I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20
Every follower of Jesus Christ is a twice born being. They have received life from above, by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Nevertheless, there still remains in every follower of Christ that unredeemed entity known as the flesh, which is unholy and corrupt. Paul reminds us that we were crucified with Christ.
To what end were we crucified with Jesus? “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with [him], that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.” (Romans 6:6) Having been forgiven and set free by the sacrifice of Christ, we are no longer debtors to live after the flesh. Yet, the flesh, like a pit bull, refuses to be denied or die. Thus, we are told: “if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” (Romans 8:13)
What are we to do with this flesh that roars for the attention and fulfillment that it was given before we came to Christ? Mortify it. How? Through The Holy Spirit. We are sanctified by grace through faith in Jesus Christ just like we are justified by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. But make no mistake about it; crucifixion is not without a struggle or pain. Greed, pride, selfishness, envy, worry, and immorality will never be eradicated as long as we dwell in these mortal bodies. They will seek to defile the temple of God and keep us in bondage.
But we have the assurance of God that as we mortify these enemies of holiness and freedom, we can walk in newness of life that bears fruit for the glory of God. Don’t feed the old man; crucify him. “For though He (Jesus) was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.” (2 Corinthians 13:4)