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What does the Bible say about our thoughts? Can we control them or are there other influences which affect our thoughts?
We do not live in a neutral world. Our minds are held captive by something…or better yet, someone. They are held captive by someone we might not even believe in, but the Bible tells us who it is behind our thought life. When Jesus was speaking about adultery, He said that it’s not only the physical act that is sinful, but in our minds we can sin too. The Lord said “that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matt 5:28). To be sure, sin begins in the mind before it’s ever manifested in the flesh. We think about it…ponder it, and then act on it. The fruit the human heart naturally produces evil works, so whatever starts in the mind can end up being “sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these” (Gal 5:19-21a), and the bad news about those who bear such fruit is that “those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Gal 5:21b). The fruit reveals the root, and until we’ve received the Holy Spirit, we cannot possible bear righteous fruit like “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Gal 5:22-23).
Fruit - God - Spirit - Thoughts - Apostle
Since we cannot bear righteous fruit without God’s Spirit, how can we take captive these thoughts that are unwholesome, to say the least? The Apostle Paul said “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Cor 10:5). So how do we demolish such thoughts when...
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