Scripture Passage: 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
Whether we realize it or not, there is a battle raging in our minds at every moment: spiritual warfare between light and darkness, good and evil, Jesus Christ and Satan. We cannot afford to be ignorant, and we cannot possibly be neutral.
2 Corinthians 10 shares encouragement for us in this battle for our minds.
First, this passage warns us of the warfare of our foe.
There is a deadly array of demons dedicated to the destruction of our thought lives. They are under the authority of the prince of darkness—the devil. He wants our minds, because it is through the mind that God communicates, changes, and controls us. When we’re saved, we receive the mind of Christ, and use our minds in different capacities than we once did. The devil wants to corrupt our minds so we fall out of fellowship with Christ.
Second, this passage addresses the weakness of our flesh.
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh” (2 Corinthians 10:3).
The spiritual battle is not in the flesh, but our flesh can be a point of weakness in our fight. We do not have what it takes to overcome on our own.
This passage also reminds us of the weapons of our fight.
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ…” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).
One of our weapons is the sovereignty of God, who is our Commander-in-Chief in this fight.
We also have the authority of our commission, as 2 Corinthians 10:8 says: “For even if I should boast somewhat more about our authority, which the Lord gave us for edification and not for your destruction, I shall not be ashamed…”
Finally, remember, we have our certain courage.
Jesus Christ has already won the war. We win the battle each and every day by guarding our minds with all diligence (See Proverbs 4:23.).
Apply it to your life
Adrian Rogers says, “Center your mind upon Jesus. Don’t let the devil take away your pure-hearted devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ. Stay in love with Him and there won’t be any room for those filthy, wicked, lustful, prideful thoughts that bombard us all.”
God did not save you for a defeated life. The bible says thanks being to God who causes us always, Always, always to triumph in christ, jesus. I hope you believe that God’s plan for you, precious friend is victory and he has a plan for you for victory. In your thought life. Adrian Rogers had two great passions to introduce people to Jesus Christ and to encourage believers in their faith. This month on love worth finding, pastor Rogers will be sharing messages designed to help you have a closer walk with God, have your bibles ready and stay with us for today’s message. And if you’re encouraged by today’s message, remember you can stream this message again. Listen to other messages from Adrian Rogers and download Pastor Rogers outline and notes all at L WF dot org. Now let’s join Adrian Rogers, Would you take God’s precious word and be finding please? 2nd Corinthians, chapter 10. We’re gonna be talking about your mind the battle for your mind. Some of our battles are maybe just a little silly I heard of a man who was only a diet trying to lose weight, but on his way to work he passed a donut shop and he got to thinking just how good a donut and a cup of coffee would be and he said to himself, I will only stop if there is a parking place right in the front. And sure enough after seven times around the block, there was a parking place right there in the front. Now we we all of us fight the battle of the bulge and those kinds of battles and they’re with us always, but there is a battle more deadly, more sinister. It is a battle for the mind, a deadly war that is between God and satan and the battleground is, believe it or not, your mind and your soul and those of us who are christians are caught up in this battle. Second Corinthians 10 verses three through five. Although we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh. So right away, we know we’re talking about a war, we’re talking about about it for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and bringing into captivity. Every thought underscore that bringing into captivity, every thought to the obedience of christ. Now there’s a war and this message is a warning and it is a call to arms. But I pray God, it will be an encouragement because when you were born again, you were born to win. God did not save you for a defeated life. The bible says thanks be unto God, who causes us always, always, always to triumph in christ jesus. I hope you believe that God’s plan for you, precious friend is victory and he has a plan for you for victory in your thought light three things. I want to live in your heart this morning. The very first thing is the warfare of our foe. Look if you will again in verse four. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God. To the pulling down of strongholds, there is a war. And who are the participants in this war? Who has declared war against your thought, Life against the citadel of your soul? Well, I want to say that your enemy is not clothed in flesh, put in your margin. Ephesians six verse 12, There the apostle paul told the Ephesians christians for we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against Principalities against powers against the rulers. Listen to this phrase of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness. In high places, that is the devil has ensconced himself in high places to war against you. You are at war and there is a war against you. There is a deadly array a deadly array. According to this verse of demonic host, they are invisible and they are dedicated to the destruction of your thought life. And they are under the authority of the Prince of Darkness. The God of wickedness, The devil. Now, what is the prize in this warfare? What is the battleground? Look if you will in verse five, Casting down imaginations, underscore the word imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God. Underscore the Word Knowledge and bringing into captivity. Every thought to the obedience of christ there, do you have it imaginations. Knowledge four. It’s obvious that there is a war satan is behind it and your mind is the battleground satan’s desire is to conquer and to control your thought life and then to make your thought life a citadel from which he can war against God. Because look if you will hear it says here every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, satan wants your mind. Now when you get saved you have the mind of christ that doesn’t mean you have a higher I. Q. But you have the mind of christ. You have a different capacity for thinking to use that brain that you have. Now again the devil wants your mind. And the fact that you do have the mind of christ. The fact that you have been saved does not mean listen to me. It does not mean therefore because you’ve been born again that the war is over for you, paul is writing here to the christians, he’s writing to the corinthian christians. You’re in chapter 10. Go over and look in chapter 11 and verse three it will make it even plane plainer. Look if you will in chapter 11 and verse three paul says here for I fear lest by any means as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety. That is he’s a snake in the grass. He’s a wily old devil. So your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in christ. Now when he says the simplicity that is in christ, he doesn’t mean that it is just you’re saying your abc spiritually. No, no the word simplicity actually means purity, sincerity. Now what he’s saying is here that the devil wants it means single minded devotion. So I fear, he says as though the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety. So your mind, your mind should be corrupted from the pure single minded devotion That is in christ folks. I’m telling you that there is a battle here for your mind. The devil wants your mind. The devil wants to corrupt your mind from the simplicity, the single minded devotion that is in the Lord jesus christ. And not only does the devil wants your mind, God wants your mind because it is through your mind that God reaches you. I’m gonna give you some scriptures and I don’t want you to turn to them because we don’t have time. I want you to listen in fast speed this morning, but I want you to jot these scriptures down and use them later on. First of all, I want to remind you that when God communicates to you, God communicates through your mind. Ephesians four 17 and 18 this I say therefore and testify in the Lord that she henceforth walk. Not as other gentiles walk now he’s talking to christians, he says stop living like pagans in the vanity of their mind. That means the emptiness of that pity of their minds. having the understanding darkened. Being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them because of the blindness of their heart. And the word heart here also refers to the mind now God when he communicates, he communicates to you through the mind. We have people today want to go to services that put the emphasis upon emotionalism God does not communicate to you through your emotions. Your emotions are the shallowest part of your nature. Salvation is the deepest work of God. People get in services and the rhythmic music and everything and they get goose bumps and liver shivers and all that. They think they’ve had an experience with God. All they’ve had is an emotional hiccup. I’m telling the truth. God communicates through your mind now. When I say your mind, I’m not talking about rationalism and intellectualism either. I’m talking about God revealing himself to your mind. God communicates through your mind and God changes us By changing your mind Ephesians four verse 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind. How does God renew in the spirit of your mind? You can change the way you live by changing the way you think I hope that comes in. You can change the way you live by changing the way that you think. Why do you think Romans 12 verse two says listen to it and be not conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your transform by the renewing of your mind. God communicates to you through the mind. God changes you through the mind. God controls you through the mind. Well who’s in charge of you? I hope the Holy Spirit is because Friend God communicates through the mind. God changes by changing the mind. God changes us by changing the mind. God controls us by controlling the mind. God wants your mind, the devil wants your mind. And so there is a battle for your mind. Now, uh that’s the first point here. What we’ve talked about is this uh the warfare of our foe. Now, here’s the second point. The weakness of our flesh. You must understand this. If I if you think I’m just telling you to buck up and uh and think better thoughts know that that that would be futile Notice that in your own flesh you’re weak. Now go back to our text a second Corinthians 10. Look, if you want in verse three for though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh. Your flesh, your natural state does not have what it takes to have the right thought process. Now we live in the flesh, folks, we might as well admit it. All of us have problems. All of us have disappointments. All of us have sicknesses. All of us have perplexities. All of us have the mundane things of life. Don’t get the idea that when you get saved, you move into another planet somewhere. I was in the store the other a while back buying groceries and a lady said to me, oh, brother Rogers, I didn’t know you had to buy groceries. Yeah, what you do. And also I have to take the garbage out in the rain. I do that just like everybody else does we all live in the flesh. I mean, that’s a part of life. That’s just where we are. And and there’s no there’s no place that you can take your flesh and and get it somewhere and and