Jesus Christ Is Lord

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Copyright © Andrew J. Shreeve 2017

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (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 exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ

2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Many problems which people suffer in life originate first in their thoughts and imagination. If we entertain thoughts and imaginations which are contrary to the promises of God, written in the bible, we are basically authoring our own demise. Whether ignorantly, or deliberately, it makes no difference; the imaginations of our heart will, one day, manifest into the reality of our lives.

That is why the Scripture teaches us to carefully guard what thoughts and imaginations enter into our heart, and also to diligently govern what proceeds out of our heart. Jesus said:

Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: these are the things which defile a man

Matthew 15:17-20

 

When we allow ungodly things to enter into our heart, which includes our thoughts and imaginations, it is only a matter of time before those same ungodly thoughts and imaginations will manifest out of us in the form of words, thoughts, imaginations and actions; which will bring pollution, uncleanness and defilement to our lives.

 

This is also what the Proverbs teaches us:

 

Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life

Proverbs 4:23 

This word translated issues is the Hebrew word ‘totza’ah totza’ah’ and means: … exit, that is, (geographical) boundary, or (figuratively) deliverance, (actively) source: - border (-s), going (-s), forth (out), issues, outgoings (Strong’s Dictionary).

The word translated keep is the Hebrew word ‘natzar’ and means: to guard, in a good sense (to protect, maintain, obey etc.) or a bad one (to conceal etc.): - besieged, hidden thing, keep (-er, -ing), monument, observe, preserve… watcher (Strong’s Dictionary).

The word translated diligence is the Hebrew word ‘mizhmar’ and means: a guard (the man, the post, or the prison) …: - diligence, guard, office, prison, ward, watch (Strong’s Dictionary).

Proverbs 4:23 is saying that what comes out of our heart will create the boundaries of our life. In other words, for better or for worse, our heart will to a large extent determine the quality and substance of our lives. Therefore, because of the significance of how our heart affects our lives, we need to protect and guard our heart with tight security, like a prison is guarded. A good prison is extremely strict as to what is allowed to enter into, and out of, the prison. We need to employ a similar discipline as to what enters into, and out of, our heart, thoughts and imagination.

We live in a very blessed, but also very dangerous, time. With advancements in communicative technology it has never been easier to access both good and evil thoughts and imaginations (Genesis 2:17). The challenge to exercise discipline has never been greater. Like a person who inherits great wealth, that wealth can either make or break them. Wealth affords people greater power and choice which they can use for either good or evil. With TV, movies and the internet we have access to a wealth of thoughts and imaginations, both good and evil. Depending upon what we allow into our heart, we will determine the boundary of our lives; whether the blessing of the Lord, or the pollution, corruption and uncleanness of this fallen world. If we are wise we will judge every TV program, movie and internet site as to whether the content of that site is what we want to manifest into our lives. If we do not want the manifestation of what we are watching and listening to, into our personal lives, we would be wise to discontinue entertaining that media program.

Ephesians 6:12 reveals that we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Make no mistake, these devil spirits are active in the world of media communication to influence our hearts. Because we are constantly engaged in spiritual warfare, wrestling against devilish spirits, the Lord has given us spiritual armour and weapons. Our initial text of 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 revealed that our spiritual warfare is in the area of our thoughts and imagination. It is not surprising, therefore, that our spiritual weapons include Words which create thoughts, ideas and imaginations:

Our armour includes: truth which comes from the Words and Spirit of God; righteousness which is understood from the Word of God; the gospel of peace is an understanding and communication of concepts; faith comes through the receiving of God’s Words into our hearts; salvation also comes through an understanding of God’s communication; and the sword of the Spirit is the usage of the Word of God (Romans 10:17).

All of our spiritual weapons are centred around Words, ideas and imaginations. We need to conclude that, being successful in Christian warfare, and life, necessitates an awareness of the importance of judging, and deliberately cultivating, our thoughts and imagination.

Because we are in an active and dynamic, spiritual environment where devil spirits are proactively advancing and shooting missiles at us to purposely attack our thoughts and imagination, damage our bodies, and steal our money; we also need to be proactive and deliberate, to thwart the enemies’ attacks, through the cultivation of our thoughts and imagination with God’s promises (Ephesians 6:16, Romans 12:2, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5).

When we identify thoughts and imaginations proceeding from our hearts which are contrary to the instruction, and the promises, of Scripture, we need to realize that we have a devilish stronghold in our mind and heart, and subsequently a chink, or gap, in our spiritual armour. It is essential that we quickly ‘patch up’ our vulnerable spiritual state, otherwise the enemy can exploit the stronghold in our mind and bring destruction into our lives. The way we ‘patch up’ our weakness is to attack the ungodly thought, which is in opposition to the Lord’s, biblical, covenant promises and instructions. We attack the thought by meditating the Lord’s promises, relevant to the area of our vulnerability, until our thoughts and imaginations naturally ‘default’ to agree with God’s promises.

Establishing our heart to be in alignment with the Lord’s precious promises can take considerable time and effort. In my own experience, it took me about five years of constant, disciplined, focus and mediation upon God’s promises of financial provision, until my heart came to a place of peace and rest in that area. It is different with each of us. It depends upon the strength of the devilish strongholds and imaginations which have been previously established into our minds. The stronger the devilish imaginations, the more focused and determined we need to be to cast it down and to bring it into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

Conclusion

Success in the Christian life is directly connected to the thoughts and imaginations of our heart. We, therefore, need to be alert as to what we are thinking about and imagining. When we identify that our mind and imagination ‘defaults’ towards ungodly themes like: poverty, sickness, fear, worry, anxiety, sin, failure and destruction, we know we have devilish strongholds in our heart, which need to be cast down and captured. We cast down, and bring into captivity, devilish thoughts and imaginations through engaging in Scriptural meditation of the Lord’s honourable promises. It will require a disciplined, determined action of daily meditation to participate in the process of establishing our heart in unity with the Word, and will, of the Lord.

Every investment of time we make, to establish our heart in agreement with the Lord’s, instructions and, precious and valuable promises, will take us a step closer to experiencing the wonderful blessings of the kingdom of God in our lives.

Prayer

Dear Father God, thank you for this teaching concerning ‘Developing our Imagination’. Thank you that as I cultivate my imagination to be in agreement with your, instructions and, precious covenant promises, I can expect the boundary of my life to conform to your will. I pray you will give me wisdom to be aware of any devilish imaginations which are established in my heart. Please strengthen me to take the necessary actions to bring those devilish thoughts and imaginations captive to your Word. Thank you that through daily, determined meditation of your, instructions and, precious and loving, covenant promises I can greatly influence the boundaries and quality of my life. I pray this is Jesus Christ name, Amen.

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Andrew Shreeve Ministries is led by the Holy Spirit, committed to the integrity of the Word of God, walking by faith and focused on preaching the gospel to all nations...

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