Biblical Counseling Manual

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Biblical Counseling Manual
Adam Pulaski
Copyright © 2004 Adam Pulaski, Steve Lihn
Dedication
This book is dedicated to Ruth and Amy.
Table of Contents
Foreword
How to View and Use This Manual
I. Overview
1. Counseling Objectives
1.1. Introduction
1.2. Preconditions in Biblical Counseling
1.3. Foundations of Biblical Counseling/Discipleship
1.4. Essential Considerations
1.5. Summary
2. Biblical Psychology: Approach to Problems
2.1. Diagnosis
2.2. Approach to Solutions
3. Counseling Process
3.1. Problem Area
3.2. Solution
3.3. Counseling Tools
II.a. Basic Study: Orientation To Biblical Counseling
4. Orientation To Biblical Counseling Mini Series
4.1. God's Way vs Man's Way
4.2. Prerequisites to Biblical Change
4.3. Why There is Hope
4.4. Effecting Biblical Change
4.5. Dealing with Self
4.6. Anger and Bitterness
4.7. Depression
4.8. Fear and Worry
5. Healing The Soul Series
5.1. Healing Presence
5.2. Transforming the Natural Self
5.3. What Makes a Man a Man
5.4. Needs of Man
5.5. Healing of the Soul
5.6. Mind and Will
5.7. Meditation Process
5.8. Steps to a Liberated Will
5.9. Healing Prayer for the Mind
5.10. Perfectionism
5.11. Schizophrenia (Double-Mindedness)
5.12. Transpersonal Psychology
5.13. Healed from Fear
5.14. Rejections
5.15. Attitude and Behavior
II.b. Basic Study: Biblical Discipleship
6. Christian Growth Series, Part A
6.1. Establish a Foundation for Biblical Discipleship
6.2. Explore Problems and Develop Sensitivity to Sin
6.3. Establish Biblical Structure for Change
6.4. Develop the Practice of Righteousness
6.5. Establish Pattern of the Mature Disciple
7. Christian Growth Series, Part B
7.1. Characteristics of a Christian
7.2. Change is a Two-Factored Process
7.3. Turning from Evil
7.4. Physical Challenges
7.5. Commitment is Doing the Word
7.6. Lifestyle Change is Evidence of New Birth
7.7. Worried, Confused, Troubled
7.8. The Pure Self Activated
7.9. Holding Self Accountable
7.10. Only God Can Change Us And Others
7.11. Judging Yourself
7.12. True Dying
7.13. True Patience
7.14. Mind Control
8. Soul Dynamics Series, Part A
8.1. Living Soul
8.2. Sins of the Flesh/Self of the Flesh
8.3. Dividing of Spirit and Soul
8.4. Union with Christ
9. Soul Dynamics Series, Part B
9.1. Cleansing and Purifying the Soul
9.2. Sin, Self, Suffering
9.3. The Spirituality of Abundance
10. Fruit of The Spirit Series
10.1. Love
10.2. Joy
10.3. Peace
10.4. Longsuffering
10.5. Kindness/Goodness
10.6. Faithfulness
10.7. Meekness/Gentleness
10.8. Self-Control
11. Supernatural Life Series
11.1. Mind
11.2. Abiding
11.3. Virtue of Love
11.4. Will of God
11.5. That Which is Perfect
11.6. Listening to God
11.7. Center of the Soul
11.8. Inordinate Desires
11.9. Union with God
11.10. Dreams/Visions
II.c. Basic Study: Strengthening Your Marriage
12. Strengthening Your Marriage Series
12.1. Marriage - God's Plan to Establish His Kingdom on Earth
12.2. Principle of Authority
12.3. Submission - Act of Bringing Forth Wholeness
12.4. The Husband's Role in Submitting
12.5. The Bride's Privilege
12.6. One Flesh Marriage
12.7. Parent/Child Relationships
12.8. Children Submitting to Parents
12.9. God's Standard
12.10. Upbringing Goals for Children (and Adults)
12.11. Maintaining Good Marital Communications
12.12. Maximum Husband and Father
12.13. Fulfilled and Fulfilling Wife and Mother
12.14. Tough Love
12.15. Marriage Partnership
III.a. Life Study: Guilt And Shame
13. Self-Acceptance Series
13.1. Self Hatred
13.2. Self-Acceptance
13.3. Healing of Memories: Forgiveness of Sin
13.4. Bind, Loose, Cast-out
13.5. Barriers to Wholeness - Failure to Receive Forgiveness
13.6. Healing Presence
13.7. Healing Presence (2)
13.8. Creative Thinking
13.9. Mental Obsessions
13.10. Breaking Physical Habits
14. Overcoming Lust Series
14.1. Assaults Against the Soul
14.2. Lusts, Desires - Inordinate
14.3. Feelings/Faith
14.4. Bondages
14.5. Purpose vs. Need
14.6. Purpose or Need
14.7. Eating Disorders
14.8. Covenant Foundations
14.9. God's Motivational Plan
14.10. Out of Control
14.11. Sexually Abused
14.12. Sexual Abuse 2
14.13. Life-Dominating Sins
III.b. Life Study: Anger And Bitterness
15. Bold Love Series
15.1. Forgiving Love
15.2. Vicious Thoughts
15.3. Reconciliation
15.4. Conquering Evil
15.5. Doing Good to Your Enemies
15.6. Loving a Fool
16. Armor Of God Series
16.1. Injustices
16.2. Revoking Revenge
16.3. Responding to Difficult People
16.4. Assaults of Shame, Rage, Hatred
16.5. Forgiving Enemies
III.c. Life Study: Fear
17. Freedom From Fear Series
17.1. Origins of Fear
17.2. Presence of Fear or Faith
17.3. Learning Truth Talk
17.4. Applying the Truth
17.5. Out of Control (World of Non-Existence)
A. Forms And Worksheets
A.1. Bible Study And Application Format
A.2. Think And Do List
A.3. Love Is An Action
A.4. Victory Over Sin Worksheet
A.5. Dying To Self
A.6. Problem Solving Worksheet
A.7. Problem/Solution Worksheet
A.8. Freedom From Anxiety
A.9. Contingency Plan
A.10. Change Is a Two-Factored Process
A.11. Scheduling Worksheet
A.12. Anchor Posts
B. Bible Resources
B.1. Bible Memory Verses
C. Internet Resources
C.1. Internet Links
Bibliography
Index
List of Tables
A.1. BSAF - Instruction
A.2. BSAF - Example I
A.3. BSAF - Example II
A.4. BSAF - Blank Form
A.5. Think and Do List
A.6. VOSWS - Instruction
A.7. VOSWS - Example
A.8. VOSWS - Blank Form
A.9. Problem Solving Worksheet
A.10. Problem/Solution Worksheet I, Part A: Analysis
A.11. Problem/Solution Worksheet I, Part B: Plans
A.12. Problem/Solution Worksheet II, Part A: Handout
A.13. Problem/Solution Worksheet II, Part B: Homework
A.14. Final Session Review
A.15. Freedom From Anxiety Worksheet
A.16. Scripture For Put-off/Put-on
A.17. Put-off/Put-on Worksheet
A.18. Scheduling Worksheet
A.19. Anchor Posts
Foreword
In 1978, I began seeking biblical resources to help work out some personal problems.
This I found in a Christian bookstore where I picked up a book titled "Competent to
Counsel" by Jay E. Adams, which opened my eyes to the possibility that I could with
confidence counsel myself as well as help others. This led me in June of 1979 to the
Biblical Counseling Foundation located then in Arlington, Virginia, where I spent three
plus years training as a Biblical Counselor.
My training continued as I began teaching a biblical counseling course to various groups
in 1980 through 1984. From 1984 until the present (2004) I continue in the capacity of
teaching and counseling at a local church in Silver Spring, Maryland.
During this period of time, I was led to counsel in numerous and varied problem areas.
From experiences gained, I accumulated a repository of handouts and worksheets to
facilitate and keep the counseling session biblical, to maintain a focus on God’s word, and
to provide resource material to assist disciples to counsel themselves.
This is what appealed to Steve. After attending my 22-week course in 1996, Steve Lihn,
who was in the final stages of obtaining his doctorate degree from University of Maryland,
suggested that this program should be put on the internet. We used the acronym "BCOL"
for this undertaking, which stands for Biblical Counseling On-Line. It took the summer of
1997 through 1998 to accomplish this feat. This cyberspace ministry proved to be very
beneficial to the global body of Christ. It has recorded thousands upon thousands of hits
and many requests for information from all over the world.
This prompted us to transform the online materials into a book form, available both
electronically and in paper print, so that the greater christian community can benefit.
Since the winter of 2002, Steve and I worked together to accomplish this conversion.
We trust that our findings will provide the insights and the tools necessary to help one
effectively and succesfully become an overcomer in this battle zone called life.
Many are tossed about by the winds of the world’s philosophies and arguments. But our
battle is to be led by the Holy Spirit in applying God’s wisdom and truth to the challenges
of life. The Bible provides all the instruction that one needs on how to live this victorious
life in the midst of obstacles, of temptations, of trials and varied difficulties ( Rom. 8:4-9
). Thus, anyone born of the will of God, who has received Christ as Lord and Savior, is
equipped and qualified to engage in this battle of wisdom ( 2 Tim. 3:16-17 ).
Our Lord directs us in Matthew 28:18-20 to make disciples: to baptize them in the
name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and to teach them to observe and
live by God’s commandments. This is the responsibility of the body of Christ who are to
be equipped to accomplish this mission. 1 Cor. 1:30 ; 1 Cor. 3:16 ; Rom. 15:14 ; Gal.
6:1-5 ; Eph. 1:17-23 and Col. 1:10-12 confirm that wisdom resides within us, that we
are to grow in this wisdom, and to inform, instruct and restore others to the light of His
word.
Accordingly, the purpose of this manual is to provide a basic approach, and the tools to
establish a foundation to assist one to deal progressively with his own problems from a
biblical perspective. And then to teach and counsel others to live by God’s
commandments; thereby, fulfilling our Lord’s directive to make disciples of all nations (
Matt. 7:5 ; Matt. 22:36-40 ).
Adam Pulaski. March, 2004.
Overview
Overview of biblical counseling principle and methodology.
Table of Contents
1. Counseling Objectives
1.1. Introduction
1.2. Preconditions in Biblical Counseling
1.3. Foundations of Biblical Counseling/Discipleship
1.4. Essential Considerations
1.5. Summary
2. Biblical Psychology: Approach to Problems
2.1. Diagnosis
2.2. Approach to Solutions
3. Counseling Process
3.1. Problem Area
3.2. Solution
3.3. Counseling Tools
Chapter 1. Counseling Objectives
Table of Contents
1.1. Introduction
1.2. Preconditions in Biblical Counseling
1.3. Foundations of Biblical Counseling/Discipleship
1.4. Essential Considerations
1.5. Summary
1.1. Introduction
This manual is designed to teach you to approach circumstances, relationships, and
situations of life from a biblical perspective and to experience victory and contentment in
all of life's trials, testings and problems.
The essence of who we are is made of events and how we responded to those events. We
are the sum of what we encountered in life and our reactions to those experiences.
Memory , the recalling of the past, is our spirit gazing at the substance of our soul
which, at times, directs our life rather than the word of God. Thus, most of our problems
are due to ignorance on how to biblically respond to life, and to use life's adversities to
our advantage as opportunities to grow and mature in Christ ( Rom. 8:28-29 ).
These spiritual resources are available to those who are born by the will of God. Having
accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, the believer is enabled by Holy Spirit to face
life, to counter adversities, to grow in grace and strength, and to live in peace and joy (
John 1:12 ; John 3:16 ).
The issue is the self , the soul of man. The self created by God, belongs to God. The self,
tempted to be god without God, became enslaved by Satan ( Gen. 1:26-27 ; Gen. 2:7 ;
Gen. 3:1-6 ).
The living soul is what we will deal with...
• to set it free
• to again be completely dependent upon God
• to follow Him and to glorify Him.
Phil. 2:12-13 ; 2 Pet. 1:3-11 tell us to work out our salvation daily being conformed to
the image of Christ. The key is daily , being God-conscious twenty-four hours a day.
Either we are thinking God's thoughts or we defer to lower level thinking. There is no
gray area. You are either for God or you are against Him ( Matt. 12:30 ).
1.2. Preconditions in Biblical Counseling
Throughout the counseling session, the goal is to change the counselee's focus on the
false self, a self of lusts and appetites to a realization of his true self, a self in union with
Christ. This is accomplished by a continuous process of judging self, one's own sins, not
others; changing focus from self needs to one of accomplishing God's purposes for his life
by loving Him and others foremost; daily dying to the old man and putting-on the new
man; and of maintaining a state of forgiving and reconciling throughout life. The ultimate
goal now is for the counselee to be a disciple, to help and restore others to this same
position whereas they, in turn, will do likewise.
False Self
All of life in the natural sphere conditions and inclines one to deal with life's experiences
from a horizontal perspective, that is, to react from a self-protective and self-defensive
posture, to insure one's survival in a competitive and fallen environment. This
pronounced self-focus degenerates, in time, until life is characterized by guilt and shame,
anger and bitterness, and fear: a life devoid of the Presence of God. Life becomes filled
with the presence of self attempting to meet the needs of self by a fruitless search for the
meaning of life in a world system energized by evil.
A person in this condition seeks relief by the fashions and customs of this world, by the
lusts and appetites of the flesh, by justifying his own behavior, by placing the blame on
others, by seeking peace and joy in things, people, possessions. Emphasis is on what
others have done or failed to do, and the remedy is to change others and the
circumstances of life by whatever human (fallen) resources are available. The focus is on
self, to save self and to use others, and the things of the world to find the meaning of
life.
True Self
All that was done to us, what we have done to others, the failures, the ills, the violations
of our persons, the brutalities, the perversions of life, rejections, death of loved ones,
tragedies, loneliness, abandonment, Jesus paid the penalty for all these sins. and
provided the means to handle the tragedies of life. We do not need to deal with these
violations , and the tragedies of life on our own. Christ is in us to work out our salvation
daily ( Phil. 2:12-13 ; Gal. 2:20 ; 2 Cor. 5:17 ; 2 Cor. 5:21 ; Rom. 6:3-6 ; Ezek.
18:20 ).
Being in Christ, we are new creatures and we are to deal with life now from a biblical
perspective. Our problem is not with Satan, not with people, not with the circumstances
of life, but our problem lies in our relationship with God. Our focus is to change from a
concern about self, to a concern about God's glory and that is accomplished by our godly
responses to others and to life in general ( Rom. 5:17 ; 2 Cor. 5:21 ).
1.3. Foundations of Biblical
Counseling/Discipleship
Self Knowledge
When born from above, the human spirit is regenerated, and united with the Spirit of
God. However, the soul remains the same as conditioned by life's experiences. Before we
can advance in our spiritual life, we can advance only if we come to know ourselves as we
really are, that is, as we appear before the almighty God. What we have done to others,
what others have done to us - our sinful interpretations of and reactions to these and
other issues - are to be dealt with from a biblical perspective.
Deliverance
One cannot go back and reform the 'old man', and redo what was said and done. But as a
new creation, citizens of heaven, we look at life now from the spiritual realm to the
earthly. Our primary concern is in our relationship with God the Father, nothing else
should matter. As the Father loves the Son, the Son loves the Father. We have been
adopted as sons. As we are in Jesus, the sonship, we are to love as Jesus loves the
Father. Participating and sharing in the triune love, our loving action becomes the means
of our deliverance ( John 15:10 ; John 17:20-24,26 ).
The answer to healing the soul lies here: loving the Father by obeying His commands (
John 14:21 ). Accordingly, unresolved actions of the past are to be dealt with in the
present, and in the spirit of repentance and reconciliation.
Sanctification
Sanctification is the work of the Holy Spirit; only He knows the heart and the motives. As
a counselor, our basic function is to lead and encourage the disciple to rely on the bible
as the sole authority and rule for living, and to hear from and to know the Person of the
Holy Spirit ( John 16:13 ). To accomplish this, our aim is to work with the disciple to
establish a standard from which he can work out his salvation.
To this effect, the following guidelines are provided to assist the disciple to work and
abide within a biblical framework.
Loving God by Obeying His Commands
Our problem is not with Satan, not with people, not with circumstances.
But our problem lies in our relationship with God the Father. No matter
what one's life is at the moment, we must hold ourselves accountable. We
cannot blame others or the circumstances of life. People and
circumstances are not to direct our lives ( Ezek. 18:20 ). Reacting to life
without reference to God's word, one becomes his own god. God is to be
God. Allow God to have full command of your life. He will use the trials
and tests of life to perfect you and conform you to His Son ( Rom. 8:28-
29 ; James 1:2-4 ).
Judging Self
The starting point is to develop a keen sensitivity to sin by not taking life
for granted. We are inclined to be critical of others, to blame shift, to be
self-defensive, to retaliate, to be malicious, and similar sinful actions (
Matt. 7:5 ; Rom. 2:2 ).
How we respond to offenses and irritations of life reveals the spirit that is
in us. Be aware, and ask God for His grace to be conscious of and
sensitive to one's spirit. Then by His grace we establish plans to respond
to offenses in a manner to restore ourselves and others ( Gal. 6:1-4 ;
Eph. 4:22-24 ).
Forgiving and Reconciling
Many souls are wounded by bitter root judgments: parental/child
relationships, abuses of all kinds, disappointments, betrayals, and such,
which paralyzes and poisons the spirit. Put the offender and the offense in
God's hands; let Him judge the situation. Get oneself free from the
offender or offense by asking God for the grace to forgive and be
reconciled. Forgiveness is an act of the will, to please the Father - it is not
an option ( Matt. 5:23-24 ; Matt. 6:14-15 ; Heb. 12:15 ; 1 Pet. 2:23
).
Daily Devotions
We are either in the flesh or the spirit: there is no gray area. We need the
daily infusion of God's word to keep us in the Spirit moment to moment.
We are to be God-conscious, practicing His Presence twenty-four hours a
day ( Ps. 1:1-3 ; 2 Cor. 10:3-5 ).
Daily Meditations
Recollections of the past stimulates memories and unresolved issues
which, in turn, prompts spontaneous mood swings. As we meditate on
God's word, we participate in the purification process of regenerating our
intellect, our memories, our emotions, and our wills to be integrated with
God's will. By His grace, we are enabled to refashion the integrity of our
inner life, preparing ourselves to be acutely sensitive to the promptings of
the Holy Spirit ( Josh. 1:8 ; 2 Cor. 7:1 ; James 1:21 ).
Objective
We begin a life of reversals.The issues of the past are dealt with in the present, in a
biblical manner. The daily offenses and irritations of life are confronted and dealt with as
directed by the Holy Spirit. The self is dethroned. God is enthroned. The stage is set for
the drama of being conformed to the image of Christ. by practicing...
... loving God;
... judging self;
... forgiving/reconciling;
... conducting daily devotions;
... engaging in daily meditations.
We trust that the proposed guidelines as amplified and elaborated upon in the manual
may prove beneficial to equip the child of God: to walk out of darkness into His
marvelous light; to establish God's kingdom and will on earth; to be a fit disciple of Christ
( 2 Cor. 3:18 ; Matt. 28:18-20 ).
1.4. Essential Considerations
Overcomers
First step is to judge self, not others. We are accountable for our own actions, and not
the actions of others, that is, we are to develop a sensitivity to our own sin, and to
respond to the present situation as a new creature in Christ ( Matt. 7:5 ; 1 Pet. 3:9 ;
Ezek. 18:20 ).
Thought 1
Since the 1st Adam failed to overcome Satan, God allows Satan to remain
on earth for us to finish the job. Man opened the door for Satan to reign
on earth, it is up to man to cast him out. Jesus condemned sin in our
corrupt nature to deal with the sin issue. Reckoning ourselves dead to sin
but alive to God in Christ Jesus, we are now emboldened to confront
Satan.
Sin is not the issue but our responses to the temptations, the emotions of
sin, that impacts upon our senses and into our thought processes. This is
what we overcome: the evil tendencies that dwell within. Submitting to
God, we are now enabled to resist and say 'no' to these emotions, and say
'yes' to the Holy Spirit. At this point we become overcomers by giving no
foothold to the enemy in our thoughts, speech and actions; but instead
cast him out and put him under foot as originally commanded ( Gen.
1:28 ; Eph. 4:22-24,26 ; James 4:6-8 ; Rev. 3:21 ).
God Lovers
All that was done to us, and all that we have done to others, the pains and sorrows of
life, God will intervene and rearrange all things to our advantage provided we do two
things: obey His commandments, and live according to His purposes for our lives by
being conformed to His Son ( Luke 9:23-24 ; Rom. 8:28-29 ; Col. 1:10 ).
Therefore, we are to change our focus from self to God, by loving Him in our minds, our
emotions, our memories, and our wills. Our biblical responses to our neighbor and to the
offenses of life provide the proof that we are loving God ( John 14:21 ; 1 Pet. 3:9-15 ;
Matt. 22:36-40 ; Luke 6:27-38 ).
Thought 2
We judge ourselves by the 'love' factor. The first thing that love is, is
patience. Impatience separates us from God, from self, from neighbor.
"Impatience is a form of self-indulgence, and has its roots in the
sovereignty of self... This ego-centric attitude severs our link with God...
Patience is a life centered in Christ. He who has patience abides in Truth.
The impatient man submits to the bondage of the moment... And the ups
and downs of life challenge the pursuit of constancy and perseverance...
Holy patience embodies an ultimate act of our surrender to God, a status
of consummate self-possession. Only in the measure that we have
surrendered our inmost being to God, do we possess ourselves." ( Luke
21:19 ). [11][Hildebrand1]
To the extent and degree we love as God loves determines the extent and
degree we are overcoming Satan in this battle of wills - God or the devil's
( 1 Cor. 13:4-8 ).
Word Knowledge
" The Word of God must abide in a person for a person to know God in a personal way.
To 'abide' means that the word of God must not only be allowed to come into a person's
mind and heart, it must be grasped and clung to. 'Abiding' means the Word of God...
living, moving, ruling, and reigning in a person's life and heart.
stirring and convicting, and challenging a person.
leading to confession, repentance, growth, maturity.
teaching love, compassion, forgiveness, goodness, and just behavior.
causing one to believe and trust God's Son, Jesus Christ, as his Savior and
Lord." (Quoted from [14][Leader1].)
Goal
Our Lord took on flesh and bones - the human nature - that through the Cross, we may
be translated from the earthly to the spiritual realm. No longer in the image of man after
the fall, but now in the image of God as originally planned before the fall, we proceed to
the 'high calling of Christ Jesus' ( Gen. 1:26 ; Rom. 6:3-6 ; Rom. 8:29 ; Phil. 3:12 ;
Col. 1:13 ).
Accordingly, it is our responsibility to attain to this level of being in our souls by
identifying, locating, and eradicating the residuals of our fallen nature residing in our
souls ( Eph. 4:22-24 ). This is a lifelong process dedicated to purifying the intellect, the
memories, the emotions, and the wills to equip us to love as God loves ( 2 Cor. 7:1 ).
1.5. Summary
Judge self in every encounter, being continually sensitive to sinful
reactions: not excusing, nor justifying self, neither blaming others. We are
to restore self, to prepare self to be in a position to restore others.
Daily put-off the old self and put-on the new self by biblically responding
to life's irritations and offenses.
Constantly sustain a state of forgiving and reconciling in the affairs of life,
allowing Jesus to live out His obedient life through us.
Dispose self to the purification of the intellect, the memories, the
emotions, and the will through meditation and contemplation.
( Gen. 1:28 ; Luke 9:23-24 ; Eph. 3:19 ; Col. 1:27 ) As we are made of the earth, the
first thing we are to dominate is the self: to put self under the complete influence of the
Holy Spirit, to be a blessing upon this earth until we are filled with the fullness of God, to
be clothed with the glory of God as in the days of Adam and Eve before the fall.
Chapter 2. Biblical Psychology: Approach to
Problems
Table of Contents
2.1. Diagnosis
2.2. Approach to Solutions
2.1. Diagnosis
Feelings
( Matt. 12:33-37 ) We are the sum of what we encountered in life and our reactions to
these events. Being conditioned by life's experiences, we are prone to react to life
impulsively and instinctively rather than to respond on the basis of considered judgment.
Such actions reveal a man's inner life - his focus - and who and what determines his
peace and joy ( 1 John 2:3-6 ; Matt. 5:44 ; Gal. 5:19-21 ; Col. 3:5-9 ).
Our usual focus is on what others have done or failed to do. As we maintain a self-
defensive and self protective posture, we are inclined to judge, to condemn, to criticize,
to blame shift, and similar reactions. This self focus is a breeding ground for anger,
frustration, despair, bitterness, self-pity, and the like - a life of feelings. A feeling-
oriented life is a fertile area in which Satan operates and upon which he feeds ( Gen. 4:7
).
Doing
( John 14:21 ; James 1:22-25 ) The ungodly live by their senses. Their lives are
directed by how and what they feel. This is what distinguishes a committed Christian
from the world: a Christian lives by the will of God, not by feelings. However, nothing
wrong with feelings in themselves until we act upon them. We are not to be directed or to
live by feelings. We are to take stock and make note of our intents - the spirit that is
being manifested. Then ask God for the grace to insure that we respond in a manner that
honors and glorifies Him.
Regardless of how we feel we are to do what the word of God says to do. As we do to
please the Father, godly feelings follow - the joy of the Lord. Living by the word, one
serves God the Creator. Anything done without faith, without reference to God's word is
sin ( James 4:17 ; Eph. 4:29 ; Rom. 2:6-9 ; John. 3:21 ; 1 John 2:3 ; Prov. 1:22-
31 ; Rom. 8:13 ).
Root
( 2 Cor. 5:17 ; Jer. 17:9 ) Our responses and reactions to life reflect our roots, the
source of our being. Man's thoughts, speech and actions convey the character of these
roots. Here we can identify the sin patterns and strongholds developed over the years
that characterize the lifestyle and personality of the individual.
Category of root problems are many: hypocrisy, manipulation, lying, cheating, stealing,
boasting, blame shifting, self-centeredness, self-protection, self-interest, anger,
impatience, self-pity, lust, immorality, greed, malice, deceit, etc - a life characterized by
self being on the throne of one's life.
Key
We establish godly roots by changing I to We , you in union with Christ. This begins with
the new birth, followed by daily renewal of the mind. Thus life is confronted on the basis
of God's word - the will of God. As we do the word, the Holy Spirit changes our roots
which affects our feelings. This is a purification process. And we, in turn, begin to respond
to life in a manner that glorifies God ( 2 Cor. 10:3-5 ; Gal. 5:22-23 ; 2 Pet. 1:3-8 ;
Eph. 4:22-24 ; Col. 3:10 ).
2.2. Approach to Solutions
Perspective
( Isa. 55:8-9 ; Prov. 14:12 ) We are to look at life from God's perspective, His view,
not from our way, experiences, ideas, opinions, what others say, the world's philosophy
or its psychology. The basic problem and the supreme challenge you will face in making
Christ-honoring changes is dying to self. The biblical perspective concerning 'self' is
exactly opposite to what the wisdom of this world proclaims ( Luke 9:23-24 ).
Accordingly, to live biblically is to respond to life's challenges in a manner that pleases
and honors God, no longer pleasing and gratifying self ( 1 Cor. 3:19-20 ; 1 John 2:15-
17 ; 1 John 2:20,27 ; 1 Cor. 2:12-13 ).
Hope
( Heb. 6:18-20 ) Hope is an anchor of the soul because it affects our mind and
emotions. Christ within me, the Anointed One, breaks the yoke of life's pressures on me.
And my job is to develop this inner image of Christ within me, that in Him, I am more
than a conqueror, never under but always over circumstances, no matter what I face in
life.
To really believe this in the inner core of my being that all God's promises are mine
depends upon my living in and by the living word of God ( John 16:33 ; James 1:2-4 ).
( Ezek. 36:26-27 ) God gave me a heart of flesh, put His Spirit within
me, and gives me power to carry out His commands.
( 1 Cor. 2:12-13 ) Being a child of God, I receive revelation knowledge
by the word of God in and through my human spirit.
