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Mind of Christ: 3 Gifts of Love, Faith and Joy

Mind of Christ: 3 Gifts of Love, Faith and Joy
Mind of Christ: Christ’s attitude, His way of dealing with things, His deportment. The Greek word used is φρονέω, to think, to understand.

Mind of Christ: Christ’s attitude, His way of dealing with things, His deportment. The Greek word used is φρονέω, to think, to understand. This developed over time.

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Mind of Christ: 3 Gifts of Love, Faith, and Joy

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:– Philippians 2:5

Mind of Christ definitions

St. Paul*(5-67 AD) is writing here of Christ’s attitude, His way of dealing with things, His deportment. The Greek word used is φρονέω

*means this person is in Spiritual Lives.



to exercise the mind, that is, entertain or have a sentiment or opinion; by implication to be (mentally) disposed (earnestly in a certain direction); –Strong’s Concordance

Seven years earlier, Paul had written the Corinthians,

But we have the mind of Christ. – 1 Corinthians 2:16.

Here, the apostle used the Greek word νοῦς



the intellect, that is, mind (divine or human; in thought, feeling, or will); by implication meaning: – mind, understanding.

This word encompasses the attitude of humility Paul encourages in Philippians, but it is more than that. It is the worldview and understanding of the intellect that provides wisdom and drives all transactions of life.

The Mind of Christ developed in love

Jesus*(5 BC – c 30 AD) was born into this world as flesh and blood, leaving the glorious life He had with the Father before the world began. The mind of Christ referenced in the Bible was developed during His 33 years on earth.

Jesus was afforded divine protection and governance, but the principal actors in His human development were His godly Jewish parents. They protected, provided, and loved Him as an infant and child, and trained Him up in the way He should go (Proverbs 22:6).

Joseph*(50 BC? – 20 AD?) and Mary*(18 BC? – 43 AD) presented Him at the temple to be circumcised and offered the scriptural sacrifice required for a son. They took Him to Egypt, at that time a center of learning and education.

They returned from Egypt and lived in Nazareth where Joseph was a carpenter. When Jesus was 12, they all went to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover with the rest of their family. On the way home, they realized Jesus was not with them and panicked, going back to look for Him:

they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.Luke 2:46-47

Jesus’ young mind was active and amazing to these learned men.

When they found Him, He asked.

“Why did you have to look for me? Didn’t you know that I had to be in my Father’s house?” Luke 2:49

Jesus here recognizes God is His Father and supposes Mary did too, but she did not:

And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.
And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. --Luke 2:50-51

What a challenge to any mind, much more so to a young one. What discipline this required to be obedient to parents who knew less than He did!

This discipline was essential to forming the mind of Christ and helped Him grow:

And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man. – Luke 2:46-51

During these 18 years, He was subject to Joseph and Mary and learned family life, with 5 brothers and several sisters. He learned how to be a carpenter and run a business. His mind was disciplined and trained.

He attended the synagogue and was a part of the social structure in Nazareth where He was brought up (Luke 4:16). He had a wider family of whom John the Baptist was a part:

Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,
And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased. – Luke 3:21-22

The mind of Christ exercised faith

This was Jesus’ first public appearance, His debut. What was going through His mind? Luke tells us He was praying, an indication of humility. Prayer was an ongoing process in His mind.

Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. Matthew 4:1-2

Fasting is another discipline, linked in His mind with prayer, and He used it here to prepare for the devil's temptations. Jesus knew the Bible! He overcame each test by quoting God’s word.

And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season. Luke 4:31

This was not the only time He had been tempted although we do not read about them in the Bible:

For we do not have a high priest who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted just as we are, yet without sin. ---Hebrews 4:15

What a faith-building experience this was. His mind was strengthened, He was poised, resolute, and in charge, ready to begin His work.

Jesus began His ministry by:

  • Preaching repentance

  • Declaring His mission in the synagogues

  • Being rejected by his family and His neighbors

  • Recruiting disciples

  • Casting out demons

  • Healing the sick in Galilee

  • Teaching his disciples

  • Feeding the multitudes

Each step demonstrated the development of His mind and strengthened faith, authority, and leadership.

