CONQUERING YOUR THOUGHTS

 

Psalms 10:4  The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.

OUR THINKING REFLECTS OUR MATURITY LEVEL.

1 Corinthians 13:11  When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

2 Corinthians 10:5  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;

 

1. TO CONQUER THOUGHTS, YOU NEED TO KNOW WHERE THEY ARE.

SOME PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS ARE MOST OFTEN PRODUCED BY THEIR EMOTIONS. OTHER PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS ARE MOST OFTEN ANALYTICAL, AND COME MOST OFTEN FROM A FORMAL LEARNING. OTHERS MOST OFTEN DEPEND UPON THEIR PHYSICAL SENSES, WHILE OTHERS RECEIVE THOUGHTS FROM GOD. WHERE DO THE MAJORITY FO YOUR THOUGHTS COME FROM ?

SOME THOUGHTS ARE CREATIVE IDEAS THAT NEED TO BE COMMITTED TO GOD’S USE.

A. FIND OUT HOW TO ACTIVATE THE THOUGHTS OF GOD IN YOUR LIFE.

Psalms 139:17 How precious also are Thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

B. THE NATURAL THOUGHTS OF MAN ARE NOT GOD’S WAYS.

Isaiah 55:9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.

WHAT ARE GOD’S THOUGHTS THAT WE SHOULD EXPAND UPON ?

Psalms 92:5 O LORD, how great are Thy works! and Thy thoughts are very deep.

–HIS LOVE FOR HIS PEOPLE.

Psalms 139:17 How precious also are Thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

WHAT ARE THOSE THOUGHTS ? “FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD”…. “GOD IS NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH”… ETC.

–PEACE TO HIS PEOPLE.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

2. TO CONQUER THOUGHTS, DON’T THINK THEY CAN BE HIDDEN FROM GOD.

THEY NEED TO BE ACKNOWLEDGED AND SEEN FOR WHAT THEY ARE.  GOD KNOWS YOUR THOUGHTS (HE REVEALED THE KING’S THOUGHTS TO DANIEL) SO MAKE THEM GOOD THOUGHTS.

A. DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THE RESPONSE OF GOD TO YOUR THOUGHTS. CAN THE THOUGHTS OF A MAN PROVOKE GOD ?

Luke 6:8 But He knew their thoughts, and said to the man which had the withered hand, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth.

Mark 3:5 And when He had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, He saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.

B. BEWARE OF THOUGHTS THAT ASSUME INSTEAD OF KNOWING.

THOUGHTS BUILT UPON ASSUMING THINGS CAN BE DAMAGING. JUDAH ASSUMED A WOMAN WAS A PROSTITUTE. IT WAS HIS STEP-DAUGHTER. EVEN THOUGH HE PLANNED TO COMMIT A SIN, HIS ASSUMPTION LED HIM TO COMMIT A GREATER SIN.

Genesis 38:15 When Judah saw her, he thought her to be an harlot; because she had covered her face.

C. OUR NATURAL THOUGHTS ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE CAN BE DECEPTIVE

AND DANGEROUS. THE BIBLE WARNS AGAINST BEING LED BY THE FLESH. CHRISTIANS ARE TO BE LED BY GOD’S SPIRIT. SO, THOSE NATURAL ASSUMPTIONS THAT COME FROM SEEING AND HEARING CAN BE DANGEROUS AND ARE OFTEN WRONG.

John 13:29 For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor.

***A man who was a bootlegger and a drug dealer in a small town in Georgia told me a story about this. He didn’t dress up much. He wore blue jean overalls, like a farmer, and he didn’t look very wealthy. But, he had a taste for material things and owned several luxury cars, a couple nice houses, and a coupel stores, in addition to his selling illegal things. He went to buy a car at an Atlanta dealership, and asked for a particular salesman. The saleman he wanted was not available, so another took his place. He told the salesman that he was going to buy a car that day, and wanted the best deal he had on a certain type of luxury car. The saleman took a closer look at the bootlegger, and told him that he needed to buy a used car, something he could afford. The bootlegger insisted on seeing the new luxury cars, so the saleman walked off and never returned. After telling me this story, he pulled out a roll of one hundred dollar bills, and said, “I even brought the money with me to more than pay for the car. ” The salesman assumed that the guy was poor and not capable of buying the new luxury car.

D. ASSUMPTIONS IN OUR THINKING CAN MAKE US THINK SOMETHING IS GOOD WHEN IT IS NOT.

2 Samuel 4:9-10 And David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, and said unto them, As the LORD liveth, who hath redeemed my soul out of all adversity, When one told me, saying, Behold, Saul is dead, thinking to have brought good tidings, I took hold of him, and slew him in Ziklag, who thought that I would have given him a reward for his tidings:

NAAMAN THOUGHT THAT HIS HEALING WOULD COME DIFFERENTLY. WHEN HE WAS REQUIRED TO DO SOMETHING, HE WAS TURNED OFF TO THE IDEA.

2 Kings 5:11 But Naaman was wroth, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper.

3. THINKING POSITIVE NATURAL THOUGHTS CAN RESULT IN GREAT DISAPPOINTMENT.

A. GOD HAS CALLED US TO FAITH THINKING.

Psalm 49:6-11 They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:) That he should still live for ever, and not see corruption. For he seeth that wise men die, likewise the fool and the brutish person perish, and leave their wealth to others. Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.

B. IF WE THINK SPIRITUALLY, WE KNOW WE NEED GOD’S HELP AND CONSTANTLY NEED TO STEER OUR FEET TOWARD HIM.

Psalms 119:59 I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto Thy testimonies.

–DON’T BE OBSESSED WITH WORLDLY THOUGHTS.

Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

–DON’T BE OVERWHELMED WITH THE FEAR OF HOW TO TESTIFY. TELL WHAT GOD HAS DONE FOR YOU. ITS THAT SIMPLE. THE HOLY SPIRIT WILL REMIND YOU.

Matthew 10:19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak.

–CONTROL YOUR THOUGHTS. YOU CAN DO IT !

Philippians 4:8Finally, 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.

Isaiah 55:7Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.

”Conquering Your Thoughts”
A Bible Study with Dr. Ed J. MacWilliams
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