OK, I'm going to jump in. After all, it is the new millennium. We're living in the information age, and technology has made available numerous communication tools that can be especially useful to us who are "truth bringers". Along with my main forum of preaching in the public assembly I thought I would make use of the pastor's blogspot on our church's website. I am wanting to call this, "THINKING BIBLICALLY" not because I am an expert on every subject, but I am called to preach the truth of the Gospel with the goal of helping people "Think Biblically" or have a "Christian mind." So, I thought this first post would help set the stage for this...for keeping your head in the game!
What exactly is a "Christian" mind and what is its importance? It is not being religious, and it is not just going to church services. A Christian mind is to have God's mind ("let this mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus") and to think God's thoughts about things. In the final analysis the important thing is always "What does God think or say? What is the will of God in this situation or concerning this matter?" This is what should shape our thinking, our world view, our attitudes and our decisions. The will of God is the wisdom of God; and the wisdom of God is the key to skillful living!
The Beatles sang a song called "Act Naturally." Besides my age, I guess I remember this because it was on of the few songs that Ringo Starr, the drummer, sang. the lyrics talked about "They're going to put me in the movies. They're going to make a big star out of me....and all I gotta do is act naturally." The Christian life is not a call to "act naturally" but it is a call to live supernaturally! Scripture is pretty clear about what happens when we act naturally: Gal 5:19-21 "When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, your lives will produce these evil results: sexual immorality, impure thoughts, eagerness for lustful pleasure, idolatry, participation in demonic activities, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, divisions, the feeling that everyone is wrong except those in your own little group, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other kinds of sin. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God." Instead, we are called to "walk in the Spirit" that produces its own . Rom 8:6-9 "If your sinful nature controls your mind, there is death. But if the Holy Spirit controls your mind, there is life and peace. For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God's laws, and it never will. That's why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.
But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you." That's what we want...to think Biblically! The Apostle Paul was unequaled in his ability to diagnose the human condition so precisely (our personal B.C. and A.D.). In (Eph.4:17-24) he tells that as Christians we should no longer walk like the rest of the Gentiles do. So much of what he deals with highlights people's thinking: "in the futility of their minds"..."closed minds full of darkness"..."they have shut their minds and hardened their hearts"..."they don't care anymore abut right and wrong." Then he contrasts this with the difference that Jesus makes in our lives: "but that isn't what you were taught when you learned about Christ." We are new creatures. Our obligation as Christians is to be constantly changing for the better by putting off the "old man" and putting on the "new man". There's a tiny verse inserted in the middle that gives us the key to this dynamic process. He says, "and be renewed in the spirit of your minds". Think Biblically! It mirrors a similar exhortation he gave to the Romans, "Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think." (Rom.12:2a) The outcome of "thinking Biblically" is that we will come to know what God wants us to do (the will of God) and that there's no better way to live!
Before I finish, let me remind you that a truly Christian mind is a powerful thing. It's also the thing that the world relentlessly and viciously attacks. It will not tolerate you being out-of-step and it relishes calling good, evil and evil, good. "Transformers" may be successful as a movie or entertainment but the truth is the world really doesn't like those transformed to think, live and love like Jesus Christ! To BE a "transformer" is a different matter and it is a matter of "thinking Biblically."
"Sow a thought, reap an action. Sow an action, reap a habit. Sow a habit, reap a lifestyle. Sow a lifestyle, reap a destiny. Sow a destiny, reap an eternity." It all begins with you and I keeping our heads in the game!