A mind of love and beauty

As Jesus' ministry grew so did His mind. We see it in His love of people, the multitudes, the outcast, and those needing a miracle.

Storytelling expressed His creativity and ability in teaching righteous truths in beautiful, loving parables. There is no better short story than The Prodigal Son, or the depiction of faith as beauty:

Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith? – Luke 12:27-28

What a beautiful mind this is, but how much more so in One who was without a home?

The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. Matthew 8:20

How grateful He must have been for those few friends He had, the women who “ministered to Him of their substance:”

And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils,
And Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto him of their substance. – Luke 8:2-3

Especially dear to Him were those 3 friends of Bethany, who provided a safe and loving retreat:

Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. John 11:5

He exercised this love in raising Lazarus from the dead and rested at their home during His final ordeal in Jerusalem.

Love amid suffering

During this time, Jesus had to exercise His mind to keep His Father’s commandment:

Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. – Matthew 22:37

John, the disciple Jesus loved, reports this as Jesus prepared the Lord’s Supper:

Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.
And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him; John 13:1-2

That love showed itself first when He washed Judas’ feet. And then, when Juda led the soldiers to arrest Him, Jesus asked:

Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him. – Matthew 26:50.

On the cross, there was this exchange between Jesus and the thief crucified beside Him:

And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.

And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. – Luke 23:42-43

Then, just before He died, His mind turned to His mother:

When Jesus, therefore, saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home. John 19:26-27

No one has captured this scene as well as Isaac Watts:

See from His head, His hands, His feet,

Sorrow and love flow mingled down!

Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,

Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

The mind of Christ was filled with love and sorrow, but amidst that He retained the joy He knew would come.

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. -Hebrews 12:2

Joy overcomes

All the sorrow and despair of Good Friday was totally eclipsed on Resurrection Sunday when Mary Magdalene and the other Mary arrived at Jesus’ tomb:

And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.
He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.
And they departed quickly from the sepulcher with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word. Matthew 28:5-8

Their joy spread to the disciples, and there was more to come:

And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.

Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me. – Matthew 28:9-10

Imagine that joy that flooded the mind of Christ when he was reunited with His disciples and His family!

What was the result of all this suffering? Our salvation and more:

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. Hebrews 2:9-10

Here are Jesus’ last words to His disciples just as He ascended into heaven:

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. Matthew 28:18-20

As He ascended, the mind of Christ went with Him, but He assured us access through the Holy Spirit:

But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. Acts 1:8

The Holy Spirit did come on the Day of Pentecost and filled His 120 with His power that enables us to have the mind of Christ. What does that mean, and when was that available to us?

Why we must have the mind of Christ

St. Paul assures the Corinthians that they have it and tells us why we need it:

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ. – 1 Corinthians 2:14-16

Having the mind of Christ is a necessity and a blessing. Jesus Himself, speaking from heaven, makes this offer:

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. – Revelation 3:20-21

How glorious!

May the mind of Christ my Savior

Sing this prayer/song with me, or listen HERE

1 May the mind of Christ, my Savior,

Live in me from day to day,

By his love and pow’r controlling

All I do and say.

2 May the word of God dwell richly

In my heart from hour to hour,

So that all may see I triumph

Only through his pow’r.

3 May the peace of God, my Father,

Rule my life in ev’rything,

That I may be calm to comfort

Sick and sorrowing.

4 May the love of Jesus fill me

As the waters fill the sea.

Him exalting, self abasing:

This is victory.

5 May we run the race before us,

Strong and brave to face the foe,

Looking only unto Jesus

As we onward go.

Author: Kate B. Wilkinson (1925)

May His beauty rest upon me

As I seek the lost to win,

And may they forget the channel,

Seeing only Him.

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: K Barclay Wilkinson / M Peterson

About the image/artwork

Date 14th century

Source Unknown source

Author Unknown author


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