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Lee Strobel received a Law Degree from Yale Law School, and became an award winning investigative journalist for the Chicago Tribune. His wife came to faith in Christ and he was challenged to consider the faith himself. He interviewed thirteen evangelical Christian scholars who defended their views regarding the historical reliability of the New Testament. As a result he came to faith in 1981, and wrote the book, The Case For Christ in 1998, which was released as a movie this year. The movie is currently on Netflix and I highly recommend it. Lee Strobel focused intently on what is good, and as a result came to faith in Jesus Christ.
Focus is directed attention on a point of concentration. The mind is never truly at rest, hence the importance of proper focus.
Why should you focus on what is good?
Focus on what is good because you have been transformed.
Philippians was written to the saints in Christ Jesus (Ch 1:1)
I also consider everything to be a loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus as my Lord. Philippians 3:8
1 Corinthians 2:16 For who has known the Lord’s mind, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
Isaiah 40:13-14 Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or who gave him counsel? Who did he consult? Who gave him understanding and taught him the paths of justice? Who taught him knowledge and showed him the way of understanding?
Followers of Jesus, as indwelled by the Holy Spirit and guided by the Holy Spirit, have the mind of Christ and therefore know the mind of the Lord.
The mind of Christ means we look at the world as he does and approach life as he would. What is Christ concerned with?
Communion w/ & the glory of the Father- John 17:5 Glorify
A humble approach to life- Phil 2:5-8 Let this mind be in you
Serving others- Matt 20:28 Not to be served but to serve
The Salvation of the lost- Luke 19:10 Seek and Save
Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.
Ephesians 4:23 Be renewed in the spirit of your mind.
The natural mind is darkened by sin, the light of Christ transforms it. The truth of God transforms our minds.
Focus on what is good so you can put it into practice.
V8 . . .Dwell (meditate) on these things
Mark Twain- What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself. All day long, the mill of his brain is grinding.
These verses have been called a brief biography of Christ.
Dwell on what is True- honest and reliable; Honorable- noble and worthy of respect; Just- upright; Pure- moral cleanness and purity; Lovely- agreeable and pleasing; Commendable- admirable, of the highest standards; Moral Excellence- wholesome conduct; Praiseworthy- worthwhile
What you dwell on is what you value and what you value is what you will do.
v9 Do (put into practice) what you have learned and received and heard from me, and seen in me.
Focus on what is good and God will bless you through it.
Sadness, worry, discontentment- 8% of what we worry about are legitimate concerns; 92% are imaginary, never happen, or are out of our control.
The average person has 10,000 separate thoughts each day, 3.5 million a year, 30 million over a lifetime.
Joy- happiness over something that is good. v4 Rejoice in the Lord always
Peace- to be sound or complete. v7 the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Contentment- to be pleased, satisfied. v11 I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I find myself in.
Watch your thoughts, they become your words; watch your words, they become actions; watch your actions, they become habits; watch your habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny. (Source Unknown)
Yesterday is gone. Today is a gift. Tomorrow is a hope. Learn from yesterday. Live in today. Look forward to tomorrow.
The Lord is near! V5