Walk by the Spirit: The Sufficiency of Christ for Christian Living

Brian Mahon - 3/3/2024


Call to worship: Isaiah 61:1-3

Text: Galatians 5:16-26


By His work, Jesus has purchased the power for our walk. He has lived by, died to procure, risen to receive, ascended to send down, and sat down to mediate---the Holy Spirit. As He is not a Gift promised through Moses, or able to be obtained through the flesh, it is foolhardy and unbiblical to come under the yoke of that covenant for living to God. The righteous shall live by faith. Presently, this remains a battle, just a battle Christ has equipped us to win under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. Ultimately, the Christian will prove that Christ is enough for the Christian life. We will be evidently His. The works of the flesh are evident, as is the fruit of the Spirit---and those who belong to Jesus have crucified the flesh! In the new birth, we died, and we arose with the Spirit of God's Son in our hearts. Just so, having come alive by Him, we're to walk by Him. This finds concrete expression in entire, increasing, church-edifying obedience to God. It's the formation of Christ in us on display. Against this, there is no law.

Sermon Outline:

  1. There is a spiritual warring in our Christian walking. (5:16-18)
  2. There is an evidential warning for our Christian walking. (5:19-23)
  3. We have then a vital calling: walk by the Spirit. (5:16, 24-26)


Discussion Questions:

  1. Read Galatians 5:16-26.
  2. What is the main charge in these verses (5:16, 25)? What is the effect of keeping in step with the Holy Spirit? What, if any, opposition will we find to Christian living? As Christians, what do we want to do? If you're led by the Spirit, why would you no longer be under the law? What does the Spirit's internal leadership mean in terms of, both, redemptive history and the state of your soul?
  3. What is true about, both, the works of the flesh and the fruit of the Spirit? What are the works of the flesh? What is the fruit of the Spirit? What warning does Paul give to those who live according to the desires of the flesh? Why is there no law against the life and/or character that the Spirit creates? Why would God's law only affirm such things?
  4. What is the relationship between the our union with Jesus and the ministry of the Holy Spirit? What's the connection between Jesus' death on the cross and the dynamic at play in Christian living? An old Puritan once referred to Christian living in terms of 'the Gospel mystery of sanctification.' What is the mystery, now revealed, that explains the Christian 'you'? Consider Gal 2:20; also Romans 8:1-17 or, more briefly, Philippians 3:10.
  5. Does walking by the Spirit seem abstract to you? How does Paul make tangible its effect? From Galatians (and elsewhere), how would you concretely detail keeping in step with the Spirit---how do we walk by the Spirit? And how does walking by the Spirit imply the sufficiency of Jesus for the Christian life?
Downloads & Resources