The Healing of the Mind

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by AVBunyan, Jun 8, 2005.

  1. AVBunyan

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    Aug 20, 2004
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    Greetings bro. - I trust all is well. Below is a sermon my preacher delivered two Sundays ago. I usually don't seek to "push" my preacher's sermons but this one was special he graciously gave me permission to "send it out". I do hope you will read this and if you think it is good please pass it on. I believe the message is vital for the saint today.

    God bless

    The Healing of the Mind

    Let me begin by giving credit to Mr. Ernest Rockstad. God used him many years ago to introduce me to the leading thoughts which form the foundation of this sermon. I thank God for Bro. Rockstad’s faithfulness to the word of God and the insight God gave him along these lines. He passed from this life to glory many years ago. Being dead, he yet speaketh.

    If I recall correctly it was Harry Blamires, in 1978, in his book, The Christian Mind: How Should a Christian Think, who said, “there is now longer a Christian mind.” I think that was the case when he wrote the book, and I believe that is the case now, but more so. There is definitely no longer a distinctly Christian way of thinking. Christian thinking and piety, a distinct Christian way of life, is at best, obscure. Surely this is a time for the healing of the mind, especially the minds of the saints.
    (Philippians 4:4-9) Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. (5) Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. (6) Be careful for nothing; but by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. (7) And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (8) Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, if there be any praise, think on these things. (9) Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God pf peace shall be with you.
    The mind is a fountain of Life. Though it may have a relation to the brain, it is not the same. Scripture links the mind to the heart. There again, the heart in this sense, is not the physical organ, but much more than that. It seems that both the mind and the heart are in the soul, rather than just kinked to the physical body.
    Contrary to scientific thinking, actually science falsely so-called, man does have an immaterial, immortal soul. The soul has capacities designed by God for the benefit of man. It was also designed to enter into the worship and service of God.
    Be that as it may, there are things about the mind we know: think rightly, be right; think wrongly, be wrong; think nothing, be nothing. The problem lies in the fact that no one, in himself, is able to think aright—even the child of God.
    A wrong mind manifests itself in many ways. You would “think” we would quickly recognize it if we had a wrong mind. That is not the case. A wrong mind is linked to the heart which is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, and no man, on his own can know it. God must search the heart or it cannot be truly known (Jeremiah 17:9-10). Having a wrong mind hinders and limits our ability to diagnose our case, even when the symptoms are manifested. Because there is no proper spiritual life without a proper mind, here are a few symptoms of a wrong mind you may need to consider.
    Failure of memory. Of course, other things may contribute to this, but it is a symptom of a wrong mind. Especially is this so in the case of an inability to remember scripture, doctrine and other things which pertain to life and godliness and are connected with the spiritual life and piety. This also affects the reasoning.
    Prejudiced and narrow-minded mind. This hinders the reception of new thoughts, as well as a proper evaluating of old thoughts. It is the attitude of mind which says, “Don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is made up.”
    Inability to think about God and meditate on his word. These are essential to the spiritual life and spiritual growth of the believer. An unhealthy mind in the Christian hinders true, biblical thoughts of God. It makes the intake of God’s word dependent upon the “predigestion” of the word before you can eat it as soul food. In saints with a wrong mind, the taking in of scripture truth for spiritual nourishment is like “baby food,” milk not strong meat. It makes you always dependent upon someone else for your understanding of even the rudiments of scripture truth. Our churches are full of such baby saints.
    Ability to think about wrong and wicked things. The wrong mind can take in that which has no spiritual value and that which is contrary to sound doctrine. Wicked thoughts, bad experiences, wicked and wrong attitudes, fill the wrong mind, naturally and easily.
    Inability to control the thought. A wrong mind lacks the ability to focus on truly worthwhile thoughts. If not occupied in some activity which requires intense focus, it bounces from thought to thought. A wrong mind tends to thoughts that flits about. This goes on in our churches among those who say they come to worship God, but their thoughts and hearts are far from him.
    The mind is the primary channel of the human make up through which Holy Spirit works. It is through the healed mind, one that is being renewed day by day, which the Spirit works. To have a healed mind and a renewing mind, four corrections are needed.

