Share This Episode
Fellowship in the Word Bil Gebhardt Logo

A Thinking Faith - Part 2

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt
The Truth Network Radio
October 20, 2021 8:00 am

A Thinking Faith - Part 2

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 536 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

October 20, 2021 8:00 am

It's All In Your Head

The Verdict
John Munro
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul
Our Daily Bread Ministries
Various Hosts
Focus on the Family
Jim Daly
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul

Today on Fellowship in the Word, Pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

That's the greatest command. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. Now think about this, when I say to you, you need to love God with all your heart or soul. What does that mean to you? Don't you feel it?

There's an emotional tug isn't there? I have to really love God. I have to love God. Just like I love my wife or my children or my friends, I want to love God with all my heart and all my soul. But now I say to you, but it says here, all your mind. Oh, I don't know how to do that.

What do you mean all your mind? Thank you for joining us today on this edition of Fellowship in the Word with Pastor Bill Gebhardt. Fellowship in the Word is the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible Church located in Metairie, Louisiana. Let's join Pastor Bill Gebhardt now as once again he shows us how God's word meets our world.

Let me ask you just a question. Power, Jezebel, pagan woman or God. Now, who has the most power here?

Billions and billions and billions of times more power, trillions and trillions of times more power. You see, who has power? He's not thinking about that. He's thinking about she threatened me.

Oh, my goodness, she's going to get me now. I understand a little bit about his dilemma here. I mean, if you think about what he has gone through here, I think that there's no question he's he's found himself in a really unique and difficult situation.

He's had the greatest experience of his life. He's also I think you'll see later he isolates even of himself from everybody else, even a servant. And when you get isolated in your own thoughts, it's not good. Thirdly, it's also likely he was physically and emotionally exhausted. I imagine just imagine when he went through just the run to get to Jezreel and then he gets lost in the same thing you and I get lost in.

Self pity. He gets lost in it. Watch what happens. Notice what he says in verse four. It says he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness and came and sat down under the juniper tree, and he requested for himself that he might die. He just had the greatest moment of his life.

He might die. And here's what he says. It's enough now, O Lord. Take my life.

I'm not better than my father's. Pity party. This is terrible. I just feel terrible.

Why? Ahab spent three years trying to hunt him down and couldn't get him. Now, Jezebel threatens him and he's panicked. Notice over to verse 10. He said, I have been very zealous of the Lord, the God of hosts, the sons of Israel have forsaken your covenant. They've torn down your altars.

They killed your prophets with a sword. And I alone am left and they seek my life to take it away. Pity party. I'm the only one. God, there isn't anyone but me. And God's so patient with this.

It's amazing. God says, look, you're not the only one. There are seven thousand in Israel who have not bowed their knee to Baal. But think about that for a moment. On the whole planet, how many believers are there?

Seven thousand one. That's it. That's not a lot considering that, but God's patient with him. But notice what happens. You find him getting himself into this terrible, precarious spot. And it's all because of the way he thinks. If I said to you is Elijah a man of great faith?

You'd have to say yes. Right. I mean, think of this all the way in James in the New Testament. James five. It said the effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain. And it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. And he prayed again. And the sky poured forth rain. I want you to think about this man.

This is a this is considered by many the greatest prophet of Israel. Now, if it happens to him, is it possible what happens to you? You see how this works. If he'd do that, would you do that? And of course you would.

And so would I. We can really struggle on this. Our thoughts can end up destroying, just completely destroying our faith.

Then we have to be so careful with this. You see, we have to be so you're you're having a spiritual high. Things are going well in your life. You have your annual routine checkup. And then he says, I'm real concerned. I'll call you back. He calls you back and says, can come in tomorrow. You come in tomorrow.

And it says it looks like you have about 18 months to live. Wow. Does that affect you? Does it affect your thinking? It does affect our thinking, doesn't it?

All of a sudden, it's like, wait, wait, wait. Now, we're not Elijah. I think that his is worse because he's you just saw what God did with him. And God usually doesn't do that with us. But the point of it is, but we are like him. All of a sudden, our thoughts begin to change.

Now, what would happen at that same incident? You had that you came home. And the Lord walks into your room and said, oh, I just want to I heard you got a bad diagnosis today.

Yes, I did. I just want to let you know something. You're a sinful person living on a cursed planet. And you realize that all human beings are going to die.