( Rom. 8:28-29 ) No matter what happens to me in life when I call upon
God He will intervene in my life, He will reach into my experiences,
redeem my past, and cause things to work out for my benefit.
( 1 Cor. 10:13 ) God is the One Who is faithful. As I put my faith in Him,
He will bring me out successfully.
( Heb. 4:15-16 ; Heb. 7:25 ) All I have to do is ask boldly, and God's
Grace is available to me, and the blood of Jesus Christ intercedes always,
washing and cleansing from all sense of guilt and shame whether real or
imaginary.
( Rom. 6:3-6 ) My old human nature and all my past has been buried
with Christ when I was baptized into His death. At the burial I was also
raised with Him into the newness of life, freed from the power of sin, and
free now to do acts of righteousness.
Change
( Gen. 4:7 ; Eph. 5:14-16 ) We must choose to change. We cannot take living for
granted, being careless or casual about our thinking, speaking and acting. God put us on
this earth to actively replace evil with righteousness.
( Matt. 7:1-5 ; 1 Cor. 11:28-31 ) Critical that I judge myself daily, that I am walking in
the Spirit, responding to life God's way, then I will be in the position to help restore
others.
( Rom. 12:1-2 ) My total being belongs to the Lord for His use. This requires a total
overhaul of my person, separating myself from my past, and the world's system and
influences in order to be conformed to the ways of the Lord.
( Eph. 4:25-32 ; Col. 3:5-17 ; Rom. 12:9-21 ; 1 Pet. 2 ; 1 Pet. 3 ) Listed in these
references are the basic put-offs and put-ons to guide and lead one to live a biblical
lifestyle.
( Rom. 8:29 ; 1 John 3:8 ) Examine self daily to see if I am living by God's standards
for that day, being a blessing and destroying the works of the devil.
Work Out Your Salvation
( Phil. 2:12-13 ; Ps. 1:1 ; John 15:5 ) The enemy never stops working. This compels
us to be completely dependent upon the Lord 24 hours a day: to be conscious of His
Presence, and to be actively involved in the pursuit of establishing His righteousness in all
of life's endeavors.
( James 1:21-25 ) Through the meditation process, we change our inner man, the root.
And from the godly root, our thoughts, our speech, and our actions. This continues until
we experience the fullness of God and express His Presence wherever we go.
( Eph. 4:22-24 ; 1 John 2:3-5 ) We are to identify areas that need changing, being
specific to identify put-offs and appropriate put-ons.
Chapter 3. Counseling Process
Table of Contents
3.1. Problem Area
3.2. Solution
3.3. Counseling Tools
3.1. Problem Area
We understand that biblical counseling looks at life's issues from the perspective of our
'feelings', 'doing' and 'root' levels. It is through these levels, we assess and evaluate the
problem, the diagnostics.
Our 'feelings' tell us what is happening, but we are not to make decisions or live by those
'feelings'. This is what distinguishes a Christian from the world. The world lives by
'feelings' but a Christian lives by his will. And his will is based on the word of God which is
the will of God. He is to do what God says to do regardless of his 'feelings'.
The 'doing' of God's word regardless of feelings is illustrated by God's commandment to
love our enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray
for those who persecute you. This is all contrary to our natural feelings but our true self
in exercising God's command - the self in union with the Holy Spirit - transcends the
natural and changes our feelings into compassion rather than retaliation.
The emphasis on the Christian life is in the 'doing'. It is the 'doing' that changes our
feelings as well as our 'root' level. As we do what God's word commands, the Holy Spirit
changes our 'root' from selfishness and self-centeredness, conforming us to the image of
the Lord Jesus Christ.
This lifelong process continues changing us from glory to glory when we simply obey
God's word.
3.2. Solution
Accordingly, we are to view the problem from 'God's perspective', and His word provides
the solution, the 'hope', and with hope are 'changes' that are necessary, and the
'practice' of these changes to conform you to the image of Christ.
Depending upon your problem or situation, the following are provided to assist you in
seeking God's solution:
1. Orientation to Biblical Counseling . An eight week training course to provide
students with a basic knowledge on how to handle their problems God's way as
opposed to the world's way.
2. Biblical Discipleship . A five week program for new Christians, teaching them
how to grow and mature in Christ. This could be used for individual counseling or
a classroom setting.
3. Strengthening Your Marriage . A ten week course for pre-marital and marital
situations.
4. Life Studies . These are worksheets designed for individual counseling
situations, and deal with a variety of sin problems and the solutions thereof.
The Life Studies are divided into three categories:
1. Guilt and Shame , the past;
2. Anger and Bitterness , the present;
3. Fear , the future.
These time segments cover all of life's experiences and must be dealt with biblically.
Counselee must know that he is identified with Christ, that by the blood of our Lord,
counselee's conscience is washed and cleansed of guilt and shame once and forever. Now
he is to live the new life, empowered by the Holy Spirit, collaborating with God, to deal
with his present, the daily offenses and irritations of life, and thereby establish God's will
on earth. Thus, he is enabled to leave the future in God's hands.
3.3. Counseling Tools
Use Section A.7, “Problem/Solution Worksheet” as a guide to gather basic
information in order to evaluate the problem, and to provide a biblical solution.
The Life Studies , the various subject matter worksheets, and the forms listed in the
Appendix , provide source material for discussion purposes as well as for homework
assignments.
For an in-depth biblical understanding of the specific issues addressed in this manual, we
recommend the following:
Self-Confrontation Manual and Handbook , for the ministry of Biblical
Discipleship/Counselling. By Biblical Counseling Foundation. [5][BCF1]
Strengthening Your Marriage . By Wayne Mack. [15][Mack1]
The Healing Presence . by Leane Payne. [19][Payne1]
Restoring the Christian Soul Through Healing Prayer . by Leane
Payne. [20][Payne2]
Bold Love . By Dan Allender. [3][Allender1]
The Divine Conspiracy . By Dallas Willard. [32][Willard1]
The Interior Castle . By St Teresa of Avila. [30][StTeresa1]
Transformation in Christ . By Dietrich von Hildeband. [11][Hildebrand1]
Collected Works of St. John of the Cross . By Kieran Kavanaugh.
[13][Kavanaugh1]
Healing the Culture . By Robert J.Spitzer. [28][Spitzer1]
Remember: You are given life so that Life may indwell you, Christ Himself, and you are
to work out this life daily being conformed to His image. God's word is your authority,
and the indwelling Holy Spirit is your power to enable you to be a blessing on this earth.
Go now as you make a disciple of yourself, go and make disciples of others and fulfill
Christ's command. Let a godly lifestyle be a living witness of Christ walking this earth in,
as, and through you.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Josh. 1:8
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 4:25-32 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Select a problem that the Lord wants you to work on and complete columns
1 through 4 on Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” . Review
Eph. 4:25-32 ; Rom. 12:9-21 ; 1 Pet. 2 and 1 Pet. 3 . Preview
Section A.2, “Think And Do List” .
Basic Study: Orientation To Biblical
Counseling
There are two series in this area.
Table of Contents
4. Orientation To Biblical Counseling Mini Series
4.1. God's Way vs Man's Way
4.2. Prerequisites to Biblical Change
4.3. Why There is Hope
4.4. Effecting Biblical Change
4.5. Dealing with Self
4.6. Anger and Bitterness
4.7. Depression
4.8. Fear and Worry
5. Healing The Soul Series
5.1. Healing Presence
5.2. Transforming the Natural Self
5.3. What Makes a Man a Man
5.4. Needs of Man
5.5. Healing of the Soul
5.6. Mind and Will
5.7. Meditation Process
5.8. Steps to a Liberated Will
5.9. Healing Prayer for the Mind
5.10. Perfectionism
5.11. Schizophrenia (Double-Mindedness)
5.12. Transpersonal Psychology
5.13. Healed from Fear
5.14. Rejections
5.15. Attitude and Behavior
Chapter 4. Orientation To Biblical Counseling Mini
Series
Table of Contents
4.1. God's Way vs Man's Way
4.2. Prerequisites to Biblical Change
4.3. Why There is Hope
4.4. Effecting Biblical Change
4.5. Dealing with Self
4.6. Anger and Bitterness
4.7. Depression
4.8. Fear and Worry
4.1. God's Way vs Man's Way
Dynamics of Problem Solving
( Heb. 3:13 ) Being ignorant of sin desensitizes and causes hardening.
( Rom. 1:20-32 ) After awhile you become your own god by establishing standards to
justify self-centered pursuits. People perish because of ignorance; therefore, it is a
question of becoming knowledgeable, of becoming sensitive, of recognizing that living in
this world cannot be taken for granted ( Hosea 4:6 ).
The Ways of Man and the Ways of God
Approximately 230 psychological schools of thought are practiced in the world dealing
with the study of man's behavior, and the varied methods and means required for man to
solve personal problems. These schools are reduced to five common characteristics.
1. Man is good : Humanism - independence from God - New Age: Man has
everything necessary within to solve own problems - mind merely blocked by
negative thinking or influences - develop positive thinking and draw from one's
own resources - see self as worthwhile and esteemed. What does God say? Ps.
62:9 ; Rom. 3:10-18,23 ; Rom. 7:18 .
2. Man is a superior animal : Basic view of man is that his behavior is wrongly
conditioned or programmed by environment and circumstances. He needs to be
reconditioned or reprogrammed by manipulation of behavior through use of
positive and negative stimuli... He is artificially maneuvered to respond to reward
and punishment in order to improve self. What does God say? John 15:4-5 ;
Rom. 1:18-32 ; James 4:10 .
3. Man can change himself : Although being wounded by circumstances of life,
man can change bad behavior. This is a combination of the above positions: that
through education, logic and reason, man can ovecome self. What does God say?
Jer. 13:23 ; Ezek. 18:20 ; Ezek. 36:26-27 .
4. Man, a victim of conscience : Man driven by instincts, thwarted by family, by
society, by upbringing, and by others, who are responsible for his problems. Deep
analysis necessary, along with hypnosis, resocialization, catharsis, self-
actualization, free association, etc. What does God say? Ezek. 18:20 ; Phil. 2:3-
4 ; 1 Tim. 4:1-2 .
5. Man, a bargainer : When the above doesn't work, the world uses - trade-offs.
You do this, and I will do this, a 50/50 arrangement. Imbalances are inevitable,
the self nature always wants more than its share. What does God say? God
commands us to love without expectation of return, to return good for evil. Rom.
12:21 ; Phil. 2:3-4 .
Man's way is always self-oriented, he is his own god, as evidenced by :
1. no biblical confrontation,
2. no conversion experience expected or even considered,
3. no repentance,
4. no work of the Holy Spirit,
5. and no sanctification process in bearing the image of God.
Given impetus in modern times from the so-called Enlightenment and the Renaissance
periods, this typifies and represents man's attempt to save himself without God. Such
concepts have culminated today in a society whose sinking foundations are being built on
preferences (feelings) rather than principles (absolutes). Twisted human reason and logic
replaces the Ten Commandments.
God's Way of Handling Problems
( Phil. 3:13 ) God is the God of the 'I AM', He is not in the past, nor in the future, He is
always in the present. We start from the present and each day thereafter - one day at a
time.
( Luke 9:62 ) Looking back into the past will make you unfit for the
present.
( Heb. 11:15 ) Thinking of the past makes one vulnerable, and weak.
( Rom. 8:28 ) Past events in our lives are irreversible. Why waste time
and effort there.
Our reactions to those events can be changed as we allow God to intervene in the
present, to reach into our experiences, to redeem us, to free us to love and worship God.
Eventually we become lovers of God in our spirits instead of lovers of self by dwelling on
the past.
( 1 Tim. 4:7 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ) Thus, it is through discipline we become godly: by
commitment to live God's way in the present through the simple process of putting-off
and putting-on - by the authority of God's word and by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Accordingly, we change our coping mechanisms from reacting to life to responding to life
on the basis of God's word.
God's Resources
Holy Spirit - John 16:7-8,13 ; 1 Cor. 2:11-15 .
Bible - 2 Tim. 3:16-17 ; Heb. 4:12 .
Counselors - Gal. 6:1-2 ; Rom. 15:14 ; Prov. 15:22 .
Start up the spiral by tackling the immediate problem first ( James 1:2 ).
Act on known solutions, postpone acting when solutions are unknown (
James 1:5-8 ; John 7:17 ; Rom. 14:23 ). Continue up the spiral ( Heb.
5:14 ).
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
2 Tim. 3:16,17
Devotion:
BSAF on John 16:7,8,13 ; Heb. 4:12 ; Gal. 6:1 . Do one a day.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Study Eph. 4:22-32 and make a list of your failures to respond biblically.
Reference: [2][Adams2]
4.2. Prerequisites to Biblical Change
Four Stages of Spiritual Development
1. Born-again stage is the new birth, new life - eternal life from above.
( John 1:12 ) Child of God, God is now the Father of our spirits.
( Phil. 2:12-13 ) Salvation is not just a destination change. It is
the beginning stage of the development of a new life. We were the
slaves of Satan, but now we are children of God, joint-heirs with
Jesus. Accordingly, we are to resist the residual evil tendencies of
the old life by submitting the natural life to the spiritual life on a
continuous basis until we "become like little children" ( Matt.
18:3 ). Takes a moment to be born-again from above, but a
lifetime to work out being conformed to the image of Our Lord.
( 1 John 2:3-6 ; John 14:21 ) To obey is to really hear, to really
listen, to see, and to understand what I listened to, and to act
upon what I heard. If we are obeying, we will walk as Jesus
walked.
( 1 Cor. 3:16 ) Obedience builds the temple. Doing the word are
the bricks of the temple making it suitable for God to dwell in it.
2. Spiritual stage is knowing the fullness of the Holy Spirit, being fully empowered
to live the Christian life.
( Luke 11:13 ) Simply ask and receive.
( Luke 24:48-49 ) Receive power from on high.
( Acts 1:8 ) When the Holy Spirit comes upon you, you will
receive power to be His witnesses.
( 1 Cor. 6:17 ) One spirit with Him. You are a co-worker.
( Rom. 5:5 ) Love is poured out into our hearts, act by faith upon
this truth. Love is ready to flow out as a river of living waters.
Faith, hope and love flows from obedience.
3. Pathway of the cross stage is a daily exercise of getting down into the death of
Christ, to allow Christ to live out His life through us.
( Rom. 6:3-6 ) Old nature buried, no longer slaves of sin. As we
put-off daily sins, we arise immediately in the newness of life in
Christ and able to respond biblically to all of life's encounters.
( Eph. 4:22-24 ) We must do the doing: putting-off corruptions -
renewing ourselves in the spirit of our minds - and putting-on
truth in all areas of living. Daily, we have our calvary, our
resurrection, and our ascension.
( Luke 9:23-24 ) No longer defend or protect self, but practice
death to private aims, selfish passions and prejudices, to worldly
reputation and honor.
( Phil. 2:3-5 ) As with Jesus, now I am to seek the interests and
betterment of others. I am no longer central but to use self to be
a blessing to others.
4. Ascension/overcomer/spiritual warfare stage is where the believer realizes
and knows he is in union with Christ.
( Eph. 1:17-23 ) We are seated with Him, "Far above all
authority..."
( Luke 10:19 ) Given all authority over the power of the enemy.
( Rom. 8:29 ; 1 John 3:8 ) God created us to be conformed to
the image of His Son, and as such, to do as He did: to destroy the
works of the devil.
( Col. 2:13-15 ) Our problem is not with Satan, he has been
defeated. The issue is our relationship with God, knowing who and
what we are in Christ Jesus. Therefore, we are to keep the enemy
from having any footholds in our lives by being free in the
following areas: ( James 4:6-8 )
o Genealogy : ( Gal. 3:13-14 ) Realize and know
that the Blood of Jesus has freed me from all
generation curses ( Exodus 18:20 ).
o Circumstances of life : ( Matt. 16:24-25 ; Col.
1:10-11 ) No longer react to or controlled by the
externals of life, by personal attacks, by pressures
of the world, by trials and tribulations, but respond
by and according to the promptings and power of
the Holy Spirit ( James 1:2-4 ).
o Environment : ( 1 John 2:15 ; 2 Pet. 1:4 )
Partaker of the divine life and nature, and have
escaped from the world's system of lusts. The devil
has nothing on me. I am now in the position to
overcome him in all areas of life in the name of
Jesus Christ. To the extent I grow in virtues, to
that extent Christ inhabits my life.
The Characteristics of an Overcomer
( Eph. 3:9-10 ) Proclaims God's wisdom to the enemy: for this is a battle
of wisdom.
( Phil. 1:11 ) Do all to the honor and praise of God that His glory may be
both manifested and recognized.
( Prov. 24:10 ) Nothing can ever limit or defeat us in Christ. We proceed
until victory prevails.
( Prov. 21:22 ) No compromises: we ascend, we assault, and cast down
all opposition.
( Luke 11:20-23 ; 1 John 4:4 ; Isa. 9:6 ) We move from strength to
strength for there is no end to God's kingdom. We are commissioned to
establish His Kingdom of peace and joy on earth.
Being an overcomer we accomplish God's purposes for our lives by being conformed to
the image of His Son. We do as He did, walk as He did: do all to destroy the works of the
devil in ourselves and in others.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
1 Cor. 10:13
Devotion:
BSAF on Rom. 12:1-2 ; Gal. 5:16-17 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review sample list (below) and Eph. 4:22-32 , note problems you are
experiencing that God wants you to work on during this course. Work out
one problem at a time by using Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin
Worksheet” .
Sample list of problems to help you decide problem areas: adultery, anger,
anorexia, bulimia, evil talk, depression, lack of discipline, fear, fornication,
greed, guilt, homosexuality, impatience, laziness, gluttony, loneliness, lust,
lying, marriage problems, pride, procrastination, rebellion, self-pity,
substance abuse, worry, bitterness, frustration, stealing, child discipline
problems, jealousy, envy, frustration, stealing, interpersonal conflicts and
disputes.
4.3. Why There is Hope
Your Hope in the Midst of Trials
1. Those in Christ are freed from the power and penalty of sin ( Rom. 6:3-
7,14,18,23 ). The past is dealt with once and forever. To listen to the past is to
listen to demons, and to dishonor the Blood of Christ ( Heb.l0:10,14-22 ). We
are to give our time and effort to the present.
2. God will not allow believers to be tested or tempted beyond what they
can bear. He gives His grace and strength to endure every test and resist every
temptation so that you never have to sin ( Rom. 8:35-39 ; 1 Cor. 10:13 ; 2
Cor. 4:7-10 ; 2 Cor. 12:9-10 ; Phil. 4:13 ; Heb. 4:15-16 ; 2 Pet. 2:4-9 ).
3. Our Lord Jesus Christ will grant mercy and provide grace to help in every
need . He constantly intercedes as an advocate for you to God the Father and
fully understands your weaknesses ( Heb. 2:18 ; Heb. 4:15-16 ; Heb. 7:25 ;
Rom. 5:10 ; John 20:23 ). Don't defend self when treated unfairly, or suffering
injustices. As your advocate, let Jesus handle evil done to you on earth. Our job
is to love our enemies, do good to those who persecute you, to express goodwill
to them: put them in the hands of God; pray that they may receive spiritual
blessings in Christ ( Rom. 12:19 ).
4. Trials and testings will develop and mature you in Christ if you respond to
them in God's way ( Rom. 5:3-5 ; James 1:2-4 ). He never devises evil or harm
for you, rather His plans for you are for good ( Gen. 50:20 ; Deut. 8:2,5,16 ;
Ps. 145:17 ; Jer. 29:ll-13 ; Rom. 8:28-29 ; Prov. 24:10 ; Prov. 21:22 ).
5. God's peace and joy are available to believers regardless of others,
possessions or circumstances ( Luke 6:35-38 ; Matt. 6:33 ; Rom. 5:3-12 ;
John 14:27 ; John 15:11 ; John 17:13 ; Rom. 14:17 ; Phil. 4:4-7 ; 1 Pet.
1:6-9 ). Follow God's will, His word which is His righteousness and the Kingdom
of God is yours to proclaim. We reign in life through righteousness.
6. Only God can change people ( Ezek. 36:26-27 ; Phil. 1:6 ; Phil. 2:13 ). You
cannot and are not responsible for changing others. You are accountable to God
solely for your own deeds ( Jer. 17:10 ; Ezek. 18:1-20 ; especially verse 20;
Matt. 16:27 ; Rom. 2:5-10 ; Col. 3:23-25 ; 1 Pet. 1:17 ), and are to do your
part in living at peace with others ( Matt. 5:23-24 ; Mark 11:25 ; Rom. 12:9-
21 ; Rom. 14:19 ; 1 Pet. 3:8-9 ; 1 Pet. 4:8 ).
7. When you confess your sins, God forgives and cleanses you ( 1 John 1:7-
9 ; Rom. 5:10 ; Heb. 7:22-25 ; Heb. 10:22-23 ). Our job is to honor the Blood
of Jesus by acting and proclaiming ourselves forgiven by His great sacrifice for us.
To act guilty, condemned or self-pitying is to make the cross ineffective. Self-pity
is negative pride, worshiping the devil.
As we follow God's way, walking in His word, living by His truths as so stated, we enter
into His promises of an abundant life now, here on earth, as well as in eternity ( 1 Cor.
6:17 ; John 5:24 ; John 4:24 ; John 10:10 ).
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
John l6:33 : Meditate on this verse, read and listen to it carefully, mull it
over until you really understand. We are 'overcomers' in Christ. It is about
time, we begin to replace evil with righteousness.
Note : During the meditating process, seek others interpretation of the
verse, ask Holy Spirit to reveal deeper meaning, etc. For example, on the
memory verse, Jesus on the Cross exclaimed: "It is Finished!" To me this
verse means that Satan is defeated, I am no longer in union with Satan, my
sins are forgiven, I am set free from the world, the flesh and the devil, I am
complete in Christ, I am an overcomer in Christ, now in Christ I can work
through all the trials , tests and temptations of life and overcome them
because Jesus overcame the world so can I in Him. When I do sin, I confess
and I am immediately cleansed and I begin to praise Him for His great
sacrifice. ( 1 John 1:9 )
Devotion:
BSAF on Heb. 6:19-20 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Continue working on 'problem areas' via Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin
Worksheet” .
Reference: See page 99, [5][BCF1] for further reading.
4.4. Effecting Biblical Change
Approach to Problems
Feelings
( Matt. 12:33-37 ) We are the sum of what we encountered in life and our reactions to
these events. Being conditioned by life's experiences, we are prone to react to life
impulsively and instinctively rather than to respond on the basis of considered judgment.
Man's words and manner of speech reveal his inner life, his focus, and who and what
determines his peace and joy ( 1 John 2:3-6 ; Matt. 5:44 ; Gal. 5:19-21 ; Col. 3:5-9
).
"Separated from God, fallen man became a flesh person, living from the created flesh as
the source and center of life. In the realm of creature flesh, man searched for the
meaning of life within his brains, intellects, memories, emotions, feelings and passions,
which all exists in the organs of his body." He looked to himself for the means to survive
which became the meaning and purpose of his life - self-interest, self-protection, self
defensiveness: traits that characterizes fallen man.
Man thus becomes vulnerable to what others have done or failed to do to make him
secure - it is the fault of others. This state of apprehension opens the door to self-pity,
fear, worry, anger, bitterness, jealousy, despair, depression and the like... All these
reactions are 'feelings', and 'feelings' are fertile areas in which Satan operates and upon
which he feeds ( Gen. 4:7 ).
Doing
( John 14:21 ; James 1:22-25 ) Residuals of the fallen life exist in our members: the
self-defensive, self-interest, self-protective life mechanisms. We are responsible to deal
with these areas in which feelings initiate reactions rather than being prompted by the
word of God. Regardless of feelings, we are to do what God's word says to do: practicing
loving our enemies, being kind to those who hate you, blessing those who curse you, and
praying for those who insult you. By God's grace, you will eventually change
maliciousness and retaliation to compassion and benevolence. Anything done without
faith, without reference to God's word is sin ( James 4:17 ; Eph. 4:29 ; Rom. 2:6-9 ;
John 3:21 ; 1 John 2:3-6 ; Prov. 1:22-31 ; Rom. 8:13 ; Luke 6:27-31 ).
Root
( 2 Cor. 5:17 ) Our responses or reactions to life reflect our true roots: the source of our
being. The essence or substance of a man are his thoughts, his speech and his actions.
Here we can identify the sin patterns and strongholds developed over the years that
characterize the lifestyle and personality of the individual. Be aware of the 'body'. It is
not an entity unto itself, but the body is God's vehicle to establish His Kingdom on earth.
Accordingly, through our body, our thoughts, our speech, our actions are to reflect the
taproot- the character of Christ Himself.
Category of root problems are many: hypocrisy, manipulation, lying, cheating, stealing,
boasting, blame shifting, self-centeredness, self-protection, self-interest, anger,
impatience, self-pity, lust, immorality, greed, malice, deceit, and the like - a life
characterized by self being on the throne of life.
Key: We establish godly roots by changing 'I' to 'We', you in union with
Christ. This begins with the new birth, followed by daily renewal of the
mind as we begin to confront life on the basis of God's word ( 2 Cor.
10:3-5 ; Gal. 5:22-23 ; 2 Pet. 1:3-8 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ; Col. 3:10 ).
Approach to Solutions
Perspective
( Isa. 55:8-9 ; Prov. 14:12 ) We are to look at life from God's perspective, His view,
not from our way, experiences, ideas, opinions, what others say, the world's philosophy
or its psychology. The basic problem and the supreme challenge you will face in making
Christ-honoring changes is dying to self. The biblical perspective concerning 'self' is
exactly opposite to what the wisdom of this world proclaims ( Luke 9:23-24 ).
Accordingly, to live biblically is to respond to life's challenges in a manner that pleases
and honors God - no longer pleasing and gratifying self ( 1 Cor. 3:19-20 ; 1 John 2:15-
17 ; 1 Cor. 2:12-13 ; 1 John 2:20,27 ).
Hope
( Heb. 6:18-20 ) Hope is an anchor of the soul because it affects our mind and
emotions. Christ within me, the Anointed One, breaks the yoke of life's pressures on me.
My job is to develop this inner image of Christ within me, that in Him, I am more than a
conqueror, never under but always over circumstances, no matter what I face in life. To
really believe this in the inner core of my being that all God's promises are mine depends
upon my living in and by the living word of God ( John 16:33 ; James 1:2-4 ).
( Ezek. 36:26-27 ) God gave me a heart of flesh, put His Spirit within me. He gives me
power to carry out His commands.
( 1 Cor. 2:12-13 ) Being a child of God, I receive revelation knowledge by the word of
God in and through my human spirit.
( Rom. 8:28-29 ) No matter what happens to me in life when I call upon God He will
intervene in my life. He will reach into my experiences, redeem my past, and cause
things to work out for my benefit.
( 1 Cor. 10:13 ) God is the One who is faithful. As I put my faith in Him, He will bring
me out successfully.
( Heb. 4:15-16 ; Heb. 7:25 ) All I have to do is ask boldly, and God's Grace is available
to me. The blood of Jesus Christ intercedes always, washing and cleansing from all sense
of guilt and shame whether real or imaginary.
( Rom. 6:3-6 ) My old human nature and all my past has been buried with Christ when I
was baptized into His death. At the burial I was also raised with Him into the newness of
life, freed from the power of sin, and free now to do acts of righteousness.
Change
( Gen. 4:7 ; Eph. 5:14-16 ) We must choose to change. We cannot take living for
granted, being careless or casual about our thinking, speaking and acting. God put us on
this earth to actively replace evil with righteousness.
( Matt. 7:1-5 ; 1 Cor. 11:28-31 ) Critical that I judge myself daily, that I am walking in
the Spirit, responding to life God's way. Then I will be in the position to help restore
others.
( Rom. 12:1-2 ) My total being belongs to the Lord for His use. This requires a total
overhaul of my person, separating myself from my past, the world's system and
influences in order to be conformed to the ways of the Lord.
( Eph. 4:25-32 ; Col. 3:5-17 ; Rom. 12:9-21 ; 1 Pet. 2 ; 1 Pet. 3 ) Listed in these
references are the basic put-offs and put-ons to guide and lead one to live a biblical
lifestyle.
