VIDEO The Attitudes of the Spirit

Be made new in the attitude of your minds. Ephesians 4:23, NIV

How would you define the word attitude? Wikipedia calls it “a psychological construct, a mental and emotional entity that … characterizes a person…. It is an individual’s predisposed state of mind.”[1]

The real question isn’t how we define the word attitude, but how our attitudes are defining us. The Bible tells us that Christ wants us to be defined by His attitudes. Philippians 2:5 says, “You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had” (NLT).

Let’s take that a step further. Isn’t that the true implication of the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23? Maybe we could paraphrase it like this: “As you grow in Christ, the Holy Spirit will produce in you the very attitudes—the predisposed state of mind—of Jesus Himself, which is more love, more joy, more peace, more patience, more kindness, more goodness, more faithfulness, more gentleness, and more self-control.”

Our attitude is important when it comes to our heart of obedience to the Father. If you have some unhealthy attitudes today, ask God to replace them with those of Jesus.

Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.

Zig Ziglar

[1]“Attitude,” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attitude_(psychology).


Ephesians 4 (Part 4) :17-24 • Putting On Christ

The Wonderful One

There before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. Revelation 4:2

In The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion return to Oz with the broomstick that empowered the Wicked Witch of the West. The Wizard had promised, in return for the broomstick, that he would give the four their deepest desires: a ride home for Dorothy, a brain for the Scarecrow, a heart for the Tin Man, and courage for the Cowardly Lion. But the Wizard stalls and tells them to come back the next day.

While they plead with the Wizard, Dorothy’s dog Toto pulls back the curtain, behind which the Wizard spoke, to reveal that the Wizard isn’t a wizard at all, he’s just a fearful, fidgety man from Nebraska.

It’s said that the author, L. Frank Baum, had a serious problem with God, so he wanted to send the message that only we have the power to solve our problems.

In contrast, the apostle John pulls back the veil to reveal the truly Wonderful One behind the “curtain.” Words fail John (note the repeated use of the preposition like in the passage), but the point is well made: God is seated on His throne, surrounded by a sea of glass (Revelation 4:2, 6). Despite the troubles that plague us here on earth (chs. 2–3), God isn’t pacing the floor and biting His nails. He’s actively at work for our good, so we can experience His peace.

By:  David H. Roper

Reflect & Pray

What do you fear today? How does it help you to know that God controls the troubles that surround you? How can you better trust and surrender to Him?

I’m grateful, God, that I can count on You to walk with me through everything. Thank You for Your peace.

Finding Strength in Weakness

Judges 16

Great strength is no guarantee of protection from temptation. Although Samson had God-given power, he was defeated by a personal weakness. In the same way, we as Christians have the omnipotent Holy Spirit to enable us to live righteously. But as broken beings, we’re bound to make mistakes along the way, as Samson did. 

Our best defense against temptation is reliance upon the Word and power of God. If we’ll turn to Him in our weakness—filling our mind with His truth and asking His Holy Spirit for guidance and protection—He will strengthen us to resist. But we must also be aware of our areas of vulnerability and take care to avoid situations that increase temptation. 

It’s also helpful to prepare for temptation beforehand by memorizing scriptures that refute the lies Satan throws at us. When Jesus was tempted by the devil, He answered every enticement with biblical truth (Matt. 4:1-11).

And finally, don’t forget to pray immediately when unholy desires threaten to carry you away. Ask the Lord to give you the fortitude and wisdom to walk away from temptation and turn to Him for strength.

Better and an Enduring Substance

“For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.” (Hebrews 10:36)

Christians have certain heavenly possessions, and this knowledge helps put our earthly possessions and welfare in proper perspective. Evidently, some to whom this was written had been imprisoned, and others impoverished for their faith. “For ye…took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance” (v. 34). Peter called it “an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:4).

These possessions are attainable; they are not in question; they are ours, given to us by the One whose name is “Truth” (John 14:6) and whose Word is trustworthy. We “know” (Hebrews 10:34) this beyond all doubt.

