01 A Sound Mind

By John Thiel, Audio: mp3

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Within this verse is couched the theme of this series. Every word is for us to absorb.

Many who profess to be Christians have yet to learn this great lesson. Many know little of what it is to deny self for Christ’s sake. They do not study how they can best glorify God and advance His cause. But it is self, self, how can it be gratified? {TMK 174.3}

This is the case with many Christians. There is a predisposition within me that I want to gratify myself.

Such religion is worthless. In the day of God those who possess it will be weighed in the balance and found wanting. {TMK 174.3}

We are to study and learn this great lesson that I should be a real Christian by having the mind of Christ. We as the disciples of old have certain expectations and we have to learn the unexpected lesson that they had to learn. Not to bring our mind exercises as an offering to Jesus and then be bitterly disappointed because they were so disappointed as they did not learn the lesson when Jesus was among them. Jesus was among them and they didn’t learn the lesson and we are here today and we don’t have Jesus with us in visible form and are we any better off than they are in reference to that we might not make the same mistakes that they made? Notice what Jesus was trying to do with the disciples.

Reasoning from prophecy, Christ gave His disciples a correct idea of what He was to be in humanity. Their expectation of a Messiah who was to take His throne and kingly power in accordance with the desires of men had been misleading. It would interfere with a correct apprehension of His descent from the highest to the lowest position that could be occupied. Christ desired that the ideas of His disciples might be pure and true in every specification. They must understand as far as possible in regard to the cup of suffering that had been apportioned to Him. He showed them that the awful conflict which they could not yet comprehend was the fulfillment of the covenant made before the foundation of the world was laid. Christ must die, as every transgressor of the law must die if he continues in sin. {DA 799.3}

Even today people find that so hard to comprehend.

All this was to be, but it was not to end in defeat, but in glorious, eternal victory. Jesus told them that every effort must be made to save the world from sin. His followers must live as He lived, and work as He worked, with intense, persevering effort. {DA 799.3}

Can you see that the disciples were not picking up on the lesson? When Jesus died, what died with them? All their hopes and expectations died with him and when he appeared to them, how did they react? They began to shake and thought they saw a ghost. Jesus said touch me, it’s me. They had no anticipation of a resurrection yet Jesus had told them time and time again.

Luke 24:36 And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace [be] unto you. 37 But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. 38 And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? 39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.

I’ve been over this in Adventism for years that those truths repeated again and again were not sinking into the minds of his followers. The Holy Spirit is approaching us with the words, let this mind be in you. Don’t hold onto your own expectations, nothing of that whatsoever. The words of Isaiah must sink deep into our appreciation.

Isaiah 55:8 For my thoughts [are] not your thoughts, neither [are] your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For [as] the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. 

Those words are not to be kept in that statement alone but need to be resolved. Your thoughts must be changed to my thoughts. Many people quote verse 9 and leave it there.

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

That is as far as people read but is it meant to stay like that?

1 Corinthians 2:10 But God hath revealed [them] unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

Those deep things of God, the spirit of God searches them and reveals them to us if we let.

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.

Do you have a natural man in you, don’t apply this to a natural man out there, it is in me. my natural mean receives not the things of god.

1 Corinthians 2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

The disciples were speaking about those who were true Christians.

Only under the direction of the Omniscient One shall we, in the study of His works, be enabled to think His thoughts after Him. {Ed 134.5}

He reveals them to us if we will let. To let him, to let this mind be in us, what is the first thought that needs to be allowed?

1 Corinthians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

Let this mind be in you. Explore this mind that initially is a mind that makes of itself of no reputation. It is the exact opposite of self. Self is always struggling for reputation.

The First Thing I Must Let in Letting His Mind be In Us

Do you want a proper level of the human mind?

What gives the proper level to the human mind? It is the cross of Calvary. By looking unto Jesus, who is the Author and Finisher of our faith, all the desire for self-glorification is laid in the dust. {OHC 114.2}

Take an honest look at yourself and see how much you need these words because there are things naturally in us that we don’t acknowledge are there. Then we wonder why we get into complicated circumstances and relationships. There is an element inside of me, the natural man that wants to feel glory, success and self-satisfaction but the correct proper level of the mind is to look to Jesus who is the author and finisher that all desire is laid in the dust.

There comes, as we see aright, a spirit of self-abasement that promotes lowliness and humbleness of mind. {OHC 114.2}

When does that come? When we look upon Jesus.

As we contemplate the cross, we are enabled to see the wonderful provision it has brought to every believer. God in Christ . . . if seen aright, will level human exaltation and pride. There will be no self-exaltation, but there will be true humility. {OHC 114.2}

You want to be levelled? It is the exact opposite to what we in our imagination think Christianity is all about. We have an expectation that we will be lifted up. That is what the disciples had in desire in following Jesus. They were so bitterly disappointed as all their expectations of being glorified with their saviour were levelled. So it is with everyone who will see a right of God in Christ. There will be no exaltation but true humility.

