Loving God with Our Minds

Loving God with Our Minds

Bryan Jones |

Loving God with our minds means we learn to think like God, not just think about Him.

Love God · Love People
Loving God with Our Minds – Week 3
Bryan Jones
April 30, 2023

A. Introduction

(Philippians 2:5; Colossians 3:23)

To love God with our mind means we learn to love with our intelligence and thoughts.

Loving God with your mind is about thinking like God, not just thinking about Him.

Philippians 2:5 (KJV)

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.

These are subjects that tend to divide the church, landmines… I’m not Senior Pastor until July, so if you want any information Perry would love to answer those…













I never had the mind of Christ when it came to work… I’ve had two unhealthy approaches to work, one was an idol, the other was idleness.

Colossians 3:23 (ESV)

23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men…

Health/body… bought house withheld one room… given God everything but body…

Today I want to look at 1 Peter 4 and give you a couple of mindsets that we should have if we are going to love God with our minds…

1 Peter 4:7 (NIV)

The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.

B. Loving God with our minds means…

1. Living with the end in mind.

(1 Thessalonians 5:2; 1 Peter 4:7)

We have all reoriented our lives based on cultural crises. For instance, in the last 20 years…

  • Columbine High School – changed the way students entered schools. The result was that police officers were assigned to all schools.
  • Stock Market Crash – changed the way people invested their money or the way some people started to think about retirement. It even changed the way background checks are done on loans.
  • September 11 – changed the way we go to airports and resulted in extensive screening.
  • COVID – changed the way we have church. It has changed the way some people run their businesses and increased the number of people working from home. Make no mistake…

Cultural crises have caused us to reorient our lives.

Peter saw a crisis – not a cultural one, but a spiritual one. And he’s calling us to reorient our lives and minds around this…

1 Peter 4:7 (NIV)

The end of all things is near . Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.

Peter realized the greatest threat wasn’t health. It wasn’t an economic threat. It wasn’t a governmental threat. The greatest threat was an eternal one.

The greatest threat is that every one of us will have a last day on this “earth,” or that Jesus will return and I’m not ready, and each of us will stand before a Holy God to give an account of our life.

1 Thessalonians 5:2 (NLT)

For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night.

How would you feel if Jesus returned today? Are you ready? Is there some area you need to get right with God confess it? Are there still people you have been putting off sharing the hope of Jesus with? Are you ready and are the people God placed you around ready?

Every crisis we face culturally, like September 11th, the stock market, no one is prepared. It happens unexpectedly and so will the return of the Lord.

Because when Jesus returns, it will mean two different things…

1.) To those who are prepared, it will be a day of rejoicing and anticipation.

2.) To those who are not prepared, it will be a crisis.

Our lives should be different in light of this crisis! As Jonathan Edwards once said, “Lord, stamp eternity on my eyeballs.”

So again, are you ready? Because the greatest crisis isn’t a cultural one is a spiritual one…

Loving God with our minds means…

2. Being sober-minded.

(Romans 12:2; 2 Corinthians 10:3-5; 1 Peter 2:17)

The term sober-minded means to be of sound mind, to be sane. It’s in contrast to Mark chapter 5, the story of the demoniac who was out of his mind.

Being sober-minded means that we are anchored, grounded in biblical truth in uncertain times.

What I find sobering in this text is that Peter is literally writing when Christians were experiencing widespread persecution partly from the emperor.

1 Peter 2:17 (NIV)

Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.

In fact, Nero was the Emperor when Peter wrote this. Do you know what Nero did? He persecuted and killed Christians. One of the things he did was douse Christians in tar and light them on fire to be lights in his garden at night. Horrible stuff. In fact, it was under this emperor that Peter, who wrote this letter, would be killed. Yet he said to honor the emperor.

Peter says to honor the very man that would end up taking his life. Why? Because he knows being sober-minded matters to God. He wants to be anchored deep in the truth that God is really in control. Heaven isn’t surprised by what’s happening.

So how is he saying this? He’s been transformed in his mind. He’s learned to love God with his mind.

Romans 12:2 (NIV)

2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.

So, to be clear you cannot love with your mind unless you have a sober-mindedness.

Part of why so many of us don’t guard our minds is that the modern church has taken demonic and spiritual warfare out of our narrative. For some, it just feels too extreme… Hollywood has desensitized us to spiritual warfare with all the movies out there. It can feel made up.

Most spiritual warfare is around your mind… that’s why Peter says be alert because there is a real enemy named Satan that wants to keep us from a sober-mindedness.

If you don’t have a Satan in your gospel, you will turn people into demons and Satan, which isn’t sober-mindedness.

Loving God with our minds means…

3. Becoming people of prayer.

(Matthew 26:40-41; Philippians 4:6-7; 1 Peter 4:7)

1 Peter 4:7 (NIV)

The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.

If you remember in Matthew 26 Jesus right before He is crucified, He breaks away to pray. He invites Peter to join Him in praying and remember, Peter falls asleep.

Matthew 26:40-41 (NIV)

40 Then He returned to His disciples and found them sleeping. “Couldn’t you men keep watch with Me for one hour?” He asked Peter.41 “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

See during Jesus’ crisis, He breaks away because He understands the power of prayer. Now, Peter, you can sense, regrets falling asleep… and he is drawing from that experience…

But now, as he faces this crisis, he’s drawing on the power of prayer. He learned his lesson.

Friends, are you asleep in your prayers? Are you praying with passion? See, think about this, Peter seems to be implying that prayer has more impact on the culture than the emperor.

One of my greatest desires is that everyone in Brookwood would begin to feel confident in hearing God. Perry is going to spend 5 weeks after this series talking about this subject…

Prayer is how we learn to hear from God.

But prayer allows us to have God’s mind on everything we are walking through…

Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

“Prayer makes a godly man, and puts within him the mind of Christ, the mind of humility, of self-surrender, of service, and of prayer. If we really pray, we will become more like God, or else we will quit praying… Prayer is not learned in a classroom but in the closet.” – E. M. Bounds

Peter says prayer isn’t the means to its end… stay awake for the sake of prayers.


Abraham Lincoln suffered from mood swings and headaches. In the 1850’s an aide noted, “He always had a sick headache — took blue pills — blue mass.”

So, what was this mysterious “blue mass?” It was a peppercorn-sized pill containing licorice root, rosewater, honey and sugar, and pure liquid mercury. He changed his mind on these pills, and it’s reported once he stopped taking the pills his health increased.

But here’s the point. Had he not changed his mind, at a minimum it would have affected the quality of his life, but it could have killed him.

The world has crippling levels of fear, anxiety and toxicity, and if we don’t change our minds and wise up to what we focus on and how we take control of our thoughts, at a minimum It will affect the quality of our life, but it could spiritually kill us in our faith.

So, if we are going to love God with our minds we have to take control…

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