Sins of the Flesh

What are they and Why?

By Rev. Jack Barr

"Hey Joe. what do you make of the preacher's sermon on Galatians 5: 19-21?"

"I don't know Sam. I didn't understand half of the words he was using."

"Yea. I know what you mean," said Sam. "I didn't understand them either. 'Sins of the flesh' he called it. it sounded like a bunch of weird diseases or a foreign language to me.

"I can't even pronounce or spell it to look them up", said Joe. "Well forget it Sam, lets go down to the bar and drool over the girls."

"Hey, that sounds great", said Sam, "Maybe we can lift a skirt or get one into bed." "They all look good after I get some drinks in me and once I get them drunk they can't wait to climb into bed with me.

"Hey, If your wife finds out, you'll be in trouble," said Joe. "Its OK for me to chase the skirts because I'm single, the worst I can get is a disease, but you can get divorced."

"Naw, won't be in no trouble, She's into witchcraft so deep that she thinks it's OK" said Sam, "Besides, she's so busy putting the hex on some people she hates that she won't even notice."


What are Sam, Sam's wife, and Joe doing? Are they committing sins of the flesh? If so, which ones?

You say that you don't understand it either? Well then let us clear up the fog that hides the truth and unravel those strange names.

In Galatians 5:19-21 there are seventeen sins of the flesh listed, and Paul tells us in Gal. 5:21 that this is not a complete list but are examples by which we may recognize or judge the rest of them.

In the story above, Joe, Sam, and Sam's wife are committing at least ten of the "sins of the Flesh".

The Sins of the Flesh are listed as:

Now let us look at each one so that we may understand what actions or thoughts belong in the category of "Sins of the Flesh".

Adultery: It is a defilement of the marriage bed, and is the sin of uncleanness committed by two persons, one of which at least is in a married state.

Or we could describe it as the voluntary sexual intercourse of a married person with someone not their spouse (Unfaithfulness). Jesus said that you can commit adultery in your mind, without acting on it

Fornication: The sin of uncleanness committed by persons in a single state.

The voluntary sexual intercourse between unmarried persons. This is illicit sexual intercourse and covers homosexuality, lesbianism, intercourse with animals, close relatives, and the worship of idols.

Uncleanness: Is a general term for all unchastity, in thought, word or action and covers especially all unnatural lusts like sodomy.

Sodomy: Self pollution. The unnatural sexual acts (such as oral or anal sex) between any two people (married or not) or bestiality, that is having sex with an animal.

Uncleanness is the impurity of lustful, sensual or unprincipled living. That is, they have lost or are insensible to principle, virtue, or decency

This is a depraved or dissolute person. Of course, no one will ever admit to living this type of life but you should be told that sensuality and evil doctrine are often associated. In 2 Peter 2:10, the Greek word for "Defilement" is rendered as "Uncleanness"

Lasciviousness: This big word means "Lustfulness". "wantonness", or "filthy". It is unbridled lust, that is unrestrained. This is outrageousness, shamelessness, insolence.

It is the absence of restraint of their arousing sensual desires. Their mind is constantly on gratifying their sexual desires without regard to anything else. They use filthy conversation, shameless conduct (they do not care who is present when they seek to gratify their desires.)

Idolatry: The worshiping of other gods, or of graven images.

You say, I know that. But did you also know that all vices spring from Idolatry and are peculiar to it?

It is the sin of the mind against God. (Eph. 2:3). It is the excessive admiration or veneration of anything other than God.

Immorality, the sins of the flesh, are associated with and are traced to lack of acknowledgment of God and of gratitude to Him. That means that any type of immorality or other sins of the flesh, are also Idolatry.

The Idolater is a slave to the depraved ideas his idols represent (Gal. 4:8-9), and thereby to different lusts (Titus 3:3).

Witchcraft: The real or pretended league and association with the devil, seeking to talk or associate with familiar spirits (a consulter with familiar spirits, De 18:10-11, a demonic spirit that stays with or near you, guiding you in actions and thoughts. giving you hidden, or secret information. leading false prophets) To gain unlawful knowledge, or to do hurt to fellow creatures; which in doing gives honor to Satan and detracts from the glory of God. This follows idolatry; conjuring ('observer of times, De. 18:10-11, astrology), soothsaying (a wizard De. 18:10-11, Lev. 19:31, 20:6, seeks information from the dead for those living, such as finding lost bodies, objects, etc.), necromancy (necromancer Dc. 18:10-11, one who seeks to interrogate the dead [a medium] for consultation and or divination.), and all kinds of magic (enchanter, De. 18:10-11, Lev. 19:26, one who uses omens and any form of magic to put a spell upon,). Hypnotism (charmer, De. 18:10-11, the casting a spell upon or influence as if by a spell). A Witch (Dc. 18:10-11, witch, is one who makes use of magic formulas or incantations and drugs.)

