The Mind of the Christian

Thank God that, as the Holy Spirit has been touching the church around the world, so many people have recovered the reality of spiritual experience. For generations the gospel was presented almost entirely as a set of intellectual and ethical propositions. Now we are realising what has always been clear from Scripture: that knowledge of God comes primarily as revelation to the human spirit, not as information to the mind.Thank God that, as the Holy Spirit has been touching the church around the world, so many people have recovered the reality of spiritual experience. For generations the gospel was presented almost entirely as a set of intellectual and ethical propositions. Now we are realising what has always been clear from Scripture: that knowledge of God comes primarily as revelation to the human spirit, not as information to the mind.

‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived<br>what God has prepared for those who love him.’ – but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God… The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:9–10, 14)</em>‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love him.’ – but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God… The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:9–10, 14)

This has far-reaching consequences for our whole Christian experience. We know that biblical faith is not a leap in the dark; it is not a determination to believe without evidence. On the contrary, it rests on solid evidence: it is a response to a revelation of God’s will, ‘seen’ by our spirit in the way that Paul talks about it in 1 Corinthians 2. The great faith chapter in the New Testament, Hebrews 11, similarly underlines that ‘seeing’ is believing.

But this revelation-knowledge is neither reached by intel- lectual reasoning, nor, as Paul points out, is it regarded by the natural mind as trustworthy. Christians whose apprehension of the gospel is almost entirely intellectual, often find faith a great problem.

Now, there is much truth in all this, but it is not the whole truth. We can fall into an equally dangerous error of thinking that all we need in order to walk with the Lord is a spirit – ‘forget about the intellect’, they say, ‘it only creates prob- lems’. ‘Big mind, big problems; little mind, little problems; no mind, no problems!’ seems to be the attitude. Anti- intellectualism of this kind can be truly disastrous.

The mind of human beings remains the strategic battle- ground in the universe. The struggle to dominate the mind is the struggle to dominate the entire human being. Christians today must understand clearly the function of the human mind, the problems it faces and – most important of all – the provision God has made for its redemption.



Categories: Theology

Tags: , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: