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“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses.  We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every though captive to the obedience of Christ” (II Corinthians 10:3-5).

Paul’s admonition to the follower of Christ in the conclusion of these verses is to take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”  It doesn’t take a man much effort to conclude that he can only entertain one individual thought at any given time. He may quickly rotate between a few different thoughts at a rapid pace, but only one thought can be on the “screen” of a man’s mind at any given time.

The Scriptures further instruct us that how we think, and what we think about (our thoughts) are of paramount importance to the believer.   Proverbs 23:7 tells us “For as he thinks within himself, so he is.”  Correct thinking results in correct living, and incorrect thinking results in incorrect living.

Thus, any man, by a function of exerting his WILL, can control what he thinks about and successfully take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”  The WILL controls the MIND and what thoughts we entertain.  A logical question is, how does a man do this?  Paul gives us some helpful instruction earlier in the passage.

First, in verse 3 Paul brings to our attention that even though we walk “in the flesh” (the temporal), this is not where we war.  Our war, and the weapons of our warfare, are not temporal, but ETERNAL.  A useful cross reference to this verse and truth can be found in Ephesians 6:11-18 (the “armor of God”).

Imagine being in a temporal/earthly war and not realizing or acknowledging that you are in the war.  What would be the likelihood of survival for such a man?

The same principle applies to a man in the spiritual realm; we need to be aware that there is an ongoing spiritual battle active in the world in the “macro,” as well as a spiritual battle active in the “micro,” in our individual lives.  To not be aware of this truth every day ensures defeat…the man of God needs to be engaged in the spiritual battle.

Secondly, the beginning of verse 5 teaches us that when we are engaged in the spiritual battle, we “are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God.”  I would suggest that the “knowledge of God” is synonymous with the TRUTH of God.

As we know, God is the author of all KNOWLEDGE or TRUTH.  This “truth” is contained in the Scriptures and one of the tactics the evil one uses in the spiritual battle is to persuade us to believe LIES.  To the degree that we believe the LIES of the enemy is the degree to which the enemy is winning the battle!

As the verse instructs us, we need to be about the business of “destroying” these lies with the “sword of the Spirit,” which is God’s Word (or truth), contained in the Bible (Ephesians 6:17).  To not be actively engaged in this effort is to not be “in the battle” which will result in certain defeat.

What are the lies that you are holding on to, that you are entertaining, that you are believing?

Perhaps it is that there are no eternal consequences for temporal behavior, perhaps it is that you are not worthy, perhaps it is that God is not good or sovereign as you experience the circumstances of your life.

The man of God must constantly be aware of, and engaged in, the spiritual battle by destroying the lies that he believes that are opposed to the “knowledge of God.”  To the degree that he does this he is then able to take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”

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