The Mind of Christ (1)
But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2.14-16
I’m always delighted to learn something new about computers, especially where the matter of word processing is concerned.
For years, the computer was just a different kind of typewriter for me. The hardest part was getting used to the green letters against a dark background, and remembering that I could go back in a document and edit without having to retype an entire page.
After a while, and several different computers later, I began to discover a few more things about the basic functions of this wonderful machine – like copy-and-paste, for example, and changing font sizes and styles. Pretty sophisticated stuff, no?
Gradually my computer was becoming much more interesting, and I began to be much more productive with it.
Over the years, friends and colleagues have clued me in to even more functions and capabilities. I’ve learned how to use PowerPoint, can do a mail merge for a monthly newsletter, and even know how to access my website’s back pages to post something on the site. I have become adept at downloading, uploading, web searching, webinar hosting, and online training – and all through the same computer. And I know I haven’t exhausted the possibilities of my current machine.
Probably none of this is a big deal for you, but discovering these latent capabilities, so long in my possession but only lately understood and used, has been for me a source of real satisfaction and increased productivity. Something like this is the case for every believer, for we all possess a power that, for most of us, is but little understood and grossly underused.
We have the mind of Christ!
I’m talking about the mind of Christ. Paul says that everyone who believes in Jesus possesses the mind of Christ. The mind of Christ spoke the world into being and upholds it day by day (Jn. 1.1, 2; Heb. 1.3). The mind of Christ saw Nathanael under the fig tree, turned water into wine, healed a servant at a distance, understood every jot and tittle of God’s Word, and peers into the heart of every person. The mind of Christ knows the will of the Father, and how that will is best accomplished to bless His people and glorify Him.
Whereas those who do not know the Lord can’t understand spiritual matters, can’t penetrate the mysteries of divine revelation and so discover the secret workings of the divine economy, this is not true for the followers of Jesus. We have the mind of Christ, and this means that we can understand the world as Jesus did, see God’s glory in the things He has made, plumb the depths of His Word, understand the times and what we must do, and draw on the power of His Spirit for transformed living in every area of our lives, increasingly day by day.
Doubtless many of us are already engaged in many of these areas; however, possessing the mind of Christ means that exceedingly abundantly more is available to us in terms of power to think God’s thoughts after Him and to understand and live out the privileges and promises of a Biblical worldview (Eph. 3.20).
We have the mind of Christ, and this is a resource for full and abundant life far more complex, promising, and potent than any computer.
So, where is it?
Over 50 years ago Harry Blamires wrote to decry the lack of a Christian mind among the followers of Christ (The Christian Mind). Most Christians in his day lived their faith only within a narrow band of spiritual experience. When it came to thinking like Christ in their day-to-day lives, well, there just wasn’t much evidence of the mind of Christ at work in our secular age.
Thirty years after Harry Blamires wrote, theologian Mark Noll published The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, in which he explained that the scandal of the evangelical mind was that there was no evangelical mind in evidence, speaking to the social and cultural issues of the day. The situation has improved somewhat, but where the mind of Christ is concerned in our world today, Christians are hunting and pecking on a supercomputer, the proportions and potential of which we have scarcely begun to explore.
The mind of Christ is ours to employ and to enjoy. If we can understand the mind of Christ, how it works, what it’s capable of, and how to access and engage it in our everyday lives, we may expect to see the reality of Christ in us, the hope of glory, becoming day by day more manifest and explicit.
We have the mind of Christ, and through His mind the realities of the unseen world and the deep truths of God are available to us in ways our unbelieving contemporaries cannot even begin to understand.
1. What do you understand by “the mind of Christ”? In what sense do you possess this?
2. Should having the mind of Christ lead Christians to think differently about the world? Explain.
3. How can we tell when we’re functioning with the mind of Christ and when we’re not?
Next steps – Conversation: Ask a few of your Christian friends what they understand Paul to mean when he says we have the mind of Christ. Share today’s ReVision with them, and encourage them to follow all the studies in this series.
T. M. Moore
This is part 1 of a multi-part series on the Christian mind. To download this week’s study as a free PDF, click here.
How’s your Christian worldview? Are you stretching your mind to think about life and the world as Jesus does? Our free online course, One in Twelve: Introduction to Christian Worldview, can provide the categories, terms, and framework for you to begin nurturing a more expansive Christian mind. For more information and to register, click here.
The mind of Christ is set for the Kingdom of God. Is yours? Our book, The Kingdom Turn, provides a concise and practical overview of what it means to live for Christ from within the framework of His Kingdom. Order your copy by clicking here.
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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.