How do you mortify the flesh? First, 1) Identify what the outward or inward sin is. You can identify it yourself or ask another trusted friend or discipler to help you. Scripture is your best guide as the Holy Spirit convicts us when we live apart from faith. Paul describes the things he does that he doesn’t want to do, “For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do.” (Rom 7:15) Hatred is a good word because it leads to the next course of action.
Next, 2) Choose to put that sin pattern off. Sometimes, translations use the word “consider”, but that seems very weak. This is something you have to strongly desire to do. Do you hate sin? God does (Hab. 1:13). The flesh is too strong, sneaky, deceitful, subtle, did I say deceitful? It will pull the strongest Christian down who does not remain on alert to its ways. Paul writes, “O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (Rom 7:24)
Then, 3) Put on the righteous action that honors God (Col. 3:10). You must have a corresponding godly behavior that Scripture mandates for biblical living and freedom in Christ. A great spiral-bound handbook called “Transformed Into His Likeness” can give you biblical put ons that will transform your thinking and life. But don’t stop there.
Finally, 4) write up a plan of action that brings your thoughts, words and actions into captivity to Christ (2 Cor. 10:4-5). The more specific you can be the better your plan will result in life-changing transformation. If you write down, “Pray every day,” that is good, but it’s not very specific. You should write down and practice, “Pray twice a day at devotions in the morning and before going to bed for God to supernaturally take the Scriptures you are meditating on and memorizing and make them real and practical in your life.” Then keep a journal of how God is answering your prayer, so you personally know how the plan is working. The journal will also be a measurement that you can check to see if you are actually following your plan.
Friends, if you plan, you’ll have a chance against the flesh. Above all, make Christ your all in all. He is the only solution. The plan is nothing if it is not centered on Jesus Christ!