Paul the apostle to the gentiles was given great revelatory truths for Christians. Heit was that needed to visit Jerusalem to rehearse these principles to the apostles. He was required to inform those who walked with Jesus three and a half years of new revelation, and throughout Paul’s epistles we see the great doctrines on which our faith rests.
All he writes is for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness. His writings give us the bedrock upon which to stand and to live for God, in this evil day. The godly wisdom he wrote is directed at a Christian’s growth and sanctification, and we in this generation do well to study carefully his instructions and warnings. He writes to the saints in Christ Jesus – to those that are set apart unto God. And Paul challenges us in many different ways to examine ourselves: examine yourselves to see whether you be in the faith. 2Cor.13:5
This is not a directive to keep checking whether or not you are born again. No, though sadly some believers do worry that they are not truly born again. Get once and for all the gospel truth ever firmly fixed in your mind and heart.. believe… just believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you are saved – forever. No, the majority of truths in Paul’s epistles are for the saved man or woman, so that we can live the life that is best for us, as directed by the Holy Spirit.
Paul’s life, witness and work demonstrates a man that lived in fellowship with God. Paul’s instructions explain in detail how every believer may also live a victorious life. His life experiences were some of the worst that one could ever imagine. He reminds us that he was in labour more abundantly.. in stripes above measure.. in prison more frequently.. in deaths more often. Of the Jews.. five times received I forty stripes save one.. three times I was beaten with rods.. once I was stoned.. three times I was shipwrecked – a day and a night I have been in the deep.
He tells us.. I have travelled many weary miles. I have faced danger from flooded rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities... in the deserts, and on the stormy seas. I have faced danger from men who claim to be Christians – but are not. He explains... I have lived with weariness and pain, and sleepless nights. Often I have been hungry and thirsty.. often I have gone without food.. often I have shivered with cold.. often I have been without enough clothing to keep me warm – then, besides all this I’ve the daily burden of how the churches are getting along.
The circumstances of Paul’s life can hardly be called cushy or comfortable.. and yet throughout it all and despite all the difficulties of his life, Paul could rejoice. He didn’t grudgingly accept the pains and difficulties that shadowed his earthly life. From start to finish Paul, through his writings, explains how he kept his joy.
He had a Single Mind – in spite of all the problems and circumstances of life. He had a Submissive Mind – regardless of the way that people behaved towards him. He had a Spiritual Mind – where he set his heart on the right thinking. He had a Secure Mind – where worry and fear was replaced with trust and love. He had a Surrendered Mind – where each thought was captured and given to God.
Jesus initially touches on the secret that was given to Paul and expounded by him:- You must love the Lord your God with all your HEART – and Paul tells us HOW. You must love the Lord your God with all your SOUL – and Paul tells us HOW. You must love the Lord your God with all your MIND – and Paul tells us HOW. Paul tells us how our thinking and thought processes must love and trust the Lord.. with every part of your being.
When Paul’s heart and soul and mind was set on the Lord Jesus, his life was one of victory, joy, faith and love... despite life’s circumstances. But it starts with right thinking.. and that is the point where most people fail.
God will wait a lifetime to correct your thoughts and your thinking, but He will only conform a mind that is willing.. and the choice is yours. If you are prepared to change your mind.. God will change your heart, but He will never change your heart until you address the issues of your mind – until you change your thinking.
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