Whoever is born of God does not practice sin

Published 8:11 am Friday, July 5, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: Preachers talk a lot about the “works of the flesh.” Is that really in the Bible, and if so, what exactly is that? – W.F.


Dear W.F.: The Bible speaks of “works of the flesh” meaning human nature in all of its weaknesses. The flesh is the lower side of people’s nature. It is all that we are without God. The Apostle Paul gives the terrible list of behaviors in Galatians 5:19-21, revealing the depravity of human nature. No wonder we see these in the daily news headlines, flaunted shamelessly.

Topping this list is immorality that covers sexual wickedness (the word is porneia ) from which the word pornography comes. Impurity, whether in thought or deed. Sensuality, the notion of recklessness or open indulgence. Idolatry, the worship of anything that comes between us and God. Sorcery, administering magical potions and drugs. Enmities: hatred, hostilities, antagonism, etc. Strife, meaning contentions, discord, fighting, and quarreling. Jealousy, which spawns all kinds of sinful behavior including murder. Anger: fits of rage and hostile feelings. Disputes: selfish ambition and self-seeking. Dissensions (divisions). Factions (heresies). Envy and pride, often involving covetousness. Drunkenness, overindulgence. Carousings – illicit sex and other evils.

Many people today believe that they can conduct their lives with such recklessness without consequence, but the apostle sternly says, “Those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:21, NKJV).

The lives of many reflect that they are more interested in imitating the world system dominated by Satan than in imitating Christ. The Bible teaches that whoever is born of God does not practice sin. The Bible also says, “Blessed are all who hear the word of God and put it into practice” (Luke 11:28, NLT). This is the key to living an abundant life. By faith in Jesus Christ we can be forgiven of our sins and know the joy of following Him every day.


(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)