The light reflected from the cross of Calvary will humble every proud thought. Those who seek God with all the heart, and accept the great salvation offered them, will open the door of the heart to Jesus. They will cease to ascribe glory to themselves. They will not pride themselves on their acquirements, or take credit to themselves for their capabilities, but will regard all their talents as God’s gifts, to be used to His glory. Every intellectual ability they will regard as precious only as it can be used in the service of Christ. {OHC 114.3}

Even the thought that comes of glory, I’m someone here, I’m really succeeding here, I’m doing better than others, it will humble every proud thought. That is where Lucifer lost his way. He forgot he was a gift by God’s creation and all the glory was to be for God. He forgot he was a created being.

Christ’s humiliation in clothing His divinity with humanity is worthy of our consideration. Had this subject been studied as carefully as it should have been, there would be far less of “I” heard and far more of Christ. It is self-esteem that stands between the human agent and his God and impedes the vital current that flows from Christ to enrich every human being. When we follow Jesus in the path of self-denial and the cross, we shall find that we do not have to strive for humility. As we walk in Christ’s footsteps, we shall learn His meekness and lowliness of heart. Very few thoughts should be devoted to self; for we can never make ourselves great. It is Christ’s gentleness that makes us great. {OHC 114.4}

You know how it says humble yourself? You can’t humble yourself as when you do you are proud of your humility. If you are going to be truly humble you follow Jesus. Let this mind be in you. I’m to let that happen. What happens as you let that happen? As you allow this mind to occupy your thought patterns? What happens to you? The governing thought of Jesus and his meekness and lowliness was displayed before the mind’s eye in the gospel.

Ephesians 4:21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; 23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 

That spirit in my mind occupied with its own ego. The spirit of my mind is to be renewed.

Ephesians 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

The spirit of our mind is to be transformed into something else and it is going to do that as we let the mind of Christi occupy my mind.

No man receives holiness as a birthright, or as a gift from any other human being. Holiness is the gift of God through Christ. Those who receive the Saviour become sons of God. They are His spiritual children, born again, renewed in righteousness and true holiness. Their minds are changed. With clearer vision they behold eternal realities. They are adopted into God’s family, and they become conformed to His likeness, changed by His Spirit from glory to glory. {OHC 214.2}

We will see the changing of the mind. This change of mind, how is this mind described?

2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

What is this mind? It is the only soundness that exists in this world. This world has gone insane and I’m one of them by nature but as we absorb the message of let this mind be in you, we will receive a sound mind. What can you do with a sound mind? Remember what it was?

1 Corinthians 2:16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

In these perplexing times in which we live right now with knowledge increased, men will be running to and fro and knowledge shall increase, hasn’t knowledge increased? Is the world any better for it? Why? Why the world is worse now with all its advanced knowledge than it was before?

What is the Mind of Christ?

Daniel 12:4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, [even] to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. 9 And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words [are] closed up and sealed till the time of the end. 10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.

A sound mind, the wise, wisdom. Wisdom in the dictionary means learning facts. But learning facts does not necessarily give one wisdom. Have you learned all the facts of all the prophecies and Adventism? Have you learnt them all? Does that mean you have wisdom? We often think we do. What is wisdom? Learning facts and having knowledge, knowledge increases and yet man is not wise.

What Is Wisdom?

Proverbs 15:2 The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

The knowledge you gain if you use it aright is wisdom as there is a lot of knowledge we don’t use aright. We need wisdom after we have gained knowledge.

Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom [is] the principal thing; [therefore] get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

Knowledge isn’t the principal thing, wisdom is so as you get knowledge, get wisdom as that is the principle thing.

Proverbs 2:6 For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth [cometh] knowledge and understanding.

Wisdom and understanding using knowledge aright. We are to have a change of mind.

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

He is referring to righteousness and true holiness, true wisdom that is to be brought into the equation.

But let no one imagine that we would discourage education or put a low estimate upon the value of mental culture and discipline. God would have us students as long as we remain in this world, ever learning and bearing responsibility. . . . But no one should set himself as a critic to measure the usefulness and influence of his brother who has had few advantages in obtaining book knowledge. {TMK 193.3}

You might be a well-studied person with a lot of book knowledge but there are some who don’t.

He may be rich in a rarer wisdom. He may have a practical education in the knowledge of the truth. {TMK 193.3}

Knowledge of the truth must go beyond book knowledge. It needs to be a practical knowledge of the truth.

Says the psalmist, “The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple” (Psalm 119:130). . . . The wisdom spoken of by the psalmist is that which is attained when the truth is opened to the mind and applied to the heart by the Spirit of God, when its principles are wrought into the character by a life of practical godliness. . . .

