Mind of Christ

1 Corinthians 2:13-16 

13This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. 14The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 15The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.


There was time when dinosaur had become very popular. When you see a picture of Dinosaur, can you identify it? Have heard about Albinosaurs?

Many children have memorized pictures of different Dinosaurs, but they may not have seen in-person the actual live image of cattle, bull or cow.

A family travelled to the countryside by bus. Along the highway, bulls and cows were grazing in the fields. The young children were so amused. “What are those huge animals, Dad?” the children asked. “Dinosaurs!” their father seriously said. “What are those white animals?” the children asked about the white cows. The mother joined the fun and answered quickly, “Albinosaurs!”

Every chance the children saw bulls in the field, the children would shout “Dinosaur!” When they saw white cows, they shouted, “Albinosaur!” And other passengers in the bus were amused or confused why the parents misled their children that bulls are Dinosaurs and white cows are Albinosaurs.

Children can easily memorize picture of animals they may see, but actual live image of an animal may not look the same to their limited imagination.

Similarly, many Christians can easily memorize the Scripture and Christian doctrines, but to personally apply practically biblical teaching is still a huge work in progress. Reflect on 2 Timothy 4:3-4, 3For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.

There’s on-going conflict of interest between our sinful nature and spiritual life. It is a generational problem for Christians to overcome. People who declare that they don’t believe in Christ are easier to identify than religious people who claim to be Christians. How do you identify genuine Christians from religious people? Religious people can be confused and identity themselves as Christians.

If a person declares, “I am Dinosaur!” will it make him a dinosaur? Similarly, to proclaim, “I am Christian!” does it make one as Christian? Obviously, there’s desire and potentiality to become Christian. Who are Christians in the Scripture?

It says in Acts 11:26, 26The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.

Biblically, the term “Christian” was originally named after Christ’s disciples.

How do you identify a disciple? Disciples believe and obey the instructions of Christ. Students in the college of Education are required to have practicum or hands-on learning experience in teaching. Practicum is necessary requirement for Education students to gain experience and develop teaching skill.

Similarly, we need practicum to grow spiritually mature as disciples. As Disciples of Christ, we need hands-on learning experience about spiritual realities.

1.  Spiritual Realities

13This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. 

Personally, do you consider yourself as Christian like the original Christians in Antioch? Originally, Christians were disciples; this spiritual reality is not readily internalized by human wisdom. In the original meaning of the term “Christian,” practicum or hands-on learning experience is required for disciples to develop skill in teaching believers to grow spiritually mature as Disciples of Christ.

Together, let us reflect on what it admonished us in 2 Timothy 2:1-2. 1You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. 2And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.

Timothy was spiritual son of Apostle Paul. And Paul admonished Timothy to entrust to reliable people who will be qualified to teach others the things that he heard Paul preached among many witnesses. Certainly, making disciple attracts discouraging moments and struggles. Apostle Paul emphasized to make sure we rely upon the grace of Christ Jesus so that we will be strong in making disciples.

We have to depend on the grace of God in Christ Jesus all the times.


Migrants work abroad for greener pasture. My classmate had opportunity to work abroad. After several employment opportunities in North America, he did not find fulfillment in all those financial accomplishments. Was he discouraged? Maybe! He returned to his native land and heeded his call to fulltime ministry. Right now, he is married and enjoying the ministry that God called him to explore.

Not everyone is called to fulltime ministry, but every disciple is mandated to go and make disciples. To disciple is a hands-on experience to develop skill in teaching spiritual realities about Christ. We just don’t learn doctrines and beliefs.

We should practice in our behavior, speech and action what we learn from Christ.

It’s for our spiritual growth to heed the admonition of Galatians 5:16-17. 16Walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.

Walking is natural means to reach a destination. To walk by the Spirit is to be guided by the Holy Spirit to reach our spiritual destination. To gratify the desire of the flesh is impulsive response of our natural instinct without minding spiritual consequences of our action or behavior. Someone may claim, “I do what I want to do. It is my human free will!” Can you accept that human free will is human sinful inclination? To accept that spiritual reality, it requires spiritual understanding.