Furthermore, these possessions are valuable. We must “cast not away therefore [our] confidence, which hath great recompense of reward” (v. 35). With this assurance, we are able to bear up under any suffering or persecution that comes our way (see also Romans 8:18).

Knowledge of these possessions is prescriptive, for it helps us cope with longstanding troubles. In our text, we “have need of patience” to get through them and do “the will of God.” “Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh” (James 5:7-8).

Lastly, realization of these possessions is imminent. “For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry” (Hebrews 10:37). “He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20). JDM

Healing Silence

And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray. —Mark 6:46

Very few of us know the secret of bathing our souls in silence. It was a secret our Lord Jesus Christ knew very well. There were times when He had to send the multitudes away so He could retire alone into the silence of the mountainside. There He would turn the God-ward side of His soul toward heaven and for a long time expose Himself to the face of His Father in heaven….

My eyes and ears and spirit are aware of the immaturities in the so-called evangelicalism of our time. The more noise we make, the more we advertise, the more bells we jingle, the happier we seem to be. All of the signs of immaturity are among us.

We are seeing a general abhorrence of being alone, of being silent before the Lord. We shrink from allowing our souls to be bathed in the healing silences.   MMG103-104

Father, grant that we might not forsake the quest for solitude and silence until we have really mastered this discipline, no matter how busy our lives continue to be. Amen.

Another Nature

And you…hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable. —Colossians 1:21-22

For the moral unlikeness between man and God the Bible has a word, alienation, and the Holy Spirit presents a frightful picture of this alienation as it works itself out in human character.

Fallen human nature is precisely opposite to the nature of God as revealed in Jesus Christ. Because there is no moral likeness there is no communion, hence the sense of physical distance, the feeling that God is far away in space….

The new birth makes us partakers of the divine nature. There the work of undoing the dissimilarity between us and God begins. From there it progresses by the sanctifying operation of the Holy Spirit till God is satisfied. BAM121-122

The only remedy for human nature is to destroy it and receive instead the divine nature. God does not improve man. He crucifies the natural life with Christ and creates the new man in Christ

Jesus. DHE/October013

On a Wing and a Prayer

Job 5:9

Ian Knop for many years had his home in Perth, Australia. There he had a part in starting a new Christian congregation, and just as a hobby he kept half a dozen white ducks behind a wire netting fence in his backyard.

One day his wife warned him that he needed to clip the wings of the ducks, as some of them seemed to be trying to get over the fence. He said that he would do the job on Saturday when he was home from work. However, late on Friday afternoon as Ian was watching from his veranda, one of the ducks which happened to be a bit lame stretched its wings, flew over the netting and disappeared behind the house.

Somewhat surprised, Ian ran into the street, but the duck was nowhere to be seen. He went to the next street, but again there was no sign of the bird. Although he inquired of almost everyone he met no one had seen the rather improbable suburban sight of a white duck flying or walking about. Time went by and the mystery of the missing duck remained unsolved.

Almost a year later the truth came out, and what had happened to the lame duck became known. Ian had attended a Sunday night service when the theme had been on answers to prayer. As the weather was rough he offered a ride home to a woman in the congregation who lived four streets from where he lived himself and who had experienced a hard life with a drunken husband and their five children.

As they drove along, the woman kept up a stream of comments on this and that and then remarked on the lovely meeting they had shared thinking about answers to prayer. She said: “I know God answers prayer. Believe it or not, about a year ago on a Friday night I was standing on my veranda praying to God because I had little money with which to buy meat or other food for the family over the weekend.”

“Suddenly, a white duck came out of the sky and landed just in front of me. It had a little bit of a limp but otherwise it was a lovely bird, and a real answer to prayer. In no time I had killed it and had it ready for the pot and we had all the meat we needed. Wasn’t that wonderful!”

Ian resisted the temptation to reveal that it was his loss that had been her gain! God’s servant of old reminds us, “He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted” (Job 5:9).

Wesley Harris, Truth Stranger than Fiction