The unregenerate mind is one of futility and darkness (Ephesians 4:17-18). So, what happens to the mind when a person is regenerated by the Holy Spirit? In what ways will his thinking be impacted?
We know that a person who comes to Christ through repentance and faith becomes a new creation:
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
2 Corinthians 5:17
Paul explains in 1 Corinthians how regeneration affects the mind of the Christian. He describes how the natural man (unregenerate) is unable to think spiritually:
But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.
1 Corinthians 2:14
In contrast, Paul explains the difference in how the Christian thinks:
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.
1 Corinthians 2:12-13
But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.
1 Corinthians 2:15-16
The Christian is now able to think spiritually. This is possible because the Holy Spirit now resides in him. In fact, Paul states that we have the mind of Christ. The idea is that since we now have the Holy Spirit residing in us we have the ability to know the thoughts of our Lord. We can learn to think as our Lord thinks.
Now as you continue reading in 1 Corinthians it is immediately obvious that the believers were not thinking spiritually as they should. How can this be? After all, they have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, therefore, the Holy Spirit resides in them. They now have the capacity to think as the Lord thinks, and yet they are not.
In the next several articles we will consider the many responsibilities we have regarding our minds. It is clear that the mind is a battle ground for the Christian. Knowing this, it is essential that we learn how to train our minds to think as our Lord thinks. The Lord has provided all the resources that we need. It is our privilege to utilize these resources.
In lieu of a comments section, I accept and encourage letters to the editor. If you would like to write a letter to the editor, you can do so here.