Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. – Philippians 2:2-8 ESV
We have a tendency to take out a verse from the Bible and use that to make a point. One of the most important doctrines with respect to the Bible is known as the “sufficiency of Scripture.” The sufficiency of Scripture can be simply defined as: In the Bible alone God has given humanity all things that are necessary for the proper understanding of who He is, who we are, how He has acted in the past and what He expects from us. The idea behind the sufficiency of Scripture is that nothing else needs to be revealed to humanity about God or His plan for the human race. The Reformation had what we call the 5 Solas, the 5- ‘ALONES’. It is Faith ALONE, in CHRIST alone, by GRACE alone to the Glory of GOD ALONE, and the BIBLE alone. One of the easiest ways to spot a RELIGION, and all RELIGION is FALSE- for religion is man’s attempt to be ‘GOODNUFF’ for God, and that is impossible apart from Christ. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 2:5) The Bible is the record of all of the things that God thought humanity needed to know about Him. In other words, Scripture is complete and sufficient for belief and behavior. Nothing needs to be added to them.
Leader, we must KNOW, BELIEVE, and act, ‘AS IF’, The Bible Alone Has the Answers to Life’s Most pressing, important, life-giving questions. The Bible contains the things which God thought that we humans should know on a number of different topics. His teaching on any subject is sufficient for us. We do not have to go elsewhere to find answers. The Bible says that the faith has been once and for all entrusted to believers. Hear the Word of the Lord, “Dear friends, although I have been eager to write to you about our common salvation, I now feel compelled instead to write to encourage you to contend earnestly for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.” (Jude 1:3) Which brings us back to today’s message, to have the MIND OF CHRIST. Jude was a half-brother of Jesus and brother of James, leader of the first Jerusalem church. This Jude was the son of Mary and Joseph and would have been raised as a brother to Jesus Christ (see Mark 6:3, Luke 6:16, Jude 1:1)). Yet, Jude when he introduces himself, does NOT claim that status of Jesus’ “half-brother’, instead he says he is brother to James, Jesus’ half-brother. Notice his humility, and his “unworthiness” to be counted as the BROTHER OF JESUS. This is my point, the Bible explains itself if you just have the MIND OF CHRIST. We are called to search the Bible for ourselves and find out the important truths about God in its pages. His Word is enough. In today’s verse, let us focus on Philippians 2:5; Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. We are called to THINK LIKE CHRIST. This is why we are to read ALL THE BIBLE, we are to ask the HOLY SPIRIT to illuminate scripture for us, to help us digest it, to understand it, to implement it! Understanding to the point of IMPLEMENTATION, is the MIND OF CHRIST! Hear the World of the Lord: Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us. (Romans 12:2-3)
Conduit, the prophet Isaiah talked about the mind of God, when prophesying about David and the coming Messiah. Hear the World of the Lord: There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit. And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. (Isaiah 11:1-2) Here we can see God explaining things through his prophet, ISAIAH. The Mind of Christ is a divine seven-fold process that begins with the Spirit of the Lord, who desires to impart to us not only all of God’s Supernatural thoughts (His Wisdom); but also understanding of those thoughts; counsel as to which thoughts are appropriate for our own situation; supernatural strength to implement those thoughts in our lives; personal experiential knowledge of seeing those thoughts manifested in our life actions; and lastly, the ability to walk in the fear of the Lord (and not in the fear of man) by fleeing anything that would quench His Spirit in us. THIS IS THE MIND OF CHRIST- do you have it? If not, you might have jumped the shark, you might have put the ‘Cart before the Horse’. We cannot possess the Mind of Christ at all unless we first have the Spirit of God in our hearts. Unless we have asked Jesus Christ to come into our hearts and have become, as John 3:3 says, “born again,” this message will not work. The Spirit of the Lord is the energy Source or Power Source of our lives. Without God’s Spirit in our hearts, we will not have either the Agape Love of God, or the Mind of Christ. This is what makes Christianity different from all the other religions of the world. Christianity is the only religion where God Himself (who is Love, who is the Word and who is Spirit) comes to dwell within each of our hearts- because it is NOT RELIGION, it is RELATIONSHIP. So, just as God’s supernatural Love is poured into our hearts the moment we invite Christ into our lives, so the Holy Spirit also gives us His Mind-God’s Thoughts and His Power to perform those Thoughts in our lives. It is the Holy Spirit that illuminates scripture. Before reading scripture, studying scripture, ruminating on scripture- ask the Holy Spirit, your HELPER, to illuminate, or explain the meaning of God’s Word to you, God’s child. This is what Jesus promised us when He departed after His resurrection. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.”