After you have done all the study of what Sr White writes, what the Bible says and what the pioneers taught, don’t think now that you’ve got it. Now is the time to bring into practical godliness in applying it to the heart by the spirit of God. To correctly use the knowledge and have wisdom. In other words, when God gives knowledge it is always knowledge of living reality. When Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, did they have a book knowledge of good and evil? They had a living knowledge of good and evil. That is God’s knowledge, wisdom and understanding. What do you get by mere knowledge? If you just have knowledge and little wisdom, what do you get? A heap of knowledge. You know and study so much and you get so much information. What do you get?

Ecclesiastes 1:18 For in much wisdom [is] much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

The more knowledge the more sorrow you get. When I studied nursing I got to know so much and it took me a good three years to get myself out of sorrow. We started with fifty students in my class and we graduated with 25 as all the knowledge they got drove them to depression. I had to battle through great inroads of sorrow the more I got to know.

Ecclesiastes 12:12 And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books [there is] no end; and much study [is] a weariness of the flesh.

I feel sorry for university students as they are spun out with all their head knowledge and when they want to find a job, practical realities strike home and they have to learn all over again. Education is good but not the way man increases it.

1 Corinthians 3:18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. 20 And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.

When the knowledge we have is used aright does true humility come into place, the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 8:1 Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth. 2 And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 3 But if any man love God, the same is known of him. 

What is important? He that loves God. if we love God we will receive not only knowledge but wisdom. Look at the sorrow of mere knowledge, Adam and Eve are a perfect example. The God who loved them, when they ate of the tree of knowledge what did they do in reference to their relationship with God? The God who loved them and who knew what they had done, what did they do? They ran for their life. What do you call that? Paranoia. What is paranoia? They were afraid and anxious because they got to know good and evil and they ran.

2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

He has not given us the spirit of fear. Fear is something that sends you into paranoia.

1 Corinthians 8:3 But if any man love God, the same is known of him.

If you love someone, are you afraid of them? There is no paranoia or anxiety. The sound mind that comes from God and the love of God is wisdom.

The Embodiment of the Love and Knowledge of God

James 3:13 Who [is] a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. 14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but [is] earthly, sensual, devilish. 16 For where envying and strife [is], there [is] confusion and every evil work. 17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, [and] easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. 18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. 

God give me the serenity to accept the things I can’t change. God give me such a thing. How does God answer such a prayer?

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

There is that word again, let. Let this mind be in you, let not your heart be troubled. The peace and wisdom that comes from God is first pure then peaceable. It is what Jesus says that his peace we need to discover. Let this mind be in you that was in him which is a total resignation of my reputation. There lies the wisdom and peace. Who is speaking when he said that? Jesus.

John 16:26 At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: 27 For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God.

As we ask in his name, what does God do? He loves us. here we are sinners with the knowledge of good and evil and our appreciations of self and we think we are great and Jesus says in that day you shall ask in my name and my Father loves you. God came to speak with Adam and Eve and they ran away. Here is the paranoia. Can you trust him who loves you? Do you need to be anxious about him who comes to you who loves you and you know you’ve done him wrong and violated his commandments but he loves you. Is it right to be anxious? Then if it is not right to be anxious, if it is right to let not my heart be troubled because he loves me, then act on it.

1 John 4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. 17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. 19 We love him, because he first loved us.

To love God is the issue of wisdom that the love that I see that God has to us in giving us Jesus Christ to our deplorable sinful condition so he had to die a death that a person has to die if he continues in transgression. If I can let God illuminate me with that, what will happen to fear? It is out, I will no longer suffer paranoia. I will have perfect peace. It is the peace that he had with my sin upon him and with faith reaching out to the great God who loved the sinner to pour his heart before God and confess all his sin. That is perfect wisdom and perfect love. No more fear. Father into your hands I commend my spirit said Jesus.

Let that mind be in you. What is the opposite to this? Let my heart be troubled. Let my heart suffer under paranoia. What is that? What is paranoia. Have you picked it up yet? It is over suspicious, unreasonably distrustful. Are we unreasonably distrustful that God loves us so much that he gave us Jesus Christ to take away my sin that I continue to hold onto my fear that I’m a sinner and not going to make it? Is that paranoia? Beside myself and distrustful? That is paranoia. Is it reasonable to be trouble minded about anything at all when you embrace the Lord? When we embrace the Lord then we can correctly reason in the spirit of our mind.

Psalm 42:5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and [why] art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him [for] the help of his countenance.

This doesn’t make sense to be disquieted. Every single one of us goes through disquietude. No matter how much we know and believe in Jesus Christ we go through seasons of disquietude. Do you ever ask why? Trust in God.

Amen.

A_Sound_Mind

Posted on May 6, 2011, in Let This Mind Be In You Seminar. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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