Text: Ephesians 4:17-19
(Much of the information here was preached by Pastor James Knox at Bible Baptist Church in Deland, FL. http://jameswknox.org/category/the-bible-and-mental-health/)
God wants to change your thinking. Physical health is not promised in the Bible for your current body. In fact, physical death is promised. Physical health is not promised.
- But mental health is promised. One day you will receive a new body. But you’ve already been given the mind of Christ.
- 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. Afraid? God didn’t make you afraid. Now you may not believe that, but God has given it to you if you’re saved. So your access to that sound mind may be limited, but it’s not because God limited it. It would be because you don’t believe what you just read.
- 2 Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
- Would God say this if it could not be done?
- Why do we excuse this command? You can’t imagine someone excusing themselves from adultery. God doesn’t command what He doesn’t make possible.
- Matthew 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. So God has a reasonable expectation that you possess your full mind.
- Vanity of their mind… (vs 17)
- We live in such a selfish culture that if I think a thought, it’s because God put it there. If I make a decision, God is on my side. And we have no idea what God’s thoughts are on the matter. But His thoughts are irrelevant to my thoughts and that fact that I know He’s on my side.
- Vanity means emptiness, fruitless, no substance
- Genesis 6:5 – God destroys the world because the thoughts cannot be fixed. You watch the news and say this world has gone crazy. Well, God said the same thing one time.
- So psychology is a place God said the world has been a colossal failure. Yet, while we claim the Bible is true, we neglect everything God said about the mind. Furthermore, while we call the world insane, we readily accept what the some evolutionist says about our minds. What some psychologist, who believes the Bible is the most absurd book ever written, yet we take his word for his diagnosis of our mind and his prescription for what needs to be fixed in our mind.
- …having the understanding darkened… (vs 18)
- If you have liver damage because you’re a drunk, the doctor will at least say stop drinking. He will address the cause of the damage. If you show signs of lung cancer and you’re a smoker, the doctor will say you’ve got to stop smoking. You ask WHY with physical problems, but not with mental problems. You say I feel sad, the doctor says, take this pill.
- If you’re a thief, maybe you should feel sad. If you’re mind is filled with bloodshed, ghost stories, and adultery, you may not be able to sleep at night and your blood pressure may be a little higher than it should be.
- Christians don’t want to ask why when it comes to their mind, yet you have more promises about a healthy mind than you do a healthy body.
- Unless it’s a criminal. Then all of sudden you want to ask why. Insanity defense. Judge, he was not in his right mind when he killed his friend and ate him. NO KIDDING HE WASN’T! It’s not about how he felt when he did it. Judgment deals with the question of whether or not he did it.
- Psychology has become an excuse factory.
- The murderer was really a victim because of abuse that traumatized him. Saw this week a would be robber pulled a gun on a guy who happened to have a license to carry. That man shot the would be thief. So the news interviews the mom of the thief and you know how that goes. The cops mistreated her criminal 29 year old thug son. And the news anchor had the ignorance to ask if the guy protecting himself would have charges pressed against him. Just complete dysfunctional thinking and mentality all dressed up in a nice suit anchoring the news.
- Born that way. So what? Born a liar doesn’t mean you get a pass from people for lying to them. What doctor says, Well, she was born with lung problems. Nothing we’re going to do, she was born that way.
- Forgiveness is a good one.
- The world says you’re problem is you can’t forgive and forget.
- The world says you’re a Christian so you should be forgiving.
- Do you know what God said about forgiveness? Ephesians 4:32, 1 John 1:8-9, Colossians 1:14. The world will lay a guilt trip on the victim.
- Do you know what the Bible says about depression? Do you know what the Bible says about anger? So before we buy the pill to turn off that part of our brain why do we claim to believe the Bible and jump to the pill without educating ourselves on the mind of God regarding the situation?
- Mark 5:14-17 there is no room for Jesus, or the truth, and no room for a right mind in our business. We make money because people are not in their right mind and will not accept the truth.
- Alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them… (vs 18)
- Whatever knowledge they have is actually ignorance.
- Maybe you have too much of the wrong kind of knowledge. You can’t put evil knowledge in your mind without it short circuiting your thoughts; without it coming out in some form.
- Deuteronomy 28:15 – anxiety, panic attacks, fear, as a result of disobedience. This is how you feel when you spend years of your life in disobedience to God. Materialism dominates psychology. If your mind is sad, then we shut off this chemical. If your mind thinks bad thoughts, back in the day, we electrocute a part of your brain and kill it.
- Proverbs 21:27 – wicked mind. Mind filled with wickedness. Murders, killing, bloodshed, nakedness, theft, hatred, and can’t figure out why you feel bad.
- Daniel 5:20 – mind hardened in pride led to literal insanity
- Romans 1:21 – reprobate minds. You pushed God out of every aspect and influence and completely surrounded yourself with godless thoughts. If you saw someone talking to a statue in a park you’d say, what a nut. But if you put that person into a Catholic Church talking to a statue someone would say, oh, how religious! They become unnatural, which is a description of devil possession.
- James 1:8 – double minded man unstable.
The psychological analysis and thought processes of the world lead to verse 19. So if you remove all thoughts of God, insulate yourself with mental justification for sin, allow yourself to be taught that evil is good and good is evil, you end up in verse 19. Working lasciviousness and uncleanness with greediness.