( Rom. 8:29 ; 1 John 3:8 ) Examine self daily to see if I am living by God's standards
for that day, being a blessing and destroying the works of the devil.
Working Out Your Salvation
( Ps. 1:1 ; John 15:5 ) The enemy never stops working which compels us to be
completely dependent upon the Lord 24 hours a day. We are to be always conscious of
His Presence - to be actively involved in the pursuit of establishing His righteousness in
all of life's endeavors.
( James 1:21-25 ) Through the meditation process, we change our inner man, the root.
From the godly root, God prompts our thoughts, our speech, and our actions. This
continues until we experience the fullness of God and express His Presence wherever we
go.
( Eph. 4:22-24 ; 1 John 2:3-5 ) We are to identify areas that need changing, being
specific to identify put-offs and appropriate put-ons.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Josh. 1:8
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 4:25-32 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Continue working on failures and complete columns 1 through 4 on
Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet . Review the change verses
above especially Eph. 4:25-32 ; Rom. 12:9-21 ; 1 Pet. 2 and 1 Pet. 3 .
Preview Section A.2, “Think And Do List” .
4.5. Dealing with Self
Marriage Concept
( Gen. 2:7 ; Phil. 3:8 ) God formed man out of the dust of the ground. By God's breath,
man received consciousness, a capacity to think, and an awareness of his environment
and surroundings. Man's very being depends solely upon God. Man without God is
nothing.
( Gen. 1:26-28 ) God created mankind, Adam and Eve, as one entity. Mankind is mated
to God and through the imaging process to be the revelators of God's love to the world.
God blessed them, and endued them with power to be prosperous in all areas of living.
All that was required was for man to voluntarily stay mated and submitted to God's
authority - His word.
( Eph. 5:21 ) Both husband and wife, as separate entities, are subject to the Lord first,
then to one another. By this act of obedience, recognizing God as Creator and Sustainer,
they would merge into one flesh. The concept of marriage applies to the body of Christ as
His bride being merged into one by obedience - individually and collectively.
Loss of Image
( Gen. 3:1-6 ) Man tested to choose to be dependent upon God or to be independent - to
become their own gods. The desire that was put into them to please God, now turned to
lust to please themselves. Becoming gods they looked to themselves for resources to
handle life, to find within themselves wisdom, strength, and ability to understand and
control life in all its manifestations. By this choice, as they changed from self-loving-
others to self-loving-self, fear became their constant companion.
Self Promotion
( Gen. 3:7-10 ) Reverential fear and awe of God and His magnificence changed to fear of
punishment and a concern for the survival of the self. All man had to do was look to God,
obey His word, and God would take care of everything else. Separated from God man has
to look to himself for security, God no longer there to provide. Man now looks horizontally
to find acceptance and approval by performing and impressing others how great he is, by
controlling others, by seeking power over others: by wealth, by position. Man is always
seeking to find the meaning of life within himself when the meaning of life can only be
found by manifesting the glory of God in his behavior.
Remarriage
( Luke 9:23-24 ) By and through the Cross of Christ, we are enabled to resume the
original relationship with God before the fall. By the cross, we are freed from the self-
loving-self and become the self-loving-others, expressing the glory of God in our behavior
to others.
( Eph. 4:22-24 ) We are all conditioned by life's experiences. We are the sum of all that
we encountered in life. Our culture, our environs, our circumstances in life have impacted
our lives and has affected our reactions. Thus, our coping mechanisms are sensitized to
cover and protect the self in competition with others. The answer to this worldly, fleshly
self is to study our union with Jesus Christ, and this by the daily putting-off of the
corrupted self and the putting-on of the new self by the renewing of the mind.
Battleground
( Gal. 5:16-26 ; Prov. 28:13 ; Jer. 17:9 ; Rom. 6:12-13 ) You will face constant
temptations to self centeredness that lead to thoughts, speech, and actions that are
devastating to the body of Christ and your own walk with the Lord. Those sins that
characterized your life apart from Christ must be confessed and repented of if you are to
mature as a child of God.
( Eph. 1:3-14 ; Matt. 7:12 ) Man's problems is that he pays too much attention to
himself, not too little. We already know how we want others to treat us. Thus, we are
commanded to treat others the same way with the focus on the other and not self. God
has given to us all we need or want. There is nothing we should seek for ourselves but to
exercise who and what we are in Christ Jesus.
Intimacy
( Rom. 8:14-17 ; 1 Cor. 1:26-31 ; Matt. 5:16 ) A proper view of self comes from an
understanding of who you are in Christ: that God is actively involved in your life, that He
has chosen you to be a testimony of His power to the world, and that He gives you a
purpose for living by conforming you to the image of His Son.
( Gen. 4:7 ; John 14:21 ; John 15:10-11 ; 2 Cor. 4:7-10 ; 2 Cor. 4:16-17 ; Matt.
6:33 ) Your contentment in all circumstances of life is dependent on your obedient
responses to God in your thoughts, speech, and actions. By obeying the Lord in your
daily walk, this demonstrates the Lordship of God over your life. The sense of value, of
worthiness, of self-esteem comes by first seeking His Kingdom and His righteousness.
( Rom. 6:3-4 ; Rom 6:13-14 ; Col. 3:5-11 ; 1 Pet. 2:11-12 ) Envy, jealousy,
covetousness, and greed reveal a self-focus that questions God's work and provision in
your life. These sins must be put-off out of your commitment to live for Jesus Christ.
( 2 Tim. 3:2-7 ; 2 Pet. 2:1-3 ) In latter days, we will be lovers of self, led on by various
impulses, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Being a
hearer only, you will be deluded.
Bearing His Image
( Col. 1:10 ; 1 John 3:8 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ) Daily walking in Christ, committing our will to
please God, being fruitful, increasing in the knowledge of God, strengthened in His power,
these changes in lifestyle give evidence that we are a child of God. As such, the potential
of Christ resides within you always ready to be a blessing, destroying the works of the
devil, and to reign in life through righteousness.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Luke 9:23-24 , meditate on this verse.
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 4:26-27,29 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review Gal. 5:19-21 ; Col. 3:5-13 . Check out sinful thinking patterns.
Make up Section A.2, “Think And Do List” to change these patterns and
establish right thinking, and right doing.
Reference: Chapter 9, [5][BCF1]; [23][Smith1].
Attachment - Continual Self-Evaluation
( Matt. 7:5 ; Eph. 4:29 ; Matt. 5:16 ) In biblically evaluating your thoughts, words, or
actions in any situation, answer the following questions. You should memorize both the
questions and the references verses.
1. Is this profitable? In other words, does this contribute toward the development of
godly traits or help to accomplish biblical responsibilities in my life or in the lives
of others? ( 1 Cor. 6:12 ; 1 Cor. 10:23 )
2. Does this bring me under its power or am I controlled by it in any way? ( 1 Cor.
6:12 )
3. Is this an area of spiritual weakness (a stumbling block) in my life? ( Matt. 5:29-
30 ; Matt. 18:8-9 )
4. Could this lead another brother in Christ to stumble? ( Rom. 14:13 ; 1 Cor. 8:9-
13 )
5. Does this edify (build up) others? Is this the biblically loving thing to do? ( Rom.
14:19 ; 1 Cor. 10:23-24 )
6. Does this glorify God? ( Matt. 5:16 ; 1 Cor. 10:31 )
Reference: Page 130, [5][BCF1].
4.6. Anger and Bitterness
We are the sum of what we experienced in life and our reactions to these experiences. To
the extent we are offended, become angry and irritated, we are limited to that extent in
our spiritual walk.
( Rom. 12:10-11 ; Gal. 6:1 ) Our job is to restore, not to condemn or
criticize, so that we can establish God's Kingdom of peace on earth by
walking free of irritations, of criticism, of faultfinding, of blame shifting.
This is accomplished by purity of heart, love and prayers for each other,
consciousness of being in the spirit by faith ( Gal. 5:22-23 ).
( Eph. 4:31-32 ; Gal. 6:14 ) By an act of our will, we put-off, and by an
act of the will we put-on being a blessing. No longer controlled by life's
irritations, but we use these irritations as opportunities to reveal Christ
within to touch the other person(s).
( Matt. 12:34-35 ) No one or thing is the cause of your anger. The
offense reveals the spirit that is in you. Sinful anger reveals that you are
living to please self.
( Eph. 2:1-6 ) Desires of the flesh and mind are inhabited by envy,
jealousy, greed, and pride: the sources of anger. The enemy's job is to
keep you occupied and earthbound by these selfish feelings. This will keep
you from realizing the fullness of who and what you are in Christ Jesus.
( Rom. 5:3-5 ) Anger and bitterness are two noticeable signs of being
self-focused, and not trusting God's sovereignty in your life. Don't need to
protect your 'rights', the defense of self. The very things that upset you,
God will use to perfect and to motivate you to work through these
tribulations, becoming a blessing instead of a curse.
( 2 Pet. 1:4 ) Being a partaker of the divine nature, working through the
experiences of life God's way, we begin to realize that we are growing in
Christ, and truly being freed from the corruption of this world.
( Matt. 5:16 ; Eph. 4:1-3 ) Anger and bitterness are formidable
obstacles to biblical love, harmonious relationships, and maturity in Christ.
Failing to put off anger grieves the Holy Spirit and gives Satan a place in
your life obscuring your witness to others, and disrupting unity in the
body of Christ. Dealing biblically with anger and bitterness requires
wholehearted obedience to God's word in every circumstance and with
every person, even if your feelings dictate otherwise.
( 1 Pet. 1:13-16 ; Eph. 2:10 ; Phil. 3:13-14 ) Anger and bitterness
have no place in thought. We are to think dispassionately. The world lives
by experiences, by reason, by feelings, but we are to live by faith. We are
to live above experiences and reason. In order to think with security, we
must think about thinking. A thinking person realizes who and what he is
in Christ. He is above feelings and lives by his will based on the word of
God. He fights a good fight of faith, not feelings, and he pursues
excellencies being daily conformed to the image of Christ.
( Gen. 4:7 ; Prov. 24:10 ; Prov. 21:22 ) You are responsible for
controlling your spirit. Since God's word commands you to put away anger
and bitterness, then it is possible to do so.
( Luke 9:23 ; Gal. 5:16-17 ) Because of the ever-present temptation to
live for self rather than to live for God, you must obey God's word, pray
habitually, constantly depend on God's Spirit.
( Col. 1:10 ) You are not to allow anger to get the upper hand and gain
control of your mind or conduct, since Satan uses these opportunities to
affect your life. You must live in a manner to please the Lord no matter
how you feel.
( James 1:19-20 ) Quick to listen means to be quick to ask questions, to
get facts, to give time for the Holy Spirit to control you, then you can act
in a biblical manner.
Think Biblically
( Phil. 4:8 ; Ps. 23:1-6 ) We are to think biblically that God has promised to care for us
in any situation, no matter how unsettling it may seem. Discipline your mind to honor
and glorify God, to please Him in all situations. "Think" kind and tender thoughts toward
the very person with whom you are or have been irritated. Focus your thoughts on
solving the current problem ( James 1:5 ; James 3:13-18 ).
Speak Biblically
( Ps. 51:1-4 ; James 5:16 ; 1 John 1:9 ; Phil. 3:13-14 ) We are to speak biblically,
confess sins to the Lord and to those whom you have failed to love in a biblical manner.
Don't talk about your past accomplishments, sorrows or defeats, hurts and pains but talk
about the goodness of God in your life. Do not slander, gossip or use words that do not
edify ( Prov. 10:18 ; Eph. 4:29 ).
Act Biblically
( Col. 3:13 ; James 1:21 ) Forgive others readily as God has forgiven you. Meditate on
Scriptures related to overcoming anger and bitterness to remove the root of the foul
spirit within.
( Ps. 1:1 ) Identify all danger signals, such as situations, places and personal contacts
that bring temptation.
( Matt. 5:23-24 ) Make amends for wrongdoing and seek reconciliation.
( 1 Pet. 3:8-9 ) We are called to be a blessing especially to those who revile us.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Eph. 4:26-27,29
Devotion:
BSAF on Luke 6:27-31 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
( Phil. 4:5 ) Gentleness means forbearing, large-hearted, courteous,
generous, lenient, moderate. These are qualities which are opposite to
irritability, rudeness, abrasiveness. To put on gentleness, ask self:
1. "What or whom are you most likely to be irritable? What is it about
your surroundings that irritate you? About yourself? About friends,
associates, family? When are you most likely to be irritated? How do
you express irritability?" (A Homework Manual for Biblical
Counseling, Wayne Mack.)
2. Make plans to deal with these situations in your thinking, speaking
and acting patterns as described in the respective headings in the
above paragraphs. See Eph. 4:22-32 for communication guidelines
on how to biblical respond to life's circumstances.
3. Note: Do not suppress feelings of anger. Turn all offenses over to
God the Father, let Him deal with the situation. Ask Him for grace to
respond biblically ( 1 Pet. 2:23 ).
4.7. Depression
Perspective
Depression is essentially irresponsibility. There are some organic
malfunctions that may trigger feelings of depression. Most symptoms and
maladies defined as depression are the consequences of unbiblical habits
and/or sinful reactions to circumstances and other people. Depression
may be experienced by anyone and must be dealt with from God's
perspective and not from your own perspective or any other person's
philosophy.
( Gen. 4:3-7 ) God commands us by His word not to live by our feelings, but to decide
by my will to respond in a manner which is pleasing in His sight. To react to please self is
to be mastered by the reactions which is sin.
( John 15:8-12 ; James 1:22-25 ) Depression is not to be used as an excuse for you to
live in an unbiblical manner. Even if you feel depressed, you are still to live biblically.
Your thoughts, words, and actions are always to edify others and bring glory to God
instead of just obeying God's word when you "feel like it".
( Ps. 32:3-5 ; Ps. 38:1-10 ; Col. 3:25 ) Symptoms defined as 'depression' are
sometimes precipitated by sin which means you are living to please yourself instead of
living to please the Lord. If you do not repent, confess your self-centeredness and return
to living in a biblical manner, you will experience even further difficulties.
( 1 Pet. 3:10-12 ; Rom. 8:11-14 ; Heb. 4:15-16 ) To love life and see good days, you
must turn from doing evil and be obedient to God's word. In spite of 'feeling' depressed,
you can live biblically because of divine resources that God graciously provides for you.
By faith be in the spirit, see self in the Throne room looking at life from God's perspective
( Gal. 5:16 ; Rom. 8:2 ). Pursue peace and harmony, run after it, flee from fear,
agitating passions, and immorality ( Ps. 23:1,6 ).
( Rom. 14:17-18 ; 1 John 4:18-21 ; Phil. 4:6-7 ) The way you feel and the way you
view yourself, your relationships, and your circumstances are often indications of whether
you are living to please yourself or living to please the God. It is not the world or things
of the world that should occupy our thoughts and time, but are you approaching life from
God's perspective, living and thinking God's word. Fear, darkness, depression reveal an
absence of loving God and my neighbor. It is our thinking which refuses to be taught by
Christ or anyone else. This spirit exalts itself against God - the spirit of antichrist.
Hope
( John 16:33 ; Rom. 5:3-5 ; 1 Cor. 10:13 ) No matter how difficult any situation
appears, the Lord Jesus Christ has overcame it. God will not allow anything into your life
that is beyond His control or beyond your ability to handle it without sinning. Trials are
for your good, they will bring out the power of God in your life when you respond
biblically.
( 1 Pet. 1:6-7 ; 2 Cor. 4:7-10 ) All the terrible things that are happening to you are but
'light afflictions'. Look beyond the circumstances and see God in control, perfecting and
maturing you for an eternal destiny.
Change
( 1 Tim. 4:7-11 ; Rom. 6:11,13,19 ) All that I am, my talents, my time belong to the
Lord. A good steward is one who starts with God and from God. He puts off disobedience
to God's word, and puts on living a disciplined and obedient life out of a consistent desire
to please the Lord instead of self. Persistency is the key, it takes sweat and tears to
break lifelong habit patterns.
( Matt. 7:1-5 ; 2 Cor. 10:3-5 ; Col. 3:2,5-9 ) In order to put off sinful habits, you must
first identify them by examining your life in light of God's word. Once you have identified
sins, repent, confess, and immediately put these sins aside.
( Gal. 5:16 ; Eph. 3:16-21 ; 1 Pet. 4:11 ) As you put on righteous deeds in the power
of the Holy Spirit, you are to glorify God to demonstrate your love for Him and to please
Him in all things. We are to do regardless of how we feel. Be conscious of and practice
the Presence of Christ within at all times.
Practice
( Eph. 5:14-18 ; James 4:17 ; Col. 3:17,23-24 ) Establish a biblical schedule for
fulfilling your God given responsibilities, keeping the schedule regardless of feelings of
depression you may experience. Do all your work heartily as unto the Lord for His glory.
( 2 Cor. 4:10-12 ; Matt. 20:26-28 ; Phil. 2:3-7 ) Stop living to please self by following
God's commandments. Regard others as more important than yourself, be a servant to
God and others.
( 2 Cor. 12:7-10 ; Eph. 5:20 ; Heb. 12:1-2 ; Rev. 12:11 ) Do not be bitter about your
conditions, thank God for your circumstances or physical condition that you cannot
correct. But correct all deficiencies in your life that hinder you from serving God and
others. Share your sufferings with the Lord and deepen your faith.
( 1 Cor. 11:31 ; Eph. 4:29 ; Col. 4:6 ; 2 Cor. 10:5 ; James 1:25 ) Biblical self-
evaluation is necessary in every area of your life which includes your actions, your
relationships with others, your words and your thought life. As you obey God's word in all
areas of your life, you will receive the Lord's blessings.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Gen. 4:7
Devotion:
BSAF on Phil. 4:4 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Complete Section A.11, “Scheduling Worksheet” , and begin to re-
evaluate your use of time and talents to do what God wants you to do. Ask
God to help you do what you should do regardless of how you feel, plan a
schedule which gives you time to do all that you must do. Then get busy
fulfilling your responsibilities. Make "think and do" list of profitable things (
Section A.2, “Think And Do List” ) you can think about and do when you
are tempted to be despondent. Compare Phil. 4:8-9 .
Make a list of your abilities and gifts, see Rom. 12 . Make a list of specific
ways in which you can serve God and other people.
Study the following verses and list things that could be circumstantial causes
for depression: Ps. 32:3-4 ; Ps. 73:1-14 ; Gen. 4:6-7 ; Ps. 55:2-8 ;
Luke 24:17-21 ; 2 Sam. 18:33 ; 1 Sam. 1:7-8 ; Habakkuk 1:1-4 .
Reference: Page 319, [5][BCF1].
4.8. Fear and Worry
Fear invades and underlies the whole of life's activities such as: fear of
failure, of change, of success, of rejection, of being abandoned, of
loneliness, of the future, of the unknown and the endless list of phobias.
( Gen. 3:9-10 ; 1 John 4:18 ) Fear is the first emotion expressed by man, and the first
emotion dealt with by the Cross of Christ. Fear is replaced by love, faith works by love,
love action destroys the feelings of fear.
( Heb. 3:12-13 ) Main causes of fear are self-concerns, self-interest and self-protection.
Fear is really unbelief that Christ is not living within you.
Fear, worry, anxiety along with anger, bitterness, resentment, guilt, envy,
and other sins are just feelings. It is faith acting on God's word by one's
will, an act of love, that supersedes feelings.
( Gen. 4:7 ; Gen. 15:1 ) When God commands us to "Fear Not!", He is addressing our
will and our mind, not our emotions. You work through fear by an act of your will because
God is with you, willing you to love. Love casts out all fear ( 1 John 4:18 ).
( Gen. 1:26-28 ) God commands us to replenish and to subdue. Fear is a necessary part
of our design. Fear tells me something or someone who appears bigger than I am is
approaching and affecting my mind and my emotions. Fear is a red light that tells us
danger is about - to signal us to call upon God and in Him to face the fear - swallow it up
and go on to the next thing. We are to replace the fear with a deliberate trust and rest in
God who lives in us, drawing upon Him for wisdom, strength and ability. Thus, fear
triggers one more way in which God is manifested and revealed in our behavior.
( Rom. 12:1-2 ) Most of us have a belief bank full of junk. We are to renew the mind,
get the junk out, and replace it with thoughts of God's Presence. He is my Light, my
Salvation, whom shall I fear: for He will give me all I need as I seek His righteousness.
( Ps. 42:1-11 ) Talk to self, tell self who God is, rehearse this reality and fear will
properly disappear. For God can now be revealed in the situation.
( Ps. 23 ; Ps. 24 ; Ps. 27 ; Ps. 91 ; Deut. 28 ) Feelings only obey what I think. If
despair, then despair comes, if fearful then more of the same, etc. Truth in God must be
learned, that I know within that He is my strength, my adequacy, my wisdom, that His
angels are all about me! We control fear by believing the truth in God.
( Heb. 13:20-21 ) God is with me at all times, He will never leave or forsake me. God
loves me, accepts me and approves of me regardless of what others say or think.
( Matt. 5:43-44 ; 1 John 2:9-10 ) Regardless of what others do or not do, be always in
a state of forgiving offenses, develop a permanent state of reconciliation. Choose to love,
develop this disposition to love. It takes time for this idea to grow and develop into the
image of Christ because it is what Jesus did. Our blueprint states that we were made to
love, otherwise life does not work.
( 1 John 3:17 ) Love is an action, activated by compassion. We don't have to pray about
it, just do it! Don't have to ask for God's help, Holy Spirit is already in us, and it is our
choice to respond God's way allowing His love to be manifested.
( Phil. 4:13 ; 2 Cor. 12:7-9 ) Fear is part of living. We will always fear changes, new
situations, and a sense of inadequacy will surround all situations. All this does is reveal
the creatureness of my being and to remind me that I can't handle anything in my own
strength and wisdom. Rejoice that you can't handle it because in each and every
circumstance that you call upon the Lord Who is your strength, the more and more you
grow into Him.
( 1 Cor. 1:30 ) By faith and not by feelings, call upon the Lord and ask Him that His
thoughts become your thoughts, His strengths your strengths, His adequacy your
adequacy. This is what is called a normal Christian life.
( Prov. 24:10 ; Prov. 21:22 ) With diligence and perseverance you can be victorious in
all new situations and changes that life offers. The enemy will challenge your growth. Use
the barriers he sets up as opportunities to strengthen your faith until you become perfect
and complete, lacking in nothing.
( John 14:21 ; John 16:33 ) He will guide us into the unknown, new territories, new
ideas, new situations, and new revelations. Look forward to great opportunities to reveal
your potential in Christ. Areas that frighten, God has already given it to us in Christ. As
with Moses with just a staff in hand, go with whatever you have in hand, and see
miracles.
( 1 John 1:9 ; 1 Cor. 13:4-8a ; Col. 3:12-14 ; 2 Cor. 5:14-15 ; Phil. 4:6-9 ; 1 John
4:18 ) In order to deal biblically with fear, you must confess your self-centered fear to
God and fulfill your responsibilities in Christlike love regardless of your feelings.
( Matt. 6:33 ; Matt. 25:26 ; Prov. 16:9 ; Eph. 5:15-17 ; Col. 3:23-24 ) Worry is
wickedness and laziness, reveals a lack of trust in God. To overcome worry, make a plan
to accomplish today's task and do each task heartily as unto the Lord.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
1 John 4:18
Devotion:
BSAF on 1 John 4:18 ; John 16:33 ; John 15:5 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review Section A.8, “Freedom From Anxiety” , follow the instructions to
deal biblically with any problem you may have. Expect and look for miracles.
Reference: [24][Smith2].
Chapter 5. Healing The Soul Series
Table of Contents
5.1. Healing Presence
5.2. Transforming the Natural Self
5.3. What Makes a Man a Man
5.4. Needs of Man
5.5. Healing of the Soul
5.6. Mind and Will
5.7. Meditation Process
5.8. Steps to a Liberated Will
5.9. Healing Prayer for the Mind
5.10. Perfectionism
5.11. Schizophrenia (Double-Mindedness)
5.12. Transpersonal Psychology
5.13. Healed from Fear
5.14. Rejections
5.15. Attitude and Behavior
5.1. Healing Presence
Perspective
( Ezek. 36:27 ; Eph. 3:16,17 ) To experience this prayer fulfilled in our lives (as
described in these verses) is to find our true center, the 'home within'. From this center,
we 'abide' in Christ and He in us, the very root of our being.
Hope
( Matt. 6:14-15 ; Matt. 5:23-24 ; 1 John 1:9 ; Heb. 10:22 ) Barriers that keep us
from realizing our 'true center' in Christ are our failures to forgive others as well as
receiving forgiveness from God for our own sins. One major area is our guilt and shame,
and the failure to acquire the virtue of self-acceptance in Christ. The blood of Christ
completely wipes out our past, making us fully acceptable in Christ.
( Phil. 3:13-14 ) The extent a person lives out of his diseased and corrupted attitudes
and feelings toward the self to that extent he will fail to find and live from his true center.
We must die to misconceived attitudes and the illusory self, else we cannot abide fully in
Christ.
( John 14:20 ; Col. 1:27 ) Christ descends to us and into us. He incarnates us. We are
indwelt by God Who is above us, before He is within us and beneath us.
( James 4:8 ; Heb. 10:22 ) We look up to God who is other, and sovereign over all.
Thank God that Christ's Spirit is within us, saving us, hallowing us, linking us to Him.
Change
( Phil. 2:12-13 ) By practicing His Presence within, man and God work together. God will
not do what you can do, that is, to choose. At the point you choose, it is God who does
the doing. Passivity is waiting for God to deal with sin when it has been taking care of at
the cross. My job now is to unite my will with His and allow righteousness to flow.
( 1 Cor. 12:7-11 ) The gifts of the Spirit are the nature of the manifestations of God. By
practicing the Presence of Christ, we lay the foundation for understanding and moving of
the gifts of the Spirit.
( Matt. 5:23-24 ) Healing gifts of the Spirit may face two big barriers to wholeness:
failure to forgive others, and failure to receive forgiveness. Faith, knowledge, love, moral
conduct, courage, hope, prayer, all have to do with Christ in us. Forgive and be forgiven,
daily cleansing of all slights and resentments keeps our union with Christ intact, and
allows the free flow of grace.
( Jer. 17:9-10 ) All kinds of hearts within us: broken, grieved, discouraged, proud,
wicked, trembling, double, subtle, perverse, sorrowful, haughty, fretting, heavy, jealous,
envious, evil, deceitful, hard, scheming, callous and so on. But Christ in us radiates
through us, making our two minds hallowed, as well as our feelings, wills, intellect,
faculties and our bodies. He completes us and we become: willing, perfect, tender, soft,
pure, upright, clean wise, merry , meek and lowly, honest and good, single, true,
compassionate and thankful and so on.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Col. 2:11-12
Devotion:
BSAF on Matt. 5:23-26
Put-Off/Put-On:
List any interpersonal conflicts and disputes. Prepare a failure list and make
plans to resolve and be reconciled by working columns l-4 of Section A.4,
“Victory Over Sin Worksheet .
Reference: See [19][Payne1] for further reading.
5.2. Transforming the Natural Self
Perspective
( Gen. 1:26-28,31 ; Gen. 2:3,7 ; 1 Cor. 15:47 ) Man was made before sin entered,
and he was made of dust and divinity, his fundamental nature. Made of the dust of the
ground is man's glory because in it man was to manifest the image of God. Sin is not in
'matter', it was never planted. Sin is not part of human nature as God designed it. Sin is
not a 'disease', but a rebellion against God.
In John 6:56-58 Jesus says we should let the very corpuscles of our blood , every nerve
and cell of our flesh, exhibit the new life that has been created in us. And to complete
what the first Adam failed to do, that is to transform the natural into the spiritual through
obedience.
Hope
( 1 Cor. 6:19-20 ) Our temple is a fleshly one, not a spiritual one. But being born-again
and becoming identified with the death of Christ, we exhibit His life in our mortal flesh.
The life of the Son of God is born in us; therefore, the perfection of that life enables us
not only to know what the will of God is, but to carry out His will in our mortal body.
