In what ways have we fallen back into the patterns of the flesh? These are the world’s ways, concerned only with what we can obtain with our senses – of sight, smell, sound, taste, and touch.
When we’re consumed only with the things of the flesh, we give away more precious things like they are nothing to us. The immediate takes precedence over the eternal, and the eternal is threatened with never coming into being.
We have a new way of living in our country, of making our own flesh-filled decisions about gender and sex. Which bathroom would you prefer to use? The immediate controls the day, and the eternal is pushed to the side and despised. “Male and female he created them” – and we forget all about it. As a result, precious things are no longer in view – like the care for our most vulnerable. Instead, we concern ourselves only with being nice and tolerant with those who care nothing for God or science. We want the praise of the world for being enlightened. This, too, is a thing of the flesh.
This is a new way of living, and it also is an old way of living. Individuals can be consumed with the things of the flesh, too. Esau was hungry, and he gave a precious thing away for the sake of his stomach (Hebrews 12:16-17). He was a man who despised the eternal.
And so we must be vigilant. The writer of Hebrews says, to a people worn down by the world and the flesh, “lift your drooping hands” (Hebrews 12:12).