    I. The mind must be changed.
    (2 Corinthians 5:17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
    Frankly, many who profess to be Christians have a wrong mind because they have never been regenerated by the Holy Spirit. They are simply not saved! The regenerating work of the Holy Spirit is absolutely necessary before there can be a healed and renewed mind. On this the scripture is very plain and pointed. The natural mind is the mind of a man without God, without Christ, without understanding, and without hope. There are certain facts which are evident concerning this.
    First, the natural mind cannot receive the things of God. It is at enmity with God, and cannot be subject to the law of God. It lacks the capacity for receiving the things of God, and cannot, of itself, know God.
    (Romans 8:5-7) For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. (6) For to be carnally minded is death; but to spiritually minded is life and peace. (7) Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
    (1 Corinthians 2:14) But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
    Second, the natural mind is vanity, the understanding is darkened, filled with ignorance, and the blindness of the heart permeates its thoughts.
    (Ephesians 4:17-19) This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, (18) 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: (19) Who being past feeling have given themselves over into lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
    Third, the natural mind must be changed. There must be a work of God upon it and in it that gives light and life to it. Paul refers to this in 2Corinthians 4:6, where he likens our salvation to the work of the Spirit’s restoration of the deadness, and darkness. As God commanded the light to shine then, and carried out the process of restoration, so he does in the saving of a soul. The natural man, without God, is under the deep, dead, and filled with darkness. God has to command the light to shine in our heart, give the light of the knowledge of God in the face of Jesus Christ, and work in us both to will and do of his good pleasure.
    (Acts 17:30) And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:
    (2 Corinthians 4:6) For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
    Therefore, the first thing necessary for the healing on the mind is the saving work of God quickening and regenerating the sinner. Without this, no matter how much a person knows they know nothing really. You must be saved, or, as far as God is concerned, you are not in a right mind, but beside yourself and in the dark about reality.

    II. The mind must be renewed.
    (Romans 12:1-2) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. (2) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that we may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
    This is the doorway to the transformed life. We are to have the mind of Christ (Philippinans2). It seems that the mind is the Holy Spirit’s outlet in the life of the believer. If that is the case, whatever percent of the saint’s mind that is not renewed is in distorted light, a form of darkness. This is the battlefield of the Christian life. It must be in a continued state of renewal. There are several evidences of a mind that has not been, or is not being renewed. These relate to the person who has had a salvation experience, but has not continued to renew their mind, and are similar to some of those in a lost person.
    First, there is an inability to retain spiritual truth. The person with an unrenewed mind may have the ability to retain many things. They can retain math facts, scientific facts, prophetical facts, sports statistics, and so forth. They just can’t retain spiritual truth.
    Second, they demonstrate and inability to communicate spiritual truth. Even when they have learned spiritual truth, they cannot communicate it to others. The reason, most likely, is that their ability to retain spiritual truth is so restricted, their spiritual thinking is faulty and erratic and distorted.
    Third, they have an inability to practice the truth. They simply cannot live in accordance with spiritual truth. This is not to say that spiritual knowledge cannot be ahead of our spiritual experience and practice. Generally it is. But, not to the degree to which I am referring in this context. Without the renewed mind, the inability to retain truth leaved the person without clear doctrine which determines Christian duty. Belief always determines behavior. The Christian who cannot retain spiritual truth, or who has a distorted understanding of it, cannot regulate their Christian behavior without distortion.
    Fourth, an unrenewed mind produces an attitude of prejudice against truth that is not understood or comprehended. The person is limited to the “first principles,” the ABC’s, of the Christian faith. From this limitation comes the attitude which says, “I can’t handle it. I’m content with what I know. I am saved and that is all that matters. Don’t confuse me with doctrine.” This causes a cowardly attitude which runs from any new truth. That in turn, leads to laziness and a contentment with half-truths. As a result prejudice to all truth develops and an obstinate heart towards the truth develops.
    The result? The life begins to go back to the natural realm. Therefore, it is either renew the mind daily, or return to the natural realm and the life which is lived in accordance with it, and the works of the flesh which accompany such a life.
    (Romans 8:4-39) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (5) For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. (6) For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. (7) Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, nether indeed can be.
    (Galatians 5:19-21) Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, (20) Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, sedition, heresies, (21) Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
    How can the mind of the child of God be renewed? Romans 12 gives us the first step necessary. There must be an initial and continued presentation of the body to God as a living sacrifice. The mind must be submitted to the work of the cross (Ephesians 4:21-22). The mind by faith, must be taken from the realm of the flesh to the realm of the Spirit (Romans 8:4-7). And, of course, the mind must be saturated and steeped in the word of God. The Bible must be read, heard, studied, memorized, and meditated upon. The word must be “hid” in the heart of the saints.