2.  Spiritual Understanding

14The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 

Spiritual realities can only be understood when inspired by the Holy Spirit of Christ. Remember this: Human natural tendencies are sinful. Sinfulness has eternal destructive consequences. Truly, God is not pleased to see anyone suffer eternally. And so, God gave commands we must do that we may enter his heaven.

Has someone ever claimed, “When the Lord is pleased with believers, he allows those believers to die?” Did anyone ever said, “I do not want to be very righteous because I am afraid that God might let me die if he is pleased with me?”

Did he read Hebrews 11:5? 5By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.

Not a few rightly believe that God is pleased when we behave properly. Yet spiritual understanding of many about heaven is very limited as if life on earth is more attractive than life in heaven. Of course, human sinful nature is attracted to worldly things more than eternal wonders of heaven. And many Christians invest aggressively in worldly lifestyle; only a few individuals want to be missionaries.

Jim Elliot: Who was the missionary to tribal people in the jungle of Ecuador who said, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose?”

Jim Elliot! Jim Elliot and his friends desired to reach out to isolated savage people in one of the jungles of Ecuador, but they were fatally speared by warriors they hope to share the good news of salvation in Christ. Were they considered as foolish when they tragically died as a result of their missionary effort? Not really!

Jim Elliot may have read and inspired by what preacher Phillip Henry said many centuries ago. Henry preached, “He is no fool who parts with that which he cannot keep, when he is sure to be recompensed with that which he cannot lose.”

It may have been interpreted from what Christ said in Matthew 16:24-26, 24Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?

To follow the Lord Jesus Christ, we may lose our dreams, aspirations, plans for our life; with understanding inspired by his Holy Spirit, we follow him anyway.

What do you understand that you have to do to follow Jesus Christ as Lord? Make no mistake! Spiritual realities are internalized with help from his Holy Spirit. Interestingly, genuine disciples are willing to take up their cross and follow him.

Human wisdom considers as foolish to obey spiritual instructions from God.

3.  Spiritual Instruction

15The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

When you hear spiritual instruction, how much enthusiasm do you sense?

Do you sense spiritual instructions as boring and irrelevant to your lifestyle? Do you sense resistance to spiritual instructions deep within you? You are not alone.

It is natural human impulse to resist and disregard spiritual instructions.

To personally internalize spiritual realities is transformational work of the Holy Spirit. When we sense resistance to spiritual instructions but we also sense small voice pleading deep within us to seek help from the Lord to obey him, practically, it only proves that the Holy Spirit of truth is actively guiding us into all truth.

When you are focused on prioritizing Christ, you’ve got the mind of Christ.

Together, let us reflect meditatively what is declares in Philippians 2:5-11. 5In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! 9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, 10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Obedience to the Lord is humility as produced by the Holy Spirit of Christ.

What do you think? Did Christ obey God the Father even to his death just for the sake of saving believers from hell? His crucifixion exemplified God’s love for us. God exalted Christ to the highest place and gave him the highest honor and glory. That is eternal proof that God graciously rewards us when we obey him diligently.

If God graciously rewarded Christ with the highest honor and glory for his obedience, can you imagine how God rewards us graciously when we obey him? Spiritual reality is discerned not by human wisdom but with the Holy Spirit’s help.

Kindergarten Teacher

Many years ago, a kindergarten teacher regularly prayed for her students. One of her students become a pastor and met her former teacher in kindergarten again. Can you imagine the glorious gladness of the kindergarten teacher who prayed for her students when she personally saw her student become pastor?

We regularly pray for children. We desire everyone dear to us will be saved. A desire others to be saved is the mind of Christ. Christ declared it in Luke 19:10. 10For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.

When he called himself as Son of Man, Christ identified himself among us. He experienced human needs. Pray to have the mind of Christ and obey him. He gave spiritual instruction for our personal betterment. Practice what you have learned spiritually. Expect gracious reward from God; if not here on earth, you’ll receive in heaven the reward God prepared for you. You’ll gladly rejoice for all eternity that you obeyed the Lord wholeheartedly.

We pray for love ones to believe and trust Christ as their Lord and Savior. We do not know when or how. For sure, God has divine timing for their response to the good news of salvation from eternal destruction. Keep praying that you’ll be ready at the divine opportunity that God set up for you to share his gospel.

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