God's Thoughts and God's Ways
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts” (Isa. 55:8-9).
There is no doubt that Gods’ thoughts and Gods’ ways are greater than ours. His capacity is greater than ours. Also, there are things with God that are too wonderful, too majestic, too big for us to imagine. However, God has revealed Himself so that we could know His thoughts and ways. In fact, when our ways and thoughts are not His it is a sign that we are away from the Lord. When we find our thoughts and our ways are not the Lords’ we need to forsake them and return to Him. We are not acceptable to the Lord. The very basic and fundamental principle that we need never forget is that the wicked are wicked because their thoughts and ways are not the Lords’.
When we talk about our thoughts being the Lords’ we are talking about the real battleground between God and Satan. Each wants our will. Paul describes that battle as casting down every high thing that arrays itself against God and bringing every thought into captivity to God (2 Cor. 10:3-6). God has revealed His thoughts and His ways so that we will know His thoughts and ways and make them ours. God wants the victory of our will brought into submission to His will. We cannot submit ourselves to God until every thought has been brought into obedience.
When we think about making our will the same as Gods’ that should remind us of Christ. We are to have His mind (Phil. 2:3-5). People who are developing the mind of Christ are people who think like He thinks. What kind of attitude did Jesus have toward the Father? Did He have the mind of God? Could Christ say My thoughts are Your thoughts? We know that the Father and Son had one mind. Christians are to be like Him. We are to have one mind with the Father. We are to value what He values (Phil. 1:9-11). We call excellent that which He calls excellent. Obedience is important, vital, but we must grow in our thinking so that we obey because His thoughts are our thoughts.
It is important our thoughts be the same as Gods’ and equally important are Gods’ ways to be our ways. That is, our thoughts are to produce a certain manner of life. God has also revealed Himself so that our manner of life will be His. Recall the occasion when the disciples of Jesus were arguing over who was going to be first in the kingdom of heaven. What did Jesus do? On this occasion John tells us He washed their feet. He did this to teach them a lesson about the course of their life (Jn. 13:12-17). Jesus was the Master, above them in authority and honor. He lowered himself to wash their feet, a task ordinarily reserved for slaves, but here the Master did it. He illustrated to them the need to be humble with one another. The need to be a servant to others. In fact, He says, “Do as I have done.” And, “happy are you if you do these things.” If we fail to learn this most fundamental lesson of our manner life as Christians we fail to learn His ways. The servant is not greater than the Master. Therefore, we ought to do as He has done.
Another manner of life we need to emulate is the quality of forgiveness. We are to be forgiving people (Eph. 4:32). We cannot be anything else in our manner of life. We forgive just as Christ forgave us. That is making our ways His ways. We cannot be Christians, acceptable to the Lord without a forgiving heart. We will have to forgive just as freely as God forgave if we expect to be forgiven by God.
Each day Christians are being transformed (2 Cor. 3:18). It may be in the absolute that God’s ways and God thoughts are not ours, but we sure better be trying to make them ours. That is our direction. For that reason He revealed Himself. We are being transformed into the same image thus our ways are being matched more completely to the Lord’s ways day by day, little by little, from glory to glory. Christians are people who are trying to make their thoughts and ways His. That is what makes us different from the world. If we thought everything everyone in the world thought or acted like they act, we would be a part of the world. But, we are Disciples of Christ, our thoughts are His, our ways are His. Therefore, we separate from the world and we follow Him. We are growing to be like Him. When we are the kind of people God wants, our thoughts and ways will be His. Christians must not be satisfied to be other than what God wants us to be.
by Rickie Jenkins