Thinking FOR Jesus

One of the insidious pitfalls of our faith is using our minds for Christ rather than having the mind of Christ. The subtle shift produces tectonic changes in the way that we live out our faith.

“I’m going to give my best thinking to advancing the cause of Christ.” It sounds noble, when in fact it usurps the supremacy and Lordship of Christ in our lives.

We’d like to sharpen our intellects for Christ, to give our best analytical skills to His cause, and thus love the Lord with all our mind. But it produces an independence and subtle arrogance that contradicts the call for us to die to ourselves.

We’re not called to think for God but to let our minds be transformed by Him; to develop “the mind of Christ.” Good intellects are a gift from God, but they remain clouded, limited, and fallen at best.

To love the Lord with all our mind is not to think for Him but to come alongside Him. It means that we filter every idea, every thought, and every insight through the filter of prayer and Scripture. We take every thought captive in obedience to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). To do less is to settle for mediocrity at best. So, we embrace His values and vision. We resist the urge to take charge with our cleverness.

This is no small achievement.

“The mind of Christ” is not a resolution I make but a renovation that Christ produces. It arises not from apologetics but from surrender. It comes not from education but transformation. We don’t make declarations on behalf of an absent Jesus but affirmations of the very Present Christ.

How does this shape us?

It means that Christian leadership calls for more spiritual sensitivity than raw competence. It means that congregational vision and mission statements emerge not from committee deliberations but from prayer. It means that Christ-followers think less of success and more of surrender, less of themselves and more of others. It challenges the intellectual pride we nurture and beckons us to deeper humility.

It’s easy to think for Jesus. Show us the end-game and we quickly form a strategy for success. Step aside. Let us through. But it’s all wood, hay, and stubble. On the other hand, gold and silver lie at the bottom of deeper ponds, where the waters are still.

Do we have the mind of Jesus today? (1 Corinthians 2:16)

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15 Responses to Thinking FOR Jesus

  1. Dave, through our Lord Jesus and His Spirit, you just keep on giving us deep, deep insight into what His word so earnestly is desiring for us to know and do. Surrender is one of my most favorite words these days! Keep it up bro…….. Thanks!

  2. Jack Simpson says:

    It has been about 4 years since I seriously began to apply Gal. 2:20 to my daily life. It is taking hold! Not constantly and not consistently. But more often as time progresses, allowing me to better understand the application of Rom. 12:2. So my mortal mind is slowly blending with the will of God. I do more WITH Jesus.

  3. Mike says:

    Sounds so simple, but we think we have to earn everything. It’s comes down to relationship, and getting to know him. Thanks Dave, you always get me thinking.

    • David Timms says:

      Mike, it’s too easy to hide behind intellectualism at times, arguing about Christ rather than taking every thought captive to Him. Yes, it’s ultimately about knowing Him not just knowing about Him.

  4. Mark says:

    As an intellectual, I find this is a good point – we learn about God not to become more intellectual but to get to know him better to grow closer so that he transforms our minds.

  5. Tim Ross says:

    Above all you have taught me the humility of Christ by your teaching, your actions, and your writing. This is a tremendous gift because it has pointed me to Christ in many facets of my walk with Jesus. This has brought me closer to Jesus which has inturn transformed me. It has shown me that if I want to be a better husband, father, brother, or friend I need to fill myself with Jesus through the word, prayer, and other disciplines. He is the potter and I am the clay. Daviid thank you for showing us areas in our lives that need to be fed and led by Christ. We are all eternally grateful.

    • David Timms says:

      Tim, the joy of shaing this Journey of faith together is that we all are learning and growing. None of us are yet what we’d like to be, but “because of grace” we are not what we were, either. I’m privileged to be part of your community.

  6. John Bond says:

    Thanks David for a guilty follower often thinking FOR Christ instead of listening to and enjoying intimacy with Christ, hearing His heart and then doing. Great to see an Aussie thinking, making an impact in the ol USA. Your Oz mate John

  7. Phil McKinley says:

    Last week I had to preach a funeral, and I took a walk through the woods just to think. Early in the morning it was dark in the woods, and there was a light rain; however, in the dark of the woods that light rain hit every leaf. The wind echoed off every branch and every bush. This light rain sounded like a huge storm. It wasn’t until I stepped out into the light of the road that I could accurately assess the nature of the storm, just a light rain. The mind of Christ gives us the perspective to evaluate the world as it really is.

  8. Christine bailey, western australia says:

    All to Jesus I surrender, all to him I freely give is still a favourite hymn for me. No other way to live but sitting before him, listening and then being obedient to step out in faith every moment of the day. Another Aussie praising God for your ministry and was married by John’s dad Jack,
    41 years ago. Christine
    Bailey, Perth WA. Hope they know you are only on loan over there David!

  9. Mark Scott says:

    This is well written. Seth Wilson from Ozark Christian College would have loved it.

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