The 3 Wars of The Mind PDF Print E-mail

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

The solution to these strongholds is they have been broken, pulled and torn down. They cannot be converted or remodeled. That is one of the most serious and frequent mistakes we make. We feel we can somehow convert or change these strongholds for the good. Thus we see people ministering from a platform of pride, or channeling their anger into their preaching or finding an outlet for their lust for power and money in the church. There are countless ways in which the strongholds of the flesh are given a make-over and presented as something useful to the Kingdom. That was precisely Paul’s struggle with the antagonists in the Corinthian church.

These strongholds cannot be converted; they are in their very essence opposed to God and his principles.  They can only be dealt with in one way- they have to be torn down. That has to happen in the same way they were erected- stone-by-stone. Strongholds do not appear in our lives overnight, they are built stone-by-stone as we reinforce bad thoughts and allow them space in our minds. In the same way they have to be dismantled, one-by-one. I know that we all wish there was some kind of miracle cure, which could destroy these strongholds in an instant. Sometimes the Lord does do that in individual cases. It is however not the norm and the majority of believers have to struggle to dismantle these fortresses one thought at a time.

How does this work? Well, we have thousands of experiences and bits of information which we have gleaned from all sources which we cement together with the mortar of our own reasoning’s which form a castle of inferiority, pride, fear, lust, etc. These things have to be pulled down one piece at a time while not allowing new misinformation to be added to what is already there. That means controlling what and who we listen to, watch, read, and spend time with. This will stop the negative flow of information, but that in itself is not sufficient, as we all have enough raw materials in our memories to last a lifetime. Secondly, we need to replace this wrong information with God’s perspective on the issues and thirdly we need to manage what our minds do with the good and the bad material at its disposal.

Replacing the bad with the good is easier said than done. We live in a world which bombards us with a constant stream of information which is contrary to God’s word. Almost everything the world has to say through its media is contrary, no matter how good the wholesome it may seem. I am not saying we have to live in a monastery, but we do need to begin to understand that God’s ways are dramatically different to the world’s ways. That is exactly where our first problem lies. Most of us do not understand how negative the world’s influence is. This is aggravated by a host of “Christian” preachers who insist that the world and its system is basically good. I have been shocked by the slew of books on how to see the “gospel” in “The Sopranos”, “Harry Potter”, or any other evil program designed to make us feel good about murder, rape, robbery, adultery, witchcraft and any of the thousands of other vices. I am tired of “Christian” books that quote Hollywood characters as examples of godly characteristics. Since when is evil good? Is this not the accusation against the prophets of the Old Testament? (Isaiah 5).

Do we not understand that “our Lord Jesus Christ…gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father” (Galatians 1:3). “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: …to keep oneself unspotted from the world” (James 1:27) “Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God”. (James 4:4) beloved, we will not win the battle of the mind until we fully understand and are convinced that everything the world has to say is in opposition to God’s word. The world will only agree with the Word in order to trick you into dropping your guard. “Has God indeed said…”

Many Christians attend church for one hour a week, listen to the message and go home. The rest of the week their thinking, values, and views are shaped by the world and then they come crying when they cannot get victory in their personal lives. I listen to their cry for victory and simply have to walk away from the meeting knowing that everything I have said will be contradicted by the world before the day is out. You cannot break those strongholds down through one sermon a week while you rebuild and reinforced the few rocks that were pulled down in the service, by the time you have finished reading the Sunday paper.

Please do not misunderstand me. I am no saying you should not read the Sunday paper or watch television or expose yourself to any form of worldly media. But a child should not be allowed to eat anything in the supermarket until he is able to read the labels on the cans and can figure out what is food and what is poison. Even then, he needs to be well educated because much of what is sold for food in the supermarket is very bad for you, but only someone with an understanding of diet and physiology can make the right choices. In the same way it seems very few Christians or wholesome-looking label. Frequently people, who should know better, recommend various “Christian” books to me. On closer inspection such books are often anti-Christian in essence and again I have to groan within myself for the naivety of people and their leaders. Oh if Christians could just see and understand what they are doing to themselves by filling their hearts and minds with stuff which is either downright poison or which is slowly killing them!

Until you stop the enemy from coming in through the gates of your senses you will never stand a chance against him. Close those gates today and challenge every thought and idea before giving them right of entry by that age-old question: “friend or foe”-