THE OLD MAN (ADAM MAN), THE NEW MAN (THE MAN RISEN IN JESUS) & THE FLESH
“Knowing this, that our old man (Adam life) has been crucified with Him in order that the body of sin might be annulled.” (Rom. 6.6)
"I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." (Galatians 2.20)
"But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, (natural man) to fulfill its lusts."(Rom. 13.14)
"Those who are Christ's have crucified their flesh(natural man) with its lusts and its affections." (Gal. 5.24)
"For if you live according to the flesh (natural man) you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." (Romans 8.13)
What is The Old (Adam) Man?
The old Adam man is a composite of man + sin - man chained to sin because of Adam's eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil. Wanting to be 'as God' i.e. independent of God, he became united with sin. Everyone born into this world inherits this independent sinful nature.
The Old Man is humanity that has independently asserted itself from God and to which the law and life of sin has become attached.
Man is still good but something evil (sin) has attached itself to him as a cancer, and because of this he is incapable of living the life for which he was created.
What is The New Man?
The New Man is a composite of man + the Risen Lord and is thereby a New Creation from whom the law of sin has been removed. The New man is the section of humanity that has become attached to God through Jesus and to whom the Life of Christ has been added.
Man is either in union with sin, and therefore a slave to sin, or he is in union with Christ, and therefore a slave to Christ. Because the "old man" (the Adam man) is man separated from the life of God, he cannot please God and sin also operates within him. This is the condition of fallen human nature. That is why Jesus says, "Without me you can do nothing' We are incapable of the kind of life for which God created us apart from being united with Him.
The Law has found the old Adam man guilty. On the Cross Jesus took the death penalty of the old adamic man, making possible for us to be restored to God's favor and connected with His life, when we see our need to renounce the old a and receive the New Life of Jesus.
The Resurrection of Jesus raises us together with Christ to a new position of restored union with God through Christ in the Holy Spirit, when we receive it and leave behind the Adam man.
When we are united to God in Christ we are now New Creations - the old separated man no longer exists. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." (2 Corinthians 5.17)
When we are born again, there is a new life principle - God's own Spirit - flowing within man. The well of sin is cut off and the well of the Spirit is now bubbling up from within him. Christ Himself has come to live in him as the source of all righteousness, wisdom, health and strength. 'He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom, our righteousness and sanctification and redemption; therefore, as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast of the Lord.”' (I Corinthians 1.30)
What is The Flesh? The flesh is not only that which produces 'the works of the flesh are listed in eh Book of Galatians. "Now the works of the flesh are plain: fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party spirit, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God." (Galatians 5.19-21)
To be in the flesh, therefore, is to act independently of the life and direction of the Spirit and the word of God, and according to our natural inherited human nature i.e. not acting according to the new nature - the Jesus life that has come into us at new birth, but according to our natural inherited instincts.
The flesh still resides in man's soul (mind, intellect, imagination, will and emotions) and in his body - the natural tendencies received biologically through his parents and generations and from the surrounding world culture.
How Can We Get Victory over The Flesh?
We get victory over the flesh by the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus. " For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death."(Romans 8.2)
Sin held our Adam man captive, but now by the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus (Christ's life in us) - the Holy Spirit sets us free from the law of sin and death. This is our new reality.
While the old Adam nature was crucified with Christ, the flesh and its works. must be put to death by us. The flesh operating through our ego, self-assertiveness, self driven-ness, self-agenda, and through the body can draw us away from the control of God's Spirit.
Jesus said that if we follow Him and become His disciples and be those in whom His Life can be manifested and expressed - we have to deny ourselves and no longer pursue the self-centered agenda of the natural independent self. This includes that we do not permit the demands of the body to lead or control us.
If we permitted our physical bodies to control we would be drawn into excessive eating , sexual immorality, drunkenness, laziness etc. On the other hand, the body under the dominion of the Spirit needs to be nurtured and taken care of it . "No one ever hates his own body, but feeds it and takes care of it just like Christ does for the church" (Ephesians 5.29) We do not allow our bodies to control us but neither do we neglect them as we have a responsibility to take good care of them. Victory of the Spirit over the flesh is not achieved through asceticism but through the dominion of the Spirit.
Three Ways To Be Human
(1) Man in Adam
(2) Man in Christ In The Spirit
(3) Man In Christ in The Flesh
There are two ways we can be human - in Adam with the fallen, sinful nature - or in Christ with His Resurrected Life.
There are two ways to be in Christ (as described in Paul's writings) - in the Spirit or in the Flesh.
The Cross breaks our connection with Adam. However it does not break our connection with the flesh - our natural biological inheritance. When we are "in Christ" our old man (Adam man) has been crucified with Christ. The life of Christ in us is now the governing principle of our lives. The Lordship and dominion of the life of Christ within us however encounters resistance from the flesh. This resistance comes from the physical body, from the preferences of the unredeemed natural mind (soul), and from our culture and natural inheritance.
When we are "in Christ in the Spirit" - the Spirit of Christ (in us) is controlling and directing our lives. When we are "in Christ in the flesh" the opinions and preferences of the soul (mind and emotions) and the drives of the body are controlling our lives.
To overcome this 'flesh' resistance from the mind, we must allow it to be renewed by the word of God and to come into submission to the Spirit. To overcome the 'flesh' resistance from body we 'keep it under' and do not permit it to control us.
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