And I know that and I know that must scare you. But don't let it whatever you need to go through this. I'll provide it for you. You come to me in prayer to the throne of grace and I'll give you grace. Let me explain something to you. My grace is sufficient to handle this stage for I can handle it for you.

OK, and I will let you know something else. I won't leave you and I won't forsake you. I'll be right with you the whole way. And when those last moments come, that last day of your life will be the best day of your life. And I'll receive you to myself. And I'm going to go and prepare a place for you. So where I am, you'll be for always.

Would that affect you for the next 18 months? And if you know what right. He's already told you that. You see, he's already said all the everything I just said he already said. You see, but you didn't allow that to enter your thoughts. You see, we don't let that enter our thoughts. And that's exactly what happens to Elijah. And so what happens to him? His thoughts are beginning and do destroy his own faith. Now, the second point is our weak faith can destroy the way we think. Just the opposite. Go with me first to Matthew 22, Matthew 22.

Versus 36 and 37. And this is one of those trap situations. It happens more than once. Pharisee comes, talks to the Lord and says, could you tell me what the greatest commandment of always? What is the greatest in law? The Lord has given some different answers are always short ones like this. But notice the Pharisee says to him, what which is the great commandment in the law? And Jesus said to the Pharisee, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. That's the greatest commandment. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind.

Now, think about this. When I say to you, you need to love God with all your heart or soul. What does that mean to you? Don't you feel it?

There's an emotional tug, isn't there? I have to really love God. I have to love God, just like I love my wife or my children or my friends. I want to love God with all my heart and all my soul. But now I say to you, but it says here all your mind.

Oh, I don't know how to do that. What do you mean all your mind? That's what he said. All your heart, all your soul and all your mind. See, what's happened in modern evangelicalism in America is we start viewing the heart and the mind are enemies of each other. That we need to be people of the heart, but not of our mind.

That's ridiculous. In fact, some people have described modern American evangelicalism as mindless Christianity. Doesn't matter what goes on in your mind. It's good to feel this thing. You've got to feel it.

But that's not what the scripture says. I think for a lot of us, we're sort of like a tin man in the Wizard of Oz. You know, the wizard story, you know, the tin man needed a heart and and the scarecrow needed what? He needed a brain. He needed a mind, right?

They had a dialog. The tin man said to the scarecrow, why did why didn't you walk around the hole? And and the scarecrow said, why didn't know enough?

He said, my head is stuffed with straw, you know, and that's why I'm going to awesome. I'm going to ask him for some brains. Oh, I see, said the tin man. But after all, brains are not the best thing in the world.

Have you any? And the scarecrow said no. And then the tin man said, he said, I should rather have a heart. All the same, said the scarecrow, I shall ask for brains instead of a heart for a fool would not know what to do with a heart. If he had one, I need to have a brain. And the tin man said, brains do not make one happy.

And happiness is the best thing in the world. That's sort of the way we often are. You don't want to engage your brain.

You know, you don't want to you don't want to engage your brain. I can still remember years and years ago at a person in our church was involved in a discussion with a person in Baton Rouge. And he said that they were in a discussion, an argument about some truth of scripture. And the person from our church was quoting me, hope accurately, but quoting me with a person. And this person, he showed him all the verses and the guy said to him, he said, yeah, yeah, I know he went to Dallas Seminary. And you know what? I know he's I know he's right biblically, but it's a dead right.

Don't miss that. It's a dead right. It's not a heart right.

It's a head right. That's what we do. That's how we change things. You see, it's only in my heart.

How do I feel? But Jesus doesn't give us that latitude. He says, look, it's got to be all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. And there's no exception to that.

That's what he says. Now, let me illustrate how this can work. Go with me to Mark four and verse thirty five, Mark four and verse thirty five. Now, what I find is interesting here is it says a very famous verse on that day evening came and he said, no, don't miss this.

Let's go over to the other side and leave in the crowd. They took him along with them in the boat and just as he was and the other boats were with him. And there arose a fierce gale of wind and the waves were breaking over the boat, so much of the boat was already being filled up. And Jesus himself was in the stern asleep on a cushion and they woke him up and they said, teacher or rabbi, don't you care that we're perishing? And he got up and he rebuked the wind and he said, hush, be still.