( Exodus 33:20 ; Rom. 6:23 ; Eph. 2:1 ) We became subject to death not because we
are finite beings but because of sin. Whenever we touch sin, death is the result. No one
can see God and live, yet we do see God and live, but only by going through death. When
we are born-again, we are also experiencing death. For to be born-again we must die -
die to our claim to our right to ourselves. As we do, we receive the gift of eternal life,
which is "the gift of God in Jesus Christ Our Lord."
( Gen. 3:12-15 ) Adam and Eve did not blame themselves, both evaded the moral truth.
They admitted but did not confess. Either we refuse to say we have sinned or we admit
we have sinned and refuse to let God save us.
( Rom. 16:20 ; James 4:6-8 ; 1 John 1:9 ; Gen. 3:15 ) Whenever the conviction of
sin comes, we must pull it out into the light and confess it. When we realize the shame of
sin and accept God's forgiveness, an inwrought energy replaces the energy spent in the
sin. That energy is recovered in "the fruits of repentance." Man must deal with Satan
because man is responsible for his introduction into this world. It is man, through
redemption, who is to overcome Satan. And to do that which would exhibit the perfect
fulfillment of His prophecy regarding the serpent.
( Gen. 6:5 ; Jer. 17:9 ; Matt. 15:19 ; 1 Cor. 2:9-16 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ) Whenever we
choose to disregard God, we are acting out of our depravity. We can never rest on the
assumption that now that I am saved and sanctified, all that I choose and think are sure
to be right. Not by any means. If our choices and our thinking do not spring from a
determined recognition of God, we are depraved no matter what our spiritual experience
has been.
We transform the natural into the spiritual by daily putting-off and putting-on: to reflect
on the word of God, to learn the art of biblical meditation, to know the mind of Christ,
and to "apprehend all things" from His divine perspective.
Change
( Gen. 6:8-9 ; 2 Pet. 1:2-8 ) The only thing that keeps back God's grace and favor is
our sin and perversity. To walk with God as Noah is the 'trial' of faith. Spiritual character
is only developed as Noah's was-by standing loyal to God's character, no matter what
distress the trial of faith brings. As with Job and with Noah, the flood and the destruction
of mankind. God in His infinite mercy saves us by His judgment.
It is not judgment inaugurating salvation, but judgment that is salvation - with nations
and with the human race. The natural life is un-moral and unspiritual. It is translated into
the spiritual by obedience. We are to add to our lives all that character means. No one is
born either naturally or supernaturally with character, it must be developed. Nor are we
born with habits. We have to form godly habits on the basis of the new life God has
placed within us.
( Gen. 7:17,19,23-24 ; Gen. 8:10,15,18 ; Gen. 9:8 ; Luke 21:19 ; James 1:2-4 )
Check the instincts, the impulses, the reactions to sight, sense and circumstances. But
hold firm to God's covenant, His promises by faith, by the Word and by the Spirit. Noah
exhibited the humility of patience . Patience is not the same as endurance, for the heart
of endurance is frequently stoical, whereas the heart of patience which sees intuitively
and waits God's time in perfect confidence. Noah waited for God's time to leave the ark.
When He comes is a matter of indifference. What matters is that we walk with Him as we
wait.
( Gen. 2:2-3 ; Gen. 9:6-12 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ) All great blessings of God are finished and
complete, but they cannot be ours until we enter into relationship with Him on the basis
of His salvation. Waiting for God somehow to do something in us means we have no faith
in Him. We have to go out of ourselves to enter into the covenant of God, just as God
went out of Himself to enter into His covenant with man.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
2 Cor. 5:16-17 ; 1 Pet. 4:1-2
Devotion:
BSAF on Luke 21:19 ; Eph. 4:26,29 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Judge yourself by the following verses, and note areas where you failed to
translate the natural self into the spiritual. Establish plans by working
through Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” , Section A.2,
“Think And Do List” , Section A.8, “Freedom From Anxiety” , and/or
Section A.9, “Contingency Plan” to be conformed to the image of Christ (
Eph. 4:25-32 ; Rom. 12:9-21 ; Col. 3:1-17 ). This is a lifetime
commitment.
Reference: [7][Chambers1]
5.3. What Makes a Man a Man
Perspective
( Gen. 1:1-2 ; Gen. 1:26-28 ; Gen. 2:19-20 ; Gen. 3:1-6 ) When God spoke, He
spoke over that which was in disorder to create order and harmony. Created in God's
image, man, likewise, is given authority to speak into creation, to rule and reign, to have
dominion, to be fruitful, to multiply, to replenish, and to subdue. Therefore, when life is
chaotic, man is to speak, to say something, to do something, to get involved. If man
remains silent as Adam in the garden ( Gen. 3:6 ), then he is sinning. Thus, to be a man
is to be godly, by speaking and by doing, by getting emotionally involved in order to
establish the Kingdom of God and His will on earth.
Hope
( Matt. 22:36-40 ; Luke 9:23-24 ; Rom. 7:5 ; Eph. 5:25 ; Prov. 3:5-7 ; Prov. 4:20-
25 ) God's purpose for us is to love others, to build relationships, to move into other
peoples lives, and help them move towards God. As in marriage, relationships can be
messy. Husband needs to move towards wife to build a relationship with her. In the
process, she may fight, reject, resist, disappoint, not respond. This is where sacrifice
comes in, to be willing to be hurt and rejected in the process of moving towards his wife.
This is entering into chaos and the mystery of relationships.
Likewise with wife who is to complement, and encourage and build up husband to fulfill
his role as leader of the home.
As Christ was rejected and crucified, we likewise, proceed to save that which is being
lost. The immediate self that faces the externals of life, must die to the instinct of self
preservation, to fear of failure, to withdraw and remain silent-waiting for certainty. At this
point, he is to call upon the Lord, remain silent in His presence, and He will move and
speak through man which brings His presence into the situation, and restoration begins.
( Gen. 1:28 ; Gen. 18:19 ; Deut. 11:19-20 ; Deut. 13:4 ; Ps. 103:17-21 ; Matt.
6:24 ; Eph. 6:6-7 ) Man is to move into that which is uncertain for that is his function
and purpose in life, to create order and harmony. Man's mandate is to be fruitful, to
multiply, to bring seed to maturity, to replenish, to rule and to have dominion. But man
must initiate, to choose to move forward. At the point he moves, God will provide the
wisdom, strength and ability to accomplish the task at hand.
Life is but one of mysteries and uncertainties, such as: who to marry, which job to take,
which home to buy, how to deal with nasty or unpleasant people, how to discipline
children, how to love spouse, etc. Simply put, the answer lies in the taking the first step
forward, then to rely on God, and in the face of chaos, ask God what to do, do it, and
trusts God for the results.
Change
( Gen. 1:2 ; Gen. 3:6 ; Matt. 22:36-39 ; Eph. 4:25-32 ) God moved into chaos and
darkness and created life and order by speaking. Man's natural tendency is to avoid
darkness, to avoid messy situations by shutting down emotionally, by withdrawing and
doing something else, placing the burden on others. God created us to enter into life and
establish order and harmony , to love our neighbors, to build relationships, to move into
other peoples lives and move them towards God.
( Gen. 4:7 ; Josh. 1:2-9 ; Prov. 3:5-6 ; Isa. 55:8-9 ; Matt. 20:25-28 ; James 4:6-8
) We hate chaos and uncertainties, we want certainty in life. To follow the Lord's teaching
is to challenge and to run against the grain of the world system orchestrated by the
enemy to destroy man.
We are inclined to avoid challenges by ignoring the problem, avoid the situation and
devote our energies to things we can manage, put the responsibility on others, become
dogmatic to cover our fears, or dull our sense of inadequacy by drink, drugs,
pornography, etc.
( John 15:5-7 ) Realize and accept this tendency to avoid confrontation. You cannot
handle life alone. Abide in God, and God in you and through you, to enable you to speak
the word of truth , thus, creating order and harmony out of chaos and darkness.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Put-Off/Put-On:
As spiritual head of the home, man is responsible for his part in establishing
the Kingdom of God and His will on earth. Review your areas of
responsibility. Are you extending God's Kingdom as husband, as father, and
as a leader in the workplace, community, church, social concerns, politics,
etc. To gain insight in areas that need addressing, list your failures. Review
Section 12.12, “Maximum Husband and Father” and Chapter 12,
Strengthening Your Marriage Series .
Note:
( Prov. 14:12 ) Do not pray your will or the problem to God, pray God's words dealing
with the situation back to Him, wait till His will becomes your will. From this you will
receive power to do (strength, ability, wisdom), and His provisions will follow. Thus,
prayer, power, provisions are the means to establish God's kingdom and His will
(righteousness and justice) on earth.
When the wife, the woman, exercises initiative in her respective role to create order and
harmony out of chaos such as completing her husband or fulfilling a need that is not
being met, she also employs inherent masculine attributes within the feminine mystique.
As such woman shares equally in the creative process.
Reference: [16][Mack2]
5.4. Needs of Man
World's psychology
World's view of man is that man is central, that man's personal needs are foundational to
man's problems.
Man's personal problems stem from his needs.
Perspective
Man is not to view or consider himself worthwhile, because his basic need is for God to
regard man as worthwhile.
( 1 Cor. 4:3-4 )
1. Not a matter of self-evaluation. This results in pride, boasting, self-satisfaction on
one side. On the other side, low self-esteem, depression, envy, etc.
2. Not a matter of other's evaluation of us either, the desire for approval and
acceptance.
3. It is a matter of God's evaluation, this is the key . Doesn't matter what I think or
what others think, but it matters WHAT God thinks.
Key: Take focus off self and look to God.
Man is bound to God, accountable to God, has his very being in God, sustained by God,
given gifts by God, made alive by God, man saved, redeemed and judged by God.
Therefore, we must not start with man; but man with God. Man's loss of value was due to
sin. Thus, sin must be dealt with above all other factors.
Creation : ( Gen 1:26-28 ) God created man in His own image,
therefore, man is of great value and significance to God. Man given all
power and wisdom necessary to run this earth. All that man needed to do
was to obey.
Sin : Sin made man useless and vain. Man was created without any lack
whatsoever, created significant and secure. God created man to have an
ethical and moral relationship and to be accountable to God.
Problem : Man's problem derived from sinful wants and desires, not from
unmet need. Man wants immortality, salvation, freedom from guilt; wants
meaning and fulfillment, happiness, riches, sense of perfection, self-
worth: wants to be God without God.
( Matt. 6:33 ; John 14:21,27 ) God gives us all we need as a by-
product. All we need to do is to obey: to live by love, to live by faith, and
put His Word first in our lives.
Insecurity and Insignificance :This is due to sin because it is sin that
makes one feel unworthy. The fruit of sin are all the negatives of life: poor
self-image, instability, depression, envy, anger, frustration, etc. What a
person needs is the kingdom of God and His righteousness. This is what
makes one feel worthy before God. Man needs a new obedience, a
renewed mind. God is always there, ready always to meet our needs. He
never leaves a vacuum.
Gospel : Gospel is not given to us to meet some unmet need. Gospel met
man's need in respect to his sin problem. Thus, the biblical view of man is
that man starts off with God, being bound to God, accountable to Him.
God will take care of his needs.
Therefore, at the bottom of man's heart is a sin problem, not some unmet need. As he
holds himself accountable to God through the blood of the cross, God will take care of all
his needs.
Seven Factors to Healthy Self-Image
1. ( Eph. 1:4 ) Knowledge that I have inherent worth. God chose me before the
foundation of the earth. I don't have to perform to get this value or sense of
worth.
2. ( Rom. 8:13-17 ) Knowledge that I am secure, that belong. I am a citizen of
heaven, and adopted into God's family.
3. ( Col. 2:9-10 ) Knowledge that I am in Christ, that I am complete in Him. I don't
have to complete my self or work towards it. I move from this source of wisdom
within me, and work out and fulfill what God has already planned for my life on
this earth.
4. ( 2 Cor. 5:17-21 ) Knowledge of a sense of purpose, reason for living. God
sends me as He did His Son to be an ambassador for Christ on earth, to reconcile
others to Himself.
5. ( Rom. 5:17 ) Knowledge of personal confidence that as I walk in the Spirit,
controlled by the Spirit, I reign in life through righteousness. As I stand firm, the
devil must leave.
6. ( Phil. 4:13 ) Knowledge of the sense of empowerment. Realize I can never fail
in anything I undertake. All I need to do is obey God. His strength carries me
through to a successful conclusion.
7. ( Rom. 8:37-39 ) Knowledge of competence that as I clothe myself with Christ, I
proclaim the victory of the cross in all endeavors.
World Focus : Positive thinking, think your way through it by will-power. This is limited
to the physical and to the bodily senses leading to self exaltation.
God's View : Think God's truth. The Holy Spirit is the power that accomplishes through
the inner man to the outer man.
Thus, see self in God's eyes, His concepts, His ideas. He created me in His image, filled
me with the Holy Spirit, endowed me with gifts and talents. He gives me the power to do
what He has already worked and willed in me to do ( Rom. 12:12-13 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ).
My job now is to maximize what God put into me, and that by simple obedience to His
word. All my needs will be provided for as a by-product ( Matt. 6:33 ).
5.5. Healing of the Soul
Perspective
( Luke 9:23-24 ; Rom. 6:11 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ; Heb. 5:14-15 ; James 1:17 ) The
presence of the self, the subjective self, the old nature, the false self of unconscious
unreality, subsists by feelings, the dust of the earth. This phony self is ever present to
substitute for the reality of living by the true self, the self in union with the Holy Spirit.
The old self is concerned with its own survival, to feed its ego needs by the externals and
experiences of life - a co-dependency hatched by the world, the flesh and the devil.
To practice the death of this egoistic self is to lift the sights of our souls from the
horizontal plane of the earth to an otherworldly transcendental one. This is the wisdom
from the Spirit of God which comes down to us in the pattern of the Incarnation. Christ
came down from above, the Holy Spirit is poured out from above, the new birth is from
above: all experiences of God's Presence come down to us from heaven as word and
spirit.
Hope
( Ps. 107:20 ; Acts 17:28 ; Gal. 2:20 ; Col. 1:10-11 ; Col. 1:27 ) Healing of the soul
is a process to separate the false self from the true self. Christ is with us whether or not
we apprehend Him. His Presence is a concrete reality but immaterial, and it takes
constant perseverance to practice His Presence in the realities of daily living. To practice
His presence is not a 'method' but a 'Person'. We cease to look for signs or sensory proof
but rather to delight ourselves in Him. We practice His presence with us as we read
Scriptures, as we pray, as we walk, as we do our duties at home, at work, at church, and
wherever we breathe and interact with others: to make Him known to others through us.
( Ps. 95:7 ; Acts 17:11-12 ; Matt. 4:4 ; 2 Tim. 3:15 ) As you listen to His words, and
you walk according to His word, the healing process becomes a constant. The first
principle in listening to God is taking sacred texts into our spirits and souls by prayerful
meditation upon them. Thereby, His words 'abide in us' and the word aflames within,
making our wills one with His whereby we begin to grasp the depth of His love ( Eph.
3:18-19 ).
Change
( Col. 3:5-15 ; 2 Tim. 2:19-26 ) One must be separated from the 'old man', the sinful,
the neurotic, the sickly compulsive, and no longer define ourselves by our sins, our
neurosis and our deprivations: but by Him whose healing life cleanses and indwells us.
( Jer. 2:13 ; Rom. 6:12-14 ) Seek no longer to soothe your feelings by looking to
others, to possessions or position, to fulfill sense of acceptance and approval. Put all of
this at the feet of Jesus: the depravities of rage and lusts, or the deprivations of
faithfulness, anxiety, emptiness, compulsions, addictions, and fears. Acknowledge all
these sins, accept responsibility for them, then discuss them in prayer, in conversation
with God. Listen , and you will receive guidance and the word that breaks the bondages.
( Isa. 10:27 ; Mark 11:22-26 ; Matt. 5:36-37 ; 1 John 1:7 ) We put no trust in our
character by vowing, pledging ourselves to do anything. Rather than trusting in our own
trust, we must trust in the Lord. We must fling ourselves clean over onto God and wash
our hands of the consequences, making ourselves incapable of any self interest. Faith is
not the means whereby we take God to ourselves for our own exclusive purposes; faith is
the gift of God whereby He expresses His purposes through us. It is faith 'in' God , not in
ourselves.
( Matt. 5:48 ; Rom. 12:1-2 ; Rom. 8:1-2 ; 2 Cor. 5:17,21 ; Eph. 4:22-24 )
Circumcision or sanctification which it symbolizes is the decision to cut away all self-
idolatry, and abandon to God entirely. The old nature and the new have to be made one.
The old has to be turned into a noble nature by the incoming of God. The new disposition
is the one in which God is all.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Col. 2:10-11
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Ask God for help in noting and breaking patterns where you are seeking God
to fulfill your purposes (self-idolatry) rather than allowing God to use you for
His purposes. It took Abraham over twenty plus years to move from trusting
self to making God all in all ( Heb. 5:14 ).
Reference: [7][Chambers1]
Attachment: Meditating on the Ten Commandments
Matt. 22:37-40
Refine your soul by meditating upon the Ten Commandments, one commandment a day
for ten days or for any period of time. List areas in which the world, the flesh, and the
devil have taken precedence over the Presence of God in your life. List these offenses,
confess and repent and begin life anew in these areas. To assist in this regard, here are
some ideas for your consideration:
1. THOU SHALT HAVE NO OTHER GODS BEFORE ME. "Any offense against 'any one'
of God's Ten Commandments or any false worship, are deliberate offenses
against God and His First Commandment."
2. THOU SHALT NOT MAKE UNTO THEE ANY GRAVEN IMAGE. "We are to bring every
thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. 'Unless our imaginations are
filled with His Presence, His word, we will default to lesser images', and from this
alien strongholds (images) may develop."
3. THOU SHALT NOT TAKE THE NAME OF THE LORD THY GOD IN VAIN. "We are to
be the salt and light and to progressively grow and mature into the image of
Christ, else our talk and walk is in vain."
4. REMEMBER THE SABBATH DAY, TO KEEP IT HOLY. "Every day belongs to the
Lord. As His representatives on earth, we are to dress, to act and to participate in
a manner that reflects His Presence."
5. HONOR THY FATHER AND MOTHER. "We are to honor the office and the authority
as ordained by God of parents, of civil and responsible authorities."
6. THOU SHALL NOT KILL. "Killing can be done through jealousy, immaturity,
egoism, vanity, false pride, indecencies, indifference, a lack of affection to a loved
one."
7. THOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY. "All forms of impure actions and abuses to
the flesh can be listed under this Commandment."
8. THOU SHALL NOT STEAL. "Denying, depriving, or failing to give due credit, honor
and respect to another person".
9. THOU SHALL NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS AGAINST THY NEIGHBOR. "Lying about,
belittling or disgracing someone through slander, jealousy or envy."
10. THOU SHALT NOT COVET. "Within the recesses of your being, the inner man, you
should not even give a single thought to self-interest. But seek first the Kingdom
of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you".
As you faithfully examine and judge yourself, look for and expect the Presence of the
Lord.
Reference: [32][Willard1]
5.6. Mind and Will
Preface:
( Rom. 7:18,25 ; Rom. 8:10 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ) With the mind, I am to honestly face the
truth and admit my inability to cope with any problem. But by my will, I open the door to
lay hold of God's resources. Here is the secret of the will: not that I will by my will-power
to accomplish, but that my will is simply to open the door so as to receive His power and
performance. "For me to will is present……" and now Lord it is your performing that does
it. "
Will Principle:
( John 7:17 ; Matt. 12:10-13 ) Jesus always ask us something we can do if we will. We
are to do it without trying to figure it out first. . But if you will 'do', then you shall
understand. It is the inner withered will which produces every outward withered condition
in life. Once the inner government of our will is in perfect harmony with His will, He can
move from this inner beachhead to fix up all the outward withered conditions in life.
Knowing and doing is a constant pathway, a constant cooperation between the mind and
will. God takes the initiative in giving man what he needs to know. Then man is
responsible for the choice of his will and God does the performing (doing) through man. .
God only requires us to walk in the light we have, that is, to obey what we know to be
the truth now !
Restoration:
( Gen. 1:26 ; Eph. 3:3-4 ; Phil. 3:13-14 ; 2 Tim. 1:9-10 ) Jesus came to restore us
through inner spiritual development, like a flower bud moving on to full blossom unto the
full measure of the fullness of God. "God said let us make man under Our Shadow, as Our
representative." God has a two-fold calling and purpose for man:
1. as sons to be as His shadows and;
2. as fathers to be His representatives.
God made man an original - a "Somebody" who exercises dominion over creation and
who is personally capable of free choices. He also made man to be an IMAGE - one who
reveals God and by so doing he himself becomes a "nobody". Man is a finite copy of
Sovereign Originator and Determinator of all. As an IMAGE, man is a self-effacing
revealor of God and His attributes.
Man was created to be a "Somebody" who wills to be a "Nobody" that God may be all in
all. Thus, man fulfills his two-fold purpose and calling: being a father for Him and a son
unto Him.
Being:
( Gal. 2:20 ) It is in Christ that we can manifest the balance of representing, 'from the
Father' and living 'unto the Father' Unto God through Jesus we are created sons, but on
earth, we are to be an earthly father-a representative for God. When we truly learn to be
a father 'for Him', and know how to be a son 'unto Him', then it is God Who accomplishes
His 'doing' through us. As we learn to be , God is free to do through us. Our effective
'doing' is simply fulfilling our call in 'being'.
( John 6:28-29 ) It is not our working, but our belief. For belief is literally by-life - the
things one lives by: then God does the working through us.
See also Unto Full Stature by Deverne Fromke.
5.7. Meditation Process
Perspective
( Rom. 12:1-2 ) It is our thoughts that produce our life-styles. What we are in our
thoughts today, we will be in our lifestyle tomorrow. We who have come into Christ from
the Egypt of the world must now be wholly transformed by replacing the foolishness of
the wisdom of the world with God's wisdom that centers on Christ. Thus, renewing the
mind is bringing our thoughts into submission to that revealed in the word of God, that
we may walk in true wisdom.
Hope
( Josh. 1:8 ) Meditation as the Bible defines it may be understood as the focusing of my
mind upon one object - the mind of God which he has put into our language, the Bible. It
is holding that word in my mind to be illumined and explained by the Spirit Who dwells
within me. Allowing the word to invade all my logic and reasoning, destroying the old way
of thinking, preparing a new view of life under God.
( Deut. 6:6-9 ; Col. 3:1-3 ; Phil. 4:8 ) We are responsible for the state of our minds.
All our actions flow from our thoughts. Today's actions are but the belated results of what
our thoughts have been dwelling on for the last month. We are commanded to order our
thoughts and direct them to things above, then God through His word will do the rest.
Change
( Luke 5:16 ; Luke 6:12 ; Matt. 14:23 ) To live on a deeper level, we must cultivate
the art of quieting our thoughts so that we may hear the voice of the Holy Spirit; and to
resist the presence of every idea of the past and present that may enter my mind. As
with Jesus, we need the mind of God to speak to me and illumine the word. This can only
be done when my thoughts and prayer are expressed in a quiet and still spirit as I pray.
( Ps. 42:3-5 ; Luke 24 ) As with David do not let self talk to you, you talk to self.
Regardless of the situation, your hope is in God, not in what you see and what your
emotions are telling you. Share your disturbed feelings with the Lord, get it out of your
system as the disciples did with Jesus on the road to Emmaus. Thus, being still, you will
be able to hear the words of Jesus. In the stillness, the Christian meditation is the
replacing of your thoughts with His thoughts. Do not say "I will not think of this", but
rather, "I will think of that."
( Rev. 2:7,11,17 ; Eph. 1:17-19 ) Scripture calls upon us to use our ears. In our new
birth we received spiritual ears, the ability to hear God clearly. First get self quiet, read a
passage of Scripture and get ready to listen. Ask question of what you are reading, only
with questions can you get answers. The Holy Spirit prepares us for His answers by filling
our minds with questions.
( Josh. 1:8 ; James 1:21 ) Constantly hearing the word tends to memorization of the
passage you are meditating on. Hold the passage in your mind and pray that the Holy
Spirit will open your mind and reveal what He is saying to you. Learn to pray sentence
prayers: "Lead me into all truth", "Be to me the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the
knowledge of Jesus." When truths are revealed ,turn this into praise and worship,
thanking God for His wisdom.
( Eph. 4:22-32 ; James 1:22-25 ) Renewing of the mind is not just an exercise, but the
actual bringing about of a new lifestyle that is aligned to God's word spoken to our minds
by the written word of God. With every unveiling of God's word to our minds is the call to
do and to be. What the word of God is commanding me to be, the Holy Spirit within
empowers me to be. The Scripture then becomes to me a description of who I am in
union with Christ.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Josh. 1:8
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Take a pressing sin problem or pressures of whatever sort, talk it over with
God first: get it out of your system, to prepare yourself to listen. Look up
Scriptures via the concordance that deal with the issue, study the passage or
passages, meditate on the essentials, dwell and memorize until you get
answers from God. Then begin the practice of what you learned.
Note : To get answers: be still before the Lord; prepare your ears to listen;
meditate on what you heard, then practice what you learned. Be still, listen,
meditate, practice.
Reference: [25][Smith3]
5.8. Steps to a Liberated Will
Four Steps to a Liberated Will
( Rom. 7:8,24 ; 2 Cor. 8:12 )
1. First step is to accept responsibility for being what we are, and doing what we do.
2. Discover the places and effectiveness of the will.
3. Understand the importance of a full liberation of the will as it cooperates with the
Holy Spirit.
4. Learn how to live in the will.
Illustration
A strong-willed wife rules the home, what should the husband do? (See Section 5.3,
“What Makes a Man a Man” )
1. As head of the home, he, not wife, is responsible.
2. Man must exercise his will to stand with God as head of the home.
3. He sees that God not only wants him to will His will but to accept the liberation of
his will from his feelings.
4. And finally, to take the abiding position to live in the will of God.
Maturity
( Matt. 7:1-5 ) Honestly facing and accepting responsibility for conditions of life; blaming
others is infantile, to face-up is the beginning; seeing the 'reality', not the illusion as by
divine illumination of the importance place for the will in God's intention
Provision
( Rom. 12:1-2 ) God has made ample provision at the Cross that by our union in His
death every vestige of self-will may be put down and the liberated will is free to wholly
co-operate with God. The hub of life is to be in the center of God's will. We can align our
wills with His, can make the victory a joint victory-a complete fusion of our will with God's
will.
Obedience
( 1 Cor. 3:21-23 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ) To live the God centered life is taking the theological
fact (doctrine), and acting upon this fact which becomes a life-giving truth, the put-off
and put-on. Then all things become ours in Christ.
Union with God
( Ps. 31 ) In union with God, the Master Gear, we do not need to ask for things. They
automatically become operative. God becomes the how, where, when, and why.
vs. 4-5: The How ... "for Thou art my strength. Into Thy hand I commit
my spirit ..."
vs. 8: The Where ... "Thou hast set my feet in a large room ..." To deny
our own independence and to accept complete dependence on God is only
to allow God to enlarge the potential capacity of the human heart. Being
made in the image of God, we are capable of almost unlimited extension
in all directions.
vs. 15: The When ... "My times are in Thy hands ..." Who else but God
can understand the proper living in His universe. How blessed to leave our
anxious will enmeshed into His own will and know in reality 'there is a
time and season to every purpose under the sun'. Surely He Who sets the
timing of the universe will keep men in perfect timing as they live in union
with Him.
vs. 3: The Why ... "therefore for Thy name's sake, lead me and guide me
..." We are to be in gear with God's will for His glory, for His purpose, for
His satisfaction. Thus, the secret of 'living' in His will is living wholly for
His glory.
Thomas Aquinas : "It is clear that he does not pray who, far from
uplifting himself to God, requires that God should lower Himself to him,
and who resorts to prayer not to stir the man in us to will what God wills,
but only to persuade God to will what the man in us wills."
Reference: [9][Fromke1]
5.9. Healing Prayer for the Mind
"Lord Jesus Christ, I ask You to enter into this person who has need of your healing in the
depths of the mind. I ask You to come, Lord, as a careful housekeeper might come into
the house that has long been closed and neglected. Open all the windows and let in the
fresh wind of Your Spirit. Raise all the shades, that the sunlight of Your Love may fill the
house of this soul. Where there is sunlight, there cannot be darkness.
Therefore I rejoice that as the light of Your love now fills this mansion of the soul, all
darkness shall flee away. And indeed in Your name I speak to that darkness, gently
telling it that it cannot abide here in this one whom You have redeemed upon the Cross.
Look and see, O Lord, whether there be any ugly pictures on the walls - pictures of old
distressful and horrifying wounds of the past. And if there be such pictures, take them
down and give to this memory-house pictures of beauty and of joy. So out of all the
ugliness of the past make beauty. O Lord, for it is ever Your nature to make beauty.
Transform old sorrows into the power to comfort others Who have sorrowed. Heal old
wounds by your redemptive love, and turn them mysteriously into a love that heals the
wounds of others.
"Go back O Lord, through all the rooms of this memory-house. Open every closed door
and look into every closet and bureau drawer and see if there be any dirty and broken
things that are no longer needed in one's present life, and if so, O Lord, take them
completely away. I give thanks, for this is the promise of the Scriptures: As far as the
east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us ( Ps. 103:12 ).
Look, O Lord, upon any memories that may come up from the deep mind as these words
are meditated upon, and in Thy mercy fulfill in this Thy servant that forgiveness
accomplished long ago on Calvary.
"Go back even to the nursery in this memory-house - even to the years of childhood.
Here, also, open windows long sealed and let in the gentle sunlight of Your love. Here
more than anywhere, Lord, make everything clean and beautiful within. Take a broom of
mercy and sweep away all dirt from the floor of this memory-room, even the confusion
and the horror and the shame of ancient memories, perhaps of childish and
uncomprehended sins, perhaps of the sins of the parents who should have been as God
Himself to the child and who were not. Take a clean cloth, O Lord, and wash away all
dust and wipe away every stain from the walls and from the furniture. Purge this Your
child with hyssop, O Lord, that the heart may be clean. Wash this one that the soul which
is created in Your image and after Your own likeness may be whiter than snow. Look
within the closets and under the furniture and see whether there be any broken or dirty
toys, any old unclean rags of memory that are surely not needed anymore at all in the
adult life. And if so, O Lord, take them entirely away; gather them into Your own
redemptive love, that the burden of them may rest upon the soul no more.
"Follow the soul of this Your child all the way back to the hour of birth and heal the soul
even of the pain and the fear of being born into this darksome world. Restore in the soul
that bright memory of Your eternal being that is not exactly a memory, but which is
rather an emanation, an unconscious infilling of the eternal radiance from which this one
was born. And if even before birth the soul was shadowed by this human life and was
darkened by the fears and sorrows of the human parents, then I pray that even those
memories or impressions may be healed, so that this one may be restored to Your
original pattern, the soul as free and as clean as though nothing had ever dimmed its
shining.
Thus, I pray, O Lord, that You will restore the soul as You made it to be and will quicken
and awaken in it all those creative impulses and ideas that You have placed therein, so
that whatever Your purpose may be for its human pilgrimage, that purpose may be
fulfilled.
"'He restoreth my soul,' so said David long ago. 'He leadeth me in the paths of
righteousness for His name's sake.' ( Ps. 23:3 ).
"I give thanks, O Lord, knowing that this healing of the soul is Your will and is the very
purpose of the giving of Your life for us, and therefore it is now being accomplished and
by faith I set the seal upon it."
Adapted from the prayer for the healing of the soul by Agnes Sanford. [21][Sanford1]
5.10. Perfectionism
Perspective
( Gen. 1:26-28 ) God's word is the source of life which enables man to exist in a blessed
state. To reject God's word is to default to the word of Satan who says we can be
complete in ourselves. To reject God's word is to allow fear to enter as a constant
because we can never be complete unless we live by God's word.
( Gen. 3:1-5 ) Be as God, be perfect and independent. Shame came as they realized
they were not perfect. Without God in their consciousness - separated from His Spirit -
now on their own, trying to be god by their own wisdom and strength, they allowed the
spirit of competition, the spirit of self-consciousness, the spirit of self-interest to prevail.
The issue is a quest for completeness. Man is designed by God to focus on and to help
complete others. By so doing he completes himself. The need to be complete is inherent
in man but this is only possible when man lives by the word of God. By the power of the
Holy Spirit, man is enabled to apply the word which conforms man to the image of Christ.
Accordingly, this image is one of self donation in the Spirit of Christ to consider others of
great value and importance ( Luke 9:23-25 ; Phil. 2:3-4 ).
This is accomplished as we put-off self-effort and rely on the Holy Spirit to lead and guide
us in all of life's functions in a spirit of purity and holiness - being God conscious -
revealing the character of God through us to the world. The emphasis, therefore, is to
stop trying to be god, and let God be God for us, in us, as us ( Gal. 2:20 ; Col. 1:27 ).
Humanism
Who I am is my performance as rated by someone. Since God is not or no longer in the
scheme of life, there is a constant need to be accepted and approved by others, a never
ending cycle to be perfect and complete in their eyes. Rejection and shame, a sense of
incompleteness, awaits at every corner. To counter this state of anxiety, man looks to
himself, to his accomplishments, to the things of the world, and to the approval and
acceptance of others to fulfill his needs. This quest for gratification, for the longings of
the mind, for assurance of one's own resources and reliance on earthly things leads to
emptiness, futility and destruction ( 1 John 2:16 ).
Elements of Perfectionism
Independence: Make myself perfect as God without God.
Shame: Looking at myself, seeing imperfection, brings on shame and
embarrassment.
Rejection: Emphasis is on my own needs, and I will do anything to save
myself even to the point of destroying others.
Perfectionism: Who I am now is dependent upon my performance and the
rating of my performance. Need acceptance and approval of others even
of God.
Solutions
( Col. 2:10 ; John 16:8-13 ) We can be complete only in God.
( 1 John 1:7 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ) As we obey His commandments, He works in us to
complete us.
( Eph. 4:22-24 ) Our job is to put-off the obsession with the self, and put-on the true
self: Jesus Christ.
( Matt. 22:37-39 ) The emphasis is on God to fill us with His Presence. As we allow His
divine wisdom to penetrate our intellect, our memories, our emotions and our wills, we
will be able to love as He loves.
Key: We are imperfect. God uses trials and temptations to reveal these imperfections
in order to prompt us to turn to Him to complete the process began in the 1st Adam.
Through our human spirit, the Spirit of God fulfills and completes our souls, clearing away
the areas of imperfections, to enable us to do the things Jesus did: to bless others and to
destroy the works of the devil.
5.11. Schizophrenia (Double-Mindedness)
Perspective
( Isa. 29:13 ; Matt. 6:22 ; James 1:8 ; Amos 3:3 ; 2 Cor. 6:14 ) Double minded man
is a man who minds on two souls, a man of two minds - hesitating, dubious, irresolute -
unstable and unreliable and uncertain about everything (that he thinks, feels, decides).
Forces acting upon the person causing problem behavior are forces distorting one's ability
to perceive or evaluate the world as it is in reality or self-induced forces that cause one to
misread or mislead one's self or others.
Schizophrenia is a disturbance, distortion or disintegration of the development of the
personality resulting in a "split personality" .
Hope
( Prov. 28:1 ; 1 John 1:7-9 ) The behavior of any given counselee stems fundamentally
from organic defects or from sinful behavior. In case of bizarre behavior careful medical
examination may be in order to detect any glandular or other chemical malfunction -
brain damage, toxic problems, etc. If problem is not organic or not only organic then
counsel may be made on the supposition that such behavior must stem from sinful life
patterns.
( Eph. 4:26 ; Prov. 28:13 ) After careful medical examination to detect any glandular or
other chemical malfunction, and reasonably assurance that (at base) the problem is not
organic, one will counsel on the supposition that such behavior must stem from sinful
patterns. What is due to sin can be changed; there is no such certainty if schizophrenia is
largely due to other factors.
( Jere 17:9 ; Rom. 5:20 ; 1 Pet. 3:12-16 ) Man is largely responsible for his behavior,
even when it is of a bizarre nature. It is not impossible to command the control of one's
emotions. By prayer, one can change in attitude and actions. A Christian can control his
bodily functions and states as God intended him to. Counselor deals with schizophrenia in
the same manner as he would in confronting those who have other problems occasioned
by sinful living patterns.
Change
Overcoming three personalities: (1) Rejection, (2) Rebellion, (3) True Self .
( Jer. 3:12 ) Schizophrenics need time to adjust and to fall out of agreement with the
false demonic personalities, point by point. He must come to loathe the schizophrenic
personality, and fall out of agreement with it.
( James 1:8 ; Matt. 6:22 ) The core problem of the schizophrenic is 'rejection' and
'rebellion'. This problem begins with 'rejection', and commonly begins in childhood or
infancy and sometimes while the child is still in the mother's womb. There are many
'doors' that lead to rejection, and rejection is usually the first personality that emerges.
One can be rejected and not be schizoid, and still manage to form a healthy personality
and be secure in themselves.
To the contrary, the schizoid is always floundering 'Who am I?'. The identity of the true
self is confused and lost.
Love Deprivation
( Luke 6:45 ; Ps. 120:2 ) Rejection depicts a withdrawn type personality. It is a feeling
within - it is agony within ... it is a starvation of love ... it is insecurity ... it is inferiority
... it is fantasy ... it is unreality ... it is all in the inside.
The second personality that emerges is 'rebellion'. When a child does not have
satisfactory love relationships in life, he grows up being unable to feel and share in love
relationships. Rebellion sets in. He begins to fight for love. Or he lashes out to those who
have starved him of love.
Rebellion asserts itself in stubbornness, self-will and selfishness as one personality. Or it
begins to be aggressive, lashes out in anger, bitterness, resentment, hatred and
retaliation as another personality. The schizoid is literally under these two opposite
powers-passive resistant, withdrawn or aggressive and violent. He can switch from one
type of personality to the other in a moment's time.
There are really three personalities - the true self, the rejection, and the rebellion
personalities. All three can be manifested at any time. The rejection and rebellion
personalities are fueled by a root of bitterness. Thus, one must deal with three factors:
rejection, rebellion, and bitterness.
True Self
( 2 Cor. 5:17 ; Gal. 2:20 ) The emphasis in dealing with schizophrenics is to concentrate
on the true self, to draw it out, to relate the true self to Jesus. Jesus must start growing
in the person, developing that personality and making it what He wants it to be. Identity
with the 'true self' takes time. The person does not know who he really is. Until he does
he will fall back to the false 'self' as a refuge. He must be weaned away slowly until the
wounds within can be healed.
Biblical Approach
( Eph. 4:22-24 ; Rom. 12:1-2 ) Put-off the old man and put-on the new man is the
basic tool. The root of all sin is lust. And the root of lust is thought. Therefore, the basic
change involves the spirit or attitude of the mind. Godly thoughts begins the process of
healing.
The inward self and the outward self must be dealt with , and the goal is for the person to
change his focus from self to God and to others. The following provides an insight into the
immensity and complexity of the schizoid personality:
Rejection/Inward Personality Fear of Rejection; Fantasy/Lust;
Harlotry; Perverseness; Self-rejection; Insecurity; Inferiority; False
compassion; False responsibility; Self accusation; Suicidal; Perfectionism;
Unfairness; Compulsive confession; Jealousy; Envy; Fear of judgment;
Self-pity; Depression; Despair; Hopelessness; Guilt; Pouting; Pride;
Vanity; Ego; Intolerance; Frustration; Impatience; Withdrawing; Vivid
imagination.
Rebellion/Outward Personality Rebellion; Self-will; Selfishness;
Accusatory projection; Stubbornness; Suspicion; Self-deception;
Persecution; Self-delusion; Confrontational; Self-seduction; Distrust;
Pride; Judgmental; Unteachable; Controlling; Possessiveness.
Setting the Captive Free Process
( Matt. 7:5 ; Luke 4:18 ; John 14:21 ; Rom. 8:28-29 ) Understand the past but do
not deal with it. Deal with the present moment, where the person is at the present
moment, and that with the concrete reality. Discard and do not even discuss or refer to
any illusions/distortions. Objective is to draw out the true self, bit by bit.
( Matt. 12:34-37 ) The person lives by his diseased and entrenched attitudes, the
broken spirit of the mind. He walks alongside himself . He is his own god, constantly
listening to his perverted self for guidance and direction.
( Luke 11:1-4 ) The total emphasis from this point on is to relate the person to God the
Father. Healing process begins at this point. He has been worshipping a false god -
himself. Therefore, until he acknowledges God as the source of his life, healing cannot
begin. The first step is to teach the person to love God and that by simply obeying His
commandments: to begin to think right and to do right, to practice daily devotions, to
judge himself and not others, to forgive others and act forgiven and to be reconciled
within self, with God and with others.
( Luke 9:23-24 ; Rom. 12:1-2 ; Rev. 12:11 ) This is a long term process, and it begins
with renewing the mind. The person may appear to improve but falls back to zero, time
and time again. For the counselor persistence is the key coupled with gentleness,
kindness and goodness. God's love through the counselor touches the person. God's
Spirit thus is being manifested in the situation.
( John 16:8-13 ) Our responsibility in dealing with the severely disturbed and damaged
personalities is to present and confront with the truth, to comfort and to exhort. We are
not responsible for the results. We are to rest by faith in God's words of wisdom, that
God will do what His words say He will do. The Holy Spirit is responsible for changing the
individual and for the final results.
Reference: [1][Adams1]; [10][Hammond1]
5.12. Transpersonal Psychology
Analyses of Terms, and the Process
This review provides a glimpse of the basic philosophies of the world. Such religious
forms come forth in various dresses and formulas. As summarized in the following, this
critique is a simple way of getting a handle on these fads that come and go.
1. Psychoanalysis - Constant introspection
2. Behavior - Externals
3. Reaction to Psychoanalysis - Self focus
4. Humanism - Integrating and developing the whole personality to evolve a new
consciousness, a transcendent being.
5. Nihilism - Negation of everything. Man is chance and is essentially meaningless.
6. Naturalism - Places man in the sphere of relativism. No more plumb line, an
ethical naturalism.
Existentialism
Man makes himself man by his self-consciousness, and his self determinism. Creates his
own values by confirming his own worth. Good comes from choosing; thus, there is no
distinction between good and evil. This is negated by my choosing whatever I choose is
good regardless.
Physical world is an illusion, only thing that exists is a god who is a being beyond
objective reality. One turns his back on material, doesn't exist. Hinduism considers cross
as meaningless because of its objectivity. Therefore, karma (a substitute for the cross) is
very attractive to many.
New Age Consciousness
Western man sees himself as meaningless and without hope. To be truly naturalistic is to
deny reality and escape by transcendence. This is the only hope for the naturalist or the
humanist. New consciousness is to act upon self, find out who you are in the recesses of
your mind, and deliver yourself from yourself (self redemption).
Objective is to discover only that which pleases themselves, enhancing self-centeredness:
the focus on self. Rejects a personal god, and sees self as a god to be realized through
meditation process. Self is the kingpin - the real reality.
Client-directed therapy : No external reality but the self which is the god within.
Meditation Process
Objective is to get out of reality, the characteristics are ...
1. Loss of ego boundaries - identification with all life forms.
2. Melting down into the universe.
3. Be rid of the fear of death: develop feelings of being separated from the self:
develop a sense of transcending time and space.
Physical death is not the end, there is life after death. They become totally one with the
universe, still all things center on themselves. Things exist in the alter state. Apart from
consciousness, transcending self is the major factor in psychoanalysis. Through ouija
boards and crystals, and other means, communication with the other world is possible.
Psychedelics are projections of the conscious self. Origin of reality is in the person who
experiences it.
Conceptual Relativism
Cosmic consciousness. The objective and perceived reality. This is really avoiding
problems of living and of relationships, a cop-out to avoid one's responsibilities. Reality is
neutral, no right or wrong. This is the tip of the Hindu's so-called cosmic consciousness.
(Christians are in the world but not of it, and we do deal with the harsh realities of God's
truths.) But cosmic consciousness avoids all reality and tries to escape responsibilities.
Techniques of false doctrines is to offer a means to relax which is really the deification of
the self.
Forms of New Age Consciousness or New Age Thinking
1. Bio-energetic: Sexual urges blocked, source of neurosis.
2. Psychoanalysis: Gestalt: Psychotherapy emphasizes release of sexual and
emotional problems.
3. Rolfing: Digging into the body with elbows, moving nerve pains around.
4. Psychosynthesis: True self is the center of awareness and is revealed by group
therapy, dreams, single therapy ...
5. Guided Fantasy: Allow dreams, fantasies to grow and develop to the extreme.
6. Open Doors: 40 days of vigorous dancing, mantras, singing, and activities of all
sort.
7. Biofeedback: Control over involuntary systems of the body, blood pressure,
nerve system.
8. Silva Mind Control: Meditation, self-hypnosis, yoga, anything to get beyond
self.
9. EST: World is meaningless, outside stimulations and influences are to be avoided,
rejected and ignored. This is accomplished by fasting, encounter groups, talk it
out, let it all hangout, insults, hatred, screaming, shouting: be rid of the affects
on the mind and body - be free of them ... by dumping all the garbage on
someone else ...
Objective: The person is to be the cause of his own world, to disregard all belief systems
... except his own.
5.13. Healed from Fear
Perspective
( 1 John 1:7 ; 1 John 4:16-19 ) Healing of our total person comes about by the perfect
love that casts out fear. Perfect love heals all the phobias of life in our mind, body and
soul. This love, this unconditional agape, is the very nature of God Himself. As we
perfectly grasp and take hold of this perfect love, we will realize total healing. The blood
of Jesus covers us now and in eternity. By faith, visualize self in the Presence of Our Lord,
in this perfect love, cleansed of all unrighteousness, clothed by this perfect love: fear has
to go.
Hope
( Gen. 1:26 ; Gen. 3 ; Heb. 2:14-15 ) Fear of death and judgment is the basic fear of
man. Fear is the first emotion man uttered after the fall. Before the fall, man was birthed
from the womb of the love of God and unto the love of God - a creature created in God's
own class. Man did not earn or merit this love. This love just 'is'. In consequence Adam
had no consciousness whatsoever of not being loved. Only other person around at this
time is God. Here was Adam, raw humanity and unashamed, not self conscious but God
conscious. He sees himself in the eyes of God being loved and accepted.
( John 3:16 ; Luke 9:23-25 ; Rom. 5:5 ) How can man place himself into this divine
love? By rejecting the right to himself. It is just a question of simply believing God loves
you regardless of what you think of yourself.
What is the Christian life? It is love, and this love is the divine nature. This nature is
placed within me to respond to the needs of others. No longer trying to please people,
the world, and God. The sanctification process is a process of getting the true self out of
the false self: no longer seeking to be accepted and approved by people and God. See
the true self in union with the Holy Spirit guided and directed by the word of God.
It is no longer my performance for God, but my surrender to Him Who loves me just as I
am. Even when I fail He still loves me regardless. All my faults, all my past, Jesus took on
the Cross. All the guilt and shame is buried in the grave, and so goes fear. Now I am no
longer afraid of God.
The true God is now in the face of Jesus Christ. Jesus took my judgments - my judgment
is over. Jesus is for us who can be against us. There is no fear in death, we fall into the
arms of Jesus at death. I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me. I find my
value in Him and through Him I serve others needs. The Lord provides for my needs as a
by-product.
Change
( Gen. 3 ) After the fall, man was blinded, could not conceive of himself as being loved
by God. Now he turns inward into himself, self becomes his focus. Self consciousness
forms and man looks at himself over and against God. Compares self to God and sees
and judges self by himself and sees an inferior, worthless, no good, and disgusting
individual. Being repulsed by his guilt, he creates a god who rejects him, a god who hates
all guilty and bad people.
When God entered the garden, Adam sees God through his distorted ideas in his mind
and begins to be afraid: "You are out to get me, You know I am bad and guilty,
worthless". At this point, religion was created. God created man in His own Image. When
man fell, he created a god in his own image: unworthy and unlovable. Accordingly, man
sees others as bad as himself and begins to hate people.
Now man must work to make himself acceptable to God, to make Him love him by self-
effort, self will. Man wanders the earth seeking someone to love him, the fear of rejection
is overwhelming. He will be whatever people want him to be, do anything to make
himself feel important.
Man looks for people to need him. If they need me and I help them, then they will not
reject me. Man will love others, just so they will love him, can't bear to be rejected. Wife
will cover up a failure of a spouse, for fear she may be rejected. A mother will give
money to her drug addicted son in order to feel needed and not be rejected, and so on.
( Luke 9:23-25 ) In summary, people who are compelled to be needed, accepted and
approved are too busy seeking their own needs which becomes insatiable. Therefore,
they have no capacity or room to love others.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
1 John 1:7
Realize to walk in His word is to walk in Light. The second we move and live
by our flesh we walk in darkness. As Jesus had constant fellowship with His
Father, we are also to walk in constant fellowship with Jesus Christ ... We do
this by diligently confessing our sins, living in open confession before Him.
This openness allows the Blood of Jesus continually to cleanse us from sin,
moment to moment, day by day, unto eternity.
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from 1 John on loving God and others.
Put-Off/Put-On:
As our ground of acceptance, and source of strength, realize the constant
need of the finished work of Jesus. We are a new creature, and completed in
Jesus. Work out this salvation, day by day, die daily to the independent self.
See also Section 5.2, “Transforming the Natural Self and
Section 5.10, “Perfectionism” for additional insights. Work the
appropriate homework assignments.
Reference: [26][Smith4]
5.14. Rejections
References: Ps. 69:20 ; Ps. 142 ; Ps. 31 ; Ps. 55 ; Jer. 30:17 .
Problem
Rejection is not what people do to me. It is my response or reaction, my feelings of
anguish, unworthiness, unlovability to what I perceive people are doing to me. The pain
of rejection triggers me to 'feel' negative and from this I believe I am rejected.
Solution
The answer is to know the unconditional love of God. I am acceptable and significant and
worthy in His eyes. God is my mate, I seek my identity in God, not by how people view
me, treat me or whatever. My worth, my security and significance can only come from
God. He is the one Who made me and destined me to be conformed to the image of His
Son.
Do not look to a human being, position or power for value. God is my true identity, I am
made in His image. His love makes me whole. I work accordingly being conformed to His
image by obeying His commandments. When rejected or hurt, mourn the loss, turn it
over to God, and go on living. God is our glory. He is the lifter of our head. Forgive all
those who hurt me, be free of revenge. Pray for mercy, become and be complete in Him
who forgave all those who rejected and abandoned Him on the cross.
Identities
( Gen. 1:26-28 ) We are either a container and expressor of God or of our diseased
attitudes and perceptions. At the fall, man, a creature united to God , lost his identity.
This identity to God is the true meaning of life, that is, to reveal God and to express His
love to the world. Otherwise, man becomes disfunctional. Fallen man tries to find his
identity, and the only thing he has to work with is his body, senses, and his head. He
focuses now on his created self . His identity becomes his performance to another plus a
rating of his performance by another (co-dependency).
Now fallen man 'does' in order 'to be' 'for God' instead of 'being' and 'doing' 'from God'.
Man was made initially accountable to God but God is gone now. Man needs another to
find out who he is. Man was supposed to 'be' in his relationship to God and out of his
'being', he was 'to do'.
Redemption
( Luke 4:1-13 ) Jesus in the wilderness, a test of the 'independent spirit'. Here is the
supreme test and example in determining who and what we are, and how we are to live.
Regardless of the circumstances, we respond within by the word, to that which is without.
( John 5:30 ) Jesus identified with His Father, His will was His Father's will. Likewise,
redeemed man lives by and from the Father to give glory to God by acting on His
commandments regardless of and in spite of circumstances, people, things or
possessions. Tests in life determine if we are dependent on God or we succumb to the
circumstances.
Spirit of rejection reveals one is earthbound, living horizontally, and influenced by the
circumstances of life. Thus, being redeemed, one's identity is now in God and from God
man is empowered by prayer, power and provisions to accomplish God's purposes on
earth: to convey God's love to others, so that they, in turn, may also become identified in
Christ.
Significance
( Col. 2:11-13 ; Phil. 2:12-18 ) Thus, the sense of rejection reveals a diseased
attitude, waiting to be accepted and approved and fulfilled by others. Put this off and put-
on that you are already accepted and approved by God Who made you significant in
Christ. From significance already obtained via the cross, you work out your salvation,
giving glory to God by being concerned for the widow and the orphan, being the salt and
light, thus fulfilling God's purpose for your life. By these means the sense of rejection will
gradually fade.
( 2 Cor. 3:16-18 ) Rejection is one of the many barriers that keeps one from becoming.
All of the veils of the fallen life have been removed in Christ. We move from grace to
grace to glory to glory, and as we allow the Holy Spirit to complete His work in us.
Reference: [27][Smith5]
5.15. Attitude and Behavior
Ten Keys of the Beatitudes : Attitudes, what we are 'to be' based on Matt. 5-7 .
( Eph. 4:22-24 ) Our spirits have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, but our minds
must be renewed, and our foundation in life is to be Christ Himself. These ten
foundational keys in the Sermon on the mount are as follows:
1. ( Matt. 5:3 ) "Blessed are the poor in spirit..." Realization that there is nothing in
myself whatsoever that I can draw upon or rely upon, but the full realization and
acknowledgement that I need God now and forever in everything I do.
We are poor in spiritual life. Thus we need God, all the time, a complete
dependency on God.
Learn about God, learn from God, and see God in all of life's activities,
view life from His perspective.
2. ( Matt. 5:4 ) "Blessed are those who mourn..." Realization that the crisis and
difficulties I find myself in, the pains and sorrows will not last forever. They will change,
comfort is on its way.
Crisis and difficulties are never forever. Trials do not last forever because
everything changes.
There is a season for all things: rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn
with them who mourn. Crisis are only temporary, comfort awaits. Crisis
are only opportunities to experience God's presence and deliverance. Plan
beyond the crisis ( 2 Chron. 20:7 ).
3. ( Matt. 5:5 ) "Blessed are the meek..." Realization that I must be in control of
myself, that I must desire, must expect and must demand self to be disciplined,
organized and structured.
Don't be mediocre, force self to do and go beyond the flesh. Do by your
will not by your feelings.
Don't let circumstances control, but be in control by your will.
4. ( Matt. 5:6 ) "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness..."
Growth and knowledge doesn't come to you, you must pursue and seek
after it. Impose on yourself standards higher than others. In Christ, your
potential is without limits.
5. ( Matt. 5:7 ) "Blessed are the merciful..."
Make room for others to fail, and don't be quick to judge them. Allow
others to make mistakes. Give people space to make mistakes. We are all
growing. Be patient . Mercy is the postponement of judgment. We are
inclined to judge and condemn. What you sow, you will reap ( Matt. 7:1-
5 ).
Be in a constant state of forgiving. Be quick to release others from
offenses.
6. ( Matt. 5:8 ) "Blessed are the pure..."
Develop a pure mind in everything, and you will see things from God's
perspective. Avoid the corruption and contamination of the world's
presentations upon one's imagination by guarding what your eyes see,
what you hear and what you speak. Your eyes, your ears, your tongue,
and your senses are the gates of your heart ( Prov. 4:23 ).
Look at life from God's point of view, see that God is in everything. If the
heart is pure, you will see God in all things whether negative or positive.
As a man thinks, so is he. To the pure all things are pure, unto the corrupt
all things are corrupt. As you see, hear, and speak that is what you will
reap.
7. ( Matt. 5:9 ) "Blessed are the peacemakers..."
Determine to be a positive influence, look for the good in others, look for
the best and the better. Be the one to bring it about. Who is without sin,
cast the first stone, look at life from this perspective... but for the grace of
God, go I.
8. ( Matt. 5:10 ) "Blessed are those persecuted for righteousness sake..."
Have a good attitude and enthusiasm toward life based on what you
know. Nothing in life is to be feared, but to be understood. The world
hates righteousness. Rejoice and be glad, so suffered those before you.
