Romans 8:6 Following after the Holy Spirit leads to life and peace, but following after the old nature leads to death.
OUR ABILITY TO THINK
We differ from animals in that we can observe, think, and arrive at logical conclusions. We are endowed by God, our creator, with understanding.
WE HAVE CHOICES
Romans 6:6-8 Your old evil desires were nailed to the cross with him; that part of you that loves to sin was crushed and fatally wounded, so that your sin-loving body is no longer under sin’s control, no longer needs to be a slave to sin; for when you are deadened to sin you are freed from all its allure and its power over you. And since your old sin-loving nature “died” with Christ, we know that you will share his new life
WE HAVE A GOD WHO LOVES AND SUPPORTS US
Romans 8:27-29 The Father who knows all hearts knows, of course, what the Spirit is saying as He pleads for us in harmony with God’s own will. And we know that all that happens to us is working for our good if we love God and are fitting into His plans. For from the very beginning God decided that those who came to Him—and all along He knew who would—should become like his Son, so that His Son would be the First, with many brothers.
BECAUSE WE HAVE CHOICES AND A GOD WHO LOVES AND SUPPORTS US THE BIBLE SAYS WE HAVE TWO POSSIBLE MINDSETS
OUR OLD WAY OF THINKING
Following the crowd to fit in Colossians 2:18 says “Don’t let anyone declare you lost when you refuse to worship angels, as they say you must. They have seen a vision, they say, and know you should. These proud men (though they claim to be so humble) have a very clever imagination”
God created me to be me and you to be you, so be the best you you can be.
Listening to lies because we don’t want to admit the truth about ourselves and our lives 1 Timothy 6:5 These arguers—their minds warped by sin—don’t know how to tell the truth; to them the Good News is just a means of making money. Keep away from them.
If you ask enough people you are sure to find one who thinks like you and will give you the answers you want to stop you from facing up to the truth of your reality. The Bible says we should Pray about everything; telling God your needs, and thanking Him for His answers. Philippians 4:6
Trusting God to help us to change what we think which will change what we do, Titus 1:15 says “A person who is pure of heart sees goodness and purity in everything; but a person whose own heart is evil and untrusting finds evil in everything, for his dirty mind and rebellious heart color all he sees and hears.”
Changing our thinking patterns is important on a daily basis if we want to change our lives. There is a cliche in Alcoholics Anonymous that says THINK! THINK! THINK! and we all need to discipline ourselves to learn to think before we act on our feelings.
GOD’s WAY OF THIKING
In the Bible Paul says Romans 7:23-25 There is something else deep within me, in my lower nature, that is at war with my mind and wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. In my mind I want to be God’s willing servant, but instead I find myself still enslaved to sin. So you see how it is: my new life tells me to do right, but the old nature that is still inside me loves to sin. Oh, what a terrible predicament I’m in! Who will free me from my slavery to this deadly lower nature? Thank God! It has been done by Jesus Christ our Lord. He has set me free.
For many of us for many years we have tried in our own strength to achieve and maintain recovery and character change, unsuccessfully and we can relate to what Paul is saying. Now it’s time to learn to listen to Jesus and do the things He tells us to do so we can experience His peace in our lives.
Jesus says: “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27
Ephesians 4:23 says “Your attitudes and thoughts must all be constantly changing for the better.”
1 Corinthians 2:15-16 says “The spiritual man has insight into everything, and that bothers and baffles the man of the world, who can’t understand him at all. How could he? For certainly he has never been one to know the Lord’s thoughts, or to discuss them with him, or to move the hands of God by prayer. But, strange as it seems, we Christians actually do have within us a portion of the very thoughts and mind of Christ.”
1 Corinthians 2:14 says “The man who isn’t a Christian can’t understand and can’t accept these thoughts from God, which the Holy Spirit teaches us. They sound foolish to him because only those who have the Holy Spirit within them can understand what the Holy Spirit means. Others just can’t take it in.”
If we want to understand the thoughts of Jesus and experience the gift of ‘peace of mind’ He talks about we need to change our attitudes and thoughts as we grow daily in faith and understanding of the reality of the opportunities recovery brings to our lives.
Death here means spiritual death, or separation from God. When we constantly think of the flesh and how to gratify ourselves it definitely separateds usfrom God.
Death stands in contrast to a “life and peace.”
“Life” is eternal or the life of God which Christ imparts into the believer.
Jesus said “Anyone who believes in me will have eternal life.” John 3:15
He also said “My purpose is to give life in all its fullness.” John 10:10
“Peace” is the tranquillity Jesus Christ brings to the heart of the believer who seeks to please God in his spirit.
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27
I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Romans 14:7 says “We are not our own bosses to live or die as we
ourselves might choose.”