”Could you not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that you do not enter into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Mt 26:40-41)
Jesus said these words while in Gethsemane’s garden. In a time of extreme testing He warned the disciples of the inability of the flesh to stay alert for even an hour. The disciples failed to stay awake three times. They did not have, within themselves, the power to stay alert and pray.
We must never underestimate the infirmity of the flesh. Also, we must be careful not to cater to the flesh to make it easier on the flesh to the neglect of the spirit.
When Paul came to Troas (Acts 20) to preach the disciples forced willingly subdued their own flesh in order to feed their spirit’s through Paul’s ministration. Because he had to leave the next day, he prolonged his message until midnight. No doubt both he and they were waging war against the weariness of the flesh but they knew it was worth it. Eutychus, a young man, was overcome by sleep and fell out of the third story window and died. No one accused Paul, saying “why did you preach so long” but rather they went down and healed him…and Paul continued on preaching until dawn! That is a demonstration of having preference for spiritual things; seeking those things which are above (Col 3:1-2); and making no provision for the flesh (Rom 13:14). It is regrettably common for man to seek ways to make it easy or convenient for their flesh and this often is to the neglect of spiritual things. Furthermore, it is common for man to extend himself in worldly affairs – making sacrifices of money, time, etc. These things are revealing of the heart.
Let the people of God heed the word of the Savior, “the spirit indeed is willing, the flesh is weak” and let us seek grace to walk after the spirit and not fulfill the lists of the flesh.
– Brother Pat Woods