The progress in our sanctification is fought in the battlefield of our minds. Though the Bible often enlists the word “heart” for the “organ” we must guard so carefully (Pr.4:23), it is important to remember that this Hebrew analogy refers to the faculty of our thoughts, reason, imagination, intention, and contemplation. When God looked on the corrupt society of Noah’s day he assessed that “the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen.6:5). Jesus said that “out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander” (Mt.15:19).
We must be vigilant as to what is going on in the thoughts of our “heart.” Never forget, the fallen world in which we live is working hard to influence our thoughts—either enticing or coercing us to fall in line with the “futile way of thinking” (Eph.4:17-19). Add to this, the ongoing assault of the Tempter to have us abandon biblical thinking in hopes that we will settle for thinking anything else (Mt.4:1-10). Knowing the battlefield is the first key to victory. The rest of the keys are found in the daily renewing, recalibrating, and refreshing of our minds to think biblically (Rom.12:2; Col.3:10).
The battle may be a struggle, and the setbacks may come through insidious means, but the fight itself and the arena in which it takes place are straightforward and uncomplicated. So, be watchful, sober, vigilant, and attentive to what is going on in your thought life today. Entrust yourself to God and feed your mind on his truth. Vanquish the lies and turn from degraded thoughts, and in time you’ll reap the blessings of a Christ-honoring and advancing spiritual growth.