Galatians 5:18 gives us a very graphic picture of the senses and of the spirit: “But I say, walk by the spirit (that is not the Holy Spirit . . . that is the recreated spirit) and ye shall not fulfill the desires of the senses.” This scripture will be of infinite value to you, for the senses war against the recreated spirit, and the recreated spirit is warring against the senses. “For these are contrary to each other that you might not do what you would.”
The word, “flesh,” should have been translated, “senses.” Then we could have understood it. You see, the five senses, seeing, hearing, smelling, feeling, and tasting are all physical doors that lead to the brain. I know a thing is sweet because I tasted it. I know a thing is fragrant because I smelled it. I know it is hard because I struck it. What we call the sins of the flesh are sins of the senses. They are sins connected with the physical body, and this body of ours is the laboratory where we have learned all we know of secular knowledge.
The eighteenth verse goes further: “But if you are led by the recreated spirit you are not under the law.” The Mosaic covenant had to do only with the senses. The new law that Jesus gave in John 13:34, 35 has to do altogether with our recreated spirits. So Paul continues, in Galatians 5:19, “Now the works of the senses are manifest.” And he gives a long list of them. We are all familiar with it. The battle that we fight in our daily walk is with our senses. I want the thing that I see. I may want to drink it. I may want to eat it. I may want to feel it. My spirit must govern my senses. My mind must be so renewed by knowing the Word and acting on the Word that I can easily conquer my senses.
Romans 12:1-2, “1 beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God to present your bodies a living sacrifice, wholly acceptable to God which is your spiritual service, and be not fashioned according to this age, but be ye transfigured by the renewing of your mind that ye may prove what is the good, and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
Here He is asking that our senses be turned over to Him. You see, our bodies are really our universities, are our technical schools. How do I know anything about metallurgy except through the senses? How do I know anything about mechanics except through the senses?
If a man is totally blind, he cannot be a mechanic. If you go a step beyond that and rob him of his hearing, now he is locked up to his senses of taste, smell and feeling because sight and hearing are gone. Suppose you go a step beyond that, and he is paralyzed so that he has no feeling in his body. Now he is helpless. You see how utterly we are dependent on our senses, and how all the knowledge we have comes through the senses.
Essek William Kenyon (1867 – 1948).
An evangelist, pastor, president of a Bible Institute, author, songwriter and poet