Mind Not High Things

Mind Not High Things

The Mind of Christ

Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

The Mind of Christ
The Humility of Christ
The Integrity of Christ 
Introduction

The Bible teaches us that there is a transformative work being done within us, changing us daily to the image of Christ.

Paul speaks to it saying, in Romans 8:29

For whom he did foreknow he also did predestinate to be confirmed to the image of Christ

He tells us in chapter 13 

put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ and make not provision for the flesh” 

(v14)

Paul speaks of this change within us, a change that will represent the image of Christ;

And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. (1 Cor 15:49)

Turn to 2 Corinthians 3:18

But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

And just in case you think this is limited to a spiritual makeup, turn to Philippians 3:20

For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: 21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.

This is the ongoing work of the Lord in each of those who know him, each and every person who is born again. You are to be changed, to be transformed and all through the Bible there is clearly presented that this work is also OUR RESPONSIBILITY.

There is no THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT escape clause in the scriptures, and we see no such idea here in Romans 12.

Paul desires simply that we should have 

The Mind of Christ
The Humility of Christ
The Integrity of Christ 

As he commands that we Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

The Mind of Christ

16 Be of the same mind one toward another

The most evident aspect of the mind of Christ is that demonstrated one toward another. 

Paul writes that we are to “be of the same mind one toward another”.

Beloved this is unity. 

That we differ in opinion on matters concerning the truth should never be the case.

That we should differ on what the Bible teaches should never be the case, we are to be of “the same mind”.

We so often think, in this relativistic, pluralist world that it is natural for our minds to differ one from another and yet it is abundantly clear in the passage before us that this is not the way it should be.

We must be agreed not agree to disagree.

Does that mean one must be forced to agree even though they don’t agree? That is not what the passage tells us. 

Then how is that possible?

Let’s first agree that the passage commands the same mind and we will answer as we go.

Consider:

How can we live in love and hope and joy together if we are of diverse minds toward one another?

Can two walk together, except they be agreed? (Amos 3:3)

If there is expected to be one group of people more united than any in the world, it should be those who are the body of Christ. But what do we see practically from the beginning?

In 1 Cor 1:12-13 Paul writes;

12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?

Does Paul give any indication that this is how it should be?

If Christ is not divided, should Christians be?

Beloved when we as Christians differ one with another, how are we witnessing the truth of Christ? On the contrary, we blaspheme God and Christ and give false evidence that there is division in the body of Christ, this never ought to be.

We will answer the ‘How’ question in just a moment, but first consider the biblical and logical truth of it? 

Just as God and Christ and the Holy Ghost are one, so are we to be toward one another according to Christ, Turn forward to Romans 15:5

Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

When we are of opposing opinion, we honour ourselves and not Christ! Christ is not in disunity with the father, he is of one mind and heart and joy abounds in this relationship.

  • Does not joy abound when you meet a brother or sister in the Lord and you are both of one mind?
  • Tell me, is there peace and joy in the home when the husband and the wife are of one mind?
  • Is there peace and joy in our children when they are of one mind?
  • Would there not be peace and joy in the world if the world was all of one mind “according to Christ Jesus”? 

We need to be careful here because though this is the overt testimony of the world, this is NOT their end nor true goal.

We are united by the spirit of God, but the only unity that the world will have is unity at the point of a gun.

Nevertheless to be of one mind, is the ONLY way to live in peace.

2 Cor 13:11

Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.

That’s great pastor, but how?

How do we live in peace if we cannot agree on a matter?

Beloved the first thing that we are to learn is to be as children; no not Childish but “child like”.

The Childish person wants it all his or her own way, they see no authority that can override what they want to do, there is no compromise there is no desire to be of one mind, there is only pride and selfishness. They are not first governed by the scriptures, but governed by their own desires based on nothing other than wilful, selfish ignorance.

I can’t tell you how often I have spoken to people, clearly bring out the simplicity of what the Bible teaches both directly and by implication, but pride blinds them. They don’t want a final authority if that is a challenge to their own authority.

Sadly, I see it in Christians these days almost as much as I do in the lost.

But having the Mind of Christ requires humility.

Turn to Philippians 2:2-3

Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves

The perfect Segway to the next point, the only way you, dear Christian, can have the Mind of Christ is to have The Humility of Christ.

The Only way we can be ‘of the same mind one toward another’ is to humble ourselves to the plain teaching of the Bible.

If you spend more time listening to sermons than reading the Bible, YOU WILL NEVER GET THERE!

There are Christians who might listen to sermons all day, but they will simply NEVER FIND the Humility to have the Mind of Christ.

Turn off the idiot box and read your Bible.

Turn off the podcasts and read your bible.

Get rid of all your other reading material for one year and just read your Bible.

And pray.

