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Not Being Able to Please God

Rom. 8:6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace. (7) Because the mind set on the flesh is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, for neither can it be. (8) And those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Phil. 3:3 For we are the circumcision, the ones who serve by the Spirit of God and boast in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh,

The man who minds the flesh is the natural man, the original man, the man who is according to his natural birth. This man is not subject to the law of God, neither can he be. Yet the Word of God tells us not only that the fleshly man sins but also that the fleshly man attempts to do good, because verse 8 says, “And those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” This obviously indicates that the man of flesh attempts to please God. No matter how hard he may try, in the end he still cannot please God. Regardless of how man serves God through his flesh, the result is always the same — he cannot please God. His offering, like that of Cain, can never be accepted by God. Only one offering is acceptable to God: our cross and our death. This is like the fat — a sweet-smelling offering before God.

Therefore, our greatest service to God is not how much we can do for Him or how much we can accomplish for Him but how much we can die. But this is not acceptable to many self-righteous men. Man often measures everything by his own work, thinking that if he can have fruit, if he can help others repent and believe in the Lord, he can bring all these offerings to God. But we should know one thing: We cannot serve God according to our work. Man’s greatest offering to God is to be on the altar, which is death. Was there ever an offering accepted by God which did not pass through the altar? Was there ever an offering that passed through the altar and still lived? All offerings to God must go through death.

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