[This is a repost from October, 2009.] Yesterday I was contemplating Galatians 5.17 – For what the flesh desires is opposed to the Spirit, and what the Spirit desires is opposed to the flesh; for these are opposed to each other, to prevent you from doing what you want (NRSV) – which brought me to Thomas Watson’s The Godly Man’s Picture. Watson, in section 19 of the booklet, describes the saint who struggles with sin. Here are a few of my favorite quotes.
“Though sin lives in him [the godly person], yet he does not live in sin.”
“Though sin is in him, he is troubled at it and would gladly get rid of it. …Sin in a wicked man is delightful, being in its natural place, but sin in a child of God is burdensome and he uses all means to expel it.”
“If we would have peace in our souls, we must maintain a war against our favorite sin and never leave off till it is subdued.”
“Grace and sin may be together, but grace and the love of sin cannot. Therefore parley [meet] with sin no longer, but with the spear of mortification, spill the heart-blood of every sin.”
“A godly man dare not travel for riches along the devil’s highway.”
So Luther said that the Christian life means a severe struggle which never abates until we leave this world.