Just a note on the preachers many listen to every day; if those you are listening to do not make you feel ashamed at not perfectly living for Christ, switch them off, you won’t grow.

They might be helpful for information, but that is not what develops the Mind of Christ.

If their preaching does not humble you enough to see how wretched you are before a Holy God and make you fall on your knees saying;

God be merciful to me, a sinner” (Luke 18:13), you will find yourself soon separating from those who do.

It is God who draws brethren together, but only those who are not puffed up in their own minds. We are to be Childlike, not childish.

The Humility of Christ

16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate.

Mind not high things” he writes;

It’s not the loftiness of the mind but the lowliness of the heart that makes the difference.

You have heard the old saying that people don’t care how much you know, but desire to know how much you care. 

A mind filled with thousands of pieces of useless information will not save a single soul, but a heart filled with compassion and love and pity for the state of the lost will save a soul from hell.

We have already given consideration to the loving care that ‘distributes to the necessity of Saints’, the selfless love that ‘blesses them which persecute you’, that ‘weeps with them who weep’ and there is no inconsistency to follow on with the Humility of Christ to “mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate”.

It’s interesting to see this sort of humility play out in the scriptures, James spoke to have no regard for the man with the gay clothing, to be as Christ without respect of persons;

Turn there with me, James 2:1-7

My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool: Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats? Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?

It’s interesting to see that it is not the status of the purse but the state of the heart that is of value when we emulate the Humility of Christ.

Jesus is recorded in Luke 14:8-11 saying;

When thou art bidden of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him; And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room. 10 But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee. 11 For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Beloved we are not to mind high things, but instead we are to re-present the Humility of Christ and condescend to me of low estate.

I am personally sickened by the popes of this world, the bishops and archbishops, the Kenneth Copelands, Creflow Dollars, Benny Hinns, Joel Osteens of this perverse upside-down world; 

These demonstrate all the “High Things” Paul teaches not to mind, they build up the Covetous lusts of their disciples, but the Humility of Christ is the last thing evident in these purveyors of perverse pride.

Rather than Condescend to men of Low Estate as Christ did, these covetous malcontents run greedily after the error of Balaam.

Turn to the passage in the Bible that describes these men in 2 Peter 2:12-22 (before the Epistles of John, and after James and 1 Peter);

12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; 13 And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; 14 Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: 15 Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; 16 But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. 17 These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. 18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. 19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. 20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

Beloved, this is the risk of the soul that minds high things, either you will become a deceiver enticing those who love the wages of unrighteousness, or you will become a follower of them, turning to your own vomit again.

But consider for yourself the Humility of Christ;

Turn to Philippians 2:1-11

1 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

How can it be that God himself would be willing to condescend to men of low estate, but you and I might not?

How far was God willing to Humble himself from a height that none can be higher, yet we wont get off our pedestal for men of low estate?

Notice how perfectly this passage meets with our own. There is no contradiction in the text, on the contrary, it wonderfully expounds what is already before our eyes.

We are to re-present the Humility of Christ beloved, and to humble ourselves for ALL people. Not to glorify ourselves, not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought to think.

Jesus had the right to do it, but didn’t; we have no such right, yet do it often.

The Integrity of Christ 

16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

There is a level of self-delusion that follows pride. A level of thinking higher of yourself than you ought to think, but more than this, a desire that others would think more of you that is fitting.

We had just read in Romans 12:3

For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

There needs to be integrity in every aspect of our lives, but most importantly not to “be wise in our own conceits

In other words, not to be puffed up with a false knowledge, either of ourselves or of the circumstances that surround us. We are living in a day and age when we think we truly know what is going on, BUT WE DON’T and we run the risk of being puffed up thinking we know the truth of a matter during a time where the sign of deception around the world is coming to light.

Paul wrote of this self conceit when he addressed us in Romans 11 concerning the Jews yes?

Turn there with me;

Romans 11:25

For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.

Why did Paul address the Romans in this way? Because they falsely believed that God was through with Israel. 

He addresses the matter at the very beginning of the Chapter; “I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid”.

Yet, Wise in their own conceits, they were deceived to believe a lie.

Beloved, this is happening today is tremendous measure but for some reason conservative Christians believe the false news is ONLY occurring from ONE Direction, so they pass on a propagate information that they themselves have not checked.

Beloved, I titled this portion The Integrity of Christ because we are to never be self conceited, but are to think soberly and Godly in Christ. We are to have the Integrity of Christ and not to be wise in our own conceits, but to do so requires HUMILITY and FEAR.

Humility to not think of ourselves more highly than we ought to think, a fear to not blaspheme the name of Christ by both believing and propagating error.

I want to give one example of being Wise in our own conceits, and how dangerous it is for others.

In 2016, a conservative driven campaign became serious news when a man was arrested for a shooting incident in a Washington Pizza Shop on December 4th, in what became known simply as “PizzaGate”.

