Your Thoughts Are Affecting Your World
"Death and life are in the power
of the tongue" (Prov. 18:21)
I am sharing a portion of a word with you that the Lord gave me for the congregation at OTC. Our congregation received parts of this message on New Year's Day. To me, one of the most fascinating subjects in the Word is the study of the human mind. Every part of your life, your circumstances and the situations you find yourself in are the fruit of your thinking/your mind. Whatever thoughts are controlling your mind are controlling your life. Your thoughts and mindsets affect cities, churches, marriages, work environments and, of course, your future.
We must first understand there are two Hebrew words used for the word "mind" (Nephesh and Lev). This is important to know for the sake of your progress. In the beginning, Genesis 2:7 tells us that God formed man of the dust, breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living "soul." "Soul" is the word "nephesh," which means man became a breathing creature with a MIND. As I learned from Hebraic scholars over the years, "Nephesh" is a state of innocence without corruption or death and with no concept of sin.
Dr. Doug Wheeler, a Hebraic leader, states in a conceptual writing on the Love of God, that "After the fall of Adam, the soul of man was no longer referred to as 'Nephesh', but 'LEV.'" "LEV" is the other Hebrew word for the mind and heart. Dr. Wheeler also states that "The journey that we call salvation is simply the process of going from a condition of LEV to a condition of NEPHESH." Simply put, now that we have received Jesus as Messiah and have been born again, we are progressively able to return to the state that Adam enjoyed before the fall. Our soul/mind/heart can become NEPHESH and our thoughts can become God's thoughts. Our thoughts can become pure, without mixture. We can daily think like God. As the Word states, "We have the mind of Christ" ( I Co. 2:16).
CHANGING YOUR THOUGHTS CHANGES YOUR WORLD
There are many studies on how many thoughts we think in a day. One interesting study by Jennifer Read Hawthorne reveals that we think anywhere from 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. According to other research, as many as 98 percent of those thoughts are exactly the same as we had the day before. She teaches that 80 percent of our thoughts are negative. We know from the Word of God that we have power to think right thoughts because of the work of the cross. We even have spiritual weaponry to remove wrong thoughts that are poisoning us and every one within our circle of influence.
- "For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds" (2 Cor. 10:4). A stronghold is a place where a particular cause or belief is strongly upheld.
- We have the ability to "pull down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God" (2 Cor. 10:5).
- We can bring into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ" (2 Cor. 10:5).
- We are punishing disobedient thoughts, and our obedience becomes a weapon of warfare against the enemies' strategies. (2 Cor. 10:6).
THOUGHTS/WORD CAN KILL OR BRING LIFE
Many of us have heard of the study of Dr. Masaru Emoto revealing how our thoughts affect our lives and life in general. "Dr. Emoto photographed frozen samples of polluted water before and after exposure to various kinds of music, ranging from heavy metal to Beethoven. He also taped written words to containers of distilled water such as, "You make me sick; I will kill you" and "Love and appreciation." The energies from beautiful words and thoughts, even if only written, created exquisite microscopic snowflake-like patterns in the water. The less uplifting words created images of disorder that even appeared toxic. Even a simple "thank you" produced a lovely crystalline pattern." 1 This is a practical example and even a proof to us that God's Word is true, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it shall eat the fruit of it" (Prov. 18:21).
The words we speak originate in the heart/mind. The mind is the seat of all spiritual and carnal conflict. For some of you, you may be being driven by a repeated behavior from which you seemingly cannot break free. The first step to freedom is to remember, there is a root cause for this behavior located in your belief system. I sincerely believe that God wants to get to the core of all our faulty beliefs about our own selves and set us free to walk in our true identity. The enemies strategy is to continue to poison our thoughts, lie to us and rob us of our true identity. We all know that there are difficult consequences for repeatedly thinking wrong thoughts.
OUR THOUGHTS ARE AFFECTING EVERYONE ELSE
To prove how serious our thoughts are and how much they affect the family of God, the church, the city, pastors and leaders, we must study the whole chapter of Joshua 7. God's heart has always been for the family/body as a whole. This concept of family and community is very Hebraic. "But the children of Israel committed a sin in the cursed thing" (Jos. 7:1). " For Achan..of the tribe of Judah, took of the thing which was cursed. And the anger of Jehovah was kindled against the sons of Israel" (Jos. 7:1). Though only one man sinned, God said the children of Israel sinned. The commentator Albert Barnes states this succinctly: "The 'trespass' was the act of one man, yet was imputed to all Israel, who also shared in the penalty of it" (Jos. 7:5). This is not to be explained as though ALL the people participated in the covetousness which led to Achan's sin (Jos 7:21). "The nation as a whole was in covenant with God, and was treated by Him not merely as a number of individuals living together for their own purposes under common institutions, but as a divinely-constituted organic whole. Hence, the sin of Achan defiled the other members of the community as well as himself and robbed the people collectively of holiness before God and acceptableness with Him. Israel had in the person of Achan broken the covenant (Jos. 7:11); God therefore would no more drive out the Canaanites before them."
My heart in sharing this with you is to show you that one wrong thought within our core can affect the progress of other peoples' lives. We must trace the core thought causing the perpetuation of our faulty behavior. This can only be effectively done with the help of the Holy Spirit. Let's look at the story of Achan while we concentrate on our own thought processes. Joshua had to find out what caused the defeat in the Battle of Ai, when previously they had had a major victory in Jericho. It was, in fact, ONE man's faulty thinking. Once the thought was traced to the root, it was discovered that Achan had coveted exactly what God had said not to touch. Achan's covetousness began with a thought. The Lord told Joshua that Achan had tried to hide his sin and that he had pretended falsely (Jos. 7:11). The fruit of this thought cost him his life. "Joshua said to Achan, My son, I pray you, give glory to Jehovah, the God of Israel, and make confession to Him. And tell me now what you have done. Do not hide it from me. And Achan answered Joshua and said, 'Indeed, I have sinned against Jehovah, the God of Israel and this I have done. When I saw among the spoil a goodly robe of Shinar, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, I COVETED them and took them. And behold, they are hidden in the earth in the middle of my tent, and the silver under it'" (Jos. 7:19-21). As sobering a notion as it is, our thoughts, which may be well hidden in our hearts, are affecting the entire community of God for good or evil.
We, as the Body of Christ, have power to change our thoughts and change the world in which we live. This year is the year to truly walk closely with the LORD and learn to effectively use the weapons of spiritual warfare He has given us. We first start thinking God's thoughts by yielding ourselves to His Spirit (Rom. 6:13). We allow this transformation to begin by renewing our MINDS with the daily washing of the Word of God (Rom. 12:2).
Though this is only a brief study, please remember that through Jesus the last/second Adam, we can return to the garden and walk as Adam walked in a state of NEPHESH.
Blessings and honor,