Sermon: Slavery of the Mind Ephesians 4:17-24

June 3, 2018

Summary

Sermon: Slavery of the Mind  Ephesians 4:17-24
 
The mind is very important.  Our minds are coming out of slavery (darkness) into freedom (light).  Here we see the depravity of the mind and the grace of God to bring us from darkness to light.  Hence, we should no longer act as a slave but as a free man by casting off the old and putting on Christ.
 
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 By: Bryan Walker Given on: 5/27/2018  Sermon plays on KWHW 93.5 FM on: 6/10/2018
 
Sermon Notes:
 
Slavery of the Mind
 
The mind is very important.  Our minds are coming out of slavery (darkness) into freedom (light).  Here we see the depravity of the mind and the grace of God to bring us from darkness to light.  Hence, we should no longer act as a slave but as a free man by casting off the old and putting on Christ.
 
Mindless Christianity is no Christianity at all. You can’t love what you don’t know.” R. C. Sproul
    • Notice how important the mind is in this passage.
 
Ephesians 4:17-24
 
    • Negative and then the positive
        • You must no longer walk
        • You learned, heard and taught Christ
            • Put off the old man, put on the new
 
17  Now this I say and testify in the Lord
 
    • Why not just say you must no longer walk?
        • To testify as if in court
        • What is so important?
 
17 ..you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds.
 
    • Difference between the walk of the Gentile and Christian
        • To walk means the whole manner of life
        • Everything you believe, everything you do
 
Mar 7:5 “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders,
2 Corinthians 5:7 ESV  for we walk by faith, not by sight.
Ephesians 2:10 NASB  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
 
    • How do the Gentiles walk, Their walk is futility
Futility – Trifling; unimportance, the quality of producing no valuable effect, or of coming to nothing;
 
    • Look at that Christian wasting their day in church, Lake
    • I am chasing after my DREAMS, not some fantasy God
    • Look at all the time and money, wasted.
    • It’s about me and my stuff
    • I will live my life to the fullest, live it up now.
    • Irony is worldly man can reason and thing, but he has no understanding
    • The non-Christian, can be a genius, make executive decisions
        • Yet they don’t see God, they don’t know Jesus Christ
            • Why?
    • This futility is not just in DEED but in the MIND
        • The mind is poisoned by sin
        • We think we can separate the mind from the man
            • The mind is who the man is
            • The mind conjures up sin
            • The mind rebels against God
            • The mind esteems the things of this world instead of Christ
            • The mind is VERY important
            • How you think is who you are
            • The world even knows this
                • We hear “The power of positive thinking
                • Think it into existence
                • Recording, money, money, money
 
(18)  They are darkened in their understanding,
 
2 Corinthians 4:4 NASB  …
 
    • Darkness and light – All over the Bible
    • They are darkened and cannot come to God because they will not come
    • They don’t want God in their lives
    • Yes they can listen to a sermon but they don’t understand
        • To them the sermon was boring
        • Bible reading and praying is a waste of time
            • They can learn facts contained in the Bible but they have no life when they read the words.
                • It does not apply personally to them
                • It is some distant story
                • Preachers will tell jokes to entertain them
                • We can bring in fog machines and disco lights
    • Their whole understanding is wrong
        • What is up is down and what is down is up
        • What is important is worthless but the worthless is important
    • So they don’t understand… BUT there is more
 
[They are] alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them
 
    • They are [alienated] isolated FROM the life
        • The cannot obtain or reach this life
    • They are totally depraved
        • Not as bad as they could be
        • There is no part of man that is unaffected
        • Especially his UNDERSTANDING
 
Gen 1:31  And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good.
Ecclesiastes 7:29 ESV  …God made man upright, but they have sought out many schemes.
 
