the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak

Definition of the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak

used to say that a person wants to do something but cannot from lack of strength or energy often used humorously
  • I try to get up early and exercise, though sometimes the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

Word by Word Definitions

spirit play
  1. : an animating or vital principle held to give life to physical organisms

  2. : a supernatural being or essence: such as

  3. : holy spirit

  1. : to infuse with spirit

  2. : to carry off usually secretly or mysteriously

willing play
  1. : inclined or favorably disposed in mind : ready

  2. : prompt to act or respond

  3. : done, borne, or accepted by choice or without reluctance

flesh play
  1. : the soft parts of the body of an animal and especially of a vertebrate

  2. : the condition of having ample fat on the body

  3. : skin

  1. : to initiate or habituate especially by giving a foretaste

  2. : gratify

  3. : to clothe or cover with or as if with flesh

weak play
  1. : lacking strength: such as

  2. : deficient in physical vigor : feeble, debilitated

  3. : not able to sustain or exert much weight, pressure, or strain


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

cautious about doing something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!