Welcome to Week 5 of Whatever! Several of you were asking me how to access the previous weeks from this study. You can go to the “Bible Study” tab on the home page and click on the various weeks.
Let’s recap a moment. We’ve looked at …
- Week 1 – Think on These Things
- Week 2 – Thoughts of Self
- Week 3 – Thoughts of Others
- Week 4 – Thoughts of Worry
In week 5 we will be focusing on “Thoughts of the Imagination.” You know exactly what I’m talking about when I say that. It’s those things that we conjure up in our minds. It’s when our imaginations get the best of us or when we are “presuming” to know something about someone or a situation that we really have no way of predicting.
It could be what someone else is thinking. It could be the way we think a situation is going to turn out. It could come from an irrational fear. The fact is, our imaginations go to work, get the best of us, and before long we are consumed by something that we’ve imagined and that is in all likelihood untrue. My friend Susan Cady calls these “vain imaginings.”
In fact, she’s said it to me before when she’s heard me “presume” that I know how a situation is going to turn out or what someone is going to say or think. She just looks at me, points her finger and says, “Stop those vain imaginings, Jacqueline!”
Let’s take a look at our focal passage to remind ourselves of what it says …
We are to think on things that are …
Read 2 Corinthians 10:5 in the King James Version. It’s below.
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.
The word for “casting down” in the Greek is kathaireō, and it means to demolish, to take down. The word for “imaginations” is logismos and means a reckoning or computation.
Have you ever “reckoned” something? My grandmother used to use that word all the time. “Well, I reckon she’s going to get sick from walking around that house with no shoes on.” To reckon means to speculate, suppose, guess, or give a personal opinion. A reckoning isn’t based on fact, it’s based on what we think might happen.
Let me ask you this. Is there any good reason we should “reckon”? I mean really. What good does it do us to “imagine, speculate, guess, or suppose” anything? After all, do we know it to be true? NO! Then why waste the time!
Let’s go back and read 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 all together so we can get better understanding.
3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.
What are we waging war against according to verse 3?
From verse 4 from where do our weapons come and what are they to “pull down”?
What else is supposed to come down according to verse 5?
What are we to bring into captivity?
Read Ephesians 6:10-18. What are some of the weapons that we use to fight these spiritual battles?
Did you catch what 2 Corinthians 10:5 says about obedience to Christ? When we have these “vain imaginings” are we being obedient to Him?
We must train ourselves to stop “reckoning” and start recounting who God is in the midst of whatever is pulling our minds away from Him. That’s what happens, you know. When we begin speculating or imagining things that we don’t know to be true, we are acting independently of God. We are doubting who God is. We are separating ourselves from God in that situation. We are being “double-minded.” James 1:8
Here are some steps we can take to help us during these times.
We can …
- Four-eight our thoughts!
- Recount who God is and what He has done in the past to provide and secure us.
- Pray and ask God to help us stop imagining.
- Find a verse of Scripture and replace our guesses and speculations with Truth!
Here’s what I want you to do this week. Print out this handout and every time you catch yourself “reckoning” or “speculating” about something write it down and follow the steps to help you “four-eight” those thoughts.
I’d love to hear your thoughts this week. Please comment below.
In our final week we will wrap-up this study and learn how to replace the “Whatevers” with something extraordinary!
See you next time!