GOD's ARMY, CONTENDING for the FAITH
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murjahel

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 GODLY THINKING
 
 
Our thinking has been so distressed, corrupted, or at least, tainted by the world in which we live.  We see saints who are depressed.  We find some to be discouraged, lacking faith.  Some others are faulty in thinking, believing doctrines that are not Biblical.  The manners, the morality, the ethics of the world affect the minds and beliefs of many. 

What can we do to heal faulty thinking?  We are told in the Bible to ‘let this same mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus’.  That means that we are not to let the world’s thinking be ours.  We are to think in a healthy way, as Jesus did.

Philippians 2:1-12 (KJV)
If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,
Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be like minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name:
That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR OUR THINKING

Verse 1
If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies

This passage is saying that if there is any ‘consolation’, i.e. encouragement, in Jesus, and any comfort of love from Jesus, any fellowship of the Spirit, and any bowels of mercy from the Lord, then we should have the ability to do what Paul is about to instruct us. As Christians, we should have experienced encouragement from Jesus, love from Jesus, fellowship with the Spirit, and mercies often from God.  So, what excuse would we have, to not know that the thinking of God is far, far greater than our thinking.  The people of God need to allow God’s love and care to affect our thinking.  We need this loving, encouraging, fellow shipping and merciful God change our thinking.

Verses 2-4
Fulfil ye my joy that ye be like minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

Paul instructs that we need to make his joy complete by doing some specific things.   If we do these things, the ‘mind of Christ’ will be manifest through our lives, through our words, through our thinking. 

Becoming like minded is done by having the ‘same love’, getting into ‘one accord’ on doctrines, and having one mind on decisions of how to serve the Lord.  One should not therefore be seeking self notice, or be striving for superiority.  Rather we should humbly esteem others as better than themselves.  We should not be seeking our own good, but seeking good things for others. 

Verses 5-6
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God

The saints are to allow the same self-emptying thinking that Jesus had when He came to be a man, suffer hardships, and even be crucified for the sake of others, to be in us. 

Jesus was ‘in the form of God, and thought it not robbery to be equal with God.’  That means He knew Who He is, and was not conscious of being less than His true power and glory made Him.  We are not ‘God’ nor equal to Him, but we need to recognize who we truly are, what are our strengths, our weaknesses, our blessings in Jesus.   
 
Though Jesus knew that He Himself is Divine, is all powerful, is omniscient, etc. still He chose to willingly humble and empty Himself for our sake.  To have His mind, we must likewise will willing to humble ourselves, to lay aside whatever good blessings we possess, to make ourselves of no reputation, to take the position of a servant, and become obedient even if it means our death. 

That is the ‘mind of Christ’ referred to by Paul, and he sought to have that same mind. We may think it impossible, but we can have divine help.

RECOGNIZE YOUR TRUE PERSON AS YOU TRULY ARE

II Corinthians 13:5-6 
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.
 
We need a daily examination, while living in a sin infested world. We need to see if we are in the true faith.  The Greek word for ‘examine’ is  peirazo (G3985).  It means to make full proof by testing.  If we ‘test’ and ‘examine’ ourselves, we will know if we are truly thinking aright in our minds.  The Word of God is our ‘testing’ agent.  It is where we go to find the standards for which we are to measure our thinking.  

Then we must “Prove” ourselves.  This is the Greek word: dokimazo (G1381) meaning  to assay metals; to prove or test with the hope and expectation of finding great worth.   One does not test ‘gravel’ for gold content.  One will test a stone that appears to be gold, that weighs like it is gold, and that all signs suggest it is gold.  That rock is taken to the assayer, and one is anxiously awaiting the news that it is ‘gold’ as they thought.   So, the word ‘prove’ suggests we should be living, thinking, acting in such a way, that when we ‘test’ our thinking, we are in assumption that it will prove to be Godly.

2 Corinthians 13:11 (KJV)
Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.
 
We should be ‘perfect’. For the Greek of the word ‘perfect’ is  katartizo (G2675), meaning  to adjust, to put in order again,  settling  by mediation.  In the proper thinking manner, ordained by God, we get into the ‘one accord’ by understanding another’s viewpoint, finding common ground, being more concerned with peace than with being right.  By jointly agreeing the Word of God is the infallible truth, and then searching and understanding it as it is meant, we then begin to believe "the same thing."  Then we can think and teach those same things, and to have no disputes.  The church will then be living in peace and harmony.
 
Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates means, we have Jesus in us, and He is there to teach us, instruct us, transform us.  Yet, unless we are ‘counterfeit’ Christians, pretend, but no reality in our faith type church member, we know Jesus can and wants to transform our mind to think perfectly.
 
Paul said he was concerned lest he become a ‘castaway’ which is the same Greek word, adokimos (G96), that is translated here ‘reprobate’.  It means to become Christ-less, and rejected.