    • The ignorance in man is great
        • He denies his maker
        • He denies the savior of the world
        • He delights in sin and rebellion
    • What creature in their right mind would commit eternal suicide?
    • You have cancer
        • The blue pill is a cure
        • The read pill causes it to spread
            • Man is taking the red pill by the handfuls
 
Romans 8:7-8 ESV  
 
    • Can you see the depravity of man?
        • Man apart from the grace of God is lost.
        • Man will not turn, he is hostile towards God.
        • Man must be born again, born of the Spirit
    • Oh you want to teach him morals, what good are morals to a dying man?
        • He needs life first
    • Your child runs out into the street and is hit by a car
        • Lecture or call 911 and start first aid?
 
(18) …due to their hardness of heart.
 
    • Hardness or blindness of heart (most go with hardness)
    • The heart is naturally stony
        • Just follow your heart???
Jeremiah 17:9 NASB  
 
(19)  They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity.
 
    • Callous are from activity, the more iniquity the worse it gets
        • Callouses prohibit feeling
        • They have given themselves up
            • This is what they want
            • Free will?  Man will always choose sin
    • Ephesians 4:19 KJV  …to work all uncleanness with greediness.
        • All translations carry forward greediness
            • Very STRONG word, to covet sin
            • To desire it above what is good
    • This is the natural state of man
 
Ephesians 2:1-2 NASB  
 
Ephesians 5:8 NASB  
 
    • The walk of darkness and the walk of light
    • Now Paul switches to the POSITIVE
        • This is no longer us
 
(20)  But that is not the way you learned Christ!—  (21)  assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus,
 
    • 3  Words learned, heard and taught – Picture of salvation and regeneration
 
    1. How does one go from futility of the mind, darkened in understanding, alienated from the life of God, ignorance, hardness of heart, callousness, given up to sensuality, and greedy to practice every kind of impurity, to Christianity?
 
2. How can one darkened in understanding, learn, hear and be taught?
 
1 Corinthians 2:14 ESV  
 
    • This is a work of God, by the grace of God
    • Notice he didn’t say some mystical experience
        • This section is focused on the mind and the understanding
        • When did you truly learn and hear Christ!
            • Many people heard Christ and they crucified Him!
            • What made you understand?
            • You have been taken from darkness to light
            • Understanding the gospel IS a miracle
    • How can I tell if I am a Christian?  Does Christ have meaning to you or are you bored?
        • Would you rather be somewhere else
        • Do you enjoy learning, hearing and teaching
        • Do you believe ultimate truth can be found in Christ?
        • To not know Christ is futility
(21) …the truth is in Jesus
 
Well then… (22)  …put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires
 
    • How can you put off the old self and put on the new?
        • Isn’t this a work of God
        • Is there a contradiction here?
        • Your old self is dead and the new is alive
    • SLAVERY IS OVER PROCLAMATION
    • Walk worthy of your calling
 
(23)  and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds,
 
    • We lose sight of who we are,
    • The Holy Spirit lifts the darkness, he brings us to the knowledge of Christ
        • He does not boast in himself
        • He does not exalt us but Christ
    • We live in a day when morality is increasing worse
        • Do not live like the world because you are not part of it.
 
(24)  and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
 
    • The tragedy of the church, ONLY preach put off the old man
        • This is what you can’t do
        • You must not live like this
        • This is unbecoming of a Christian
    • You can NEVER put off the old unless you ALSO put on the new
        • Morality preaching does not save anyone
    • When The Great Awakening came righteousness and holiness came
        • Johnathan Edwards – read
        • No one had to tell them to be moral
    • Put off NOW and put on NOW
        • Do not leave the house vacant
 
Matthew 12:43-45 NASB  
 
    • If all we do is focus on putting off the old we will get nowhere
    • We MUST put on the new
 
———————-
 
    • The understanding is very important
    • Do you have understanding?
    • Are your priorities in knowing the Holy God and Christ whom He sent?
        • Or are you focused on futility?
    • Do we realize who we are now, the dead old man needs put off AND the new man needs put on?
        • If you know Christ you have been declared righteous, realize this and stop living as a slave!
Put on Christ

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