Rejoice for great is your reward as you stand firm in the truth.
9. ( Matt. 5:11 ) "Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you..."
Expect the best and prepare for the worst. See that difficulties in life are
normal. Get ready for persecution. They hated Jesus, and they will hate
you. Expect this. Be prepared to bless and to pray for those who are
against you.
10. ( Matt. 5:12 ) "You are the salt of the earth..."
You are important for the world, for humanity, and for your generation.
Know your value and your worth. We are to be the example for the world
to follow. This is the spirit of Christ: that we are the elite, that we
influence the best in life, that we are the standard for the world ( Matt.
28:18-20 ).
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Matt. 7:24-26
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review Matt. 5:14-7:29 , make a list of your sins, and attitude distortions.
Make plans to change attitudes and behavior via Section A.4, “Victory
Over Sin Worksheet” . To help remove those sin barriers that keep you
from developing the mind of Christ, here are some major areas to be
considered:
1. ( Matt. 5:21-26 ) Anger, Bitterness, Contempt . Unless this is
dealt with, our Christian walk is crippled at the start. Jesus came to
save not to condemn. We are to do the same.
2. ( Matt. 5:27-32 ) Obsessive Lust . Keep your eyes single and
pure. Women are the guardians of our culture. They are endowed
with a natural reverence for that which is sacred. Make plans to
break from the spirit of the world, the flesh, and the devil.
3. ( Matt. 5:32-37 ) Verbal Manipulation . Don't force others to
accept your opinions or position.
4. ( Matt. 5:38-48 ) Payback/Revenge . Our job is to be reconciled
to God, to self, and to others. Mercy is the postponement of
judgment. As God does with us, do likewise. Restore and be
reconciled to all of life, and be free.
5. ( Matt. 6:1-18 ) Seeking Approval and Acceptance of Man .
Develop the interior life, view life from God's perspective. You are
already accepted and approved in Christ. Use self to seek to glorify
God by exercising your talents and gifts for the benefit of others.
6. ( Matt. 6:19-34 ) Wealth and Greed . Depending on and trusting
in the externals of the world system (mind of the flesh) rather than
trusting in God leads to frustration and despair. As a co-heir with
Christ, a citizen of heaven, you already own the cattle on a thousand
hills. Act accordingly, for we are to live by God's economy ( 2 Cor.
8:9 ).
7. ( Matt. 7:1-12 ) Criticism/Condemnation . Our natural inclination
is to judge and a penchant for condemnation engineering. Judge
yourself first for condemning, then you will be in the position to help
restore others. As God's ambassadors, we are here, not to compete,
but to help complete one another.
8. ( Matt. 7:13-26 ) Doing and Not Just Hearing . Active listening
and doing of the word is the key. Severe warnings are issued to the
passive, lazy and self-indulgent. Unless we develop the interior life,
the heart level, daily practicing the Presence of the Lord, our house
will crumble. Judge self daily to assure that you are living by the
Kingdom rules of the beatitudes. Therefore, exercise dominion of self
in, as, and through Christ: be on top in all of life's endeavors.
Reference: [32][Willard1]
Basic Study: Biblical Discipleship
There are six series in this area.
Table of Contents
6. Christian Growth Series, Part A
6.1. Establish a Foundation for Biblical Discipleship
6.2. Explore Problems and Develop Sensitivity to Sin
6.3. Establish Biblical Structure for Change
6.4. Develop the Practice of Righteousness
6.5. Establish Pattern of the Mature Disciple
7. Christian Growth Series, Part B
7.1. Characteristics of a Christian
7.2. Change is a Two-Factored Process
7.3. Turning from Evil
7.4. Physical Challenges
7.5. Commitment is Doing the Word
7.6. Lifestyle Change is Evidence of New Birth
7.7. Worried, Confused, Troubled
7.8. The Pure Self Activated
7.9. Holding Self Accountable
7.10. Only God Can Change Us And Others
7.11. Judging Yourself
7.12. True Dying
7.13. True Patience
7.14. Mind Control
8. Soul Dynamics Series, Part A
8.1. Living Soul
8.2. Sins of the Flesh/Self of the Flesh
8.3. Dividing of Spirit and Soul
8.4. Union with Christ
9. Soul Dynamics Series, Part B
9.1. Cleansing and Purifying the Soul
9.2. Sin, Self, Suffering
9.3. The Spirituality of Abundance
10. Fruit of The Spirit Series
10.1. Love
10.2. Joy
10.3. Peace
10.4. Longsuffering
10.5. Kindness/Goodness
10.6. Faithfulness
10.7. Meekness/Gentleness
10.8. Self-Control
11. Supernatural Life Series
11.1. Mind
11.2. Abiding
11.3. Virtue of Love
11.4. Will of God
11.5. That Which is Perfect
11.6. Listening to God
11.7. Center of the Soul
11.8. Inordinate Desires
11.9. Union with God
11.10. Dreams/Visions
Chapter 6. Christian Growth Series, Part A
Table of Contents
6.1. Establish a Foundation for Biblical Discipleship
6.2. Explore Problems and Develop Sensitivity to Sin
6.3. Establish Biblical Structure for Change
6.4. Develop the Practice of Righteousness
6.5. Establish Pattern of the Mature Disciple
6.1. Establish a Foundation for Biblical Discipleship
Perspective
( Isa. 55:8-9 ) We are to think God's thoughts after Him. Unless our thoughts are in
agreement with His, they are to be discarded. Our ways, our habits and practices are to
change, to be directed and guided by God's word and commandments regardless of our
feelings or our opinions. We cannot mix our thoughts with His, else God's word becomes
polluted. God's words are pure and cannot be mixed with carnal thoughts.
Hope
( Rom. 8:28-29 ; John 14:21 ) As we think God's thoughts and do what He commands,
God enters and intervenes in our lives and into our situation. Regardless if we cause the
problem or caused by others, if we respond God's way, He will turn the situation to our
advantage. When necessary the Holy Spirit will make His presence known by giving a
deep sense of His love and care, helping and giving confidence, forgiveness, and
assurance - giving whatever the believer needs.
( 1 Cor. 10:13 ; Eph. 6:10-12 ) The devil operates only in the carnal which is common
to man but we are spiritual. We don't fight him with reason, by will-power, by tangibles:
For our weapons are not carnal but spiritual and are mighty to tear down the strongholds
of the enemy. Thus, our trust and faith is in God and in Him we face our temptations.
God will see us through. He is our refuge, our fortress, our God in whom we trust. It is He
who delivers us from the demons ( Ps. 91:1-3 ).
( Heb. 4:14-16 ; 2 Cor. 5:21 ; Heb. 9:14 ; Eph. 2:4-10 ) Jesus went to the end of
temptation, and far beyond it. He did not collapse for no man was ever tempted as He
was. He suffered all of this to secure the ideal and perfect righteousness for us that we
may be acceptable to His Father. Based on what Jesus did, we are given the right to
enter the Throne room and receive the very help of God Himself: to enable us by His
grace to confront any trial, to conquer and triumph over any situation and circumstances
of life. God is able to do this because His Son, while on earth, suffered the same trials we
do. He knows how to walk through and conquer, and we in Him are to do likewise.
Change
( Eph. 4:22-24 ; Rom. 6:6 ) You must exercise your own will to put-off the old man, the
man you were before you accepted Christ. As you choose God's way, the emphasis now is
to make new, readjust, change, turn around and regenerate your mind by God's word
which becomes the very Presence of Christ in the believer. You have Christ's mind and
you are to allow the Spirit of Christ to focus your mind more and more upon God and
spiritual things. Becoming a new man, you can now begin life all over again. Your spirit
has been recreated into the righteousness and holiness of the truth. This qualifies you to
have fellowship with God, enabled to become obedient to God's will and devoted to His
service.
( Col. 1:10 ; 1 John 1:7 ) Becoming a new person means activity. It is not enough to
know God's will, possess wisdom and understanding - all this must be put into practice.
We are to set our lives, our behavior and conduct after Christ - being fruitful in every
good work. As we increase in the knowledge of God, His presence and power also
increases to enable us to exercise every kind of endurance, patience, forbearance with
joy.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Matt. 7:1,5
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 4:22-32 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review this worksheet and develop list of failures to love God's way. Use 1
Cor. 13:4-8a as a guide; or refer to Section A.3, “Love Is An Action” .
List two or more recent incidents in which you were upset, irritated, and
assess if these are behavior patterns, or isolated cases.
Reference: Throughout Chapter 6, Christian Growth Series, Part A , you will find
relevant information from [5][BCF1] and [14][Leader1].
6.2. Explore Problems and Develop Sensitivity to
Sin
Perspective
( John 14:26 ; Eph. 5:18 ; Isa. 55:8-9 ) At the point you choose to stop perpetuating
self-interest and begin to consider the interest of others before your own, God's wisdom,
strength and ability will enter into your spirit to do those things that are pleasing to God.
Only in the power of the Holy Spirit are you able to live the abundant life. You cannot live
according to God's design in your own way or by your own wisdom.
The Holy Spirit will help the believer through the trials of life by teaching him all things:
the words and life of Christ, the Truth and the Life, the Word and how to live, the theory
and the practice, the principles and the conduct, the morality and the behavior of
Christian existence.
Hope
( Heb. 4:16 ; James 1:5-8 ; James 1:22-25 ; Phil. 4:13 ) It is a question of faith. You
believe God's word, you respond to it, (whether you feel like it or not), to what God says.
You turn over your intellect and will to God, allowing God to direct your faculties, your
passions, and to refurbish your memory. God intervenes through you into the situation or
circumstances to resolve the problem in God's way, and to reconstitute your very being in
order to establish His kingdom and His will on earth.
( Matt. 7:1-5 ; Gal. 6:1-5 ; 2 Cor. 1:3-4 ; 1 Cor. 11:28-31 ) Practicing God's word
begins with judging ourselves and removing sinful obstructions from our own lives. Since
we have no righteousness of our own, our only worthiness is Jesus Christ. The only time
we could be counted worthy would be when we are walking in constant fellowship with
Him. This means that we are to be actively thinking upon and talking with him through
confession, repentance, praise and request. Thus, our hope is in Him who brings us to
fruition and fulfillment.
( 1 John 2:3-6 ; 2 Pet. 1:3-11 ; John 16:33 ; John 15:10-11 ) You must obey God's
word consistently to grow increasingly into godliness and to realize true peace and joy.
The Lord's joy and glory was doing the will of God and looking ahead to the joy and glory
of eternity with His Father and His followers. Likewise, the joy of believers is the joy of
Christ Himself reigning within their hearts. And this joy is fulfilled as believers study His
word, the promises and commandments which He made.
Change
( Luke 17:10 ; John 14:5 ; 2 Cor. 5:15 ; 2 Cor. 10:5 ; Col. 3:1-7 ; Col. 1:10 ) In
order to mature (grow up) in Christ, you must persevere in doing what is good in the
Lord's sight: by being obedient to Scripture, disciplining your thought life, speaking in a
manner that is helpful to others, and loving others in a biblical manner.
Patience, kindness, goodness embodies the standard by which we are to live. We belong
to Him totally. It is our duty as His ambassadors, to serve Him, to increase in the
knowledge of Him, and to fulfill our roles as His disciples.
( Gen. 4:7 ; Isa. 26:3 ; Luke 11:28 ; John 15:10-11 ; Matt. 7:21 ) Your
contentment in all situations is dependent upon your obedient response to God in your
thoughts, words and actions. This brings forth a tranquility of mind, a purity of memory,
a composure, a peace that is calm in the face of bad circumstances and situations. By
obeying the Lord in your daily walk, a person becomes bound, woven and joined together
with himself, with God, and with others. We are naturally inclined to maliciousness and to
retaliation. Accordingly, as a constant, check yourself to determine what spirit you are
manifesting in all encounters ( Luke 9:53-55 ).
( 1 John 1:9 ; Matt. 3:8 ; 2 Cor. 7:9-11 ; James 4:8-10 ; Eph. 4:31-32 ) Confess
your sins to the Lord and, when appropriate, confess sins to others whom you have
offended. Honor the Blood that washed away your sins, by 'acting forgiven'. To fall into
despair or self-pity is to honor the enemy. No matter how many times you fall into sin,
honor the Cross and Blood of Christ by getting up, confessing, repenting, and starting
over again.
As a basic guideline, judge yourself in the areas of failing to be patient, failing to be kind,
and failing to exercise goodness in contrary situations. To do this, list your failures,
formulate a specific plan to change, and begin to implement the plan.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Luke 9:23-24
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from the above listings.
Put-Off/Put-On:
List, at least, two or more recent incidents in which you were offended, and
complete column 1 of Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” , the
put-offs in column 2 and put-ons in column 3. This will be your working data
to complete column 4 at the next session.
6.3. Establish Biblical Structure for Change
Perspective
( Rom. 5:3-5 ; 2 Tim. 3:16-17 ; James 1:21-25 ; 2 Pet. 1:2-4 ) Effective and lasting
biblical change is a continuing process. You are to obey the commands and guidelines in
God's word for every area of your life (your thoughts, words and actions). As you stop
(put-off) the old continuing pattern of sin and begin (put-on) the new practice of
righteousness and holiness, you are renewed in the spirit of your mind.
Being justified, we are no longer defeated by trials and sufferings. To the contrary, by
God's grace, we use problems as opportunities to grow in Christ. Working through
pressure, oppression, afflictions, and distress, we develop endurance, fortitude,
steadfastness, constancy, perseverance. Thus, patience stirs experience and this
develops character, integrity, strength. Also experience stirs up hope. By enduring trials,
we experience the presence and strength of God. When a justified man becomes stronger
in character, he draws closer to God. The closer he draws to God, the more he hopes for
the glory of God.
Hope
( John 15:10-11 ; John 16:33 ; Matt. 6:33 ; 1 John 2:3-4 ; 1 John 3:22 ) You are
to walk in a manner worthy of God and to please Him in every area of your life. As you
obediently respond to God's love, you become mature in the Lord and are blessed with
peace and joy regardless of your feelings, other people or circumstances of life. The
believer's hope, peace and joy is based upon the presence of God's Spirit who dwells
within the believer. These virtues are activated when one biblically responds to life.
( 1 Cor. 6:19-20 ; 1 Pet. 1:17-19 ; Luke 16:10-13 ; John 16:17 ; 1 John 2:20,27 )
You were purchased with the precious blood of Jesus, you wholly belong to Him. You are
God's possession and a steward (managing servant) of all that the Lord has provided for
you. The anointing of Christ is with you. God's wisdom, strength and ability are within
you to exercise your particular talent and gifts to become a blessing to those about you.
Christ in you, the hope of glory, the anointing of God is upon your flesh to do the things
flesh cannot do.
( Ps. 119:165 ; Matt. 5:3-12 ; John 14:27 ; John 15:11 ; John 16:33 ) God's peace
and joy are available to believers regardless of others, possessions or circumstances. We
are to be dependent upon God. As we become so we will not be controlled by others but
will be free to love others as God loves us. We are primarily accountable to God-not to
self, spouse, parents or others.
Change
( Eph. 4:22-24 ; Matt. 7:5 ; 1 Cor. 11:28-31 ; Heb. 4:12 ; Rom. 6:12-13 ; 2 Cor.
10:5 ) To keep God's anointing flowing through you, you must daily put-off old sinful
habits, identify them, judge yourself in the light of God's word, confess and repent and
put them aside immediately. Do not take life for granted. You are God's ambassador on
earth. You are His standard for the world to see.
( 2 Tim. 2:22 ; Titus 2:11-12 ; Gal. 5:16 ; Matt. 22:37 ; Col. 1:10 ; Rom. 8:29 ;
Rom. 5:17 ) As we put-on the righteous deeds in the power of the Holy Spirit, we grow
daily in the image of God. We become on earth, vessels reflecting and revealing the Spirit
of God within to the world without as we destroy the works of the devil and establish
God's righteousness on earth. We are to rule and to exercise predominance over the
world's system and institutions ( Gen. 1:28 ; Matt. 28:18-20 ).
( Prov. 10:12 ; Eph. 4:32 ; 1 Pet. 3:8-9 ) We begin the process by forgiving others
biblically as necessary. We seek reconciliation and restoration in accordance with biblical
principles. We do not retaliate, we eliminate stumbling blocks, and seek ways to bless
others. Our Lord took care of sin at the cross. Our role is to destroy the structure - the
scaffolding - the habit patterns - of sin embedded in our minds over the years. We are to
rebuild these structures until our faculties, our intellect, our passions, are placed solely
under the rule and lordship of Jesus Christ ( 2 Cor. 10:3-5 ; Prov. 21:22 ).
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Eph. 4:29,31-32
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Continue working on columns 1-3 of Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin
Worksheet” and begin to work on a biblical plan for any pattern of anger,
bitterness and unwholesome speech. Review and as appropriate use
Section A.2, “Think And Do List” and establish biblical patterns of
thinking, speaking and acting. Place this information in column 4, and be
specific in practicing new thought patterns, how you should speak, followed
by concrete actions.
6.4. Develop the Practice of Righteousness
Perspective
( Rom. 5:3-5 ; Rom. 12:1-2 ; Matt. 10:16-28 ; 1 Pet. 3:13-17 ) Do not be surprised
at trials, even if they seem fiery. Rejoice in them because God uses them to reveal the
spirit that is in you, and develop Christlike maturity. Be prepared to be reviled. If you
should endure suffering for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed of the Lord.
Renewing the mind is a constant process to free us from our own corruption of lusts and
appetites; and to defend and protect ourselves from the fashions and customs of the
world.
Hope
( Eph. 5:15-16 ; 1 Tim. 4:7-11 ; Heb. 5:14 ; Gal. 5:22-23 ; Heb. 13:20-21 ) You
must faithfully practice your daily responsibilities and discipline yourself toward godliness.
As you continue to be a doer of the word, your senses will be trained to discern good and
evil. Your growth is a sovereign work of God that is divinely linked to your living in a
biblical manner.
Prov. 3:5-10 ; Ps. 55:22 ; Ps. 94:17-19 ; Jer. 29:11 ; Rom. 8:28-29 God has
promised to provide all the necessities of life as you seek to please Him. He is always
available to help you and He is firmly in control of every aspect of your life. Living in a
biblical manner, the believer is assured that God is arranging and re-arranging 'all things'
for his good on a daily basis. Thus, hope is really faith extended into the future, living the
divine life in the present.
( Matt. 6:25,34 ; Luke 12:22-34 ; Matt. 6:33 ; Heb. 5:14 ; James 1:22-25 ) Put-off
self-centered concern about the future and put-on doing the Word. As you dwell on the
things of God, He will protect and provide for you in all areas of your life.
God made man a spiritual being. As such, man is not to be preoccupied with making it on
his own, taking care of oneself in this world, and fighting and struggling to make it
through life. As a citizen of heaven, he works in partnership with God. He trusts and
acknowledges God while doing all he can: plows and works, not looking back; and while
working, trust the results to God. God says he will see to it that such a trusting person
will always have the necessities of life.
Change
( John 3:30 ; John 12:24-26 ; Matt. 20:26-28 ; Rom. 15:1-3 ; Col. 3:23-24 ) Stop
living to please self in daily situations, responsibilities and relationships. Regard others as
more important than yourself and be a servant to God and others. The Christian believer
who truly lives and witnesses for Christ gives himself up to Christ. In Christ, as a bond-
slave, he ministers to the needs of others.
( Prov. 9:6 ; Prov. 14:16 ; Gal. 5:16-21 ; James 1:19 ; John 15:5 ; James 1:22-25
; James 4:17 ) List the circumstances or relationships in which you are (or have been)
tempted to become angry or bitter. Develop a biblical plan for overcoming anger and
bitterness in these situations. Formulate a contingency plan for dealing with anger and
bitterness that may arise suddenly. What you comprehend, you will be conformed to, and
this is what you will communicate.
( Prov. 10:12 ; 1 Cor. 13:4-8 ; 1 Pet. 1:22 ; Eph. 4:32 ; 1 Pet. 3:8-9 ) Practice
biblical love by forgiving others just as God has forgiven you. Do kind and tenderhearted
deeds to the very individuals with whom you become irritated. Forbearance is giving what
a person needs, not what he deserves.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Heb. 5:14
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Continue developing biblical patterns of submitting and continual dying to
self through:
1. Considering others as more important than self, and
2. Serving others.
Evaluate your deeds daily, determine areas where you are weak. Develop
contingency plans to deal with and face possible stumbling blocks when they
appear. These offenses (stumbling blocks) keep God's grace and His
anointing from flowing through you. Look for data in areas of depression,
fear and worry, anger and bitterness, interpersonal relationships, envy,
greed and covetousness. Deal with specific problems via Section A.6,
“Problem Solving Worksheet” , Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin
Worksheet” , Section A.2, “Think And Do List” , Section A.8,
“Freedom From Anxiety” . See verses Isa. 10:27 ; Isa. 61:1 ; Luke
4:18-19 ; James 4:6-8 .
6.5. Establish Pattern of the Mature Disciple
Perspective
( Eccl. 12:13-14 ; 1 Pet. 1:17 ; 1 John 4:11,19 ; Heb. 12:5-10 ; Phil. 2:12-13 )
Successfully facing and dealing with specific problems is only the beginning of living a
godly life. Focus must remain on God's standards for continuing toward Christ-likeness.
Accordingly, one must evaluate the whole of one's life constantly conforming to God's
standards.
Hope
( Isa. 40:8 ; Acts 10:34-35 ; John 14:21 ; John 15:10-11 ; 1 John 3:22 ) God's
standards are always consistent and are never subject to the whim of the moment. They
are the same for all individuals, in all cultures, and at all age levels, regardless of
personality or background. Keeping God's commandments, having reverence and awe of
God, is the key to fruitfulness.
( Ps. 145:17 ; Jer. 29:11-17 ; Deut. 11:8-9 ; James 1:22-25 ) God's plan for you
are for your benefit and have as their goal your maturity in Christ. If you keep God's
commandments, He will bless you; otherwise, you will be subject to discipline.
( Matt. 11:28-30 ; Josh. 1:8-9 ; Ps. 103:1-5 ; Isa. 40:29-31 ; Eph. 1:13-14 ; Phil.
2:12-13 ) God's standards are not burdensome for He will strengthen, uphold, and keep
you from stumbling as you walk in His ways, cooperating with the changes He is
accomplishing in your life.
Change
( Rom. 13:1-3 ; Rom. 13:12-14 ; Eph. 6:10-18 ) Put-off deeds of darkness, put-on
the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for fleshly lusts. Put on the full armor of God
to withstand the schemes of the devil.
( Rom. 5:3-5 ; Matt. 5:10-12 ; 1 Pet. 4:12-19 ; 1 Pet. 3:13-17 ) Do not be surprised
at trials, even if they seem fiery. Instead, rejoice because God uses them to develop
Christlike maturity in your life. Be prepared to be reviled and to suffer persecution. You
will be blessed when you do.
( Gal. 5:22-23 ; Eph. 1:4 ; Eph. 4:1,17 ; Eph. 6:9 ; Col. 3:12-24 ; 1 Tim. 4:7-8 ; 2
Pet. 1:2-10 ) Establish and maintain biblical standards that will encourage you and your
children toward godliness. Identify godly traits that need to be developed along with
corresponding biblical responsibilities and activities which will demonstrate Christ-
likeness.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Gal. 6:14
Devotion:
BSAF on selected verses from above.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Continually work on a biblical schedule ( Section A.11, “Scheduling
Worksheet” ) to eliminate unprofitable activities, and in its place, add
activities necessary to carry on God-given responsibilities.
Review the following questions to determine what activities need to be
eliminated:
1. Is this profitable ( 1 Cor. 6:12 ; 1 Cor. 10:23 )?
2. Am I controlled by this in any way ( 1 Cor. 6:12 )?
3. Is this a stumbling block in my life ( Matt. 5:29-30 ; Matt. 18:8-9
)?
4. Could this lead another to stumble ( Rom. 14:13 ; 1 Cor. 8:9,13 )?
5. Does this edify (build up) others ( Rom. 14:19 ; 1 Cor. 10:23-24
)?
6. Does this glorify God ( Matt. 5:16 ; 1 Cor. 10:31 ) ?
Chapter 7. Christian Growth Series, Part B
Table of Contents
7.1. Characteristics of a Christian
7.2. Change is a Two-Factored Process
7.3. Turning from Evil
7.4. Physical Challenges
7.5. Commitment is Doing the Word
7.6. Lifestyle Change is Evidence of New Birth
7.7. Worried, Confused, Troubled
7.8. The Pure Self Activated
7.9. Holding Self Accountable
7.10. Only God Can Change Us And Others
7.11. Judging Yourself
7.12. True Dying
7.13. True Patience
7.14. Mind Control
7.1. Characteristics of a Christian
Perspective
( Josh. 24:15 ) The choice is yours to either serve Satan or to serve God. You cannot
stay halted between two opinions. It's one or the other - a question of life and death,
blessings or curses.
Hope
( John 1:12 ; John 5:24 ; Rom. 10:9-10 ) To receive Christ is to receive power to
become a child of God. The power to pass from death to life comes by confessing with
your mouth that Jesus is the Lord of your life: that Jesus lived on this earth; that he died
on the cross to pay the penalty for your sins; that He rose from the dead to give you
eternal life. To receive this, to confess this, one commits himself to live totally for the
Lord Jesus Christ.
( Col. 1:10 ; 2 Cor. 3:5 ; 2 Cor. 4:4 ; Phil. 4:13 ) Commitment means to progressively
to think, to speak, and to act according to God's principles, no longer by one's feelings or
by one's past. One is committed now to bear fruit worthy of the Lord: to do all things
pleasing to Him, to study His word daily, and to gradually be strengthened by Him in
order to live the spirit-filled life on this planet.
Change
( Matt. 7:5 ; Ps. 139:23-24 ; Gen. 1:26 ; Matt. 22:37-39 ; 1 John 2:9-11 ; Gen.
4:7 ) We can no longer blame others, circumstances, genealogy or people for our
problems. We will be held accountable for our own actions. We always looked to others to
change, but we must do the changing. The meaning of life is for God to live out His fullest
in us and through us at the present moment in the areas of relationships and
responsibilities. We are to develop our conduct and behavior in such a manner as to give
glory to God.
( 1 Tim. 4:7-8 ; John 14:15,21 ; Phil. 4:8-9 ; Phil. 2:12-14 ) We are to live
obediently by our will regardless of feelings. This takes discipline and practice involving
planning, scheduling and working out the plan. Change demands discipline in our
thoughts and in our deeds. Out of the heart the mouth speaks. First comes a thought,
then an idea, then action, then habit, then character and finally destiny. Thus, protect the
gates of your heart by guarding what you see, what you hear and what you speak.
( Luke 9:23-24 ; Eph. 4:15-32 ; Matt. 5:23-24 ) We are born to die, and to die in
order to live. Thus, life begins by denying self, putting-off our old habits and practices,
and putting-on new habits and practices based on the principles of God's word. We learn
to become a blessing instead of a curse: forgiving others instead of seeking revenge,
forgiving offenses of the past, asking forgiveness of those we offended. Thus, we are to
establish a consistent pattern of being reconciled to ourselves, to God, and to others.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Luke 9:23-24
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 4:22-32 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Regardless of what others have done to you or what life has done to you,
judge yourself first on how you failed to live godly. Review Rom. 1:18-32 ;
Col. 3:5-17 ; 1 Cor. 13:4-8 .
Make a list of what you must put-off and what you must put-on in its place.
Evil is not to be restrained but replaced by righteous thoughts and deeds.
Accordingly, select one major sin pattern and work it out on Section A.4,
“Victory Over Sin Worksheet .
7.2. Change is a Two-Factored Process
Perspective
( Col. 3:1-7 ; Matt. 12:33-37 ) We are the sum of what we encountered in life and our
reactions to life. Being conditioned by life's experiences, we are prone to react to life
impulsively and instinctively rather than to respond on the basis of considered judgment.
Man's words and manner of speech reveal his inner life, where his focus is, and who and
what determines his peace and joy.
