Indeed, we live as human beings, but we do not wage war according to human standards; for the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but they have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to obey Christ.2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (NRSV)
War in your mind. War is waging all about us as this pandemic darkness floods the earth. There is nothing more the enemy of our soul would like better than to have us frozen in fear. I admit there have been a few times when I have been frozen. Just plain stuck in an ugly place. Not able to move. I wonder if that is how wildlife feels when hit by our headlights? Research says it because their eyes are wide open and our lights blind them. I am thinking more of being blinded by darkness.
Divine power to destroy strongholds. Where are your strongholds? Do worldly thought patterns have a strangle hold upon you? Are you willing to fight that off?
We have been given “divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God.” Trust. A cross at the beginning of the word. A cross at the end of the word. And in the middle are us. Can we trust God in this time of uncertainty? Will we? If fear of death has a stranglehold upon you, you will have to put it off with these divine weapons. Does the cross and all the benefits Jesus brings to us appeal to you? Are you willing to take up your cross and walk with Him?
Hebrews 2:11-15 (HCSB) “For the One who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers, saying: I will proclaim Your name to My brothers; I will sing hymns to You in the congregation. Again, I will trust in Him. And again, Here I am with the children God gave Me. Now since the children have flesh and blood in common, Jesus also shared in these, so that through His death He might destroy the one holding the power of death—that is, the Devil— and free those who were held in slavery all their lives by the fear of death.”
Have you been held in slavery all of your life by the fear of death? The death and resurrection of Jesus have destroyed the one holding the power of death. We will pass from these bodies, but by faith in Jesus we will live forever with Him. Recently I have often been reminded of Paul’s writing in Philippians 1: 21 “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” What could possibly be better than to be with the Trinity for eternity? So what is there to fear?
Ah, but I digress. None of this is possible for me without taking every thought captive to Christ. That means the dark blips that come across my mind must go before Him and show their true nature. Brother Lawrence wrote, “Useless thoughts spoil everything and much mischief begins there.” Much mischief … oh goodness. This little dark thought can lead to one an hour from now and then build upon another to interlink and make a chain that is soon trapping me and hobbling my stride. If I allow that first little dark thought to abide in my brain I am soon crippled. Useless thoughts spoil everything.
I have taught 2 Corinthians 10:5b in various women’s Bible studies and without fail someone will voice the query “Every thought?” Well, many of our thoughts do not need to be taken captive. They are not a threat to our journey with Christ. If you watch your thoughts though, you will soon begin to recognize the ones that form patterns of darkness and ill will towards your soul. Your patterns of thinking will show themselves to you over time if you will pay attention to them. Who will win the battle between your own ears? The world, the enemy of your soul, or Christ?
When I take a thought captive to obey Christ I can tell almost immediately upon examination if it is something Jesus would approve of. Compare it to the beatitudes in Matthew 5 or Philippians 4:8-9 whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, etc. How does the captive thought compare? If it does not glorify God, send it packing in Jesus’ Name.
This weighty topic can actually bring you greater peace if you are willing to practice it. Why not try it out to experience for yourself if it is true or not? God will help you. All you have to do is ask.