just get out of this rat race that win. You just can’t do that. The warfare is not after the flesh, though we live in the flesh. We don’t war in the flesh. He’s talking here about the our weakness of our flesh. Listen, we do not fight with flesh and blood because we don’t fight against flesh and blood. You have to understand that. Remember Ephesians chapter six versus 10 through 13. Finally, brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might, put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against Principalities and powers. That’s the reason, he says here in verse three, but we walk in the flesh. We do not war after the flesh? The problem folks is the mind as a man thinketh so is he Out of the heart. Out of the mind are the issues of life. Now let’s move to the third and final thing. What I’ve talked about is the warfare of our foe. The devil tries to conquer our minds. What I’ve talked about is the weakness of our flesh. We don’t have what it takes to overcome and to win this battle for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal. You know what the word carnal means? Did you ever order chili con Carney means with me? The latin word for fleshes car nous. What are you saying? The weapons of our warfare are not fleshly. We live in the flesh, but we don’t war after the flesh. Here’s the third thing I want you to see folks uh the weapons of our fight. The weapons of our fight, what are they? He mentions them. The weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God. To the pulling down of strongholds. Now in paul’s day, there was a battle and in one corner had paul in the other corner, you had the roman empire. The roman empire been in existence for 700 years. Head prestige power. The iron legions of Rome, for an army. The mighty uh vessels of Rome in the navy, the roman Senate, The roman law and all of that evil had entrenched itself in corinth in the hearts and minds of those people. And over there in the other corner was the apostle paul, a little squinty. I ju with a heart full of jesus and paul is declaring war. And paul said, I’m coming against all that now. Who’s gonna win this fight? We’ll paul wins this fight. How did paul win this fight? Not with carnal weapons? How did paul put the the entrenched evil in the roman empire? And at Corinth down for the count of 10, paul said, I’m coming against this citadel, I’m coming against this notice if you will here as he talks about what he’s coming against here says and if you will, in verse four, he speaks there in verse four of strongholds. Do you see that? He says mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, what is a stronghold? It’s it’s it’s a fortress walls of resistance are going to come down. What kind of resistance are in the hearts and minds of the Corinthians. Well, arrogance, ignorance, despair. Uh these are the strongholds inside that stronghold are demonic thoughts organized, mobilized. The demonized armies of hell are inside that stronghold, paul says that is coming down and then he mentions high things. Do you see that? Look if you will in verse five, casting down every high thing now here’s the citadel. And it’s got these towers all around these towers, paul said, I’m gonna pull down these walls, I’m gonna get those of you going inside and paul says, I’m going to decimate your towers. What’s he talking about? They’re talking about not intelligence but intellectualism, high minded attitude. Sophistication, paul said that’s coming down and then he said inside there’s some captives, he said, I’m going to take those captives captives. He says I’m going to bring into captivity. Every thought, thoughts that are being held hostage are going to be set free from habits and fears and obsessions and lust. Paul says, I’m tearing down those walls, those towers are coming down and those thoughts they’re coming out i and going to war not in his own flesh because he says the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and bringing into captivity, every thought to the knowledge of God, what a war. Now, what is what we’re paul’s weapons, paul says the weapons of our warfare. First of all, there’s the sovereignty of his commander. Look if you will in verse seven, he said, do you look on outward things after the outward appearance? If any man trusts to himself that he is christ let him of himself think this again that as he is christ even so are we christ that is, we belong to christ, he is our commander and chief Japan at potsdam told Britain told the United States, we’re not going to surrender the allies said to Japan, if you don’t surrender, we will decimate you, we will obliterate you. We will come with devastating force on you. Japan said, we’ll fight on and we dropped on Hiroshima Nagasaki, the a bomb and Japan surrender. They surrendered. And the devil has been trying to do all that he can do to win this war. But I’ll tell you when Jesus christ died at calvary, he dropped an a bomb on the Devil. He dropped an a bomb on the devil, Jesus said, Now is the prince of this world. Cast out Satan’s kingdom came down and Paul said, we belong to Jesus. He is a sovereign commander in this battle. Not only is he do we have uh the sovereignty of our commander, but we have the authority of our commission. Look if you will in verse eight look at it for though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord has given us for edification and not for your destruction. I should not be ashamed notice our authority. What is authority? Authority is the legal right to act on behalf of another Jesus who has won the war. Has given to us the power of attorney luke. 10 verses 19 through 20 jesus said, behold, I give you power and the word Power is literally authority to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt you, Jesus said, you’ve got this authority, but now notice this notwithstanding. In this rejoice, Not that the spirits are subject under you, but rather rejoice that your