Introduction: In these verses Paul contrasts the works of the flesh with the fruit of the Spirit. He begins by showing a battle that we all must fight, moves on to introduce the armies, shows the battle plan, and finally adds a warning against a deadly trap of the enemy.
I. A Battle Worth Fighting verses 16-18
A. The Goal verse 16
1. Walk by the Spirit…
2. …so as not to fulfill the lusts of the flesh.
B. The Problem verse 17
1. The flesh and the Spirit are opposed to one another
a. Not as in Gnosticism
b. Desires are different
2. Our internal conflict
C. An Unlikely Incentive verse 18
1. The one who is spiritual…
2. …is not under law.
II. The Works Of The Flesh verses 19-21
A. The Laundry List
3. Uncleanness (state of being)
4. Lewdness (active uncleanness)
8. Contentions (arguing)
10. Outbursts of wrath
11. Selfish ambitions
12. Dissensions (divisions over nothing)
13. Heresies (divisions over doctrine)
B. Their Condemnation
III. The Fruit Of The Spirit verses 22-23
A. Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Kindness, Goodness,
Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-Control
B. Their Commendation
IV. A Resolution verses 24-25
A. We Belong To Christ
B. We Are Dead 1 Peter 4:1-6, Romans 8:1-11
1. Fleshly passions
2. Fleshly desires
C. Yet We Live verses 2:19-20
1. Since we live in the Spirit…
2. …we should walk in the Spirit
V. A Final Warning verse 26
A. Against Conceit
B. Against Contention
C. Against Envy
Conclusion: We have died to the law and sin, and now we live by the power of the Spirit, the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead has raised us from our death, not to live in the flesh, but by the power of the Spirit.
So live like those who are dead…dead to fleshly passions and lusts, and as those who are alive…alive by the Spirit and created for good works. This is our duty and our delight.