And the wind died down and became perfectly calm. And he said to them. Why are you afraid? You still have no faith. Now, I want you to see this point. Our weak faith destroys our thinking, not only can our thinking ruin our faith, but our weak faith can destroy our thinking.

Notice how this started out. Now, who is Jesus? OK, he's the son of God.

Right. And if the disciples seen anything to prove that. They've seen thousands of things that prove that right. I mean, that he is the son of God.

He is God incarnate. Now, notice what God incarnate says. Let us go over to the other side. Now, if God says to you, let's get in the boat and go to the other side. What do you think is going to happen? What do you think?

I hope we make it. You see how this works. If God says you're going to the other side, you're going to the other side. By the way, Jesus knows that that's why he's asleep. Why I said we're going to the other side when I speak it, it's true. They panicked. There's another thing.

Then the other time they speak, they say to him. Teacher, don't you care that we're perishing? No, I don't care at all about anybody. I don't care about people. I don't care about you. Don't you care to ask the Lamb of God?

Don't you care? What is wrong with people who think like that? The thinking. You see what they're thinking.

They're thinking we're not going to make it and you don't care. And notice what Jesus says this, what he diagnoses and says, you still have no faith. You see, that's the whole point of God says something to us. If we're going to have any peace from it, we have to actually believe it.

How you think determines what your life is going to be like. One more passage or two Ephesians four. Ephesians four, verse 17. I want you to see what Paul says to us about the way we should live. Paul says, So this I say and affirm together with the Lord that you walk no longer as the Gentiles walk, that you live differently than unbelievers. He said, Here's what I'm going to tell you. You need to live differently than unbelievers.

That doesn't seem far fetched for us, right? But watch what he says in the futility of their what? Their mind. See, why do unbelievers live that way? That's the way they think.

Notice in the futility of their mind being darkened in their understanding. That's their thinking again, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them. See, why does the unbelieving world live that way? Because that's the way they think. They're excluded from the life of God.

You see, that's the way. So there's no reason to condemn them for it. They're living exactly the way they think. When you think of all the cultural things, and I'm always bothered by this.

When people in our culture who don't know Christ decide they're going to live in a certain way. I don't understand why Christians believe that this is so terrible for us and this is so terrible for people shouldn't be allowed to live. Why do you think they live that way?

Because that's the way they think they can live. That's the point. They're different. Maybe more importantly, we're supposed to be different.

That's what Paul says. The thing that should alarm you and I is not how terrible the world lives out there. The thing that should bother you and I is how terrible we live in here. That's what we should be concerned about. Not their sin, but our sin. They're what they have their excuse.

They're going if they're just following their thoughts. But notice what he says about us. Verse 20. He says, You did not learn Christ this way.

If indeed you learn of him, he said, and have been taught him in truth is in Jesus. That is, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lust of deceit. And that you beat no notice and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind. You back to Romans, you have to think differently and you put on the new self, which is in the likeness of God, which was created in righteousness and holiness. And then from twenty five to thirty two, he goes through all these all these behavioral changes we should have.

But how do we make all these behavioral changes? We think differently. We don't think like they think. You see, that's the hope. That's the distinction between us.

It occurs between our ears. And I think so many of us get in so much trouble is because we don't think any differently than they do. Except maybe on Sunday morning. And then we think a little bit different than they do. But we should think diametrically opposed to the way that they think. Our thoughts can destroy our faith and our faith can destroy our thinking. That's what the word of God teaches us. See, what is the reason for the renewing of our minds so that we can grow our faith? If you don't renew your mind, you'll never grow in your faith.

You just can't. You'll think as you've always thought. There's a clear relationship between your mind and faith. As I said, our thoughts can destroy our faith and our faith can destroy our thinking.

So if you want to grow your faith. You have to change your mind. You have to renew your mind.

You must renew your thinking. One last verse. Philippians.

Just a couple of pages. Chapter four. In verse six.

And this is very practical for us. Makes us uneasy. And if I ask for hands of everyone, it's violated this commandment. I am certain every person in this room would raise their hand if they were honest. Now, some of you may be dishonest and you'd want to look righteous. But notice what Paul says. Be anxious for nothing. That's a commandment, by the way.

It's not an idea. Be anxious for nothing. You ever been anxious about anything?

Ever? Worry? You see, sometimes we're so much this way, we think, well, that's just a pie in the sky by and by verse. He's just saying that, but he doesn't mean it.

