A little more than 52 years ago a brilliant British theologian by the name of Harry Blamires wrote a classic book entitled, “The Christian Mind: How Should A Christian Think (Servant Books, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1963).”
Harry Blamires studied under the great intellectual C.S. Lewis at Oxford University; he has been a prolific writer across the years in the areas of theology, fiction and literary criticism.
Mr. Blamires’ main contention in his book The Christian Mind was that Christian believers or disciples have been saved and they are going to Heaven. However, many of these same Christians have “Unsaved Souls or Unsanctified Minds.”
What does Mr. Blamires mean by this?
How can our “spirits” be Saved, but our minds be “Unsaved?”
First and foremost, let me define and clarify some terminology.
When we refer to the word Salvation, we mean that once an individual accepts JESUS CHRIST as their LORD and their SAVIOUR they have been spared from the ultimate penalty of eternal separation from GOD (1 Thessalonians 1.10).
1 Thessalonians 1:8-10
8 The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it, 9 for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.
The believers in Thessalonica (and we too who embrace Christ as our SAVIOUR and LORD have) literally passed from Spiritual death (Hell) and into Eternal Life (we experience a Spiritual Re-Birth… John 3.16-36 & II Corinthians 5.17-21… eventually we will reside in Heaven).
However, Belief or Salvation in Christ entails many different facets.
Belief in Christ means more than giving a mental or intellectual assent to the truths of Christianity; believing in Christ means that our “Heads” as well as our “Hearts” must be totally “Surrendered to the Person of Jesus Christ.”
We must cultivate the development of a Christian Mind!
The Old Testament Shema (Creed) instructs believers in GOD that there are certain things that should categorize how they live.
First, and foremost, believers in GOD are enjoined to hear and obey His Voice:
“4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”
The LORD GOD instructed the nation of Israel that their “Minds” as well as their “Hearts” totally belonged to Him.
The nation of Israel was forbidden to syncretize their Worship of GOD (LORD ADONAI) with the worship of other gods.
The first of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20 & Deuteronomy 5) states:
Moses summoned all Israel and said:
Hear, Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them. 2 The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb (Mt. Sinai)
3 It was not with our ancestors that the Lord made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today.
4 The Lord spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain. 5 (At that time I stood between the Lord and you to declare to you the word of the Lord, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said:
6 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
7 “You shall have no other gods before me…
We note here in this passage from both the books of Exodus and Deuteronomy that The LORD GOD is personal; He can be known; and that He stipulates that His children / followers are to commune with Him in a specific way or manner.
Why is this important?
In the United States of America, we pride ourselves on the fact that historically we have viewed ourselves as – “One Nation Under GOD indivisible with Liberty and Justice for All!”
From the time our country was a colony of Great Britain until this present day the GOD that the “majority” of our population worshipped is The GOD of the Hebrew Old Testament and the Christian New Testament.
Believers in The GOD of the Holy Bible understood that their faith in LORD ADONAI encompassed more than simply “getting saved from going to Hell and now going to Heaven.”
Belief in The GOD of the Holy Bible meant that every single aspect of a person’s life belonged to GOD.
A careful examination of what Harry Blamires wrote suggests that a Christian’s whole life the five areas of their “mind” or “soul” that is their (1.) Time; (2.) Testimony; (3.) Treasure; (4.) Talents; and (5.) their Thought Life (the 5 Ts) all are to be dedicated to GOD in Holy Worship!
To dedicate anything less than the whole of these 5 areas to GOD meant that a person was violating the First Commandment which stipulates that “We are to have NO OTHER GODS OTHER THAN THE LORD ADONAI!”
May I be so blunt to say that most Americans probably could not recite the Ten Commandments in order from memory?
(I say this with sorrow as a man who has been involved in Pastoral ministry for more than 20 years.. since 1992).
When we accept Christ as our LORD and SAVIOUR, we actually are giving credence to a “comprehensive belief system or worldview.”
A Worldview is a way of looking at the Universe and Interpreting and Applying the insights that we glean.
Jews and Christians receive their “worldview” from the insights that GOD has disclosed (a Self-Disclosure of Himself) about Himself.
The first 11 chapters of the book of GENESIS teach us that there are four (4) Historical Events that shape the way that we view reality.
These four areas constitute the main framework of our conceptual outlook or worldview (I am indebted to Breakpoint Worldview for the classification of these categories):
- CREATION – Genesis 1-2
- THE FALL – Genesis 3
- REDEMPTION (GOD provides a way back from our Separation from Himself and from our Slavery into Sin / Spiritual Death) – Genesis 3
- RESTORATION – Genesis 3.15ff – GOD gives Adam and Eve a Promise that they will triumph over the force of Evil and Darkness
Over the next few weeks I would like to discuss with you how each of the four elements above are crucial to the understanding of “The LORDSHIP” of GOD over our (1.) Time; (2.) Testimony; (3.) Treasure; (4.) Talents; and (5.) our Thought Life (the 5 Ts).
All of these areas are to be dedicated to GOD in Holy Worship!