heart

Seek the Mind and Heart of Christ

Jesus came to bring us GRACE, but also to bring us TRUTH. Jesus came to bring us Father's LOVE but also His MIND!

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Where We Should Fix Our Eyes

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth.

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth.

Did you know that the only New Testament writer that uses the term “anti-Christ” is the Apostle John? As I have meditated on that, I have come to the conclusion that is as it should be. John was the one known as the beloved Apostle. John was the one who laid his head on Jesus' breast at the Last Supper. John was the only one at the cross. John was the one Jesus entrusted his earthly mother too when he was about to die.

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth. But I have loved reading the letters of John because he ministers to my heart. So I find it fitting that the one who was so in love with Jesus, should be the one who recognizes that which is not of Jesus, that which is “against” Jesus, which is what the word “anti” means. 

I believe this speaks volumes to where we should fix our eyes. Ours is not to be concerned with identifying or searching out what is wrong, but rather to so be devoted to Jesus that anything contrary to Him will be readily identifiable. The one whom Jesus loved, he is the one who saw that which was not of Jesus. Let it be so with us, may we see Jesus so intensely, that all that is anti-Jesus will be readily identifiable in our hearts and minds.

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Heart to Mind

The battleground in the New Covenant economy is the mind.

The battleground in the New Covenant economy is the mind.

It is often said, "I know it in my mind, but I have got to get it to my heart." 

According to that great modern-day theologian Tim Chalas, that is not true. It is the wrong battle and that is why so few people win that battle. The truth is that God has already placed life, joy, peace, righteousness, goodness, love, mercy, etc... IN MY HEART (Cf. Ezek 36, Jer 31). 

The real issue is getting it from my heart to my mind.
The battleground in the New Covenant economy is the mind. 

That is where the enemy seeks to defeat us, by placing thoughts in our minds that are contrary to truth. 

That is why the exhortations of the New Testament are ALWAYS to set the mind, fix the mind, renew the mind... NEVER to fix the heart, or set the heart. 

The key to victorious living in a New Covenant economy is NOT getting truth from our mind to our heart, but getting truth from our heart to our mind. 

Phil. 4 says to think on the things that are good, lovely, true, etc... and the God of peace shall be with you.

The only way to win a battle is to fight the right battle...

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Experience and Express

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It seems to me that there are those that gain the "mind of God" but miss the heart of God. They minister truth, but they do so very often in a harsh and critical spirit and misrepresent the God that they claim to have come to know.

Then, there are those that gain the "heart of God" but miss the mind of God. They minister love, but they do so very often in an overly tolerant spirit that misrepresents the holy, loving God that they claim to have come to know.

We desperately need both the mind and the heart of God, not only to experience the fullness of His holy love but also to express the fullness of His holy love, so that we can more completely represent Who He really is to those who desperately need Him so much. We desperately need to be made whole, which by the way is what the word "saved" - "sozo" = really means.

"sozo" = to return to wholeness.

Wholeness will only fully occur within us as we more completely comprehend fully Who He is to us and who we have become in Him.

Jesus came to bring us GRACE, but also to bring us TRUTH.
Jesus came to bring us His LOVE but also His MIND!

Oh, how we need the Holy Spirit to help us know... REALLY KNOW not only the mind of God but the heart of God, so we can become and minister wholeness through the Person and Work of Jesus!

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Another Journey Of Being Conformed

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You will know that you have gained the heart of God when you want more for people than they want for themselves.

That in turn, will break your heart.

You will have then been more conformed to the image of Christ, for He was a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief. He wept over people who missed out on all that He came to bring them...

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Worship Thoughts...

Loving God, and LOVING PEOPLE! Now that is Pure and Unadulterated Worship!!!

Loving God, and LOVING PEOPLE! Now that is Pure and Unadulterated Worship!!!

What is worship? Is it singing songs and lifting your hands? Oh, that may be included, but I am not sure that would not be better called "praise".

Worship! It is such a bigger word than that.  So much grander.  So much more inclusive of ALL that God is...
So, how would I describe what true worship is?

Loving God, and LOVING PEOPLE! Now that is Pure and Unadulterated Worship!!!

How could anything we do be called "worship" that leaves out the very heart of God?

