God-Centered Mind

Consider this line of reasoning:

1 Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion,

If I can get encouragement in my suffering for Christ (see chapter 1) and you can have the same encouragement that what he offers is joy inexpressible even in the face of negative circumstance, if we can have that encouragement, if we can have the consolation of our Saviors love, if you have a heart like Paul’s and compassion (on his situation? suffering), then…

2 Make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

Then, be of the same mind. How could they say no. But clearly this is very difficult. I’m not sure that the average fundamentalist church has two people that have ever been of the same mind about anything other than to criticize.

3 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;
4 Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,
6 Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped,
7 But emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.
8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

Now it says earlier, “intent on one purpose.” What is that purpose? What should we be of one mind to? A Christlike mind is one that is God-centered. It humbly accepts it’s call to obedience and loves the purposes of God. This is a battle of the mind. Thoughts and arguments are the ammunition. We seek to justify our selfishness and argue for our own interests. But if we have the blessings of Christ, then Paul urges that we make our minds intention God-focused and not self-focused.

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