"Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness,revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."Galatians 5:19-21
According to these verses those who manifest these actions and attitudes will not inherit the kingdom of God. How does this line up with what you may have heard regarding salvation? Does this sound like salvation comes only through faith by believing in Christ or are there other factors involved? Perhaps perseverance is indeed necessary to receive the desired goal of our faith? It seems possible since these verses definitely preclude many so called christians who thought they were secure.
How about you; can you honestly say that you are free from each and every one of these sins listed? Let's take a look:
Adultery: Remember that Jesus said if you look at a woman to lust after her in your heart you are just as guilty as if you had committed the very act.
Fornication: many young people today seem to think it's ok to have premarital sex. I wonder what version they have been reading.
Uncleanness: This has much more to do that simply our outward appearance. Rather God looks at our thought life and our heart's attitude. Are your thoughts morally pure at this moment?
Lasciviousness: One who is inclined to lustfulness in thought or action.
Idolatry: We all know this refers not only to idols of stone and wood but those we set up on the altar of our heart. Perhaps you have something that you esteem higher than Christ?
Witchcraft: This one is becoming increasingly common in our land today. There are many facets of witchcraft from fortune telling, divining, to things such as water witching and ouija boards.
Hatred: very self explanatory.
Variance: Do you find yourself constantly arguing with others, quarreling over petty issues or finding disagreement simply for arguments sake?
Emulations: According to the dictionary this would mean a desire to equal or exceed others. Another common name is jealousy.
Wrath: Those with excessive anger tend to overreact in judgement and often appear harsh and overbearing.
Strife: Do your words and comments sound bitter and antagonistic?
Seditions: Do you have an attitude of rebelliousness against your authorities and leaders? Do you talk about your boss, pastor, or people to whom you owe respect honor and loyalty behind their back?
Envyings: Do you suffer from feelings of inadequacy? If only we had this or that, or if our (fill in the blanks) was as nice as our neighbor.
Murders: Jesus pointed out that our anger towards a fellow brother can have the same results in our heart.
Drunkenness: "Well I know it's wrong to get drunk, but I only get tipsy once in a while. After all I need to fit in with the crowd." What about your intoxication with the technologies and pleasures of this world? Have they made you drunk?
Revellings: Are you the life of the party? Do you find that you must take everything to the extremes in order to have a good time? Does your pleasure come from the affluence around you or are you finding satisfaction in God. Do you delight in Him above all else?
If we honesty and soberly examine this list it will reveal where we truly stand before God. Don't delude yourself into thinking all is okay simply because you believe a mental fact about God. You may also think that because I have my theology straightened out I will be fine.
Obviously God is more concerned about our conduct than how correct and detailed our theology is.
What does your theology say about the kingdom of God? Will you inherit it based on this above list? Please explain your answer.