by Matt Slick
The Bible sees the mind as that place of contemplation, judgment, and intention. Our minds allow us to be rational, to weigh evidence, to make decisions about right and wrong, options, etc. Our minds allow us to worship, praise God, pray, love, repent, and trust. In this we are made in God's image with the mental capacities not shared by any animal on the planet.
How many thoughts pass through our minds every day? It must be thousands. We constantly think and contemplate. If we multiply this by the number of years we live, then we undoubtedly produce millions and millions of thoughts. Furthermore, if we realize that we are to give account to God for all our words, then we are quickly sobered. Jesus said, "For nothing is hidden, except to be revealed; nor has anything been secret, but that it should come to light," (Mark 4:22). All we can do is humbly lay ourselves before God and be grateful for God's grace to us. Because of Christ's sacrifice He will not remember our sins either of deed or of thought (Heb. 10:17). Thank you Lord and may you be praised for your kindness.
Knowing that we are cleansed in Christ, we can then set our minds on godly things. "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God," (Col. 3:2-3). Notice what Paul says. He says that because we have died with Christ (trusted in Christ and been counted in Him on the cross), that we are to set our minds on the things above, not the things on earth. Paul is not saying we can't think about our mortgage, food prices, family, etc. He is stating that our minds need to be focused on God, on living the Word, on presenting Christ to the lost, on God's glory, etc. We are not our own. We belong to the one who has purchased us with His blood, (Acts 20:28) and indwelt by God Himself (John 14:23). Our minds are to be taken into the service of godliness. Our thoughts are to be holy.
Again, praise be to God for His grace to us in revealing to us what the focus of our minds is to be: "Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things," (Phil. 4:8). Within the confines of our daily lives, are we guiding our thoughts to dwell on what is pure, lovely, good, excellent, and worthy of praise?
The more you read God's word and the more you humble yourself in prayer, the more you are able to set your minds on the things that are above. You cannot be godly in your mind apart from the strength of God's presence. This is why you must seek God and be close to Him in fellowship (1 Cor. 1:9). In His presence, your mind is changed and your heart is moved. As Moses' face shined with the glory of God after leaving His Almighty presence, so too will your mind shine with the glory of God as you spend time in devotion to the Lord. Let your mind dwell on God's mercy, goodness, love, kindness, grace, provision, and faithfulness. Memorize scriptures that deal with God's holiness and purity. Wash yourself with the Word. Spend time in prayer with God and seek His will and guidance. He desires to be with you (Ex. 25:8).
"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect," (Rom. 12:2).