4.4. Life in the Spirit – Dying to Self – Deep Conviction


“Dream as if you will live forver, live as if you’ll die today” – James Dean

1. The Movie

In the movie “Tree of Life” with Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, the plot is about the impressionistic story of a Texas family in the 1950s. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father (Brad Pitt). Jack (played as an adult by Sean Penn) finds himself a lost soul in the modern world, seeking answers to the origins and meaning of life while questioning the existence of faith.

2. Movie Quotes

“There are two ways through life,  the way of nature and the way of grace. You have to choose which one you will follow.”

“It takes fierce will to get ahead in this world.”

“Come on son, hit me, hit me. He is afraid of you, you expect things of him that only an adult could accomplish.”

“I always wanted you to be strong, be your own man.”

“Father, mother, always you wrestle inside me. Always you will.”

“Some day we will fall down and leave, then we will understand it all, all things.”

“Guide us to the end of time.”

“Unless you love, your life will flash by.”

It is interesting what she says about life Hans, there is the way of nature (sinful nature) and the way of grace (life in the Spirit).

Then you will have to choose which one you will follow. In the end it is about choices you make that determine the outcome.

It takes a fierce will to get ahead in this world either way if you live for the world or if you live for God.

As as parent you set the scene for your children, “you wrestle inside me” your discipline will either lead them to the tree of life or you will be a willing partner to their death (Pr 19:18)

Hans I pray that you will understand what life is all about now, dont make the mistake to find out at the end that your life that your ladder has been leaning against the wrong wall, “then we will understand it all, all things”.

Who will; “guide you to the end of time.”?

“Guide us to the end of time.” Will that be worldly love or spiritual eternal love?

3. The scriptures:

Let’s look at what the Bible has to say:

14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?  – Romans 7:14-24 | NIV

– Am I making every effort to be in close contact with other Christians?

  • Francois, no not always daily contact.
  • I am thinking about the first century Christians that met daily in the Temple courts.
  • I know in our current day and age that does not seem possible to meet in person every day,  but surely we have Whatsapp where we can chat daily.

– Why would someone want to have daily contact?

  • We are social being, just think how you felt during the lockdown.
  • Francois maybe to be encouraged.
  • To confess sin to have a clear conscience.
  • To get advice about situations that happened during the day.
  • To build friendships in the church Francois.
  • To think of it that way, why would I not want to have daily contact!

– How powerless am I to live this life without God’s help?

  • If I do not have the Holy Spirit I will live in sin all the time.
  • My sinful nature wage war on my soul.
  • I will be totally unspiritual.
  • I would keep on doing the things that I hate, being a slave to sin.
  • No good thing lives in my sinful nature.
  • Even when I want to do good, evil is right there with me.

–  What must I do with my sinful nature?

  • It is only God that can save us from our sinful natures.
  • I need to to put to death whatever belongs to your sinful / worldly nature. (Col 3:5)
  • I will not live to gratify the desires of my sinful nature; if I walk in the Spirit. (Gal 5:17)

Hans let us read Romans, placing your name in the scriptures:

 81 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those (Hans) who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you (Hans) free from the law of sin and death. 3 For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us (Hans) , who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.5 Those (Hans) who live according to the flesh have their (Hans) minds set on what the flesh desires; but those (Hans) who live in accordance with the Spirit have their (Hans’) minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6 The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. 7 The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. 8 Those (Hans) who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.9 You (Hans) , however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you (Hans) . And if anyone (Hans) does not have the Spirit of Christ, they (Hans) do not belong to Christ. 10 But if Christ is in you (Hans) , then even though your (Hans) body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you (Hans) , he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your (Hans) mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you (Hans) .12 Therefore, brothers (Hans) and sisters, we (Hans) have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. 13 For if you (Hans) live according to the flesh, you (Hans) will die; but if by the Spirit you (Hans) put to death the misdeeds of the body, you (Hans) will live.14 For those (Hans) who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you (Hans) received does not make you (Hans) slaves, so that you (Hans) live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you (Hans) received brought about your (Hans) adoption to sonship. And by him we (Hans) cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our (Hans’) spirit that we (Hans) are God’s children. 17 Now if we (Hans) are children, then we (Hans) are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we (Hans) share in his sufferings in order that we (Hans) may also share in his glory. – Romans 8:-17 | NIV

You were probably assured at your baptism into Christ that you would receive the Holy Spirit upon your obedience to the Gospel Hans.

Now we will look what the Spirit means in our lives.

– What are some things that impressed you the most in these scriptures?

  • There is now no condemnation if I am in Christ.
  • If I live according to the Spirit I will have my mind set on what the spirit desires.
  • Living according to the Spirit means I put to death the misdeeds (sin) of the body.
  • If I am led by the Spirit I am a child of God.


Hey Hans, can you please close us out with a prayer?

  • Sure boet.
  • Morning Father. Thank you for a new day with new possibilities and opportunities to use to bring You glory.
  • Life in the spirit is truly awesome!!!
  • The movie the tree of life is so impactful, even just the quotes in the movie.
  • God we will always struggle with our sinful nature that wants to bring us down. 
  • God only through living with your spirit can we be righteous in Your eyes. 
  • I know that daily contact help us to give an account of our lives on a daily basis and afford the person who disciples us / mentors us to give us input in our lives.
  • Our struggle is to put our sinful natures to death every day. 
  • Help me to live by your Spirit so that there will be no condemnation in Christ.
  • Amen.
Tomorrow we will be looking at: Taking Correction

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