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So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s Law, but in the sinful nature, a slave to the Law of Sin.  What did Paul mean about being a slave to God’s Law?  Previously, when we were deceived and confused by the Judeaizers who stole our freedom in Christ, “God’s Law” for us and still for most Christians is the 10 Commandments and various parts of the Mosaic Law that fit with our current concept of morality.  However, praise be to God who leads us in triumphant procession in Christ, we have been set free by the truth and we now know God’s Law is this one law:  “Listen to Him!”

So when Paul wrote to the Christians (for the letter to the Romans is addressed to all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints, and it is those who are in Christ who are saints only and not Israelites who are saints),  God’s Law then can only be:  “Listen to Him!”  Therefore, we must make up our minds to be slaves to this law of God, slaves to listening to Jesus, so that listening to Jesus is the master of our thoughts, words and actions, whether the thoughts come from our mind or heart.

Remember that when our Lord was asked by the teacher of the law who noticed that Jesus had given a good answer whilst debating with the Sadducees, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”  See that it was a teacher of the Law of Moses who asked that question, so Jesus replied in context, “The most important one is this:  ‘Hear, o Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One.  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ …” Seemingly quoting Deuteronomy 6:5 where Moses said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength,Jesus added “with all your mind.”  Surely then, Paul is telling us how to begin to love Him with all our mind with these words:  I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s Law. 

A mind fully captivated with all its thoughts set on Christ, a mind renewed, no longer conforming to the ways of the world, a mind enslaved to listening to Jesus, isn’t that the very least we can return to God who is always mindful of men as it is written:  What is man that You are mindful of him, the son of man that You care for him?  You made him a little lower than the Heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honour.  …You put everything under his feet.

If God is always mindful of us, isn’t it right then that we should at least have all our thoughts taken captive in obedience to Christ, and are found ever listening to Him?  Isn’t it right then that our thoughts, as often as we can, be turned to listening to Him rather than the way the world thinks?

Consider how you think, as well as what you think.  In truth, we think more about our problems, our needs, our desires, our hopes and our dreams, and having formulated them in our imagination, we begin to enact (I am speaking about Christians) out the ways we think they can be solved or achieved, and perhaps throw in 5 cents worth of time to say a quick prayer to ensure that God would bless us with success in our schemes.

If that is loving God with all our mind, you must be joking.  As Paul wrote:  When I was a child… I thought like a child, but we are not children, so let us learn to be mature in our thinking, if we truly are to have the mind of Christ and the elect of the Holy Spirit.  Paul challenged us and wrote:  those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires…  Then I say, those who live in accordance with the Father have their minds set on what the Father desires.  And what does He desire?  Is it not mercy?  And those who live in accordance with the Son have their minds set on what the Son desires, and what does He desire of His disciples?  Is it not that we be one?  And what does He desire of His churches?  Is it not that they listen to the Holy Spirit?  And the Spirit, what does He desire?  Is it not to bring glory to the Father and the Son by making known to us what belongs to God?

So, are our minds slaves to Their desires?  Do you understand what it is to be slaves who are at the beck and call of the Master to satisfy Their desires?  So, are our minds and thoughts centred on listening to Jesus and all the problems, needs, desires, hopes and dreams that are part of listening to Jesus?

Do we think of ways of solving our deafness and ignorance to the voice of the Lord, as we think of ways of filling our stomachs?  Do we think of ways of helping others to hear better as we think of ways of getting a new mobile phone?  Do we think constantly of ways to better preach the Gospel, to bring justice to Jesus and to glorify His Name as we think of ways of getting people to help us with our problems?  You see, when your mind is led by your sinful nature, you will see problems that come in your life as unnecessary hassles that God should have prevented and solved for you.

When your mind is set on what the Spirit desires, you will begin to see that every problem that besets your life is an opportunity permitted by the Lord for you to practise the words of Christ and refine your practice until you develop the expertise to reflexly do and say what is right in God’s eyes without so much of a thought, so that you will arrive to that place where you know that you abide in Him and His word abides in you because whatever you wish and will is done for you.

Since a will and a wish come from thoughts, desires and imaginations, then a prerequisite for you all to qualify for John 15:7 must be a time where you learn to master your thoughts so that truly you are always mindful of Him and so that you can truly be described as one who “loves the Lord your God with all your mind.”

The problem with us with our unrenewed mind, our unpractised control of our thoughts, thinking and imaginations, is that we always think of the worst and not the best and that with regards to God.  We are just like the Hebrews who always thought ill of God’s intentions from the first moment Moses and Aaron appeared to them.  When Pharaoh stopped supplying the straw for the bricks, they said to Moses and Aaron, “May the Lord look upon you and judge you!  You have made us a stench to Pharaoh and his officials and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.”  And after they were miraculously delivered, look at what they said and therefore thought of God and Moses at the Red Sea:  “Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die?”  And after the crossing of the Red Sea, they grumbled and said, “What are we to drink?”  And again, “If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt!  There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.”  And so on and so on…

Paul wrote to the Corinthians:  Brothers, stop thinking like children… but in your thinking be adults.  The thinking of a child is self-centred, it is when we learn to stop being mindful of ourselves but mindful of God that we will find our speech and action begin to change.  For a man’s thoughts come from both his heart and mind, and if your thoughts, regardless of where they are coming from, are not set on what the Spirit desires, then how can you be seeking to glorify God with your heart and mind?  God does not look at the external, but at the motives and thoughts of men’s minds and hearts.

And if your heart and mind are not set on the glory of God, then how can you say, much less think, that you are working for the glory and honour of Him who sent you.  You may be doing the work commanded, yes, but then so is every factory assembly-line worker in this world doing what they are told and have to do, but their hearts and minds are rarely set on how much profit their work is giving their employer and how much glory their company is receiving.  No, they are working, but they are thinking of the end of the day, their holiday or their problems.  You see, even though you are saying and doing what you are told, you are no more than a servant working for his pay.

However, when your heart and mind, when your thoughts and your thinking, are set on the glory and honour of Him who sent you, then you are truly one who works for the honour of the One who sent you, and you are a man (male or female) of truth who has nothing false in your heart and mind, for Jesus said, “There is nothing false about him.”  If there is nothing false about your thoughts, then there is nothing false about your imaginations, and therefore it is all true.  And that which is true will, must and can only manifest even if there is no faith, so that you can come to that place where you will no longer have to believe without a doubt in order to have what you say manifest, and you have no need for the Law of Faith.  You no longer have to ask so that it will be done for you, neither do you need to declare it or stretch out your hands to indicate what you want parted, you merely have to think about it as a man wishes and wills, and you will find that it is done for you!

For when your heart and mind, your thinking and thoughts, are completely enslaved to God’s Law to listen to Jesus for His glory and honour, you are a man, male or female, of truth, whose heart and mind are truth, not wicked beyond understanding or tossed on the seas.  Where truth is there can be no doubt, and truth overcomes faith.  The Spirit of Truth who searches the deep things of God’s mind and heart is also searching your heart and mind, to see if indeed, in your mind you are a slave to God’s Law, with an attitude to be a slave who works for the glory and honour of his Master who sent him.  When He finds such a mind in you, such a heart in you, overflowing into the formation of your desires and the formulation of your thinking, you will find whatever you wish and will, as a result of your thoughts, will be done for you!

So, learn to ask yourself, “What do I think?” and see what no one has ever imagined possible, as you master your thoughts.

 

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