Pastor Bert this past Sunday preached about the need for us to love God with all of our minds. To many, this seems to be contrary to the message of our Christian faith. You cannot argue a person to be a Christian, it is a work of God. “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder” (James 2:19). Why waste our energy on knowledge when the Christian gospel is all about love — loving God and loving your neighbor? The Apostle Paul, of course, wrote, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up” (1 Cor 8:1). We want to be people who are fun and loving — not one of those stuffy bookworms that only works in the theoretical without any grounding. These are seemingly diametrically opposed concepts.
Yet, if Pastor Bert is right, then God may actually be very interested in how we use our minds. In fact, we are to be transformed through the renewal of our minds (Rom 12:2). It’s like when Optimus Prime transforms from being a big rig to his awesome two-story high robot — a paradigm shift from one form to another. The odd thing is the change begins from within our minds. We must be question, challenge and engage our Christianity.
But all of this is not simply an academic exercise. This is what Paul had trouble with in the Corinthian church when he described knowledge as something that “puffs up.” This well-trained Pharisee was not saying knowledge was bad — unless it is wielded as a weapon of war rather than a tool to build up the body. I really liked this one phrase from Pastor Bert’s opening prayer, “God, call our minds to action.” Like the breath that was breathed into the dry bones (Ezek 37), I am also to ask the Holy Spirit to bring life to what I learn. How do you love God with all your mind and love your neighbor as yourself? By asking Him to move us from our minds, into our hearts and through our hands.
– Alex Chow
We are continuing our series on Love the Lord Your God with All Your Heart, All Your Soul, All Your Mind, and All Your Strength. You can find the entire series at the BCEC Sermon Page or listen to last week’s sermons directly – All Your Mind.
- J. I. Packer, Knowing God, Downers Grove, IL: Intervarsity Press, 1993. ISBN 083081650X
- A. W. Tozer, Knowledge of the Holy, San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1978. ISBN: 0060684127