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Fishers of Men-Part V

Fishers of Men-Part V
The Battle for Our Mind

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

In Part IV of this devotional series, we learned that we are fighting a spiritual war with Satan and his emissaries, and that the battlefield is being held within our minds.  If Satan can get us to think upon something, we will eventually act upon it, and this is where his power lies.  We learned that we are to put on our Spiritual armor each day (See Eph. 6:13-18).  And we learned that part of this armor is a "Shield of Faith."  With this piece of armor, we can deflect any fiery dart thrown at us by the enemy, and we can quickly put out any fires that started as a result.  

The next thing that we want to look at is what I believe to be the greatest tool available to every Christian--and that is the ability to reason or think with our minds. I believe our mind is the most important weapon for defeating the enemy and his temptation for us to bite upon his bait.

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...2Corinthians 10:4-5 (NKJV)

Q:    What are these "Strongholds" that crumble before the weapons of the Spirit?

A:    These are the places where we are in error in our doctrine, or in opposition to the will of God with regard to our actions within our lives.

The "arguments, and every high thing," refers to any human act or attitude that would make an obstacle or barrier to the freeing knowledge of God contained in the Gospel of Christ and that keeps people in bondage to sin.

 "Every thought," literally means, "Every Thought!"  Once you've taken every thought, sift through it and see if it is in opposition to God's perfect plan and will for our lives.  Our thoughts must be identified as to their origin, and then reconciled with what we know God would want.

This simply means that if we have a thought popping through our mind, we need to ask ourselves,

Is this what Jesus would do?  
Is this what He would want me to do?  
Is this something that would be condoned in His Word?
Is this something that is going to build others or me up?
Is this something that is going to tear down my relationship?
Is this going to bring me closer to my spouse?
Is this going to cause others to stumble in their walk?
Is this going to cause others to not want to know Christ?
Is this going to bring me close to God?
Is this in the will of God for my life?

We learn to reconcile our thoughts by being knowledgeable in the Word of God.  Hebrews speaks of those Christians who have gone beyond knowing a few verses to quote, and who have dug into the Word to rightly divide it.  When we are attempting to know Gods will for every situation and are reading His Word to prepare ourselves, this constitutes Solid food.

But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil. Hebrews 5:14 (NKJV)

When we take each thought captive to the obedience of Christ, we are exercising our senses to discern both good and evil.
Satan knows that he has lost the battle for your soul once you have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.  But if he can influence your actions by throwing fiery darts of deception at your mind, then he will render you ineffective in your Christian walk, and most likely will cause others to stumble around you in their walk as well.  

In addition to this, there will be some people who may not want to know Jesus because of our irrational behavior due to entertaining these evil thoughts. We need to get rid of or "Cast down," any conversation or argument that comes against the truth and knowledge of God and His Word. We can only do this by taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.

Once we have successfully taken a bad thought captive, and have thrown it out of our mind, we need to fix our thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. We need to think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.  Think about some of the promises that God has made and speak out loud-giving praise for His grace and love.  

I want to encourage you today, to take every thought captive and think on those things that are outlined in Philippians 4:8.  If we follow this simply practice, we will avoid every tempting bait that the enemy is using to cause us to stumble.

STUDY QUESTION: How powerful are our weapons for pulling down strongholds according to 2 Cor. 10:4-5?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you willing to check your thoughts out before acting on them?

APPLICATION: Take every Thought captive to the obedience of Christ.  If it is not something that He would want you to act upon, get rid of it immediately.  The longer you think upon it, the more likely you will act upon it.

Father, Thank You for Your wisdom and discernment.  Help me today to take every thought captive to the obedience of Your Son.  Help me to discern the thoughts that are of You, and those that are counterfeit or that will be damaging.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000