Yesterday, we discussed the first part of this section of this scripture. Today, we will finish. Let God's Holy Spirit speak to you about your life.
9. Fits of rage (wrath) - The Greek word thumos is used throughout the New Testament to picture a person who is literally boiling with anger about something. Although the person tries to restrain his anger by shoving it down deeper into his soul, it intermittently flares up. When that happens, this person is like a volcano that suddenly blow it top, scorching everything within its reach as it hurls its load of deadly molten lava on the entire surrounding landscape.
10. Selfish ambition (strife) - The Greek word eritheia describes a self-seeking ambition that is more concerned about itself and the fulfillment of its own wants, desires, and pleasures that it is in meeting the same needs in others. When eritheia is working in someone's life, it means that a person's principle concern is to take care of himself and to get what he wants. He is so bent on getting what he wants that he is willing to do anything, say anything, or sacrifice any standard, rule, or relationship to achieve his goals. Because this self-consumed, self-focused attitude is engrossed with its own desires and ambitions, it is blinded to the desires and ambitions of other people.
11. Dissensions - The Greek word dichostasia means to stand apart, as one who rebels and steps away from someone to whom he should have been loyal. Thus the word "dissension" gives the impression of disloyalty. It is the ultimate act of defiance or disloyalty to an established authority.
12. Factions - The Greek word hairesis carries the idea of a group of people who adheres to the same doctrine or who ardently follow the same leader and are sectarian. The adherents of a sect are usually limited in their scope and closed to outsiders, staying primarily to themselves. In New Testament times, these groups were considered to be unauthorized because they were not submitted to the authority of the church leadership. In today's contemporary language, we would call them "cliques" - a group of people who believe or conduct themselves as if they are exclusive.
13. Envy - The Greek word phthonos implies a deeply felt grudge because someone possess what a person wishes was his own. Because this person has a chip on his shoulder, he begrudges what the other person possesses and is covetous of that person's belongings, accomplishments, relationships, or titles in life. Every time he see that other person, he inwardly seethes about his success. He deeply resents that person's blessing and tries to figure out a way to seize it away from the person he envies in order to make it his own.
14. Drunkenness - The Greek word methe refers to strong drink or to drunkenness. The consumption of wine for the sake of intoxication was common in the first century due to many pagan religions that employed wine as a part of their religious practices. A drunken state suppressed the mind's ability to think correctly and releases the flesh to fully express itself. The believers in the first century were trying to walk free from the power of their flesh. The last thing they needed was to drink wine, inhibit their ability to think correctly, revive their flesh, and then do things that were sinful or damaging! That is why Paul urged them to leave wine alone!
15. Orgies - The Greek word komoi describes a person who can't bear the thought of boredom and therefore constantly seems forms of amusement or entertainment. This person is actually afraid of being bored, so he constantly contemplates what he can do next to have fun or be entertained. The word komoi can refer to a person who endlessly eats at parties or who seeks constant laughter and hilarity. Although there is nothing wrong with laughter, this person is consumed with the need for comedy, light moments, fun, pleasure, entertainment, or constant eating. He lives for his next meal, the next restaurant, the next movie, the next vacation.
16. and the like - Paul ends this list with this Greek phrase, which alerts us to the fact that this list of the works of the flesh is not comprehensive; it is just the beginning of the works of the flesh! Many more examples of works of the flesh could be added to the list, but Paul uses these as examples of how the flesh behaves, ending the list once he has sufficiently made the point to his readers.
If you routinely do these things as a matter of lifestyle, I believe you need to go to God and ask Him to tell you the truth about your spiritual status!
You cannot afford to make a mistake about this eternal question!!
This entry and yesterday's entry are taken from the book, Sparkling Gems From the Greek by R. Renner