Discipleship – Level 2 Lesson 3

Level 2 Lesson 3

RENEWING THE MIND
By Don Krow

Today we want to talk about renewing the mind. I’d like to read two passages.
The first one is out of Philippians 4:8. It says, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are
true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are
pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any
virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” The Apostle Paul is obviously
telling us that there are things we should think on. In other words, we can choose our
thoughts. Now I know that we all have thoughts that are sometimes contrary to the Word
of God, according to Romans, chapter 7, verses 22 and 23. The Law of sin that wars in us
attacks our minds. But the Bible tells us out of Philippians that we don’t have to sit there
and let our thoughts build a nest, that we can choose what we think on. The Bible also
tells us that as a man thinks in his heart, so is he (Prov. 23:7). So it’s really important
what we think on.

In Romans 12:1 and 2, the Bible says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the
mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God,
which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye
transformed by the renewing of your mind.” The Bible says we can be transformed by the
renewing of our minds. Did you know that when the Apollo spacecraft went up into
space, they had to make a course correction every ten minutes? They went to the moon in
kind of like a zigzag. And when they eventually landed, they had a 500-mile designated
landing zone, and they just barely made it within that zone by a few feet. Yet the whole
flight was successful. We need to set a course and make a total commitment to the Lord
Jesus Christ by being a living sacrifice. The problem with a living sacrifice is that
sometimes it wants to crawl off the altar, so we have to make course corrections in our
thoughts. We have to have a heart that says, “God, I want You and I want Your way.”

Not only do we need to make a total commitment, but part of having a victorious
Christian life requires that we take the next step and be transformed by the renewing of
our minds. We can’t think like the world, if we don’t want the world’s results. As we read
in Philippians 4:8, we can choose what to think on. Whatsoever is lovely, just, of good
report, think on these things. What they would do in the Old Testament is take the Word
of God and put it on their doorposts and on their garments. It was constantly in front of
them. God instructed that they were to talk about the Word of God night and day that
they might observe to do what it said. And they were also to tell all these things to their
children. It’s very important what we think on. It’s very important that we keep the Word
of God in front of us all the time in order to really have a life of victory. The opposite of
thinking on what’s lovely, just, and of good report is to not think on the things of God
and the things of the Spirit. Romans 8:6 says “To be carnally minded is death,” but the
next part of that verse says, “To be spiritually minded is life and peace.” It is life and it is
peace to think on the things of the Spirit of God. But if we start thinking about adultery,
the things of the world, money, covetousness, and so forth, do you know what will
76happen in our lives? As a man thinks in his heart, so is he. We’ll begin to act on those
things. We’ll begin to play those things out in our lives, and it will destroy our lives. You
see, the real spiritual warfare for the believer is really not resisting or rebuking the devil
all the time, although there are times that we need to do that. But spiritual warfare has to
do with what we’re thinking on and what we’re dwelling on.

You see, the Bible says in Isaiah 26:3 that God will keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed upon Him. There are times during the day that we all need to make
course adjustments, just like it says in Romans 12. We need to say, “God, those are
wrong thoughts. I need to turn around and renew my mind and start thinking about the
things that are lovely, just, and of good report.”

So if you’ve got a stronghold, if you’re in bondage, if you find yourself thinking
things that you shouldn’t be thinking, you need to catch yourself immediately. The Bible
says, If we will draw near to God, He will draw near to us. If we resist the enemy, he will
flee from us. There are times in my life when I’ve let things slip and let depression rise
up. At those times, it’s hard to pick up the Bible and sit down and take a passage and say,
“God, this is what You say about me. This is who You say that I am. You are my
strength.” Did you know that your victory is just that simple? You need to say, “I’m
going to resist what I’m letting the enemy do to me right now. I’m going to sit down and
open the Bible, and I’m not going to just read some words on these pages, but I’m going
to connect with the God behind these words. I’m going to let my mind be stayed upon
Him. And, Lord, this is what You say about me. You say that I’m forgiven. You say that
I’m cleansed. You say that nothing can separate me from Your love.” When you sit there
and just think about all of the good things that God has done for you, in just a few
moments, you’re going to forget about those other things.

Let me use an illustration. I heard a man one time say, “Now, I’m just
admonishing you to not think about pink elephants for the next ten minutes.” Do you
know what happened? For the next ten minutes, all we did was think about pink
elephants. Then he asked, “What color is the Statue of Liberty?” Somebody said green.
And he said, “Well, which arm is the Statue of Liberty holding up?” And somebody said
it was the right arm. Then he asked, “What does the Statue of Liberty have in her hand.”
And someone said it was a torch. Then the man said, “What happened to your thoughts
about pink elephants?” They were gone. You see, it’s not a matter of saying, “Now, don’t
you think these thoughts,” because you know you’ll think those thoughts. The Scripture
is really telling us that we need to replace those thoughts with God’s thoughts, and when
we see these things coming against us and we’re thinking something we shouldn’t think,
we need to immediately call to mind our new identity. We need to immediately turn to
the Lord, connect with Him, not just with words on a page, but with the God behind those
words. And the Bible tells us in Romans 8:6 that as we do, we will see the transformation
the life and peace of God gives, as our minds are stayed upon Him and the things of the
Spirit. Think on these things, my brethren, and walk this day in the liberty and freedom
that Christ has purchased for you.

77Discipleship Questions

1.  Read Romans 12:1. What are we to do with our bodies?
________________________________________________________________________

2.  Read Romans 12:2. This scripture is telling us that we should be different than
_______________________________________________________________________.

3.  Read Acts 17:11. We must make our thinking line up with? _____________________

4.  Read Romans 8:5-6. To be spiritually minded is ________________________.

5.  Read Romans 12:1-2. What two things do we need to do, according to these verses?
________________________________________________________________________

6.  Read Isaiah 26:3. How do we stay in perfect peace?
________________________________________________________________________

7.  Read Isaiah 26:3. What are some ways we can keep our minds on the Lord?
________________________________________________________________________

Scriptures to Use with Questions

Romans 12:1 – “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present
your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable
service.”

Romans 12:2 – “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the
renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect,
will of God.”

Acts 17:11 – “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received
the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those
things were so.”

Romans 8:5-6 – “[5] For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but
they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. [6] For to be carnally minded is
death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.”

Romans 12:1-2 – “[1] I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye
present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your
reasonable service. [2] And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the
renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect,
will of God.”

78Isaiah 26:3 – “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee:
because he trusteth in thee.”

Isaiah 26:4 – “Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting
strength.”

Answer Key

1.  Read Romans 12:1. What are we to do with our bodies? Present, or offer, them to
God.

2.  Read Romans 12:2. This scripture is telling us that we should be different than the
world, or unbelievers.

3.  Read Acts 17:11. We must make our thinking line up with? The Scriptures, God’s
Word.

4.  Read Romans 8:5-6. To be spiritually minded is life and peace.

5.  Read Romans 12:1-2. What two things do we need to do, according to these verses?
Commit ourselves to God as a living sacrifice and begin to renew our minds.

6.  Read Isaiah 26:3. How do we stay in perfect peace? By keeping our minds on the
Lord.

7.  Read Isaiah 26:3-4. What are some ways we can keep our minds on the Lord? Prayer,
praise, meditation on the Word, giving thanks, etc.

Copyright © 2004, Don W. Krow
Permission is granted to duplicate or reproduce for discipleship purposes on the condition
that it is distributed free of charge.

Discipleship Evangelism
P.O. Box 17007
Colorado Springs, Colorado 80935-7007 U.S.A.
http://www.delessons.org

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