We are to set our mind on things above, not below. The issue here is spirituality, the
capacity to know, to experience, to respond to God. As we do, the Holy Spirit empowers
us to live and to work with Christ-likeness, dealing with our character (inner man) and
conduct (outer man).
We are challenged to make Christ the center of our lives. All our faculties and passions
(intellect, memory, emotions, will, and love, hope, joy, sorrow) are to be at His disposal
and direction.
Hope
( Eph. 2:8-10 ; 2 Cor. 5:17 ) All man has to do is to believe what Jesus did for him on
the cross. We were reconciled to God by the death of His Son. Man cannot earn, merit or
win salvation. He is to believe, confess, repent and by faith receive the gift of God's
grace. His belief places his spirit in union with God's Spirit. Thus, he is empowered to do
good works, to bear the fruit of his new nature.
( Col. 1:15-21 ) Christ lives in us to transform us personally. He wants to affect our
individual jobs, our families, our communities, and our personal relationships. By faith in
Christ and by our obedience Christ will reconcile all things within us: our minds and
emotions, and our relationships with others. Thus, making us holy and blameless and
above reproach in His sight.
( Eph. 2:19 ; Phil. 3:20 ; Gal. 4:5-6 ; Matt. 12:50 ) We are fellow citizens in a nation
created by God. We have been adopted as children of God, and live in the same house
with God and His family. Now, we have the privilege and responsibility to render service
for the sake of God's family.
Change
( Col. 1:10 ; Rom. 12:10-11 ; Gal. 6:2,10 ) It is not enough to 'know' God's will or to
possess wisdom and understanding. We are to put what we know into practice, so that
our behavior and conduct reflects that of Christ. We must be committed to be fruitful in
every good work and grow into the knowledge of God.
( 2 Tim. 2:19 ; John 10:14 ; Eph. 4:22 ) A person who follows Christ does not live in
sin. To become a noble person, it takes purging, cleansing self from behavior that is
dishonorable and unrighteous.
( Prov. 14:12 ; Isa. 55:8-11 ; Rom. 12:1-2 ) As a man commits his total life for God's
service, he separates himself from the world, the flesh and the devil. He does this by
purging himself and renewing his mind from all behavior that is dishonorable, and from
teaching that is false and cancerous. Thus, he prepares himself so that Christ may infuse
his very being and to use him for every good work.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Eph. 4:22-24
Devotion:
BSAF on Eph. 5:1 ; 2 Thess. 3:6 ; 1 John 2:15-16 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Examine your life in the light of Col. 3:1-17 . Work out Section A.10,
“Change Is a Two-Factored Process” . List all your failures on left side of
sheet, and correspondingly what God wants you to do in its place on the
right side.
7.3. Turning from Evil
Perspective
( Matt. 12:38-40 ; Rom. 1:4 ; Acts 10:39-45 ) It is human reason that seeks after
signs, works and proofs. God wants man to simply believe and love Him because of Who
He is and what He has done for man. The true religion of God is not a religion of works
and signs, but of faith and love in Christ Jesus. God is finished with signs. He has given
the ultimate in signs: He has given His Son by means of His death, of His burial, and of
His resurrection.
Hope
( Matt. 12:41 ; Acts 2:38 ; Acts 3:19 ; Isa. 55:7 ) The worst sinners in history
repented at the preaching of one man, the prophet Jonah. Now the Messiah Himself,
God's own Son, has come. He has preached and announced: "The Kingdom of God" itself
is at hand. Every person is now, beyond question, without excuse. Heavenly doors are
now open to those who simply make a decision to repent of the old life in the flesh, and
begin a new life in the spirit - a life in union with the trinity.
( Deut. 4:29 ; Prov. 2:3-5 ; Luke 11:9-10 ) The Queen of Sheba went to the farthest
extremes humanly possible to seek the truth. No effort, struggle, energy, strain should
be spared in seeking the truth. As you do, you will find the truth: Jesus Christ, and the
Source of all good things, the Holy Spirit, the very presence of God dwelling within our
hearts and bodies.
( Heb. 11:6 ; Prov. 8:17 ) Though it can be put out of a life, and turned from, evil will
always attack. As evil is a constant so is my trust in God who enables me to resist. What
is needed is a supernatural power to turn from evil, and that power is in Christ. The love
of Christ and His mission of redemption is to fill a man's heart and life. To keep out evil, a
man must begin to do Christ's work of love and care: to meet the needs of others, of the
world and community; to look after the orphan, the sick and hungry; be swamped with
doing God's work. Then he will not have time to think and to do evil.
Change
( Rom. 8:1-4 ; Gal. 2:19-20 ; Gal. 5:16-18 ) Christ fulfilled and completed the law.
Christ is Spirit, He is life. It is His life that sets the standard and the rule for the believer.
It is His Spirit and life that gives the believer the power to obey. A person's faith in Christ
places him in Christ. Accordingly, we are to walk day by day in Christ, and believe that
Christ takes care of the past sins, of our present welfare, and of our future destiny.
( 2 Cor. 5:17-21 ) It is being "in Christ" that makes a person a new creature, he no
longer belongs to Satan. The believer is sinless and righteous because Christ is sinless
and righteous. A spirit of repentance is to be cultivated, that is, to confess and repent
each time we fail to walk in the light as He is in the light. Visualize the blood of Jesus
cleansing us in order to maintain our godly fellowship on a continuing basis ( 1 John
1:7-9 ).
( Gal. 5:22-23 ; Titus 2:12 ; Eph. 4:22-24 ) No matter how corrupt or how low man
has fallen, God longs to make a new creature out of him. All that is required is to believe
in Christ, to realize and understand all that He has done. Thus, we are to act on this truth
by establishing His kingdom on earth of patience, kindness, and goodness.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Col. 1:12-14
Devotion:
BSAF for Col. 1:20 ; Heb. 2:17 ; Eph. 2:16 ; Heb. 10:19-20 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Christ has defeated Satan and his evil spirits: all the forces, energies,
powers and principalities of the universe. Man now has been delegated
power and authority by the word of God to bind and loose: to bind the force
of sin, and to loose the foul spirit so that God's will prevails in the situation (
Matt. 16:18-19 ).
As this is so, list areas in your life where you feel defeated and condemned.
Make a failure list of your sins and guilts. Replace this list by what God
wants you to put in its place. In Christ practice the put-ons, knowing that
you are more than a conqueror. Practice this until a new pattern of thought
and actions are established. This takes time. God's word is more than
sufficient to amend, to heal and to deliver you from the evil one ( Ps. 91:1-
3 ). If problem persists, seek counsel from a mature disciple.
Accordingly, to assist you to accomplish this, please complete Section A.10,
“Change Is a Two-Factored Process” .
7.4. Physical Challenges
Perspective
( Matt. 26:41 ; Eph. 5:18 ; 1 Cor. 6:12-13 ; 1 Cor. 6:19-20 ; 2 Pet. 2:18-19 ) Our
physical condition may influence our response to spiritual needs. But regardless of our
need, of our being under a heavy load, God can and will give peace and joy to those in
need. Recognize, however, that God may not choose to heal the believer.
Hope
( Deut. 32:39 ; Ps. 115:3 ) God does whatever He pleases. He may allow the physical
problem to remain to further and deepen maturity and for effective ministry.
( Jere. 29:11 ) Regardless of what has happened to you, keep your focus on the Lord.
God will provide for your welfare, to give you a future and a hope. Thus, faith speaks of
future events with as much certainty as though they were already passed. Thus, look for
the spiritual growth and development of the inner man ( Rom. 4:17 ; 2 Cor. 4:17-18 ).
( Rom. 8:28-29 ) My responsibility is to insure that I am thinking and living according to
God's principles. My goal is not to seek my needs primarily but to accomplish God's
purposes in my life. Regardless of the adversities or the consequences, being obedient to
God's will in all things, I will overwhelmingly conquer through Jesus Who loves me.
( Matt. 5:3-12 ) God's peace and joy are available to believers regardless of others, of
possessions or the lack of them, or of the circumstances of life. The key is to develop the
character of Christ, to think as He does, to act accordingly. Though the outer man may
perish, it is the inner man that is developing and growing.
Change
( Rom. 8:28-29 ; Matt. 6:7-8 ) Whether I have been born with a physical defect or
problem, through carelessness, negligence, or an accident caused by others, my focus is
to be on the God, and to approach the situation His way. Regardless of any limitation,
physical or mental, work out the situation to its fullest being empowered and energized
by the Holy Spirit. Transcend any limitations by maximizing what you do have.
( Isa. 46:9-11 ; Phil. 1:6 ; Phil. 2:13 ) My job is turn any thoughts off of myself and
obey God's commands for the moment that lies just ahead. Allow God to be His fullest
through me at the present moment bringing to past His purposes. By obeying, God works
in me to complete and to mature me in the image of His Son.
( 2 Cor. 6:3-10 ; 2 Cor. 12:7-10 ; Job 42:1-6 ) Maintain the integrity of God's word
and promises in your life, that despite afflictions, hardships, distresses, beatings, hunger
and pain, rely on His presence within. In the midst of sorrows, of dishonor, of evil
reports, His Presence within, His strength will fill you with rejoicing. For in Him you are an
overwhelming conqueror.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
2 Cor. 12:9
Devotion:
BSAF on 2 Cor. 6:3,4,10,16 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Meditate on the principles stated herein. Consider your particular situation,
develop a contingency plan ( Section A.10, “Change Is a Two-Factored
Process” ) or plans to counteract self-focus.
7.5. Commitment is Doing the Word
Perspective
( James 1:22-25 ; Rev. 22:14 ) Christian life is one of commitment to God and His
Word. It is not to be part-time, of casualness, of indifference or of neglect. It is one of
doing, of practicing, of exercising in the pursuit of excellence, in the spirit of integrity,
working through failures time and time again. An effective Christian life thus uses failures
as opportunities to grow into a mature Christian in the image of Christ. It is not enough
to listen, to hear, to know. The word must be practiced, exercised, and applied until the
person is set free from the bondages of sin and death.
Hope
( James 1:19-21 ; Matt. 13:23 ) Be quick to hear the word of God, not hanging on to
one's own ideas, but be willing to listen to God's word instead of insisting upon what one
thinks and likes. Respond rather than react to life by being slow to speak and slow to
wrath, developing a gentle spirit as a child. Listen to God's words and allow God's words
to be born within one's heart and life, which is the core of healing and growth, of
patience, kindness, and goodness.
( Col. 1:9 ; 2 Cor. 10:5 ; Ps. 143:10 ) Nothing is to flow through us nor out of us that
is not of God's will. God's will involves all of life, everything we do, every moment of the
day. Through His word God tells us how to live.
Knowing God's will involves both wisdom and understanding. Wisdom means a person
knows the first principles of life. Understanding means the person has the ability to apply
the basic principles to everyday life.
( Prov. 2:1-2 ; Acts 20:32 ; Acts 27:7-16 ; Eph. 1:17 ; James 1:5 ) We secure the
wisdom and understanding by studying God's word and by prayer. Praying is the process
by which we are being filled with the knowledge of God's will, and by which we find union
with Jesus. This union is marked by a loving exchange of friendship between God and the
soul.
Change
( Rom. 12:1-2 ; Col. 1:10 ) It is not enough to know God's will, to possess wisdom and
understanding, it all must be put into practice. We are to live out the will of God. Christ is
the pattern, and our conduct and behavior is to be upon Christ. To face life, death,
disease, accidents, we need God's power. We secure this power through prayer.
( James 3:17-18 ; Matt. 5:8 ; Heb. 12:14 ) Source of true wisdom is God. To be pure
is to be free from fault and defilement, from moral impurity, from iniquity and, thus,
separated unto God. We must be peaceable and gentle, forbearing with people, being in a
state of reconciliation with self and with others, weave with self , with God and with
others. The last thing to do is to criticize, condemn, neglect and ignore people. We must
be ready to listen to reason and to appeal - being willing to change when one is wrong.
We are to have feelings of compassion, affection and kindness, eager to help others, and
not show partiality or favoritism, being without hypocrisy, insincerity. The fruit of
righteousness is brought about by making peace, being at ease with each other and with
God.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Col. 1:10
Devotion:
BSAF on James 4:1-5 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Study James 3:17 . List personal failures in each of the categories listed in
James 3:17-18 . Then prepare a plan of action on how to deal with each
item biblically. Use Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” or
Section A.9, “Contingency Plan” as appropriate. In each encounter in life,
your basic plan of action is to call upon the name of the Lord by quoting,
"Thy will be done". This unites your will with His will which initiates and
insures a biblical response. This is a lifetime endeavor.
7.6. Lifestyle Change is Evidence of New Birth
Perspective
( Eccl. 12:13-14 ; John 3:3-8 ; John 10:10 ) It is necessary to be born-again, a
spiritual birth in order to recognize, to admit, and to solve your problems in a biblical
manner. Only God's solutions, grace, empowering and wisdom are completely adequate
for abundant living.
Hope
( Eph. 2:8-9 ; Rom. 3:27 ; Rom. 4:2 ; Rom. 5:1 ) Salvation is received by faith, all
man has to do is to stretch out his hand and receive God's free gift of salvation. Man
must believe just what God says and accept His word, accept His free offer of salvation.
All man can do is accept the fact that God says He will save him, and to accept as true
the free offer of salvation.
( Rom. 3:23 ; Rom. 6:23 ; Rom. 10:9-10 ) Realize there is no salvation in or within
one's self or in the world. Salvation is by the word of God, as we confess it and verbally
state God's word and believe. Then faith grows and increases effecting a reconciliation
within one's self, with others, and with God. To 'reconcile' means to change, to change
thoroughly, to exchange, to change from enmity to friendship, to bring together, to
restore, to be related and united with God.
( John 1:12 ; Acts 17:30-31 ; 2 Cor. 5:17 ) God the Father becomes Father of your
spirit, and you move from darkness to light. Satan is no longer your stepfather. By the
resurrection of Jesus from the dead, you become a child of God, a citizen of the kingdom
of heaven. You begin a new existence, and operate now from heaven whence you receive
spiritual blessings, power, wisdom and knowledge in order to live a victorious life here on
earth.
Change
( Rom. 12:1-2 ; 1 John 5:4-5 ; Titus 3:3-7 ) Christ now lives in your heart by faith.
Your spirit has been regenerated, you are empowered to live the victorious life. It all
begins by the renewing of your mind, thinking God's thoughts after Him, removing the
garbage of your past life, and developing biblical attitudes and motives to please the
Lord.
( Eph. 5:3-6 ) Being led astray by immoral and seductive persons, by false teachings,
and false systems of religion, these habits, practices and associations are to be changed.
God has taken our unloving nature and made new people out of us, but we must turn
from living a selfish and worldly life and turn to Christ and begin a new lifestyle. Thus, we
are to guard what we see, what we hear, and what we speak.
( 1 John 2:3-6 ) The change process begins with the mind, and the mind changed,
fashioned and molded by the word of God. As the mind changes so does the thoughts,
attitudes and motives. What you comprehend, you will be conformed to, and this is what
will be communicated.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Eph. 2:8-9
Devotion:
BSAF for Acts 17:30-31 ; Eph. 2:8-9 ; John 1:12 ; Rom. 10:9-10 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review the book of 1 John . Note the references and vivid contrast to
loving, to fellowship, to light and the dark, to backsliding, to false teachings:
to that which distinguishes a child of God from the devil's children.
Assurance that you are a child of God rests upon abiding in Christ and upon
the pursuit of righteousness as He is righteous.
It all begins in loving God and the proof that you are loving God rests upon
your relationship with others, and your involvement with the world, the flesh
and the devil.
Begin a process of change by noting when and where you are harboring
grudges, resentments, bitterness. Make plans by using Section A.4,
“Victory Over Sin Worksheet” , Section A.9, “Contingency Plan” , and
other worksheets as appropriate, to respond to these situations in patience,
kindness and goodness.
7.7. Worried, Confused, Troubled
Perspective
( John 14:1-3 ; John 3:15 ; John 5:24 ; John 11:25 ; Rom. 10:9-10 ) Whenever
troubled, disturbed, agitated, perplexed, worried, tossed about, confused, disheartened,
continue to believe while in the midst of troubles. This will carry you through to believing
that God and His Son will deliver your troubled heart. Thus, through belief and hope for
God's house and its mansions, through Jesus' work, through Jesus' return and through an
eternal habitation with Jesus - these things will deliver you from a troubled heart.
Hope
( 1 Pet. 1:3-4 ; Titus 2:12-13 ) Earth is only a temporary place, we have a permanent
one in a real world in another dimension of being. Jesus knew His Father's house, the
truth and the reality of it. Thus, the one thing essential to inherit these mansions is belief
in Christ.
In relation to God, the more a soul hopes and believes, the more it will attain. The more
hope it has, the greater will be its union with God. Thus, we are to empty ourselves of all
that is not of God. In this way we can purely hope for God Himself. Every possession that
is not of God is against hope. In the measure the memory becomes dispossessed of
worldly influences: its delights, its honors, its pressures, its oppressions, its fears, its
materialism - any semblance of earthly properties... to this extent, one will exercise
divine wisdom to reach beyond the earthly to the divine, and from the divine to the
earthly ( Col. 1:27 ; Heb. 12:1-3 ).
Therefore, perfect dispossession of all that is not of God opens up the human faculties to
be filled with and under the absolute presence and direction of the Holy Spirit resulting in
perfect possession with God in union ( Matt. 5:48 ; Matt. 6:10 ; Luke 14:26,33 ).
( Eph. 1:7 ; 1 Pet. 1:18-19 ; 2 Cor. 13:4 ; Rom. 5:2 ) It is through Jesus' work that
our deliverance comes about. Jesus went to the cross to prepare redemption for us by His
death, His resurrection and His exaltation. Being raised from the dead, He prepared the
conquest of death and a new life and power for us. He ascended into heaven to prepare
our access into the presence of God and an eternal home for us.
( John 5:25 ; John 17:24 ; 1 Thess. 4:16-17 ; 2 Cor. 5:8 ; Titus 2:12-13 ; 2 Tim.
4:18 ; Phil. 3:20-21 ) Believers are to be glorified with the Father and Jesus. In an
instant, we will pass from this world into the next world, into heaven itself. In
comparison, our present afflictions are but slight. Meditate on this and grasp the truth of
this statement which will carry your troubled soul through any trial even martyrdom. The
Lord will deliver you from any evil work... physical or spiritual.
Change
( John 14:4-7 ; John 8:19 ; Acts 28:27 ; John 3:3-5 ; 1 Cor. 2:14 ; Rom. 8:15-17
; Gal. 4:4-7 ) As with the disciples, our eyes are to be taken off of earthly things, of
worldly position and power, of wealth and possessions, of pomp and ceremony. We are to
think on Jesus' words that all roads lead to God Himself. We dwell on the words of Jesus,
and we look through the things of the world and see the way to God is Jesus Himself and
the destination of life is God Himself. Accordingly, do not think like the natural man and
be caught up into the earthly atmosphere. Our perpetual residence is one of a heavenly
atmosphere, having an eternal quality, beyond the senses, realizing that we will be in the
Presence of God the Father forever.
( John 14:8-14 ; John 12:45 ; John 16:15 ; Col. 2:9 ; Heb. 1:3 ; John 10:37-38 ;
John 14:20 ; John 17:21-22 ; Acts 1:8 ) As with the disciples, the same today, Jesus
wants us to walk by faith. We will see the Father in Jesus in the Gospels. Jesus revealed
Himself as the full embodiment of God - the very nature, character, substance and
perfection of God. As we believe the word as Jesus did, then, we too will walk by the light
of the word manifesting the Presence of God in our being and deeds - in the midst of
troubles, pressures, and persecutions as with Jesus. We are to believe Jesus as a Person,
as the Son of God Himself, believe His claim, that His testimony and witness to Himself is
absolutely true. As we believe and live in Him, we can go through any trial and come out
victoriously.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Matt. 28:18-20
Devotion:
BSAF for Acts 4:33 ; Eph. 3:20
Put-Off/Put-On:
Meditate on the following verses and make note on what the Holy Spirit is
saying to you, and what should your attitude be in your present situation:
Col. 1:12-14 ; 1 Thess. 5:18 ; 2 Cor. 3:18 ; Heb. 13:15 ; 1 Pet. 2:9 ;
Ps. 29:2 ; Ps. 100:4 .
7.8. The Pure Self Activated
Perspective
( Heb. 4:16 ; James 1:5-8 ; 2 Cor. 3:4-5 ; Phil. 4:13 ) To appropriate God's gracious
wisdom in facing and dealing with your problems, you must ask in faith, that is, to live
according to God's word, and to depend solely on His power.
"You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you..." ( Acts 1:8 ) - not
power as a gift from the Holy Spirit, something that He gives us - the power is the Holy
Spirit. The life that was in Jesus becomes ours because of His Cross, once we make the
decision to be identified with Him. If it is difficult to get right with God, it is because we
refuse to make this moral decision about sin. But once we do decide, the full life of God
comes in immediately. Jesus came to give us an endless supply of life - "...that you may
be filled with all the fullness of God" ( Eph. 3:19 ). Eternal life has nothing to do with
time. It is the life which Jesus lived when He was down here, and the only Source of life
is the Lord Jesus Christ". (Adapted from [8][Chambers2], April 12.)
Hope
( John 16:7-13 ; 1 Cor. 2:11-13 ) Our human spirit is now in union with the Holy
Spirit. Having the mind of Christ, all that Christ is, His fullness is within to be conveyed to
our spirit - the wisdom, strength, and ability of God. From our spirit, His grace moves to
our mind, and from there to our body to manifest Christ in any and all situations,
replacing evil with righteousness. Through us the Gospel of the Risen and Exalted Lord is
proclaimed and able to give eternal life to every person who calls upon Him.
"Eternal life is the life which Jesus Christ exhibited on the human level. And it is this
same life, not simply a copy of it, which is made evident in our mortal flesh when we are
born again. Eternal life is not a gift from God; eternal life is the gift of God. The energy
and the power which was so very evident in Jesus will be exhibited in us by an act of the
absolute sovereign grace of God, once we have made that complete and effective
decision about sin". (Adapted from [8][Chambers2], April 12.)
( John 15:16 ) We are to bear the fruit of our salvation and witness to others of what
Jesus has done. Our job is to be a witness, by our lifestyle, as represented by a solid
demeanor of confidence and boldness, and of patience, kindness, goodness. However, it
is the function and responsibility of the Holy Spirit to convict and convince the world of
sin, righteousness and judgment. He is the one who persuades and convicts.
( 2 Tim. 3:16-17 ; 2 Pet. 1:3-4 ; 2 Cor. 3:18 ) By the word of God, we live, move and
have our being. The life which Jesus gives is a life of energy, force and power. By His
word we become conscious of God's Presence, that we live just as God would live if He
were walking on the earth. We receive life and godliness by the knowledge of Christ and
His word conforms us to His image. Seed of corruption is sin, and this is replaced by the
Holy Spirit indwelling the heart of the believer. We actually partake of the divine nature
of Christ and escape the corruption principle and are enabled to live a life of
righteousness. We move from glory to glory, and grace to grace, the very energy and
Presence of God indwelling.
Change
( 1 Thess. 5:17 ; Heb. 4:15-16 ; James 1:5 ; Matt. 18:18 ; 2 Cor. 9:8 ) God sits
upon a Throne, the seat of authority and power, honor and glory. By His grace, we can
approach God and He will receive us in Christ Jesus. From His Throne, we receive Grace
and in prayer, we receive help to work through our trials, and to receive His strength to
undergo any and all situations. In prayer, we bind the sin and loose the foul spirit by
God's directions, replacing evil with righteousness.
( James 1:5-8 ; James 1:22-25 ; 2 Cor. 3:4-5 ; Phil. 4:13 ) To appropriate God's
gracious wisdom in facing and dealing with our problems, we must ask in faith, live
according to God's word, and depend solely on His power.
( Matt. 26:39 ) "The agony in Gethsemane was the agony of the Son of God in fulfilling
His destiny as the Savior of the world. The veil is pulled back here to reveal all that it cost
Him to make it possible for us to become sons of God. His agony was the basis for the
simplicity of our salvation. The Cross of Christ was a triumph for the Son of Man. It was
not only a sign that our Lord had triumphed, but that He had triumphed to save the
human race. Because of what the Son of Man went through, every human being has been
provided with a way of access into the very presence of God". (Adapted from
[8][Chambers2], April 11.)
It is time to be increasingly separated from the world, the flesh, and the devil.
Accordingly, place your will in the center of God's will and maintain what Christ obtained
for us: to be His disciples to be His intercessors, to be His ambassadors, to establish His
kingdom and His will on earth.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
1 Cor. 2:12 ; 2 Tim. 4:18 ; Heb. 13:6
Devotion:
BSAF for Phil. 4:13,19 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Realize who and what you are in Christ Jesus by fulfilling His Prayer in Matt.
28:18-20 . Be an example, be a teacher, be an intercessor by binding and
loosing. Pray for others to become disciples so that they, in turn, will do
likewise. It is about time that God's Kingdom principles prevail on earth.
Praying for others, you may wish to use Eph. 1:17-19 ; Eph. 3:19-20 ; 2
Cor. 4:4 ; Col. 1:10 ; Matt. 18:18 . To intervene and release those in
bondage, you may be disposed to pray the following:
1. Lord, sprinkle their hearts clean from consciences oppressed with sin
( Heb. 10:22 ).
2. Lord, we bind the sin over them, and loose the foul spirit that hovers
( Matt. 16:19 ).
3. Remove the blindfolds over their eyes that they may see the truth (
2 Cor. 4:4 )
4. Holy Spirit brood over them until the life of Christ penetrates into
their souls ( Gen. 1:2 ).
7.9. Holding Self Accountable
Perspective
( Gen. 1:26 ; Matt. 7:1-5 ) Since God created us and we are His own invention, He is
our means of life and existence, our only resource. Accordingly, we are accountable to
Him and from Him, and we receive whatever we need from Him in order to fulfill His
purposes through us on this earth. On the basis of God's word, we are to judge ourselves
by and through our actions especially in the area of critically judging and condemning
others. The criticizer is inconsistent, self-righteous, self-deceived, lacks love, a hypocrite,
and abuses the Gospel by which our life is to be changed. We are to be an example to the
world by expressing the love of God to others. ( Phil. 2:14-15 )
To judge yourself correctly, examine self in the areas of repentance, of renunciation, and
of detachment. Life's effects are deposited in our memories. Our memories are connected
to our emotions. Those areas that have not been dealt with biblically, Satan stimulates to
bring forth guilt, shame, anger, bitterness, despair, and the like. Thus, keep your
memory clean and fresh by being in a constant state of repentance (confess and repent
immediately upon conviction), by renouncing all those things that hold you in bondage
(vain thoughts, images), and separating oneself from the temptations and the false allure
of the world's enticements ( Matt. 12:30 ; James 2:15-17 ). Now you can be a fit
vessel of the Lord to accomplish His purposes on this earth ( 2 Cor. 6:16-18 ).
Hope
( Ezek. 18:20 ; Jer. 17:10 ) I cannot blame my background, my parentage, the
circumstances of life to justify sinful actions nor am I controlled by them. God's grace is
available to me from heaven to enable me to live righteously regardless of what others
have done. Being free of horizontal controls, God's grace will break the hold of the past,
and He will guide me and lead me to an abundant life.
( Ezek. 18:2-3 ; Eph. 5:18 ) I am not responsible for other's sins, nor do the actions of
others have to unsettle me. Being free of the past, of blame shifting and defensiveness,
this allows for the Presence of the Holy Spirit. The believer is to be filled continuously to
be conscious of His Presence, of His leadership, and of His guidance. The Spirit's filling is
the personal manifestation of Christ to the believer who walks obediently day by day. He
is filled only as he walks in obedience to the word of God.
( John 14:21-22 ; Ps. 119:11 ; Acts 2:1-4 ) To be filled requires that we walk
obediently to Christ, as we walk through terrible trials and severe crisis, God will manifest
His Presence to provide a deep sense of His love and care: lifting and strengthening us to
conform to His Son. Thus, the meaning of life is to allow God to be His fullest in our lives
at every moment of the day and night. This consciousness is the believer's privilege in
being aware of His presence, and of His leadership - moment to moment.
