One of the keys for successfully overcoming the devil is winning the battle of the mind. Satan will very often seek to target us is in our thoughts. It is in the mind that his seeds are planted; seeds of doubt, lust, fear, anger, bitterness, or other assaults and temptations.
If we can win the battle of the mind, the seeds that the enemy plants will not be able to take root in our attitudes, actions, or words. Below are two keys for having victory in our thought-life.
1. Renewing the Mind
Paul states that a process of transformation occurs as our minds are renewed: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). Renewing the mind is a process of replacing old and unhealthy mindsets with Christ-centered ones.
We must actively allow the truth of God’s Word to replace the lies of the enemy. As we let go of old mindsets, and continually let the mind of Christ take root in us, the battle of the mind becomes one of victory instead of defeat.
2. Taking thoughts Captive
We cannot always control the thoughts that enter our mind, but we can take dominion over those thoughts. Consider Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 10:4-5:
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.”
We have spiritual weapons for the spiritual warfare that we are in. But notice that we must bring “every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” Many believers have a mentality that they are the victim of whatever thought patterns come into their head. For example, a thought of fear or anxiety comes into their mind, and they let it continue until they are paralyzed by fear.
Instead, once a thought comes into the mind, we are to take it captive and make it obey Christ. We must take dominion over our mind, not allowing any thoughts remain that are not in line with God’s truth.
Yes, the battle of the mind is real. But the Lord has given us weapons and strategies to be victorious. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in renewing your mind, and show you how to take thoughts captive. With God’s help, we will be victorious in our minds and this will overflow into our decisions, words, and attitudes.
I know exactly what you mean, Jake. It’s the story of my life about which my book is written, “God’s Healing Hope: Breaking the Strongholds of Wrong Thinking.” I continually struggle with my thoughts, but I do know what is going on and how to counteract it. We CAN take control of our thoughts. Thanks for this article.
Thanks for the comment John. Being proactive in taking control over our thoughts is a huge part of the victory. I’m glad you’re sharing your insights into this in our book!
Well put. If I know something comes into my mind that isn’t of me, I simply refuse it, unless it’s from God. I think a lot of times these demonic entities want us to feel like we thought something then feel ashamed for it, when it was from demonic influence. I think it always comes back to resisting the devil and making him flee then meditating on our Lord. God bless.
I agree Joel, the enemy loves to work behind the scenes, planting thoughts and ideas without being recognized.
I have been a victim of his efforts to mess with my thinking for way too long. I am quick to recognize when the enemy dumps his physical ailments on me, but am not as confident or experienced (yet) at recognizing his efforts in the mental area. I’ve found myself all too eager to believe his accusations. Sometimes I still have a hard time believing that it is possible for him to do that and that it really isn’t MY thought at all. It guess it is just a matter of REALLY believing that what God says, He means, and I can apply it to me.
So important to know this! One of my former pastors once put it like this: thoughts are like airplanes circling in our mind, looking for permission to land, but it’s up to us which thoughts we give permission to become our own…
Thanks for the great message!