A Saint In Embryo
For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
~ Romans 7:22-23
The regenerate man often has a more difficult time of it than the unregenerate, for he is not one man but two. He feels within him a power that tends toward holiness and God, while at the same time he is still a child of Adam's flesh and a son of the red clay. This moral dualism is to him a source of distress and struggle wholly unknown to the once-born man. Of course the classic critique upon this is Paul's testimony in the seventh chapter of his Roman epistle.
The devil makes it his business to keep Christians in bondage, bound and gagged, actually imprisoned in their own grave clothes! Why doesn't the old devil, Satan, give up and bow out of the picture when a person becomes a believing Christian? Although he is a dark and sinister foe dedicated to the damnation of humans, I think he knows that it is no use trying to damn a forgiven and justified child of God who is in the Lord's hands. So, it becomes the devil's business to keep the Christian's spirit imprisoned. He knows that the believing and justified Christian has been raised up out of the grave of his sins and trespasses. From that point on, Satan works that much harder to keep us bound and gagged, actually imprisoned in our own grave clothes.
The true Christian is a saint in embryo. The heavenly genes are in him and the Holy Spirit is working to bring him on into a spiritual development that accords with the nature of the Heavenly Father from whom he received the deposit of divine life. Yet he is here in this mortal body subject to weakness and temptation, and his warfare with the flesh sometimes leads him to do extreme things. “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would” (Gal. 5:17).
Lord, sometimes I could wish I were not 'still a child of Adam's flesh and a son of the red clay.' But I live in this flesh and realize constantly my total dependence on You for spiritual victory. Grant it today, for Jesus' sake. Amen.
~ from “Christian Leadership” by A.W. Tozer