Change
( Rom. 12:9-10 ; 2 Pet. 1:5-7 ) To begin to love sincerely, the believer is to hate all
forms of evil because evil destroys lives. A godly love desires the very best for people. He
is to cleave to the good and to work for everyone to know and experience the good. He
loves others in Christ by being kind and affectionate. He takes the lead in esteeming and
expressing respect for others.
By faith, the power and provision to live a virtuous existence resides within the believer
in the person of the Holy Spirit. But this faith must be worked out and demonstrated and
experienced by one's responses to life. The believer is to add moral excellence, goodness
of character, and moral strength and moral courage; he is to add practical knowledge and
insight in knowing what to do and say in trials and temptations of life; and he is to
master and control the body or the flesh with all of its lusts ( Rom. 5:3-5 ).
( 1 Cor. 1:10 ; 1 Pet. 3:10 ; Prov. 13:3 ; Luke 11:17 ) To reach any situation, one
must refrain the tongue in stirring dissension, division, but to bring peace, love, and
brotherhood. We are to be restored within ourselves and with others. Union in mind and
judgments involves thoughts, reasonings, emotions, motives and intentions. Judgments
involve conclusions, purposes, goals and objectives. Restorations begin in and around
conclusions that bring unity within ourselves and with others.
( Phil. 2:2-4 ; Prov. 17:19 ; Isa. 14:13-14 ; 1 John 2:16 ) If we don't get our way or
what we want, we are inclined to strive, to cause arguments and divisions. We are
inclined to want attention, praise and honor. We are to deny these inclinations for the
sake of Christ that we may help others. God works in us to offer ourselves in a spirit of
submissiveness and lowliness, not to be high-minded, proud, haughty, arrogant, or
assertive.
Humility must be developed which is learning of Christ - His disposition
and His virtues - who placed everyone ahead of Himself. Humility reaches
its height when we lose our lives in the cause of Christ to the benefit and
welfare of others. This requires an honest evaluation of oneself because
we are always at the center of all that we do. Self-centeredness weakens
and limits relationships and achievements.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Ezek. 18:20
Devotion:
BSAF for Luke 9:23-24 ; Rom. 12:16 ; Prov. 21:4 ; Prov. 26:12 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Read Phil. 2:3-11 , then work out Section A.2, “Think And Do List” .
Evaluate yourself to the extent you seek your own interest, using the
following characteristics we habitually think about that keep us self-
centered:
• ambition
• being by-passed
• being ignored
• not being recognized
• desires
• position
• wants
• being neglected
• being overlooked
• not being honored
• not given a promotion or not selected
(See also Section A.5, “Dying To Self” for additional insights.)
For each item replace by what God wants you to think and to do, considering
the needs of others before your own, such as: visiting, consoling,
ministering, helping, sharing, feeding, clothing, transporting, listening,
advising, counseling, teaching, etc.
7.10. Only God Can Change Us And Others
Perspective
( Ezek. 36:26-27 ; Phil. 1:6 ; Phil. 2:13 ) Only God can change people, so you are not
and cannot be responsible for changing them. You are accountable to God solely for your
own deeds, and to do your part in living at peace with others. Your job is to intercede in
prayer, to be a godly influence and set an example to provide an opportunity for God to
work in the hearts of others. For God is the one Who arouses, stirs and energizes the
heart of the believer to do His will.
Hope
( Phil. 1:6 ; Jude 24-25 ) The believer has absolute confidence in the work of salvation
or redemption which God has begun in his life. He has confidence through the Presence of
God's Spirit Who dwells within him. Accordingly, the Spirit of Christ within the believer
enables him to fulfill his role and function. For it is God who frees us from blemishes; it is
God who delivers us daily when we confess; He, it is, Who makes us blameless and keeps
us from falling. All we need to do is to draw near to Him and stay in touch with Him by
daily bible study and prayer, and by walking righteously ( Ps. 91:1-3 ).
( Phil. 2:13 ; 1 John 2:27 ) God arouses, stirs and energizes the heart of the believer to
do God 's will. God is working within us-energizing us-giving us both the will and power to
do what pleases Him. God does not leave us alone to work out our salvation and
deliverance.
( Rom. 5:3-5 ; 2 Cor. 4:7-18 ; Luke 22:23 ) Do not be surprised at trials, even if they
seem fiery; instead, rejoice in them because God uses them to develop Christlike
maturity in our lives. If you should endure suffering for the sake of righteousness, you
are blessed by the Lord. Trials and sufferings work good for us. Oppressions and
afflictions stirs patience, which is the development of endurance, fortitude, steadfastness,
constancy. Through these experiences we develop character, integrity, strength. When
one endures trials, he becomes stronger as he begins to sense the increasing presence of
God. He draws close to God and the closer he draws to God, the more he hopes for the
glory of God. All of this leads to the continuous experience of God's love through the
presence of the Holy Spirit.
Change
( John 7:24 ; Rom. 14:1-13 ) Do not judge others by your own standards, perspective,
or experience. You will be judged in the very same way you judge them. We are to form
a just judgment by checking our own spirit and place ourselves in the position to help
restore others, if need be, who are at fault ( Gal. 6:1 ).
( Ps. 19:7-11 ; Prov. 30:5-6 ; Heb. 4:12 ) God's word is to be your only authority for
faith and conduct and is to be the only legitimate standard by which you are to be
evaluated. You are to rely on no other source, since God's word provides hope and gives
direction for change in all areas of life (thoughts, words, actions). But you must labor to
enter God's rest, that is, to study God's work and to learn to walk righteously. As you do
your part God will do His: It is the word of God that takes man's earthly, soulish nature
and separates it from the spiritual call and promise of God.
( 2 Pet. 1:3-4 ; Matt. 5:1-20 ) Nature of well being comes about by setting aside anger,
contempt, lust, manipulation, revenge and payback, forsaking dependence upon human
reputation, wealth, possessions. Our memories are to be possessed by God, not by the
past, people or things. Thus, by faith, by repentance, we are to add to our faith the
virtues of prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance. As such, we will grow into the
image of Christ as ordained from the beginning.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Ps. 128:1-4
Devotion:
BSAF for Titus 2:11-12 ; Ps. 31:19 ; John 6:63 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
The fear of God will be the soil out of which your positive influence will grow
and the basic reason your family and others will arise and call you blessed.
Meditate on the following Scriptures and read what the Bible says will
happen to you as a God-fearing person. In 50 words or so, describe what
you have learned from these verses: Ps. 25:12-13 ; Ps. 112:3 ; Ps. 31:19
; Ps. 103:11-18 ; Ps. 112:1-9 ; Ps. 145:19 ; Prov. 1:7 ; Prov. 8:13 ;
Prov. 9:10 ; Prov. 14:26 ; Prov. 15:33 ; Prov. 19:23 ; Acts 9:31 ; Job
2:3 ; Malachi 3:16 ; Ps. 147:11 ; Ps. 128:3 ; 2 Cor. 7:1 ; Rev. 14:7 and
Eccl. 12:13 .
7.11. Judging Yourself
Perspective
( Matt. 7:5 ; James 3:1-2 ) To judge means to criticize, condemn, censor - a habit of
censorious and carping criticism. To criticize others is to boost one's own image, at the
expense of another. This makes us feel that our lives are better than the person who
failed. We justify our decisions and acts by pointing out the failures of others, and this
shows that we are stronger than they are. Criticism is really an outlet for our own hurts
and desire for revenge. The criticizer will be judged for the very same thing he criticized:
it is that for which he shall be condemned, and that by God himself ( Rom. 2:1-4 ).
Hope
( Ps. 19:7-11 ; Prov. 30:5-6 ; 2 Pet. 1:2-4 ) By judging and examining ourselves
correctly, we open up and allow God's grace and peace to flow within to provide a fit
place for the divine nature to inhabit. This nature is the power of Christ, the power to
save us from death and to give us life and godliness. Just using God's word itself provides
this hope and gives direction for change in deeds (thoughts, speech and action)
consistent with God's nature. The Word is adequate to equip you for very good work, and
to develop a Christ-like attitude of servanthood within.
( Jer. 17:9 ; Heb. 4:12 ; Matt. 15:18-20 ) You cannot fully understand your own heart
but God's word is the measure and instrument by which the heart level of your problem is
discerned. "'Let not your heart be troubled...' ( John 14:1,27 ). Am I then hurting Jesus
by allowing my heart to be troubled? If I believe in Jesus and His attributes, am I living
up to my belief? Am I allowing anything to disturb my heart, or am I allowing any
questions to come in which are unsound or unbalanced? I have to get to the point of the
absolute and unquestionable relationship that takes everything exactly as it comes from
Him. God never guides us at some time in the future, but always here and now. Realize
that the Lord is here now, and the freedom you receive is immediate." (Adapted from
[8][Chambers2], April 21.)
( Eph. 5:14-18 ) How the believer walks day to day is crucial to the cause of Christ and
to the welfare of society. The wise person knows God personally and he knows that he is
on earth to live a righteous and godly life. He walks throughout life exact, strict,
disciplined and controlled. As such, people, circumstances or things in life do not cause
his problems but only reveal the condition of his heart - the spirit within. By being under
control and influence of the Holy Spirit, the believer can assess his heart and biblically
respond regardless of the situation, and become a blessing under the prompting of the
Holy Spirit.
Change
( 1 Cor. 11:28-31 ; Heb. 12:1 ) Practicing God's word begins with judging yourself and
removing sinful obstructions from your own life. Then, you will have the privilege and
responsibility of restoring others to victorious living. We have no righteousness of our
own. We can only be counted worthy when we examine ourselves to assure that we are
walking in constant fellowship with Him. And constant fellowship means actively thinking
upon and talking with Him through confession, repentance, praise and request.
( Prov. 28:13 ; 2 Cor. 7:9-10 ; Rom. 6:12-13 ) Once you have identified sins in your
life, you must repent of them, confess them and immediately put them aside. Repentance
moves us from the old creation to the new creation, from the flesh to the spirit, from the
natural to the supernatural realm.
( Titus 2:11-12 ; Gal. 5:16 ; Eph. 3:16-21 ; Eph. 5:18 ; 1 John 5:3 ) The believer
needs to be strengthened with power in the 'inner man', in his soul, in his heart, in his
spirit - in the spirit that God has renewed. This is the only way he can overcome the flesh
with all its weakness. The source of this strength is the Holy Spirit Who provides the
energy and the force to live the overcoming life. Thus, the believer is to prepare himself
through repentance, through renunciation, and through detachment of all that is of the
flesh to allow the Holy Spirit to move one to stretch forward: "for the prize of the upward
call of God in Christ Jesus".
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Ps. 139:23-24
Devotion:
BSAF on verses from above (at least choose 3 verses).
Put-Off/Put-On:
The four anchor posts in Section A.12, “Anchor Posts” provide a method
and the means to examine and evaluate yourself in a structured and
disciplined manner to insure a firm and godly spiritual foundation. ( Phil.
2:14-16 ) List the people of whom you feel bitter, envious, jealous, and of
whom you indulge in negative and critical thoughts. List the circumstances
of life in which you murmur and complain. On the basis of your findings,
process Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” .
7.12. True Dying
Perspective
( Matt. 10:38-39 ; Prov. 16:3-7 ) To carry the cross means to practice the Presence of
Jesus, and to allow His love to flow through us to others. It means that we are to carry
the life of Christ to other people and say to them: "The Kingdom of God has come to
you," that is, God's approval and peace, as well as the joy the Holy Spirit gives. The work
of the Holy Spirit in us and among us is to understand the positive character of what it
means to carry one's cross: He comes into us and empowers us at the point we obey.
Hope
( 2 Cor. 4:17 ; 1 Pet. 4:13 ; Isa. 63:9 ) Christian suffering we undergo in carrying of
our cross is when we allow Christ to live in and through us. It is His light in us which
collides with the darkness of the world: the ignorance, lies hate, all the delusions of a
darkened fallen world. Our suffering is redemptive when we carry His love and
forgiveness into the lives of others affected by the world. We should rejoice when we take
part in Christ's suffering because Christ is suffering with us.
( 1 Pet. 3:9-15 ; 1 Pet. 4:12-15 ) When we suffer due to the sins of others or to the
corporate sins of others, we can ask God to transform these sufferings into healing
power. We forgive those who have sinned against us, and we accept the circumstances of
our lives. Then we go on to make prayers of confession and intercession for ourselves
and others. As we pray, that which is redemptive is accomplished. Accordingly, righteous
actions follow, healing our own souls in the process.
Change
( Rom. 6:3-8 ) Our identity is with Christ and not on our past, the past is in the grave.
The abuses of life as a child or adulthood: the depression, intense inner suffering of life
as a child or adult; life in a disfunctional family due to alcoholism, sexual addictions,
mental illness, overt or subtle evil on the part of parents or others, and similar
experiences: all of these violations are afflictions. But it is not the cross we are to bear.
We are to take this cross of pain and suffering to Christ's Cross, and there acknowledge
that Christ died to take into Himself this very pain and suffering.
( Rom. 8:2-11 ) We are not to deny or suppress our past and associated pain and
suffering: accept them, then offer the pain to Christ, let the pain flow into Him. We die
with Him to these sins, we die to these diseased feelings by allowing Him to take them
into Himself. By this means, we get in touch with heretofore repressed grief, fear, anger,
and shame. To dwell on the past is death, give death to Christ Who kills it. Doing this you
come to life to live in the present by practicing the Presence of Christ rather than
practicing the presence of the self.
( Col. 2:11-14 ; Matt. 6:14-15 ; 1 John 1:1 ) We are to stand in Christ, identify with
His suffering for us, and grieve at the grieves, and yield up our angers, naming them and
forgiving others at the same time. Christ's suffering consists in the fact that He became
the way of life. He channeled (by dying) His life to us. Our suffering consists in the fact
that we become a channel of His life, His life and Light in us overcomes the evil and pain
in the souls of men. This is where the battle lies, and this is where we experience
suffering for Christ's sake: Jesus overcame sin, we appropriate His life.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
Luke 9:23-24
Devotion:
BSAF on Rom. 6:12-16 .
Put-Off/Put-On:
Review and study Section A.5, “Dying To Self” and Section 9.2, “Sin,
Self, Suffering” . List in priority areas that need addressing. Prepare
Section A.4, “Victory Over Sin Worksheet” or Section A.6, “Problem
Solving Worksheet” .
7.13. True Patience
( Luke 21:19 ) Few virtues provide witness that our life is based no longer on one's own
nature but on Christ.
False virtues
Indolence reflects a lazy spirit, and stoic actions reflect an artificial indifference in regard
to all things. Only thing that matters to this person is his own impertubility which implies
a loss of response to values. In either case, these conditions lack an ardent zeal for the
victory of our God.
Likewise, the Buddhist mentality sees all reality as mere appearance, or is to be detached
and to dispense of all obligations of duty and accomplishment. One becomes merely a
spectator looking unfavorably to all activity and tension. This makes it impossible for one
to encounter reality and work through it to develop Christlike character.
The stoic develops an attitude to things insofar as they affect the mind. The Buddhist
modifies one's basic relation to the world of reality and negates one's responsibility to do
one's part within its framework.
Traits of Patience
The ups and downs of life challenge the pursuit of constancy and perseverance in the face
of stark reality. Petulance, fickleness and quarrelsome aspects come about whenever a n
action seems to require a long period of time which is a common test.
Impatience is a form of self-indulgence. When we expect something and don't get it, we
get upset. This involves an element of time. Three varieties of evil related to time may
account for impatience: delay in securing of a coveted good; any kind of lasting
unpleasantness (boring people); and the boredom inherent in pure waiting.
These tendencies show that one has not yet succeeded in establishing that distance
between one's responsible self and one's unredeemed nature with the desires and
impulses it harbors. This is a test of sovereignty - yours or God's. Impatience, therefore,
is rooted in an illegitimate sovereignty of self.
Roots of Impatience
1. Self-indulgence - no pain, no waiting, no delays.
2. Sovereignty of self-egocentric attitude - disregard of others needs but my own.
This severs our fundamental link with God which defines our creatureness.
Accordingly, this attitude presents a negation and non-recognition of one's human
creatureness; a substitution of a supra-human position of mastery; failure to note
one's limitations and finiteness.
The reality imposed by God is that there is a space of time that exists between our will
and decision and the fulfillment of our purpose. The impatient man ignores this reality.
We become harsh, petulant, unkind which implies a lack of depth. We are to keep in mind
that fulfillment of any aim of man is a gift of God. It is a question of the higher good in
contrast to trivial goals. What irritates an impatient person above all is too sluggish effect
of his order, his attempt to influence man's behavior, and the development of a situation.
Virtues of Patience (Hierarchy of Goods and Things)
The patient man preserves the right order on the scale of his interest. The requirement of
the moment no matter how imperious, can never displace or overshadow his attention to
higher values. This is due to the 'art of waiting'. He refrains from letting himself go. He
checks his nature and its stirrings, and no matter the provocation, bears the cross that he
may respond biblically.
He is always aware regardless of the experiences of the moment. He knows he cannot
remain in communion with God except his soul is in a state of composure and self-
possession ( Ps. 30:16 ). Thus, he never pretends a false position of supremacy over the
universe.
( Eccl. 3:1 ) God is the Lord of Time, that He has assigned to the course of events its
temporal extension. Thus, it is up to us to realize the interval of time between a decision
and the realization of its intended aim as a reality willed by God.
Patience is a life centered in Christ, an absolute dependence on Him, as well as an
acceptance of our creature finiteness. He who has patience abides by the Truth. The
impatient man submits to the bondage of the moment.
Holy patience means our responses to the Truth reveal that it is not we but God alone
Who determines the proper day and the hour for our fruitful performances of certain
actions and , even more, exclusively, the ripening of our seed and the harvest labors.
Fullness of Time
To grow in inner and personal holiness requires a passage of time. Need to wait on God's
timing not ours. As Noah in the ark performed his functions, he focused his attention on
God, and waited, as God developed and matured the situation. Then Noah was told to
depart. Paul spent a number of years in the desert as did John the Baptist before they
started their work.
( 2 Tim. 4:2 ) Christ wants us to fight with Him, not to conquer with Him. We are to
renounce any pretensions in determining the time of the harvest - 'not as I will but as
Thou wilt'.
( Luke 21:19 ) Holy patience embodies an ultimate act of our surrender to God, a status
of consummate self-possession. Only in the measure that we have surrendered our
inmost being to God, do we possess ourselves.
Fruits of Patience
Within the attitude of patience, we let God act and allow all things to unfold from above.
Accordingly, the fruits of patience are faith, hope and love.
Faith: ( Rev. 13:10 ) Faith teaches us that God the Universal Lord is also
the Lord of time. He appoints the proper hour to everything. Thus, we
place the success of all endeavors in His hands.
Hope: ( Rom. 4:17-22 ) Hope keeps us from getting discouraged in spite
of all the failures and all the delays in achieving success. With God
nothing is impossible.
Love: ( 1 Cor. 13:7 ) We are to Love His will above everything. Patience
is an offspring of love in respect to constancy and perseverance.
( Matt. 24:13 ) Patience acknowledges man's creaturely status. We are finite and
subject to persevere in the space/time continuum in the midst of obstacles and
sufferings. Thus, we give proof of the constancy demanded of God as we hold on to Him
to get us through this terrestrial life into the eternal.
( Rom. 6:3-6 ) Thus, only the patient man who lives by and in Christ can persevere to
the end. "In your patience, you shall possess your souls" ( Luke 21:19 ).
Reference: [11][Hildebrand1]
7.14. Mind Control
Perspective
( 1 Pet. 1:13 ; Col. 3:1-3 ) Gird your mind is to control, guard, select what you are to
put into it. Thus, be selective about what you read, hear and think about. All your
thoughts are to please God, not self. Consciously thinking to please God allows the Spirit
of God to be revealed in your spirit. We precondition ourselves by what we think, by what
we believe, and by what we confess ( Prov. 4:20-23 ; Matt. 12:33-36 ).
Hope
( Eph. 4:23 ; Phil. 2:12-13 ) The spirit of the mind refers to the 'will' of the mind. By an
act of my will, I will my mind to think thoughts pleasing to God, to disregard feelings, but
to think on God's word only, an attitude change. Ask God to make you willing to will to do
the will of God, to be strengthened by His presence.
( 1 Pet. 4:1 ; Luke 9:23-24 ) By suffering, I learn to die to self-pity, self-defensiveness,
self-concern and self-interests. From that point on I am in the spirit responding to life
from God's perspective, looking for opportunities to be a blessing, putting on the cross
and allowing Jesus to live through me being a blessing to others. Arm self is to arm the
mind, to set it do what God wants regardless of the pain: then healing comes - the
Presence of God in the situation.
( Heb. 7:26 ; Heb. 9:14-15 ; Heb. 10:19-23 ) Once and forever our sins are paid for.
No need to try to pay for our sins by self-pity, by promising to do better, going to church
more often, giving more time and money, Jesus paid the penalty. We are free now to
allow Christ to live through us, and in Him to do those things that are pleasing in His
sight because our conscience is cleansed from guilt by His blood.
Change
( 2 Cor. 10:4-5 ) All things begin with a thought. A thought becomes an idea, an idea
becomes an action, an action becomes a habit, and a habit becomes a character trait -
good or evil. All thoughts develop into imaginations, these lead to strongholds - godly or
ungodly.
( Phil. 4:6 ) When anxious moments come, let them come, just fix your mind on Jesus,
replace negative thoughts with godly thoughts. Then, in time, confusion ceases, peace
comes. What you sow, you will reap.
The key word is FIX :
FIX mind on what you will put into your head.
FIX mind on will, will to think right.
FIX mind to purpose, to determine, not to be moved by anything.
As Jesus set His mind to go to Jerusalem, to die on the Cross, do likewise, die to the old
self thoughts, so that the new self in Christ can now live in your mind.
Work Out Your Salvation (Phil. 2:12-13)
Memory Verse(s):
2 Cor. 10:3-5 . Devotions on CONSTANCY : Firmness, steadfastness,
determination, perseverance, resolution, faithfulness.
Put-Off/Put-On:
Takes time and repeated effort to succeed. When you fall, get-up, and start
all over again, regardless of the number of failures, key is getting up and
doing it all over again. God promises victory to those who patiently and
through longsuffering keep on, keeping-on. Rest will come, then peace (
James 1:2-4 ). Inconstancy is a habit as well. One tries 2 or 3 times and
gives up which becomes a pattern. Keep on, keeping-on until you are
dominant and have control over your mind.
Example of a think-list: (See Section 5.2, “Transforming the Natural
Self” )
Each time a negative thought comes, immediately think upon
the blood of Jesus washing my sins away, forgiving me, and
delivering me from the power of sin, making me white as
snow, forgiving me, and delivering me from the power of sin.
At the same time, pray for God's favor and grace also to be
upon those who offended, who failed you or hurt you in any
way ( Luke 6:27-28 ).
This opens the way for the Holy Spirit to be present within
me to restore, to cure, and to heal my mind, my memories,
my emotions, and my body ( Col. 3:10-14 ).
Continuously practicing being freed from the curse of the law,
I place myself in the position to fulfill my role as a disciple of
Christ by serving and meeting the needs of others ( Matt.
28:18-20 ).
God promises success and prosperity to those who read and
keep His word. As I meditate on these promises, daily I am
being conformed to His image, and daily I am rising above
self and life's circumstances ( Joshua 1:8 ).
Chapter 8. Soul Dynamics Series, Part A
Table of Contents
8.1. Living Soul
8.2. Sins of the Flesh/Self of the Flesh
8.3. Dividing of Spirit and Soul
8.4. Union with Christ
8.1. Living Soul
Perspective
( Gen. 2:7 ; John 6:63 ; Rom. 8:16 ; Heb. 4:12 ) Since soul and spirit can be divided,
they must be different in nature. When God inbreathed into man, the breath of life
became man's spirit, that is, the principle of life within him. When this spirit came into
contact with the body, the soul was produced. Hence, the soul is the combination of
man's body and spirit. From this, man is called 'a living soul'.
Man was designated a living soul, for it was there that the spirit and body met and
through which his individuality was known. Man's soul represents him and expresses his
individuality. It is the organ of man's free will by which man chooses to follow God or
some other source to guide and direct his life, goals, and purposes.
Hope
( 1 Cor. 15:44,45 ; Luke 1:46-47 ; John 16:13 ) The first Adam, a living soul, lived
through the body, and the body gives us world-consciousness. The soul is the site of the
personality because it is where the spirit and body merge. The soul belongs to man's own
self and reveals his personality, and the part of self-consciousness. The spirit is that part
by which we commune with God by which we apprehend and worship Him. This spirit is
called the element of God-consciousness. Thus, God dwells in the spirit, self dwells in the
soul, while senses dwell in the body.
The spirit transmits its thought to the soul, and the soul exercises the body to obey the
spirit's order. Since the soul lies between spirit and body, it is the medium by which the
spirit or the body determines its character. Before the fall of man, the spirit controlled the
whole being through the soul. It is the will in the soul which determines whether the
spirit, the body, or even itself is to rule. As such the soul is the organ of man's
individuality, and the reason the Bible calls man 'a living soul'.
( 1 Cor. 3:16 ; 1 Thess. 5:23 ) God formerly dwelt in the temple, as the Holy Spirit
indwells man today. As in the temple, God is present in the Holy of Holies and His Light
shone on the Holy Place - the soul of man. The soul directs the body, the outer place.
Before the fall, God's word, the Light, was directly linked to man's spirit. Before the fall,
the soul was governed by the spirit. This is the order God still wants: first the spirit, then
the soul, and lastly the body.
( Ps. 51:10 ; 1 Cor. 2:11 ; Mark 2:8 ; John 4:23 ) Human spirit is not the same as the
soul nor is it the same as the Holy Spirit. The human spirit has three functions:
conscience, intuition, and communion. The conscience is the discerning organ which
distinguishes right and wrong, not by influence of knowledge stored in the mind but
rather by a spontaneous direct judgment. The intuition is the sensing organ of the human
spirit. We really 'know' through our intuition; our mind really helps us to 'understand'
through the medium of our imagination. The revelations of God and all the movements of
the Holy Spirit are known to the believer through his intuition. Communion is worshipping
God. Our worship of God and God's communications with us are directly in the spirit - the
'inner man' - not in the soul.
Change
( Lev. 11:44 ; Lev. 17:11 ; 1 Chron. 22:19 ; Prov. 19:2 ; Luke 1:46 ; Matt. 16:26 ;
Luke 9:25 ; 1 Cor. 15:44 ; Heb. 4:12 ) The soul comprises the mind, intellect,
memory, emotion and will. The soul is man's life, his natural life. The life of our present
body is that of the soul. The soul is the organ of volition and the natural life. Thus, as
humans we determine what kind of Christian we become, whether spiritual or soulish.
Before regeneration, whatever is included in life-be it self, life, strength, power, choice,
thought, opinion, love feeling - pertains to the soul. Soul life is the life man inherits at
birth. All that this life possesses and all that it may become are in the realm of the soul.
Therefore, if we can distinctly recognize what is soulical, it will then be easier to recognize
what is spiritual.
( Gen. 1:24-26 ; Gen. 2:7 ; Ezek. 36:26-27 ) Our spirit comes directly from God, it is
God-given. Our soul is not so directly derived; it was produced after the spirit entered the
body. God bestowed upon man sovereign power and gifts to the human soul. Thought,
will, intellect and intention are among the prominent portions. The original purpose of
God is that the human soul should receive and assimilate the truth and substance of
God's spiritual life by a voluntary action. Man is given the choice of two trees: one tree
germinates spiritual life; the other develops soulish life.
( Gen. 3:1-6 ; Gen. 3:12-13 ; 1 Tim. 2:14 ; 1 Pet. 2:24 ; 1 Cor. 3:18-20 ) Eve by
trying to answer Satan exercised her mind-disobedience to the spirit. Satan provoked her
soulical thought first, then advanced to seize her will. Exercising soul in relation to the
body brought forth the lusts and associated emotions. The intellect was the chief cause of
the fall, the activity of the mind. Thus, become a fool that you may become wise ( Prov.
3:5-6