“(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ” (2Corinthians 10:4-5).
If we are to know victory in our Christian lives then we need to be involved in active spiritual warfare and we need to recognise how the enemy works in our mind. We need to understand that not every thought that comes into our mind is our own.
In Matthew 16:13-15, Jesus asks His disciples, “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? 14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.”
Now what’s Jesus saying here? He’s telling us that Peter’s understanding of the true identity of Christ was a direct revelation from God the Father. These were not Peter’s own thoughts. They were thoughts that were placed there by God Himself.
But just a few verses later in this same conversation, Jesus explains that “He must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.” Then in verse 22 it says that “Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.” Now where did Peter get that thought from? Verse 23 makes that very clear – “But he [Jesus] turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.”
In this same conversation, Peter had two thoughts and neither of them were his own. He had a wonderful thought that was placed there by God; but he also had a thought that was placed in his mind by the enemy and he never realised it.
Not every thought that comes into your mind is your own; that’s why Paul says we are to take “every thought captive.” Many Christians struggle with negative self-critical thoughts and they don’t realise that these thoughts have been placed in their mind by the enemy of their souls. When we believe the lies of the enemy he is able to place us in bondage; but Jesus said the Truth will set us free (John 8:32).
Don’t just believe every thought that comes into your mind. If it does not line up with the Truth of God’s Word then consider its source and reject it.
Morris Hull, Home Life Ministries