 

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A Good Heart

Because of the finished work of Christ, it is no longer true that a believer, a child of God, has a desperately wicked and deceitful heart.

Because of the finished work of Christ, it is no longer true that a believer, a child of God, has a desperately wicked and deceitful heart.

As I grew up in the church, I was often told by many various people that the human heart is desperately wicked and deceitful beyond all things. This, as you know, is a statement from Jeremiah 17:11. When this truth was proclaimed to me, about me, it came with the full authority that every other verse in the Scriptures has. After all, Paul has loudly and affirmatively proclaimed that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect thoroughly furnished unto all good works.”

Therefore, I must have a desperately wicked and deceitful
heart, right? After all, the Bible says I do!

Wrong! DEAD WRONG!

Those dear souls who communicated that “truth” to me, about me, failed to interpret that verse in light of there being two covenants, and therefore two economies in which we live. Jeremiah 17:11 was written under an old covenant economy, where man, even the believing man, lived in a state of separation from God, his sins not yet having been removed by the cross of Christ!

In Ezekiel 36:25-26 however, God stated that He was going to establish a New Covenant, in which he would cleanse us from our sin, take away the stony heart of our flesh, and give us a new heart. Did you see that? Because of the finished work of Christ, it is no longer true that a believer, a child of God, has a desperately wicked and deceitful heart.

That old ugly heart has been taken away, and we not only
have a new heart, a good heart, a heart that wants to love and serve God.

Oh, my friends, you have a good heart. I am reminded of that incredible movie "Braveheart" where William Wallace has a vision of his recently martyred father telling him, "William, your heart is good! Have the courage to follow it!" 

That is my word to you today, "Dear friend in Christ, your heart is good, have the courage to follow it, and watch the world stand in awe of the God they see in you and the work He has done on your behalf!"

True Obedience

One who is obedient is one who listens under the voice of God.

One who is obedient is one who listens under the voice of God.

Obedience is.... well, it is one of those words!

Just listen to the word - OBEDIENCE! It sounds ominous, strong, cold and hard!

In some circles it is the epitome of devotion, in the grace camp, it is often viewed as a bad word.

The truth is, 'obedience' is a beautiful word. It is definitely NOT a word of conformity as it is so often used. The word is "hupomone". It is a compound word from two words that when put together mean to "listen under". Isn't that wonderful?

One who is obedient is one who listens under the voice of God.

True obedience is not, therefore, a matter of the external so much as it is of the internal. It is a heart that loves God, seeks God, and listens under God in such a way that it brings a transformation from the inside out as it responds to the heart of God.

Makes you want to be obedient, huh?

My Goals as a Bible Teacher:

I teach the Bible!

That is what I do, and what I have done for most of my life now. Please understand, 'teacher' is not who I am, nor is my desire to get an identity out of what I do. I never have and to this day, do not WANT to teach the Bible. Rather, it is a compulsion than a desire.

That is because to be quite honest, it is such a scary thing to claim that you are teaching for God, His perfect Word! That is a major OUCH to the ego of anyone who would want to claim the office of teacher.

I do, however, love the fruit of what God accomplishes by using such mere human vessels to deliver life-changing truths to His people. In 1 Timothy 1, Paul put the goal of the teacher in plain form:

'The goal of our instruction is FAITH' = we want people to trust God. To take Him at His Word and learn of His goodness toward them.

Second, our goal is to produce love. First and foremost is the desire for people to have love for God. But the instant by-product of that is, of course, love for people. What an amazing thing to ponder, that people by trusting God become lovers of people and thus create a glorious community of faith that becomes a safe harbor for those who endure such a harsh and victimizing world.

And because that is so glorious, we want to thus teach from a pure heart, "katharos" = clean. The word was used of an army that had been purified of all its cowardly men so that only true soldiers remain. A pure heart is a heart that is "unmixed" with anything else.

This is why I teach.... to see people come to know God by faith so that they will become lovers, and live before God with clean hearts. That is real LIFE and makes for very real living. This is what I seek, it is of course, not what I always experience. I allow the world and sin to clutter my mind and behavior, WAY TOO MUCH, but that is my goal, for my life and for the lives of all who choose to listen!

I would put it this way, sadly, I ALWAYS preach a better message than I live but my heart is always to preach a message that accomplishes faith, and love, from a pure heart.

Just wanted you to know...