3 Vows

The 3 Temptations of our Lord Jesus as written of in Luke 4 and Matthew 4 cover all of the temptations known to us: needs of the Body (not to be confused with ‘the Flesh,’ which is the natural inclination to remain outside the will of our Creator), needs of the Soul (where Body and Spirit meet and combine), and needs of the Spirit.
There are 3 Vows which counteract the 3 Temptations, and these are the Vows of Poverty (Body), Chastity (Soul), and Obedience (Spirit).
The provisions of the 3 Vows are contrary to what we expect. We believe that Poverty will impoverish us, that Chastity will leave us longing for intimacy, and that Obedience will enslave us. However:
Poverty (also called Voluntary Poverty and not to be confused with impoverishment) provides Sustenance and averts physical needs and worry. The correlating fruit is Faith, which darkens the natural intellect.
Chastity (not to be confused with celibacy) provides Intimacy and averts angelic worship, ceremony, and adultery or fornication. The correlating fruit is Hope, which darkens the natural desire for possessions.
Obedience provides Co-Rulership with Christ and averts compromise and thus the dead nominal Christian life, and slavery. The correlating fruit is Love (Agape, Charity), which darkens affections for all except God.
‘A threefold cord is not quickly broken.’ ~ Ecclesiastes 4.12
The three temptations of Jesus show the three fortresses, if you will, of the body, soul, and spirit–and the three ways they are assailed by the World, the Flesh, and the Devil.
Lust of the flesh has to do with physical needs. The vow of defense is Poverty. The body part which represents the body are the feet.
Lust of the eyes has to do with soulish needs. The vow of defense is Chastity. The body part which represents the soul are the hands.
Pride of life has to do with spiritual needs. The vow of defense is Obedience. The body part which represents the spirit is the head.
If any one of these three fortresses are overcome by my old nature or unclean spirits–or a combination of both–then the other two fortresses will be taken as well. As an example, if I am not obedient in praying for those who hurt me–praying for my enemies–then I will also become unchaste and I will also worry about my food, clothing, and shelter.

Garden represents the Body whose counterfeit is Addiction whose act is Gethsemane and whose vow is Poverty whose strength is Faith whose providence is Sustenance who is represented by Moses and whose symbol is Feet.
Land represents the Soul whose counterfeit is Perversion whose act is Caiaphas and whose vow is Chastity whose strength is Hope whose providence is Intimacy who is represented by David and whose symbol is Hands.
World represents the Spirit whose counterfeit is Dominance whose act is Pilate/Herod and whose vow is Obedience whose strength is Love whose providence is Co-Rulership who is represented by Paul and whose symbol is Head.
Jesus teaches us in John 16 that the Holy Spirit of God convicts us of sin, righteousness, and judgment.
We must first be censured about our sinful state. When we accept this to be true, the transformation process begins. Here we overcome the World System which pulls at us at every turn, weighs us down, depresses us, causes us to want to fight for our lives, our rights.
The next censure concerns our righteousness. Once we have begun transformation, righteousness begins to reign in our lives. We are not perfect yet, which is the completion of the transformation, but according to the First Letter of John, we can live sinless lives. This is, of course, a gift of grace, so that we cannot boast in our own holiness. Here we overcome the Flesh which causes us to succumb to the thoughts we are tempted with.
The final censure of the Holy Spirit concerns our judgment–where we become perfect in Christ on the Last Day, when we are given our spotless robes for the Wedding Feast of the Lamb, when we become the Bride of Christ, when we are given our glorified bodies and begin our lives everlasting with God, worshiping and lauding His Name forever. Here we overcome the Devil–the architect of Death and very source of our human terror as nothing more than marionettes in his cruel hands. Funnily enough, he never had any power over us–he merely convinced us that he did, and our Father of Lights allowed him to do so in order to test us for eternal service in the Kingdom.
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