No, he means it. Be anxious for nothing. Jesus said exactly the same thing. There is nothing that can happen in your life as a child of God that you should ever worry about or be anxious about.

Ever. Nothing. Wow. He said, Look, I know you're human. Notice the next verse in everything, in prayer, by supplicate and by prayer and supplication with Thanksgiving, let your request be known to God. Go and tell God how you feel. But please allow God to be God here. You see, please allow God to be God. God is infinitely powerful and he's infinitely good. And so what has happened when I let my request be known to God? What will God do?

Anything he wants. That's for my good. In fact, then he say that all things work together for the good. Can you say that Romans 828? Isn't that the promises by which we get to know God? God says, Look, everything in your life, I work for good.

I'll redeem everything in your life. I just want you to know that right now. So what am I anxious about? You see, that's why the promises of God should drive anxiety from me. Notice what he says in the next verse and the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

You see, how do I get through this? God says, I got it. I've given you everything that pertains to life, everything in my promises. Now, you need to know my promises.

Be diligent, guard up the loins of your mind and you need to believe them. You see, now, if I do that, get what do I get a piece beyond all comprehension? You tell that to your unsaved friend and they go, How can you possibly have peace now? Jesus.

You see, how can you not have anxiety? Jesus. You see, don't you know how terrible this is?

I do. But for this, I have Jesus. You see, that's what our faith should mean to us. And then he goes on and says this.

Watch, I love this. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there's any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, think about it. Dwell on these things. That's what you're there's where our mind should go. That's what we should be thinking about.

But we don't. And we have to be aware of this. Our thoughts, our thoughts clearly can destroy our faith. Even the best of us. What was Elijah thinking? He was a man of a tremendous faith and courage, but the circumstances changed and he fell to pieces. We have to be aware of that. And just like with the disciples of Christ, our weak faith can destroy our thinking.

You read it in a Bible and you sort of read it, say that probably for other people. That doesn't apply to me. That doesn't apply now. It does.

You see, it does. That's what God is saying to us over and over again. We have to develop a thinking faith. We have to renew our minds if we're ever going to build our faith.

Let's pray. Father, for some reason, what we end up doing so often is we compartmentalize our thinking process. And we take your words and we take the verses and we take the promises. Some of us have even memorized them.

And we know many of the things that you've said. And then when the circumstances of our life change, we don't think about those anymore. We don't think about the application of those verses. We think about how we're going to face it. We think about our fears and our worry and our anxiety. We think about these things, Father, and we lose peace. And we're not filled with hope and joy and peace. We're filled with this idea of worry and anxiety and fear. Father, remind us that it has to be a renewing in the way that we think you have told us so many wonderful promises.

They're from you. And if we believe those, they can change the way we think, which will change the way we live. Father, I pray all of us challenge ourselves in this particular area, that when we find ourselves starting to feel fearful or stress or guilt, we have to ask ourselves the question, has God spoken to this issue?

And if he has, do I believe it? That's what's so important, Father. If we get this right in our lives, it makes our lives infinitely better. Jesus called it the abundant life. I pray that for each and every one of us, Father, that we are able to live this wonderful life of Jesus Christ. I pray this for our good and for your glory.

In his name, amen. You've been listening to Pastor Bill Gebhardt on the Radio Ministry of Fellowship in the Word. If you ever miss one of our broadcasts, or maybe you would just like to listen to the message one more time, remember that you can go to a great website called That's, and you can listen to Fellowship in the Word online.

At that website, you will find not only today's broadcast, but also many of our previous audio programs as well. At Fellowship in the Word, we are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible. We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help this radio ministry continue its broadcast on this radio station by supporting us monthly or with just a one-time gift. Support for our ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word 4600 Clearview Parkway, Metairie, Louisiana 7006. If you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format, that is as a sermon that Pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible Church, then you should visit our website,

That's For our website, you will find hundreds of Pastor Bill's sermons. You can browse through our sermon archives to find the sermon series you are looking for, or you can search by title. Once you find the message you are looking for, you can listen online, or if you prefer, you can download the sermon and listen at your own convenience. And remember, you can do all of this absolutely free of charge. Once again, our website is For Pastor Bill Gebhardt, I'm Jason Gebhardt, thanking you for listening to Fellowship in the Word.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-08-05 20:13:16 / 2023-08-05 20:23:34 / 10

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime