is that ejaculation is a dopamine rush. It’s 50/50 but when I grab my Bible and pray away the urge, obedience fills the dopamine rush. It’s really weird then to watch the Bible play our It’s intention. Whereas we mostly use cliches, “gotta give it to God”, etc. Actually living out these cliches and then having them be successful, is nuts!! The other side of the 50/50 is when I fail and left sleepless most of the night. Probably wrongly living out the grieving of the Spirit. For me, the only womanizing happens late at night when I should have just went to bed early…

        • hank cunel says:

          Thanks Chris, good practical points..I’ll grab the Bible when the urge you say,over time, that could be the dopamine required..blessing to you

  12. Marko says:

    You are a true blessing to me and many others Brother Vince. Thank you and may God continue to bless you and the work you do in His Name!

  13. Tom Hollis says:

    Tom Hollis
    Pinehurst, Texas

    Great devotional. As another has mentioned, it is my daily prayer to walk in the Spirit and to be used by our Lord.

  14. Tom Fredericks Sr. says:

    Oh God. May I DO what you have told me to do, so that I will SEE what you told me I would, and BE all that I was destined to be!

    Do you not know that you are slaves of the one you obey? Whether you are slaves to sin which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness! – (Romans 6:16)

  15. Mark Brannan says:

    I have reading your DEVO’s for a year or so and have really enjoyed and have shared them with your Men’s group at Church. Also, I have used one of your Bible Studies “James” and believe it’s well done. Thanks for all you do brother, God Bless

  16. Sean Dahlquist says:

    Love today’s devotion! That’s like one of my daily top prayers, to be less of me and more like Jesus, I personally have to pray constantly to be spirit driven and not led by my own flesh!

    Sean Dahlquist
    Bradenton, Florida

    • Eddie Ackerman says:

      well said Brother Sean. and the Apostles said this too, specifically Paul, if memory serves. Pray continuously. We need to be in CONTINUOUS communication with The Helper, The Father, and The Son because we can’t see them, but they are always there. our fleshly desires find it VERY difficult to submit to an unseen force as The Leader in our lives, but The Spirit will guide us as long as we DO submit to Him. As my small group leader says, “We have to ignore the desires of the OLD man, for we are a NEW man in Christ. However, we still have the life-long battle ahead of us of fighting the OLD man urges and replacing them with the NEW man urges.” using 2 Corinthians 5:17 as the basis for this mindset.

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