IN THE DAYS OF HIS POWER SERIES.
TOPIC: WINNING IN THE BATTLEFIELD OF THE MIND
Rev. Innocent Peace-Udochukwu
President Living Fountain Ministries Int’l LIFOM
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by
Renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and
Acceptable and perfect will of God.
To be a Christian is to be a warrior. The good soldier of Jesus Christ must not expect to find ease in this world—it is a battlefield! Neither must he reckon upon the friendship of the world, for that would be enmity against God. His occupation is war and the battlefield starts and ends in our mind.
Our behavior are always affected by what we think. For us to enjoy life to the fullest, we must learn to identify and reject unhealthy thought patterns.
The saying “It’s all in your head” is truer than we would like to admit. What can start out as something done with good intentions can lead us very far astray save for one crucial ingredient: God’s Word.
Books, TV, Movies, Advertisers, all battle for your mind. So does God and Satan. What kind of mind do you have? Strive to have the mind of Christ
Remember this: You will never change your life until you change the way you think.
“As a man thinks in his heart, so is he…”
He never uses either persecution or patronage, force or bribery, glitter of grandeur, or terror of power. He works upon men by the Word, which is suitable to His own spiritual Nature and to the spiritual work which is to be accomplished. While it is spiritual, this weapon is “mighty through God.”
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war
According to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal
But mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down
Arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the
Knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the
Obedience of Christ.”
A violent battle is raging around us twenty-four hours per day.
In this very battle we are not merely to defend, but also to attack. It is not enough that you are not conquered, you have to conquer and, therefore, we find that we are to take, not only a helmet to protect the head, but also a sword with which to annoy the foe. Ours, therefore, is a stern conflict, standing and withstanding—and we shall need all the armor from the Divine magazine, all the strength from the mighty God of Jacob!
The Holy Spirit wields no sword but the Word of God. This wonderful Book, which contains the utterances of God’s mouth, is the one weapon which the Holy Spirit elects to use for His war-like purposes. It is a spiritual weapon and so is suitable to the Holy Spirit. The weapons of His warfare are not carnal
In 1965, Donald Grey Barnhouse wrote a book about it called The Invisible War. It is the battle for your mind, and that battle is vicious. It is intense. It is unrelenting, and it is unfair because Satan never plays fair. And the reason why it is so intense is that your greatest asset is your mind so one of the most important things we need to learn and teach others is how to guard, strengthen, and renew our minds, because the battle for sin always starts in the mind.
The apostle Paul says here that our job in this battle is to “destroy strongholds.” You know what a stronghold is? It is a mental block. Paul is talking about pretentions, arguments set up against the knowledge of God. This is a mental battle. And he says, “Destroy these strongholds.” A stronghold can be one of two things:
It can be a worldview, such as materialism, hedonism, Darwinism, secularism, relativism, communism, atheism. All of the different -isms are mental strongholds that people set up against the knowledge of God.
A stronghold can also be a personal attitude. Worry can be a stronghold. Seeking the approval of other people can be a stronghold. Anything that you make an idol in your life can be a stronghold — fear, guilt, resentment, insecurity. All of these things can be strongholds in your mind. And the Bible says that we are to tear them down.
Take captive every thought. The Greek word aichmaløtizø there means “to control, to conquer, to bring into submission.” We take captive. We make it submit. Every thought obedient to Christ. Make it obedient. Hupakøe means “to bring into submission, to bring under control.”
The thing is there is a lot in the world that can poison the minds of the people against the things of God. There is legalism, there is the idea that you will give up all of the fun things in life, there are even things like media that twist the Scripture to suite their needs and when you try to share the truth of God’s word with people their minds have been so poisoned that they believe the lies of the world and tell you what you believe is a lie. The enemy is out there to turn the minds of the people away from the truth.
But we must we bring every thought to the obedient of Christ!
There is a time in our hearts when the inner warfare rages with unusual violence. At certain seasons our corruptions break forth with extreme violence; and if for awhile they appear to have formed a truce With us, or to have lost their power, we suddenly find them full of vigour, fierce and terrible; and hard will be the struggle for us, by prayer and holy watchfulness, to keep ourselves from becoming slaves to our inward enemies. May we have increased grace given us in these trying seasons. I believe you have, most of you, found that there are seasons when kings go forth to battle in the matter of your doubts and fears. Depressions come upon you, you scarcely know why. They come without apparent cause, and they depart almost as unexpectedly. As John Bunyan says of the Slough of Despond, that at certain seasons it poureth forth its mire most horribly, so I have found it with regard to despondency and feebleness of faith. At certain times these tyrants make havoc in our souls.
So is it with Satan. He doth not always tempt. Though always “going about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour,” he does not always roar, neither doth he every moment leap upon his prey; he is always ready to destroy, but does not always find the opportunity for attack. Yet are there times when he finds our flesh in a fit condition for his temptation, like dry tinder for his sparks, when he finds our souls at a distance from God, our faith at a low ebb, and our piety declining, and then will this grand enemy of our souls go forth to battle like a mighty Nimrod, seeking to lead us captive and utterly to destroy our faith. You know these times of war, my brethren, for you have passed through them. If they are not upon you just now, thank God, and accept the rest which his love affords you, but keep your sword out of its scabbard, for the fight may begin again at any hour. If you are passing through the conflict at this moment, be not afraid nor discouraged; it has been the lot of all God’s people to fight their way to heaven, and it must be yours. Think not that you shall be overcome, but rather cry with the prophet, “Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise.”
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