The experience of the child of God is described, in Galatians 5:17, in the
following words: "the flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit
against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other; so that ye
cannot do the things that ye would."
In every thing but this the mere professor can imitate the true child
of God: and it is this which distinguishes the merely religious person from
the real Christian. Every true child of God always has an abiding experience
of conflict within, as described in Galatians 5:17. But not every child of
God understands the doctrine concerning it. To have the experience without
knowing the doctrine is the fruitful source of confusion, disquietude, and
discouragement. To know the doctrine and not to have the experience is fatal,
and means eternal disaster. The only remedy for this is to learn, direct
from the Word of God, all that is there taught concerning the nature inherited
through generation by Adam, and the nature bestowed through regeneration
by God. This alone can give the believer the true knowledge concerning "God's
workmanship"; and the key to his experiences which are otherwise inexplicable
to him. When the doctrine of the two natures is clearly understood, then,
that which before was the cause of doubt is not only removed, but it becomes
the ground of assurance; and is, indeed, the best assurance that one can
ever have that he is God's workmanship, and that God has actually begun in
him that good work which He Himself will perfect and complete (Phil. 1:6).
The object of the book is to give the knowledge of this doctrine, so
that the experience, which produces doubt and fear, may become the source
of peace and joy.