The mind of Christ

The whole concept of having the mind of Christ is kind of a tricky one, in my opinion. But I guess that kinda speaks to the whole dilemma I’m brining up: “opinions” don’t matter much.

Our wisdom doesn’t matter much. Our knowledge doesn’t matter much. All those things are important and can be leveraged by the Lord as Kingdom-building tools–but in the end, tools are without use if one doesn’t have a plan that puts them to work. And that plan must come from heaven, which is where the mind of Christ comes in.

1 Corinthians 2:6-16:

Yet when I am among mature Christians, I do speak with words of wisdom, but not the kind of wisdom that belongs to this world, and not the kind that appeals to the rulers of this world, who are being brought to nothing. No, the wisdom we speak of is the secret wisdom of God, which was hidden in former times, though he made it for our benefit before the world began. But the rulers of this world have not understood it; if they had, they would never have crucified our glorious Lord. That is what the Scriptures mean when they say,

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
and no mind has imagined
what God has prepared
for those who love him.”

But we know these things because God has revealed them to us by his Spirit, and his Spirit searches out everything and shows us even God’s deep secrets. No one can know what anyone else is really thinking except that person alone, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. And God has actually given us his Spirit (not the world’s spirit) so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us. When we tell you this, we do not use words of human wisdom. We speak words given to us by the Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain spiritual truths. But people who aren’t Christians can’t understand these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them because only those who have the Spirit can understand what the Spirit means. We who have the Spirit understand these things, but others can’t understand us at all. How could they? For,

“Who can know what the Lord is thinking?
Who can give him counsel?”

But we can understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.

This, coming from a man who was among the intellectual elite of his time. Before coming to know Christ, Paul was very zealous for the “things of God”–or so he thought. His intellect told him that. His pride told him that. He was learned in the things of scripture; of course he knew what it meant to live for God!

Then Jesus told him otherwise. And Paul promptly went into Arabia for three years (Gal. 1) to learn what it really meant to do the “things of God.”

I continue to be humbled at my inability to interpret and comprehend the things of God with my own understanding. It is impossible. And when I try to work things out in my mind–even “non-spiritual” things that happen throughout the day and are part of life here on earth–they just don’t always make sense.

That’s why we have to walk by faith and not by sight. The Holy Spirit can reveal to me God’s thoughts concerning a situation or idea–and I can believe them and act upon them. Circumstances can either support something God tells us or completely fly in the face of what He’s said. But that doesn’t change that God has said it and it is true.

That’s why it’s important that we continually pursue the mind of Christ. It isn’t our default. Though we have the Spirit, that doesn’t mean He’s always leading–even when we are reading the Word or listening to a sermon. He’s the one who leads us into truth. And we have to submit to His leading. It says “we can understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.”

Joel Maust

Joel Maust is a blogger, marketer and photographer living in the beautiful Flathead Valley of northwest Montana.

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