Dabar [theme]

He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou find refuge: His truth is a shield and buckler
Psalms 91:4

Be it ours,when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of His wings. C.H. Spugeon

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sarx

Sarx means strictly the flesh which is stripped from the bones of an animal; by implication our human nature with all its frailties and weakness, what is finite, perishable, and vulnerable, including our passions.


The problem in defining sarx is excluding it from its integral affiliation with our personhood. "Biblically we do not 'have' a body, 'have' a soul and 'have' a spirit, but our bodies, souls and spirits --are integrated wholes." The attempt to isolate sarx from soma (the body) and make them exclusive is fraught with deception. We do not operate as mutually exclusive parts of a whole. Even the works of the flesh highlighted by Paul in Galatians 5:19-21 are not indications of our physical drives and appetites but more accurately point to the fundamental orientation of our lives. Hence the pursuit of purity is not just found in a spiritual realm devoid of bodily function but is actually a psychological and physical expression of a changed orientation to life including our bodily functions. 

The totality of our existence is expressed by four dimensions of life: the body 'soma', our shape and form; the soul, total self or life 'psuche'; the spirit, our spiritual dimension, 'pneuma' 'the breath of life' the energizing life-force; the flesh 'sarx' the dimension that represents human finitude, mortality and weakness, strongly suggesting our human failing and inability to rise above our physical being.

Mark 12:30 "... and you shall love the Lord Your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength."

The intricacy of the our being man is found in the inherent links, for the purpose of this discussion the link is between our strength 'sarx' having a determination upon the other dimensions. We cannot love God uni-dimensionally it is a multi-dimensional effort. A divided allegiance is impossible, you have to be 'all in'. We are given a choice to determine what is the nature of our being and in that choice lies the strength, our resolve, our belief. our faith, our hope. If we are lost to our sinful nature believing that in this life there is nothing else then the strength used is towards that end. We are not persons knowing what to do but helpless to do it.

Galatians 5:16, "I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh."

We are not warring internally against subordinate uprisings of the flesh turned against God's purposes, presence and power, the conflict is in our personal decision to avail ourselves, by faith, of the redemptive and empowering presence of God in our lives. The decision must be made to no longer make provision for the impulses of gratifying our fleshly desires, those things which we attribute to a selfish nature, those things which look upon another as serving me.

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