The theory that was propagated by a leaked email told of a Child trafficking ring run by the Clinton foundation, included both pedophilia as well as Child Sacrifice by Satanists.

A man went to the store with a rifle to investigate whether this Child friendly Pizza store called ‘Comet Ping Pong’ were housing Children in its basement.

The most tragic portion is that this one unproven conspiracy has painted ALL Conservative concerns about that which is evident in the world as “Conspiracy Theorists”, and over looks the massive deceptions of the left wing media.

Beloved, when you are tarnished with just one case of false information, your integrity is shot. But sadly, thanks to the efforts of Q-Anon and the mix of both provable and UNPROVABLE information that stems from them, division and doubt rises around the world until a call for controlled information comes for us all.

What makes this worse is those who are “wise in their own conceits”, desiring to be the first to tell of some new thing they had just seen on Youtube or other media without first taking the five minutes to see if the information is remotely credible.

The Integrity of Christ is maligned every time we deal with stolen goods, every time we pass on information that either makes no difference to anyone, or that we have not checked for ourselves to be true with ALL DILIGENCE.

Part of my work as a Pastor is to check original sources of material before adding it to our Newsletter or writing about it or preaching it. I don’t do it perfectly, but I do make sure I attend to it as thoroughly as I can, why? Because I don’t want the Integrity of Jesus Christ brought into question as a Christian. That is how serious this is!

In the Middle of last year I received an email from a conservative pastor, a man of great reputation in Independent Baptist circles.

He sent what seemed to be a testimony of a doctor in Italy who had been overwhelmed with the dying and diseased he was treating through this virus, but what struck him were the Christians and how they were so different respecting death, that, supposedly he came to Christ himself.

As I read the letter supposedly written by this Italian Doctor, there were items in it that did not fit, most specifically how he had already adopted ‘Christianease’, ie the language of a Christian long in the faith.

So I sent the pastor an email asking if he checked the source of the information (Some of you think I pick only on you for this stuff). He did not respond so I thought id do some checking.

It turns out it was a letter posted on a persons Facebook page who quotes as his source another writer, but when I went to that writer, he quotes as his source this same guys Facebook page. 

The believing and passing on of false information is the modern day version of self-conceit that makes a person Wise in their own eyes. 

Let me quote from a old example evidencing men Wise in Their Own Conceits

The Epistle Dedicatory KJV

So that if, on the one side, we shall be traduced by Popish persons at home or abroad, who therefore will malign us, because we are poor instruments to make God’s holy Truth to be yet more and more known unto the people, whom they desire still to keep in ignorance and darkness; or if, on the other side, we shall be maligned by self-conceited brethren, who run their own ways, and give liking unto nothing but what is framed by themselves, and hammered on their anvil; we may rest secure, supported within by the truth and innocency of a good conscience, having walked the ways of simplicity and integrity, as before the Lord;[1]

Beloved, each piece of evidence of those wise in their own eyes that I have given, that of the ancients in the time of Paul, that four hundred years ago in the time of the KJV, and that in modern times, are all Christian and conservative deceptions believed and passed on.

Where is the purposeful dedication to the integrity of Christ?

Beloved, it does not take long to slip into self conceit! Just one oversight and you are there, just ignoring the contradiction ONE TIME and there is a slippery slope into becoming “Wise in thine own conceits”.

Wednesday night Bible study we looked at Chapter 2 of the book of Ephesians I went on a wonderful study on the nature of a given item in the text, or at least I thought it was in the text.

I was so exited to teach and expound on it, and what I taught was true, but as I concluded that verse two words popped out at me to realise that it was not true for this passage.

Two words gave me the context and I had to stop.

Why did I stop? Why didn’t I just ignore it and move on? I dedicated a lot of passion to teaching about the verse and what I taught was true, so why didn’t I just let it go, why would I risk embarrassing myself to correct it?

Because I stood right on the precipice of self-deception and wise in my own conceit, I could either slip down that slope or reject the opportunity to malign the INTEGRITY OF CHRIST.

PS: I actually made TWO mistakes that night….youll need to come to Bible Study to learn what the second one was.

16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

Close:

Above all things this is a passage that teaches of HUMILITY and it is the willingness to humble ourselves that have us be of the same mind one toward another, to not mind high things and condescend to men of low estate, and especially to not be wise in our own conceits.

It is a picture of Christ, 

It demonstrates;

The Mind of Christ
The Humility of Christ
The Integrity of Christ 

And it is this Humility we learn when we compare ourselves to Christ our Lord and Saviour.

We learn about him in the Bible, and we learn about ourselves in Prayer.


[1] The Cambridge Paragraph Bible: of the Authorized English Version. (1873). (p. cxix). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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