The Mind of God (Part 2)

Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory. None of the rulers of this age understood this, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 

But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” 10 these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 

11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. 13 And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. 14 The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. 15 The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. 16 “For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

–1 Corinthians 2:6-16

Last week, we considered the wisdom of God, and how one can actually take on the mind of Christ. How can a person see the world from God’s perspective? How is it possible for a person to make decisions that are pleasing to God? How can a person decide what is right and what is wrong? Well, Paul explains how, and it has everything to do with the mind of God. Since God is the source of all truth and all wisdom, there is no truth or wisdom outside of God Himself. So it is an ultimate gift of the Lord that through Christ we are able to take on the mind of Jesus. 

In the above passage of Scripture, Paul presents three truths regarding the wisdom of God. The first truth is that God’s wisdom is revealed only to His children. God’s wisdom is veiled to the natural man because he is spiritually blind. Satan blinds the natural man by using his calloused heart. The question then that needs to be answered is this: How does God reveal His wisdom to anyone? 

Well, that leads to the second truth found in the above text. God’s wisdom comes by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. See verses 11-12: “In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.”

I cannot know your thoughts and you cannot know my thoughts. The reason is because our spirits, which include our minds, are not united. Verse 11 states, “For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him?” If there was some way for your spirit, which includes your mind, to invade my spirit, then I would know what you are thinking. I would know your belief system and worldview. In other words, I would know what you know. Just as one man cannot know the mind of another man, so the natural man cannot know the mind of God. That is because God’s Spirit does not indwell the natural man. 

But that all changes when a man is born again. When a man is truly born again, his spirit is invaded by the Spirit of God. This is what Jesus meant when he said in John 14:16-17, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.” John writes in 1 John 3:24, “And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.”

It is the role of the Holy Spirit to bring wisdom and insight and truth to those who were beforehand spiritually blind. This happens at the moment a person believes and receives the Spirit by faith. 2 Corinthians 3:16-17 state, “But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom.” When a person turns to Christ by faith, the Spirit works to lift the veil from one’s spiritual eyes. This enables the natural man, which we all were at one time, to see and understand spiritual matters.

Remember, Nicodemus came to Jesus at night (John 3) his eyes were veiled to the wisdom of God, even though God was standing right there in front of him. That is why Jesus said to him, “I tell you the truth, no one can see (understand) the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” Once a person believes, he is indwelt by the Spirit, and is born again. At that very moment, he is set free from his blindness. Thus, the mystery of God is unveiled to those who are His. In John 9:39 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into the world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.” 

A friend of mine told me that he was in a Bible study for about 3 years, and he said, “I just didn’t get it. I didn’t understand the Bible. I read it, but it just didn’t make sense.” But one summer, a friend shared his faith with him, and he placed his trust in Jesus. At that moment, he was indwelt by the Spirit. From that point on, he says whenever he reads his Bible, he understands it. “It makes sense to me now,” he says. 

Here is the truth: Faith precedes understanding. When you believe, you become one of God’s children, and He gives you spiritual insight which leads to wisdom. 

Do you sense that you really don’t understand the Bible? Do you understand what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ? Are you able to discern spiritual truth from error? Do you have a personal testimony? Have you really placed your trust in Jesus Christ? Do you know for sure that you have been born again? Do you belong to God? Are you one of His children? Evidence of belonging to God is spiritual understanding. That is, when you read the Bible, you understand it, and you can discern truth from error. The natural man cannot do these things. Read verse 14 again: “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

God’s wisdom is revealed only to His children.  God’s wisdom comes by the indwelling Holy Spirit. And next week, you will see how the Spirit uses the Word to convey wisdom. Stay tuned. Amen!