names are written in heaven, Jesus said, you’ve got you’ve got power, you’ve got authority over all of these demonic hosts that are in this, this citadel. But don’t rejoice in that. Don’t be devil minded. B be heaven minded. Don’t rejoice that I’ve given you this authority. Rejoice that your name is written in heaven. Listen, it is not the knowledge of the devil that sets you free. It is the knowledge of Jesus that sets you free. You have to understand we’re not called to be evangelical Ghostbusters. The bible says, we resist the devil not chasing what what what you have to do, what you have to understand is this that there is the sovereignty of our commander. There is the authority of our commission. I wish I had time for this. But our time is going. There is the certainty of our courage. Look, if you will in verses eight through 11 of the same chapter here, and I’m coming to the end, for though I should boast somewhat more of our authority which the Lord has given us for edification and not for your destruction. I should not be ashamed that I may not seem as if I would terrify you by letters for his letters. Say they are waiting powerful, but his bodily presence is weak and his speech contemptible. They said, paul, you’re always writing these tough letters. Wait till you get here, you little weakling And Paul says in verse 11, let such a one think this that such as we are in word by letters. When we are absent such will we be also? Indeed when we are present, paul says, listen, I belong to jesus christ. He’s won the battle for me. He has given me authority. And because of that, I have this carrie and I am going to win this battle now. My time has gone. Would you listen to me today as you think that’s what you’re going to be chuck swindle is correct when he says that attitude is everything. Now, once you take back the fortress of your mind then what you need to do is to set a guard. The bible says guard your mind with all diligence for out of it are the issues of life. You go to the airport to get on an airplane, you go through a thing, What do they call the magnetometer or something like that? You go through that deal. What do you do? You take out your keys? You take out your glasses, you take off your tie clasp, you take off your earrings, not me but others. And you take off this stuff you think you’re ready to go through and that things mm hmm. Would you step back sir, Do you have anything in your pocket one more time. Would you step back again sir. Would you come over here sir and they frisk? Well, I wish we could put some of those at the doors of the sanctuary that would detect sin after. I preach. You try to get at it. So you go back in there for a while. Wouldn’t that be great? Alright? You ain’t ready yet. You come on back in there. He’s not finished with you yet. You got something else you need to put in the basket. Amen. Well, friend also, you need to keep one of those on your mind. And you don’t let those things get into the fortress. I mean, just don’t let those things in. Listen read Philippians whatsoever. Things are pure, whatsoever things are just whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report. If there be any virtue. If there be any praise, think on these things, God made you where You can’t think two thoughts at one time, you’re thinking what’s right? You can’t be thinking what’s wrong? And as you think you will be, you guard your mind, Center your mind upon the Lord, jesus. Don’t let the devil take away your pure hearted devotion to the love of the Lord jesus christ. Stay in love with the Lord jesus christ and there won’t be any room for those filthy, dirty, wicked, lascivious, lustful, prideful thoughts that bombard us all. I wish I had more time. Let’s bow our heads and pray heads about. Eyes are closed, all precious friends, you must begin by giving your heart to jesus christ. You see The Bible says in 2nd Corinthians, for the God of this world has blinded the minds of them that believe, no, you see your mind without christ is really blind to spiritual things. Would you let God just remove that blindness today? Give your heart to christ? Would you pray a prayer like this? If you’re not saved, Lord jesus, I need you and I want you, I need you for this life and I need you for life everlasting jesus. You died to save me and you promised to save me. If I would trust you, I do trust you, jesus. Would you tell him that? I do trust you, Jesus pray that. Oh, Lord jesus, I trust you come into my heart right now. Take control of my life right now make me the person You want me to be pray that Lord jesus save me. And jesus, help me never to be ashamed of you in your name. I pray amen friend. Aren’t you grateful that no matter who you are, where you are or what you are, That God has a way of plan for you. Oh, his mercies are new every morning and his grace extends to all people, regardless of the background. That’s the reason this message has been God speaking to you, telling you that he loves you and he wants to save you and he will save you if you trust him right now, will you do it, Will you pray? Lord jesus, I need you. I want you, you died for my sins. You shed your blood for me. You were raised from the dead. You’re able to save me and you will save me if I trust you and I do trust you, jesus come into my life right now and begin now to make me the person you want me to be. Thank you. Thank you, jesus for saving me, pray it and mean it and then write to us and let us know. We’ll rejoice with you. We’ll send you some literature to help you get started in your christian life. We hope that today’s message has been an encouragement to you. You can stream this message again. Listen to other messages from Adrian Rogers download pastor Rogers outlining notes or purchase bible studies on this and other topics, all at L WF dot org at L WF dot org. You can also sign up to receive our daily heartbeat. Email. 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