WINNING THE BATTLE FOR YOUR MIND
1. INTRODUCTION - Our Personal warfare
2 Cor. 10:3-6
· We are engaged in a warfare - Born Again into God’s Kingdom, enrolled as a soldier.
· The enemy is Satan - seducing spirits that stalk, work to deceive, rob, bring to bondage.
· The battlefield is the soul - mind, will, emotions - whatever controls the soul controls you. 3 Jn.2 Prosper as your soul prospers. Mt.22:37 Love the Lord with all heart and all soul and all strength.
· The enemy devises strategies ‘wiles’ = 3180 methods, to lie in wait to attack and capture.
· God has give us weapons that are mighty - powerful through dependence upon Him.
These weapons are used to pull down - 2506 = to demolish with violence.
· The goal of the warfare is bringing our thought life into obedience to Christ.
2. THE BATTLE IS FOR YOUR THOUGHTS AND IMAGINATIONS
a) Your Life follows the Things that You Think on
· Prov. 23:7 As man thinketh in his heart so is he”
· Job 31:1 Covenant with my eyes (vision, pictures) why think on a maid. V7 - Heart walk after my eyes.
· What you see creates inner pictures in imagination that the mind ponders on.
· What the mind ponders on affects the heart - the affections and longings.
· Rom.8:5 Those who walk after the flesh mind the things of the flesh.
· “Mind” (5426 Strongs) = to exercise the mind be interested in.
b) Your Imagination is Your Creative Faculty
· Imagination = capacity to picture, to dream, to create images or pictures of things not yet seen in reality.
· Inner eye, inner screen enabling you to picture things that were (past), things that are (present), things that might be.
· The inner man works strongly with inward pictures.
· The Holy Spirit communicates through inward thoughts, impressions and pictures.
· The Imagination is connected to your desires
· You tend to picture things you desire and desire things you picture e.g. Big Mac. E.g. Josh.7:8 Achan - saw and coveted and took.
· When Imagination, desire and will agree things conceive in heart
· Vision conceives e.g. building, career, ministry, family.
· Sin conceives e.g. Ja.1:14 lust conceives, brings forth sin
Acts 5:4 Why have you conceived in your heart to be?
· The Seed conceived in heart can be
Cultivated - nurtured until it comes forth
Miscarried - accidentally destroyed
Aborted - deliberately destroyed
· You need to learn how to nurture the dreams of God and pull down and demolish negative pictures of defeat and failure.
· Whatever you can see within your mind is within your reach. Gen.11:6.
Imagination and desire coupled with will and action make things possible.
· Ruling our mind = God is able to fill it with picture that extend His Kingdom.
3 HOW THE THOUGHTS AND IMAGINATION ARE ATTACKED
· Ro.1:21 God not honoured and thanked - became (a process) vain in their imagination.
· Vain = (3154 Strongs) = foolish, empty, idolatrous, self centred.
· Imagination = (1261 Strongs) = purpose, inner reflection, cast in mind.
· When God is not given the right place in our thoughts and imaginations then the enemy sows thoughts and pictures contrary to the purpose of God for our lives.
· These thoughts and pictures exalt self and resist us knowing and walking with God. 2 Cor.10:5 Imagination a high thing that exalts self against the knowledge of God.
Daydreams - Mind pictures people, events with self at the centre Creates imaginary world with self at centre where defeat is impossible.
Fantasy - People escape reality and painful experiences by entering an unreal world e.g. TV, video, games, books or by living in unreality imagining they can do anything for God.
Wrong Desires - People picture themselves fulfilling desires contrary to the Will of God. E.g. Eve Gen.3:5 - shall be as gods - self exalting thoughts.
Hurts, Wounds, Injustice People rehearse the pictures of these experiences like a mental VCR - anger, resentment, fearful.
Failures People picture negative outcomes and their heart fills with fear.
Num.13:33 In own eyes as grasshoppers
cf Num.14:9 Bread for us.
4. WINNING THE BATTLE FOR YOUR MIND (2 Cor.10:3-6)
i) Recognise - Think what you are thinking about, dwelling upon. What is going on in your thoughts? What type of thoughts.
ii) Resist - Practice first frame resistance, catch the first impression.
Dwelling on pictures and thoughts develops and intensifies them.
Speak against the thought - refuse it - talk to God about it.
“Captivity” = make a prisoner of war.
iii) Refocus - Choose to think about something good, godly - Phil.4:8 Whatsoever things are good - Think!
iv) Rebuild - Make conscious effort to develop godly thoughts by regular input of the Word of God.
Meditate = to ponder, roll around in mind, picture.
Josh.1:8 Meditate to do and you will prosper
1 Tim.4:15 Meditate and give self - that profiting might appear.
Do not attempt to answer all the questions.
1. Read 2 Cor.10:3-5
· Why are thoughts and imaginations such an area of conflict in your life?
· Why does the Bible use the term stronghold to give a word picture of some of the mind sets people have? What would a “stronghold” have been like in those days.
· Can you explain how mind sets or negative patterns of thoughts are self centred or “exalt self”.
· How do mind sets or negative patterns of thought resist you knowing God?
· Can you identify any repeated thought patterns or mind sets that you struggle with? Can you give it a name?
· Which of the five common areas of struggle do you find most difficult to overcome?
· I) Daydreaming, ii) Fantasy, iii) Wrong Desires, iv) Hurts and Injustice, v) Past failures.
· How do you think it affects your relationship with God? with people?
· What could you do to change this? Are you willing to?
· The goal of this warfare is to bring your thought life into obedience to the Word of God. What scriptures would apply to the pattern of thought you struggle with?