    III. The mind must be controlled.
    The Christian has a responsibility in this and it doesn’t just happen. The thoughts must be gathered. The loins of the mind have to be girded about with truth and then the thoughts taken captive to the obedience of Christ (I Peter 1:12; 2 Cor. 10:5; Eph. 6:14). The mind has to be “captured” and brought to Christ (2 Cor. 11:3), so that it is not corrupted nor distorted. Either you must control your mind, or it will be controlled by the flesh, the world, and/or the devil. These are some scriptural principles to control the mind.
    Control of the Christian’s mind begins by asking God for his Holy Spirit to enable you to do so. No one can do it without God’s enabling power. That comes from the work of the Holy Spirit. Next, our thoughts have to be sifted by the sieve of Philippians 8. This will “blow out your mind” so that “stinking thinking” is blown away like the chaff. If a thought or attitude doesn’t “sift”, don’t consent to it. Put it away by reckoning on you death with Christ to the old man, and your new life in the new man (Romans 6:6 ff.).
    Apply to your heavenly Father regarding every problem (Phil. 4:6). Allow God by his Spirit and holy scriptures, to heal your memory and mind. Apply the blood of Jesus Christ to past sins. Ye are washed (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). Look to the Sovereignty of our good and gracious God to clean the mind of wrong thinking about tragedies. If others have or do treat you ill or in a wrong manner, forgive and never discuss it again. This is what God does with your sins if you are his child. (Ephesians 4:32).

    IV. The mind must be occupied with proper thoughts and objects.
    Do not have a passive or blank mind. Beware of this, especially when reading, hearing sermons, and listening to music. Avoid being captivated by television which helps induce mindlessness and an inability to reason. When you do watch it, make mental notes of faulty reasoning or false philosophies, and seek to develop scripture answers.
    In the place or stead of a passive or blank mind, occupy your mind. Don’t let it be a “blank page.” Occupy it with noble thoughts. Use your mind to approve things that are excellent (Phil. 1:10). Set your affection on things above (Col. 3:2). Think on Christ: who he is (Luke 10:38-42); what he has done (Phil. 4:4); and what and where you are with him (Eph.1). And, keep your mind occupied with the return of our Saviour (Tit. 2:13; Phil. 3:20-21).
    In our age of mindlessness, the child of God must endeavor to have a renewed mind. The benefits and blessing are great. The person here, who is without Christ, is in the worst sense possible, mindless.
    (Isaiah 26:3) Thou shalt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusted in thee.
    Bro. Don Scott

    Tabernacle Baptist Church
    8836 Southwest Court
    Jacksonville, Florida 32222
  2. Ben W

    Ben W
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    Sep 16, 2002
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    Interesting article, could be a good one to share with some of the guys in the mens forum?

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