And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. (Galatians 5:24, NKJV)
The apostle has contrasted walking in the Spirit with fulfilling the lusts of the flesh (Galatians 5:16-17). He has pointed out the kind of life the flesh prompts men to pursue (the works of the flesh), with its fatal result (“those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of heaven,” Galatians 5:19-21). The character and conduct formed by the Spirit’s instruction and guidance is fruitful and robust, free from law’s condemnation (Galatians 5:22-23). Those who belong to Christ extinguish the flesh as the controlling factor of their lives (Galatians 2:20). Christians deliberately and methodically eliminate the influences and cravings of the flesh, so the fruit of the Spirit can thrive in their hearts and lives (Colossians 3:5). It is no accident that Christians bear the fruit of the Spirit. Through repentance, the heart has been conditioned to serve a new Master, Christ Jesus. The heart that is humble, repentant and responsive to the gospel is the perfect soil for bearing the fruit of the Spirit (Luke 8:15).
26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. (Romans 1:26–27, NKJV)
When God’s word speaks, we either believe it and conform our thinking and our lives to it, or we reject it, raising ourselves above and against God. As an example, take the subject of homosexuality. The Bible is crystal clear on the matter. Homosexual uses of the body are not normal and natural, but express “vile passions” that are “against nature.” God’s truth clarifies LGBT issues for us, just like soap and water cleans a dirty window. Such conduct is described as “vile passions;” “Against nature;” “Leaving the natural use of the woman;” Burning “in their lust for one another;” “Men with men committing what is shameful;” Producing a just penalty for “their error” that is due and received. Until one will believe God’s truth on the subject, he or she will exchange the truth for the lie that gay love is just the same as straight love (Rom. 1:24-25). It is not. But you see, when people worship themselves and serve the lusts of their hearts instead of God, every lie is preferred over the “word of the truth of the gospel” (Col. 1:5). God’s word is truth (Jno. 17:17). God’s truth frees us from our sins when we believe it and obey it (Jno. 8:31-32). Do you believe the truth, or have you exchanged it for the lie?