This week I came across a video of a young man who shared his personal testimony of encountering Jesus. His experience completely changed his life around. After formally being heavily involved in the New Age Movement, he had a personal encounter with the Lord, renounced his past sin, and is now walking in a deep and meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ.
Now I don’t usually write about these testimonies, especially when they involve people who have come out of a background stooped in the occult where there is such serious darkness and deception. The reason being that often, even though their conversion is sincere, and their spirit man has been reborn, the damage and deceit sown into their souls has so influenced their thoughts and emotions that they remain in bondage in many areas, preventing them from walking in complete and total victory. The Bible teaches us that while our souls are wounded or have memories that have become toxic strongholds, we will remain susceptible to the enemy of our souls. These very things give him the legal right to keep us in bondage, even in the area of our health.
But after listening to this young man’s testimony, and a few of his other videos, I personally believe that his encounter with Jesus is not only sincere, it has begun a process of freedom in the area of his soul. Through his relationship with the indwelling Holy Spirit, he has a genuine and intense hunger for the truth of God’s Word, and listening to him, you can tell that he deliberately spends hours saturating his mind and heart in the Word. If he carries on this path, the sanctification process of his soul will be sound as he constantly renews his mind to the truth of God’s Word, replacing those wounds and toxic strongholds with the truth that will set and keep him free.
Why am I writing about this? Recently I’ve been studying on the ongoing process of renewing our minds to the truth of God’s Word. I’ve discovered that this is not a mechanical process at all, even though the principles are set in stone, it’s only through our personal, intimate relationship with the Holy Spirit, that the Word is able to become life to us and heal our souls.
The subject of renewing the mind to the truth of God’s Word is not something new or untaught in the church. However, I do believe there is so much to be said about the importance of daily walking in a meaningful relationship with the Holy Spirit, where we He is constantly teaching and changing us, through God’s Word. I’m going to put out a few brief truths that have really hit home in my heart and understanding concerning the process of renewing our minds to heal our souls. I have found many Christians who believe they are doing what is expected of them, yet can’t understand why they are not walking completely free or healed in certain areas of their lives. I believe this series will be a great blessing to them in particular.
The first truth is one many of us are familiar with. We are taught in the Word that every person is made of three distinct parts. We have a spirit that lives in a body, and we have a soul.
When we become born again, our spirit is made completely new. It is saved by the grace of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit actually recreates our spirit and inhabits it. It is pure and holy, without sin and full of God Himself! If you don’t trust my word on this, I have listed these scriptures to back it : 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 Corinthians 6:17,19; Ephesians 3:19; Philippians 1:11; Colossians 1:9; John 7:38-39, John 14:16-17,26; John 15:26.
Now, our soul, which is our mind consisting of our thoughts, emotions and free will, is a different matter entirely. Even though our spirit man is reborn, and free of sin and it’s effects, our soul is still conformed to the sinful, carnal nature of a fallen world. What’s more, every memory that is formed by information we have received through our five, natural senses, has influenced and shaped our thinking process. The way we perceive ourselves, others, God and the world around us all comes from the memories or thoughts that we have accepted and agreed on through the experiences we have had in life.
In other words, our personal truth, or what we perceive as truth, is based on the experiences we have encountered in life. The problem with this is our personal truth is not necessarily truth at all. The only true, ultimate, unchanging truth is the Word of God. And unless our perceptions and attitudes are influenced by, rooted in and grounded upon this truth, we will never truly be free to live the abundant life Jesus paid for us to have. We will always be limited by our own misconceptions and issues that have shaped or clouded our souls.
In fact, the Bible teaches how our souls are the battlefield where our enemy, the devil, is given legal right to torment us when we have found common ground with him. What do I mean by common ground? It’s when we have agreed with a thought that originated from his lies. That could either be through sin, a traumatic experience, or any thoughts that we harbour that are contrary to God’s truth.
Let me explain, scientists have proven that every though originates from one of two sources. It is either faith based or fear based. Any thought process that we have accepted as our truth, but is contrary to the truth of God’s Word does not originate from God. This means it is a lie or misconception. The devil is the father of all lies, and when we buy into His deception, whether we understand it’s from him or not, we give him legal access to cause trouble or torment in that particular area of our lives.
That’s why the Bible urges us to pay careful attention to what we are thinking because our minds really are a battlefield. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 says, “For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds, [Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),”. Those strongholds are incorrect thoughts that have been agreed with, meditated on and formed permanent belief systems in the recesses of our minds.
In order for us to truly live free in this life, we must be extremely vigilant to pay attention to what we are thinking. Recognise whether our thoughts line up with the Word of God or are directly contrary to its truth. Then we reject the wrong thoughts and replace them with the truth of God’s Word. How on earth are we supposed to recognise the nature of our thoughts? We can only know this by spending quality time in the Word. By the help of the Holy Spirit, the truth of the word comes alive to us, giving us wisdom, understanding, peace, life, discernment and healing.
Mark 4:24 says, “And He said to them, Be careful what you are hearing. The measure [of thought and study] you give [to the truth you hear] will be the measure [of virtue and knowledge] that comes back to you—and more [besides] will be given to you who hear.” That word virtue in the original Greek translation means excellence of soul. That means the amount of attention we pay to the Word of God, agreeing with it, meditating on it and allowing it to influence our belief system, will result in our souls being prosperous, healthy and free.
This week, choose to invest quality time in the Word of God, asking and trusting the Holy Spirit to make it alive to you. As you do this, you’ll become far more attentive to the thoughts and mindsets you’ve adopted, and begin to replace the wrong ones with the truth! It’s time to pay attention to what you are thinking about.
Next week we’ll take a closer look at the battlefield of our minds, and how we can choose who will be the master of our souls.
All my love,