I recently posted a teaching called “Faith – Seeing It Through”. The Lord instructed me to address an issue that many believers including myself struggle with. This is often a roadblock for all of us at some point as we walk by faith. The Bible tells us that we all have been given our own measure of faith, I believe the more we get into the Word and seek God diligently the greater our faith should become. However, many people have gotten in God’s Word and sought Him but still do not have a breakthrough. The reason for this lack of breakthrough is not because a person is not truly seeking God, it is because they have neglected to address this common roadblock.
Let me first say this teaching is not meant to put people down, that is never my intention. I want believers to recognize this roadblock as it applies to their life and address it according to the Word of God. Many have said that 2021 is to be the year of faith, and I agree with that, but we must address this if we are going to walk in full faith this year as the Body of Christ.
The roadblock to faith for almost every believer is not fully surrendering the carnal mind to the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us we are a three-person being, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:23 NKJV). As many of you already know when we get born again it is our spirit man who is regenerated, however, we are still left with the flesh (our body and soul). Our soul is where our mind, will, and emotions lie.
Now, what is a carnal mind? A short summary would be it is a mindset that is set on any or all the lust of the flesh and not lined up with the walk of the spirit as we see in Galatians 5 where the Apostle Paul differentiates the walk of the flesh vs. the walk of the spirit. We must all continually examine ourselves; we live in a world where the mainstream entertainment media will put propaganda before us that promotes sin. I pray that each person reading this begins to develop a habit of searching their heart daily and examining themselves.
Aside from the sinful lust of the flesh, there is another area of carnality that can become a roadblock to our faith. I really want you to pay attention closely to this one and hear what I am saying. I believe that standing for Biblical truth and sound doctrine is the duty of every believer for defending the faith. We must be careful of where our source of knowing God is coming from. There is a dangerous path one can fall privy to where they only rely on head knowledge and neglect being developed spiritually by the Holy Spirit.
Jesus said in John 6:63 (NKJV), “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.”. The teachings of Jesus cannot be properly understood by the human mind alone, no matter how good your academic skills are. When Jesus promised us the Holy Spirit he said in John 16:13 (NKJV), “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”.
Many people think they have sound doctrine because they have studied a bunch of Greek and Hebrew, maybe even learned to read the Bible in the original language. Now learning Greek and Hebrew for Biblical studies has its place. But we must be careful not to go academically overboard. If we go academically overboard, we will only know God based on head knowledge, rather than seeking Him intimately in the secret place. Psalm 1:2 (TPT) says, “His pleasure and passion is remaining true to the Word of “I Am,” meditating day and night in the true revelation of light.”.
The Apostle Paul did not sit in a Survey of the Old and New Testament course, he sought after God and received great revelation knowledge, and had a fruitful ministry as an apostle. You can have all the degrees you want in theology and apologetics you want, but still have zero intimacy with the King of Kings. Now I am not rebuking people who have gone to seminary who seek after God. There are many ministers out there that have gone to seminary, and sought God in the secret place, and sat in the classroom of Holy Spirit. I am sure there are schools that teach their students about keeping this area balanced. Head knowledge has its place with the Word of God, however, there is a whole other level when it comes to developing spiritually when you are continually walking in communion spirit to Spirit daily. We must keep everything balanced and avoid going from one extreme to another.
Not only is being carnally minded about being given to the lust of the flesh, but it is also when one only operates in head knowledge of God, rather than truly personally coming to knowing God intimately. This can only be accomplished by daily prayer, worship, and meditating on the Word of God.
Romans 8:5-8 (MSG) tells us, “Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn’t pleased at being ignored.”.
Have you been given over to one of these pitfalls of carnality? Or maybe both? I know I have from time to time. It is time for us as believers to truly submit our mind to the Lord, and take diligent time to meditate on His Word. We must begin to make it a priority to rely on the teaching of the Holy Spirit over our head knowledge. As I said academics has its place when it comes to theology, but we must be spiritually developed in God’s Word so that we have a firm foundation and do not get off balance.