Warfare of the Mind
Complements of Unlimited Grace Ministries
As believers in Jesus Christ we have certain rights which have been given to us via our salvation. There are things that we are subject to, and things that we are not subject to. There is a constant warfare for control of our minds. This warfare is actually only in, or against, our minds. Since the crucifixion, resurrection and ascension, Satan has no real power at all. He can only cause us to think he has power over us. The most he can do is cause us to dwell on thoughts he plants as seed in our minds. Maybe that is why we are told in Philippians 4:8 to dwell, (ponder, think, consider, keep in our mind) on things that are honest, just, pure, lovely, of a good report, and if there be any virtue or things that are praiseworthy, to think on those things.
The Bible tells us that the devil is "as" a roaring lion, 1 Peter 5:8. We do know that he roams about seeking whom he may devour, and, he may devour the unredeemed at any time he chooses. He does not, however, retain that right when we are born-again, so, it is against us, the redeemed ones, that he wages his most violent assaults. He does this through various means, including discouragement, disappointment, depression, despair. He attacks our minds with thoughts, for that is all he can use against us. When we dwell on these thoughts, we give place to him, Ephesians 4:29. We give him space to operate in our lives. This is how he wars against us. It is a powerful weapon, and has caused much pain and destruction within the body of Christ.
How, then, are we to deal with these onslaughts? I find the answer is in the Word of God. 2 Corinthians 10 gives us a great deal of insight in this area. Paul teaches us that though we do walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh, verse 3. The weapons of our (the believer) warfare are not carnal, or fleshly (v.4). They are mighty through God, or His provision (v. 4). They are so mighty that these weapons are able to pull down the strongholds of the devil (v. 4). How is this possible, or how do we accomplish this great feat?
2 Corinthians 10:5 states that we are to cast down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God (also remember Philippians 4:8). We are to bring every thought into captivity, to the obedience of Christ. Since Satan's warfare is over our mind, the mind should be our first line of defense against him. When we dwell on things contrary to truth, which is the revealed Word of God (John 1:1-17,14:6) then we lay ourselves open to demonic influences of varying degrees. Demonically inspired thoughts become like self-fulfilling prophecies. We can then become snared by our words, which are the wings of our thoughts. We know that words are powerful, they have a life force of their own and once spoken can not be recalled. You can read more about this in the book of James Chapter 3.
Why is it that such warfare goes on in the thought realm? Think about this:
Anger begins where?
Lies are cooked up where?
Deception is planted as a seed of thought, where?
Fornication/adultery is first contemplated where?
What about murders, greed, hate, lust, backbiting, gossip, pride,
boastful attitudes, disobedience to parents and those in authority,
and promise breaking?
(Read Romans 1:18-32)
Where do they all begin? In the mind! Why? Because that is the only place demonic forces can attack us. It is our most vulnerable part, the one part God left as our complete domain. We are free to make
choices, all kinds of choices. Our choices can be good, bad or seemingly indifferent, but none are without consequence.
Romans 6:16 tells us that to whom we yield, or give ourselves up to, that is the one we will be a slave to. Again, I am reminded of Philippians 4:8, the answer is there, what ever we decide to think on, the choice and the result of that choice, is ours. 1 Peter 5:9 says to resist the devil steadfast in the faith. Read also Ephesians 6:10-18, 1 Timothy 4:1-3, John 8:44, 2 Corinthians 11:14-15.
We do not have to give place to these evil tricks. We were not left without protection and recourse. Jesus said, I give you (that would also include us) power over ALL the power of the enemy, the devil, Luke 10:19, 9:1, Matthew 10:1. If Jesus gave us all power, how much power does the enemy have? None That is why we have to give it to him, we have to give him place. Satan knows he has but a short time, then will face the eternal flames of judgement, Revelation 20:10. He laughs, I am sure, every time he is able gain access to our minds. Trickery, deceit, lies, murder, every evil thing, comes from him, he is the father of it all for no truth dwells in him, John 8:44. It all begins in our minds, over which we retain complete control. Warfare of our minds? Yes! It is a war, for our minds, because that is where everything we are, produce, or hope to become, begins. But thanks be unto God who always causes us to triumph in Christ, 2 Corinthian 2:14, we are the victors. We are the head and not the tail, Deuteronomy 28:13. The choice is ours