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As we heed the call of the Bible and of the Holy Spirit for the believers in the Gospel of Jesus Christ to become cleansed and purified for the purpose of sanctification, we conclude that the primary target of our efforts to become cleansed needs to be (the world of) our emotions. Said differently, unless we first deal with the defining influence that our emotions have over our actions, to bring them to submission to the Word of God; that is, unless we cleanse them from Darkness and subject our emotions to the leading of the Holy Spirit, we cannot make spiritual progress in Christ.
For example, fear and the love of God cannot co-exist. The same is true for anger, wrath, bitterness, unforgiveness; you cannot have any of those and love your neighbor as yourself by the love of God.
1 Corinthians 2:11 For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. 13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know [them,] because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is [rightly] judged by no one.
there is a soul in man, which/where is the world of the emotions, which is unclean in and of itself, possessed by instinctive, beastly, sensual feelings, which lead a person to decisions and actions of Sin.
Ap. Paul explains that very well in Romans 1:18-32. In verse 29 he said “being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness, etc” – where are they filled? Which part of human nature becomes filled with such beastly, sensual feelings? The emotions! Here is another portion of Scripture that can help us grasp the depth of the issue we are looking at.
James 3:14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but [is] earthly, sensual, demonic. James attributes a demonic source and nature to these “sensual” feelings of the soul of a natural human being. In other words, the emotions of the soul are by nature demonic, because they are part of our earthly, carnal, beastly nature, in which we were born and raised.
That is why our human emotions need to be placed on the altar of sacrifice that they may be cleansed through the purifying fire of the Holy Spirit; they need to die, because our emotions are the habitat of the devil inside our earthly, sensual, human nature, which is (in) our soul.
So, what can we do about this challenge? We are called to lay our emotions on the altar of sacrifice. If we love our soul and all that comes with it, we shall lose it, Jesus said.
John 12:24 “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. 25 “He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 “If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him [My] Father will honor.
These words of Jesus can be applied in numerous ways; the first, what He said has to do with His own sacrificial death. He also had to fight against His own emotions in the garden of Gethsemane, before He surrendered and offered Himself up willingly to fulfill His father’s purpose to die on the cross.
We do not have to die as He did, but we are also called to lay our own soul on the altar of sacrifice to die as a burnt offering to the Lord, so that we may become a cleansed vessel, useful for the Master to use for His Glory. Unclean vessels cannot be used to serve the Holy God, as Paul explained:
2 Timothy 2:20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.