CONFORM TO THE WORLD’S THINKING,
or
TRANSFORM TO JESUS’ WAY OF THINKING

If we yield our mind to God, and if we make ourselves a living sacrifice, making our thinking to be holy, full of light, dead to sin, alive to God.  We have to refuse to be a slave to sin, and mortify the deeds the carnal man would want to do. 

Romans 6:10-13 (KJV)
For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.
Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.

Our body is the ‘temple of the Holy Spirit’, and that means it should be holy.  That means more than the outward washing the pharisees did, for we need to be sure our minds are healed from the carnal, sinful, wicked thoughts that are common in the world.

1 Corinthians 3:16-17 (KJV)
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.

1 Corinthians 6:20 (KJV)
For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. 

As a slave is the property of his owner, so we, bought by the precious blood of Christ, are not our own.  We do not have right to claim independence from the One Who purchased us.  He created us, and then saw us rebel. Mankind then began to serve sin, and serve the devil.  Yet, then He purchased us from sin, and we again are His.  He has a right to tell us what to think, how to think, and what to speak.
 
Conforming to the world is not wise.

Romans 12:2-3 (KJV)
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

be not conformed to this world

The word ‘conformed is the Greek: suschematizo (G4964) meaning  to conform to another's example.  It is the ‘mind of Christ’ we are to ‘conform’ to, but too often people ‘conform’ to the ‘world’.  The word for ‘world’ is the Greek word,  aion (G165) meaning ‘age’. We are not to pattern  after this age.  We often hear people say things like ‘this is the 21st century, and we must adjust’, or others say ‘that is old fashioned thinking’ about verses in the Bible.  The Bible is never outdated, God wrote it to be eternal, and it , just as valid and true in a million years as it is now.  We need to find the ‘mind of Christ’ and not seek to think like the world.

Be ye transformed
 
The word ‘transformed’ is from the Greek word ‘metamorphoo’ (G3339), meaning ‘transformed or transfigured by a supernatural change.’  This refers to a supernatural miracle, doing what cannot be done without God’s power.

Paul exhorts believers to be transformed, rather than to be conformed to this world's ways. We are not to let the world put us into their mold, we are  not to look in the spiritual mirror, and see the same thing that the world sees.  We should see Jesus, when we look in that spiritual mirror.  We should have a mind that thinks like His would if He were in our situation.  Sin is still sin, murder is still evil, abortion is not suddenly righteous because society says that a woman can choose to murder the unborn, but only the born cannot be murdered at her choice.  Cursing and using God’s name in vain is still as evil as they always were in past generations.

We are told to be "living sacrifices" (Romans 12:1) for God does not desire us to die for Him (though He sometimes allows us to die), but He certainly does want us to live for Him daily.  If we conform to the world, we are not living for Him.  If we are transformed to think as He does, then we will be living sacrifices for Him, for the world will hate us, treat us, as they treated Him.

Our "mind" is what needs ‘transformed’.   Our thinking is warped by the world, lied to by the devil and his cohorts, and twisted by the cursed circumstances of life. The Greek word is ‘nous’ and means the "capacity to perceive."   Our perceptions and thoughts need to be reshaped by God's presentation of truths shown in Scriptures.
We can then be totally in God's will. The word dokimazo, prove, means to be assured positively knowing God’s will.  Paul is saying that we can trust God's will to be good, to be acceptable, to be perfect, for our life.  We will be thinking aright, so we will easily understand God’s will. 

If we can ‘think soberly’, we look at ourselves honestly, we can realize the needs of others, and we can be of use of the Lord being that ‘living sacrifice.’

Romans 12:9 (KJV)
Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.

The transformed mind, the correct and Godly thinking, brings a ‘love’, and this love is for real.  It causes the children of God to abhor evil, and cleave to good.  To function well in one’s thinking, we must have this love from the thinking of the mind. 

Love is not some conventional concept. Love is a way of thinking, it is an expression of the heart.  The transformed thinking is based on love, is motivated by love, and judges all things with this love.  Love is wonderful.

The ‘renewing’ of our mind is not a mere change of decision, but it is one which results from an entire alteration of the whole way of thinking, the whole nature of the being.

Some of the wicked have a ‘reprobate’ mind, guided by the loss of God in their heart, and doing things not wise due to that reprobate mind.

Romans 1:28 (KJV)
And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

Many have an ‘alienation’ from God, which results in a vain, worthless mind, and gives them darkened understanding.

Ephesians 4:17-18 (KJV)
This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

We must be renewed in our mind, by a renewal of having God rule and umpire our mind.  This is a command, and a necessity to survive this wicked world.

Ephesians 4:23 (KJV)
And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;

When our thinking is aright, is transformed, we will then be able to ascertain, prove, what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. We are renewed in our thinking so we can approve and agree with what is God’s will and God’s thinking. That brings happy thinking.

Ephesians 5:8-10 (KJV)
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth[wink]
Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

We should not be unwise in our thinking, we need a transformation, a renewal of our thinking, so we can know and can agree with the will of God.

Ephesians 5:17 (KJV)
Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

__________________
murjahel
John
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