A Renewed Mind in Christ
Well man, you preach on Spiritual Warfare one week and the next week, it seems all hell breaks lose in the world!!
But listen, as I said in the email that went out- God is not only still on the throne, but we have an eternal hope in Christ Jesus that sickness and death could never touch!
We are believers in Jesus, yes we are human and can get worried a bit over earthly things but listen, we were created in Christ Jesus to be the ones to thrive in adversity, sorrow, sickness and despair as we put all our trust in the Lord!
If the church will not stand up and take its place by showing the love, compassion and mercy that Jesus showed... then the enemy will gladly do it.
The other side of it is is that there is a physical caution we must take; especially those who are elderly or have long-term auto immune issues.
God gave us faith, but he also gave us brains.
It is from that standpoint that I’m going to first read the Eblast that was sent out, for all those that did not receive it, and then I will brief you on our special board meeting this morning to let you know what to expect in the coming days and weeks as part of the FCC family.
Then I’m going to preach for about 10-15 minutes, and we’re going to end with prayer, and testimonies for the last part.
If prayer and testimonies only go to 11:30-40 we’ll sing hymns for the remainder.
The President declared today National Dy of Prayer but the funny thing is is that I was already planning on it before this week started.
God is good!
We’re here to worship our Lord and creator today, we didn’t risk our lives coming out here for nothing. ;)
That was a sarcastic joke, too soon??
And if you’re at home today- welcome, we love you and are praying for you and we ask that you worship right alongside of us.
READ THE EBLAST
SHARE BOARD MEETING DECISIONS
SUM UP EVERYTHING AND PRAY
Last week was heavy and I thank you for sitting through all of what I was digesting in my studies on the topic of the Origin of Satan, sin and Spiritual warfare.
Some new people asked if I preached that much content every week and others stayed awake and really got a lot out of it.
Shows you the diversity in the body of Christ!
But none the less, today I wanted to tag on to a topic that has been thrown around the past couple weeks and that is “a renewed mind”.
We talked about it in the sermon on the Holy Spirit and also during last week’s message.
There are four passages we will read together today.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18, Ephesians 4:17-24 and Titus 3:4-8 and Romans 12:1-2.
READ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
In the back of our minds, as believers, no matter what we face we must remember to not lose heart because the Lord renews us day by day and we have hope of eternity, amen?
How does the Lord renew us day by day?
Through the Holy Spirit’s guidance and comfort- each morning brings new mercies through God’s Holy Spirit, amen?
(Share story about studying for tests and anxiety before, always second guessing myself and never doing well… led me to the College I went to…)
You may be a great test taker, I’m not!
I needed the Holy Spirit each day to renew my mind and remind me that I didn’t need to be anxious for anything because the Lord was with me.
I had a couple best years of my life at that school through growing in my faith (Cru) but also made great friends and got the experience I needed.
As I was in school I was focused on graduating and moving on to my field of study...
Each day we can be tested by the enemy and it is up to us whether to rely on our own wisdom and discernment or the Holy Spirit.
We can have a mindset focused on the earthly or on the heavenly, which is God’s will for our lives.
And because we have the hope of eternal life, through Jesus conquering death, we do not have to lose heart.
READ Ephesians 4:17-24
The apostle Paul, at the time of this letter was in chains and was facing adversity but at the same time longed to encourage those around Him through letter writing, prayer and worship.
“There is a way of ordering our mental life on more than one level at once. On one level we may be thinking, discussing, seeing, calculating, meeting all the demands of external affairs. But deep within, behind the scenes, at a profound level, we may also be in prayer, and adoration, song and worship and a gentle receptiveness to divine breathings.”
Paul understood this balance and we often do this in our lives, we juggle life with many things but at the core we worship.
When we face the enemies schemes and get overwhelmed like what’s happening today we must worship through our lives as we go about our day.
Through this verse we learn that pursuing true righteousness and holiness can not be done through our old sinful nature, only through living in the new self.
Do you know what the main issue was for the church in Ephesus?
They did not truly understand and make Christ Lord of their life.
They loved the idea but didn’t show it through how they lived their lives.
When we put our trust in Christ we give over our lives to Him, we forfeit our will for His Father’s and that is understanding Christ as Lord over our lives.
Where, in our lives, are we not allowing Christ to be Lord?
My dad used an illustration one time in his sermon that I’ll never forget.
“The glove gets muddy but the mud doesn’t get glovey.”
What does that mean?
When we live and allow the Holy Spirit to renew our minds we can live our lives in the world, but not of the world.
We can keep our focus on heaven, live out the beatitudes, and a Christ-like character without going with the flow and getting muddied by the world.
We can strive to please the Lord by living for righteousness and holiness in this world at the same time being in the world.
But it is impossible to do this in our own strength and power.
And it is impossible for the Holy Spirit to be muddied by the world because He is God.
We must put our trust in that
They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed.
This is supposed to be the past.
But this is the new life.
READ EPHESIANS 4:20-24
READ TITUS 3:4-8
Similar to the last illustration; we can not come to the presence of God, unless we’ve been washed by the Holy Spirit, but first it is through the cleansing water by the death of Jesus Christ.
The Holy Spirit lives in this world to glorify Christ and urges us to do the same with our lives.
he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior,
The last passage we will read is Romans 12:1-2.
READ ROMANS 12:1-2
“Christ’s focus in our live is to lead us to internalize the values of His kingdom and to animate our lives with His ways… eternity is the benchmark by which every earthly issue is measured… we need to learn how to live successfully by projecting the real world according to Christ into the fallen world around us. And that requires that we permit Christ to change us to be conformed to His world.”
Joseph Stowell, Following Christ, Pg. 98-99
What a great quote and great perspective!
We are to not live out the corrupt values of this world, but instead allow Christ to change us to be conformed to His world.
As I read Romans 12:1-2 I can’t help but think that true Spiritual worship is not giving the world all of our minds, hearts and lives, but instead giving all of that to God, out of the overflowed thankfulness to Him, and the fact that we are His.
Paul starts off this chapter by saying that he’s writing the following words because God has shown him mercy first.
And he says something else that is on point for today.
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
When we are transformed by the renewing of our minds, then, and only then can we know God’s true will.
A renewed mind is achieved through these ways, by the Holy Spirit:
Pursuing righteousness and holiness can not be done through our old sinful nature, only living through the new self. (Ephes. 4:17-24)
We must be first washed by the Holy Spirit before becoming a child of God and that is poured out by Christ’s death and power of His resurrection. (Titus 3:4-8)
-That is the beauty of baptism (Plug for baptisms on Easter!)
3. A renewed mind is kept through our spiritual act of worship to God and not to anyone or anything else. (Romans 12:1-2)
How have you been changed by the Lord and renewed?
What was it like for you?
Or out of the whole Design for Discipleship series so far, what sermon or Scriptures have really impacted your life, and why, by what way?
As we move into prayer after testimonies, how has the power of prayer changed your life by what God has done?
Or how has it made you patient through a prayer you are still waiting to be answered?
Or simply sharing what God is currently doing in your life but let’s keep this verse in mind as we share.
READ PSALM 105:1-5
Whatever we share should always bring glory to Christ.