Works of the Flesh Part V: Variance

“Battle Song” by Lecrae, ft. Suzy Rock (From the Album: ” Rehab: The Overdose”

So You Love Strife? Not a Good Choice.

Galatians 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, (emphasis, mine).


Lætare (Photo credit: Lawrence OP)

If knowledge is power, then knowledge of the Most High God is power indeed. Life in Christ is the quintessential power to live life as Almighty God planned for us since before the beginning of time. In previous posts we have seen how the works of the flesh are contrary to the will of God and can only be overcome by the power of God. We learned that:

1. Adultery: Is (imaginary, virtual or real) sex outside of marriage.
2. Fornication: The sin of fornication not only involves unlawful lust of either sex, but also the act of idolatry. It is idolatry because it is outside of the will of God. The concept of pornography is related to this.
3. Uncleanness means physical or moral impurity.
4. Lasciviousness: In a state on lasciviousness, one exhibits moral incontinence, where wrongful behavior is freely indulged in and moral uprightness has been abandoned.
5. Idolatry is making anything or anyone more important than our relationship with our Heavenly Father.
6. Witchcraft is the path of seeking to have knowledge and power over people, events and things in any way that is outside of the ways and will of Almighty  God. It is also related to drugs.
7. Hatred is to be in opposition to the love of God. Hatred is the essence of Satan, so when we hate we submit to satanic influence.

That brings us to the subject of the next element in works of the flesh: variance. The original Greek word that was translated as variance is “eris” meaning “strife, debate, contention, a quarrel, i.e. (by implication) wrangling – contention, debate, strife, variance.” From this meaning we can safely conclude that variance is an affinity for opposition, discord, and fighting that is contrary to the purposes of unity and brotherhood – which is the way of the body of Christ. Strife does not involve a peaceable use of words. It does not come from a desire to do good. In many ways, strife is the word weapon, seed, and activity of hatred, and hatred is the heart of the devil himself.

How many people do you know who are contentious and disagreeable? How many of them are in your work place? How many of them attend the same church as you do? It is wrong to practice variance and create strife and disunity in the House of God. Yet, it happens every day. How many times have your mind, emotions, and thoughts words and actions been planted by the enemy to breed a harvest of pain, disruption and dissent at work and at home?

Variance or discord (aka “drama”) doesn’t have to be a way of life. But, keeping it out of your life requires mindfulness. Take 5 minutes (or longer) and write down some of the ways you practice strife. Submit these situations to Christ. Repent and obey the word of God which says:

Psalm 34:14

Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. (emphasis, mine)

Remember the cure to works of the flesh is to “walk in the spirit.” The ability to walk in the spirit requires a relationship with and knowledge of God. Knowledge of God requires a relationship with Jesus. A relationship with Jesus begins with faith in His all sufficient death, resurrection and atonement for our sins. Without reading and studying the word of God you will not grow in strength and knowledge of God. So read the word of God daily. It is the life, health and strength of your life.

Until next time: Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might!

Your friend in Christ,


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18 comments for “Works of the Flesh Part V: Variance

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