Living by Grace

Dedicated to providing guidance in daily living through the power of God's grace as experienced in our union with Christ.



Therefore, brethren, we are debtors--not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.  Romans 8:12


The statement “we are debtors” follows a series of contrasts presented in Romans 8:5-11 between walking according to the flesh and walking according to the Holy Spirit. 


When a believer walks according to the flesh, he thinks the thoughts of the flesh that result in death. The word death is used here in the spiritual sense, not the physical. It is a life of such defeat that it can be called death. That believer who walks in the flesh is the enemy of God. He is not subject to the law of God. He cannot please God. 


When a Christian walks according to the Holy Spirit, he thinks the thoughts of the Spirit. He experiences the abundant life and peace. His life is filled with righteousness. The Holy Spirit energizes and strengthens his body.


Following the contrasts, Paul writes that we are debtors—but not to the flesh. The implication is clear. We are in debt to walk in the Spirit. But to whom are we obligated to walk according to the Spirit?


We are in debt to God  the Father because He planned the life of walking in the Spirit. We are in debt to God the Son because He made it possible for us to walk in the Spirit. We are in debt to the Holy Spirit because of the good things He desires to do in us and through us if we walk according to Him.


We are in debt to all believers because we can show them the quality of life that is available to them. We are in debt to all people because the Spirit enables us to relate to them in love.


Finally, we are in debt to ourselves to be free from the miserable life of walking in the flesh and are free to experience the abundant life by walking in the Spirit.


We will walk according to the Spirit as we experience our oneness with Christ.