Witchcraft is the practices or powers of witches or wizards, as due to dealings with evil spirits or the Devil. It includes the use of, or the administering of drugs.

Those persons who indulge in the use of mind altering drugs (not related to health) are in fact practicing witchcraft.

The Greek Word translated Witchcraft is pharmakeia, from which we get our word pharmacy (drug store). Its meaning is related directly to drug usage. There are three places in the bible where this word is used, in Galatians 5:20, as witchcraft, in Revelations 9:21 and 18:23 as sorceries.

Hatred: The internal hatred of any man's person, even of our very enemies. This is forbidden and is also called enmity. It is the opposite of "agape" love (the highest level of love). It is an intense dislike or aversion. A very deep seated unfriendliness even hostility.

Variance Fighting and quarrelling, by words scandalous and reproachful, what we commonly call scolding. It means to cut apart, to divide in two.

It is a tending to vary, to change inconstantly, reckless, or fickle in what we say or do which puts down another.

Emulation's A boiling and rising up of the spirits and passions, at the honor and happiness of another. It can also be called jealousy, envy or indignation at another's pleasure. It is trying to equal or surpass because they (in your mind) are gaining happiness.

Wrath Violent emotions of the mind, moving to revenge, and seeking the hurt and mischief of others. It is hot anger, extreme or violent rage or fury. Usually accompanied with vengeance or punishment. It is an anger that boils up and then soon subsides again.

Strife Perpetual contradictions, either expressed by words, or working in the mind (for this strife may be in a man's heart James 3:14, 16). This is also an angry contention, any contest for advantage or superiority (not sports), a self seeking ambition in seeking to win followers.

This is stirring up trouble in order to place yourself on top. This is trying to gain followers by falsehoods (lies), making them believe one thing when your purpose is really for your personal gain.

Sedition's Dissension's or divisions in things domestic, civil, and religious. It is language or conduct directed against public order and safety of the state or the secret incitement of such disorder.

The state means the governing body of a family, a city, county, state, or country, or the leadership of a local church or its national associations.

Built into the laws are ways to legally make a change. Sedition's is the unlawful attempt to divide and overthrow any ruling body. God instituted government.

Heresies Are bad principles and tenets, relating to doctrine, which are subversive of the fundamentals of the Gospel and the Christian religion, and are the produce of a man's own invention, and the matter of his choice, without any foundation in the word of God.

It is a self willed opinion which is substituted for the truth and leads to division and the formation of sects or cults.

Any belief contrary to established doctrine of a church or religious system.

Envyings A feeling of resentment or discontent over another's superior attainments, endowments, or possessions. It is a desire to possess the goods of another.

They have it, you want it. It could be over the things someone has like a car, house, money. It could be over the personal endowments of someone like handsome, beautiful, tall, short, hair. It could be because they were chosen to be your boss, to lead the club you belong to, while you desired that position.

Murders The malicious and intentional killing of one human being by another because of ill will, spite, or desire to injure another. It is a willfully formed desire to do another an injury. It is also called Slaughter.

This is not an accidental killing or the taking of a life in a war battle, or the taking of a life of one being executed by a legal government. These three are shown in the bible to be either allowed or actually commanded by God. There is not the space here to go into the scriptures on this subject.

Drunkenness The excess in drinking of beer, wine or strong drink, where the mind is intoxicated, and the body is enfeebled and unable to perform its functions as it should. It is often the source of many, or all of the works of the flesh.

Intoxication is the poisoning of the body This poisoning is also defilement of the temple of God, which is in the body of Man.

Reveling is characterized as an excess in eating, coupled with drinking, dancing, singing, sex, and wantonness.

The Greek dictionary gives the definition as:

"A nocturnal and riotous procession of half drunken and frolicsome fellows who after supper parade through the streets with torches and music in honor of Bacchus or some other deity, and sing and play before houses of male and female friends; hence used generally of feasts and drinking parties that are protracted till late at night and indulge in revelry."

They engage in noisy and unrestrained festivities which has also been called rioting in Romans

13:13, which is a consequence of drunkenness. Many times it also included wild unrestrained sex

while in the drunken state. (Ex. 32:6)


** If you haven't figured out yet which of the seventeen sins of the flesh that were about to be committed in the starting story, there were ten.

They are:

Now you know what each sin named represents.

Those who commits such acts without repenting will never enter Heaven, but will instead literally and actually go to Hell, to burn forever.

Jesus will forgive you for these and all the rest of your sins IF you turn to Jesus, accept Him in your heart and ask for forgiveness. Jesus said that He would forgive, and since Jesus IS God and God can not lie, we can know that He will forgive us if we ask.

Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for the sins of all of us. He rose again on the third day just as He said He would, and is Alive, sitting at the right hand of the father.

Our flesh is weak, our spirit is sinful. It is only with the help of Jesus that we can overcome the sins of the flesh and join Him in Heaven.

Won't you ask Jesus to help you? Do it now, He will hear you.

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