Now Think About These Things

Philippians 4:8-9 ESV

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”

Whatever is True

I believe this needs to be all inclusive, for there are many things which are true that we should not be thinking about. So, in addition to being true they need to be these other things, too. I think the whole idea here with regard to truth is that we should not be having our minds dwelling on things which are lies but rather on things which are true but which are also praiseworthy.

But an exception to that may be that if we are dealing with falsehood, with things hidden in secret, with deceit and false teachings, etc., we may have to think about these things in the sense of exposing the lies and then telling what is truth in contrast to the lies. So sometimes we need to be aware of what the lies are so that we can expose them for what they are.

But we should never tell lies, and we should never live a lie. We should not be those who hide what they do in secret because what they are doing is evil. But many professers of faith in Jesus Christ are living a lie, and they are hiding what they do in secret, because what they are doing is evil. Especially in this area of sexual immorality this seems to be prevalent.

Whatever is Honorable

Honorable definitely fits with truth. For honorable is what is moral, decent, proper, upright, and righteous. And when this says, “think about these things,” this has to do with what our minds are set on, what we dwell on and desire, where we focus our attention. So, if a person is lying and is not telling the truth, that is dishonorable. And someone who is dishonorable is someone who is indecent, immoral, improper, dishonest, and unrighteous.

So this would be like people who are addicted to sexual immorality, who lust after others to whom they are not married, who confuse lust for love, who get engaged in pornography and extramarital affairs for they are looking to gratify a feeling which they call love but is totally selfish in nature for it is all focused on self and on what self wants and feels. And when this overtakes a person’s thinking, he often ends up doing very irrational and foolish things.

Whatever is Just and Pure

“Just” means “approved by God,” “just in the eyes of God,” “conformity to God’s will and standard of righteousness, hence upright.” And “pure” means “free from defilement,” “holy, sacred, chaste, unadulterated, undefiled from sin, and not mixed with anything condemnable” (source: Bible Hub). So our minds are to be set on what is free from defilement and not mixed with sin.

So, our minds should be set on and focused on the teachings of Scripture, on obeying our Lord’s commands, and on living holy and pure lives to the glory of God. And they should be set on rejecting all impure or immoral thoughts or images. So we should not be purposefully watching anything with any amount of immorality in it or anything giving glory to sin.

Whatever is Lovely and Commendable

“Lovely” is whatever is pleasing and acceptable to God. It is whatever is worthy of personal affection or worth the effort to have and embrace in the eyes of God, not according to human affections. And the Scriptures are filled with instructions to us on what is worthy to God for us to embrace, and it is whatever is fitting and proper to the calling to which we have been called. And we have been called to holiness, repentance, and obedience of faith.

And whatever is commendable is that which is of good repute, praiseworthy, and admirable, but not in the sight of human flesh, but in the sight of God. All of this is from God’s perspective and not from a human perspective on what is truth or righteous or praiseworthy, etc. God and his holy word are what define for us these truths, and the Bible spells these things out for us, so we need to pay attention to what the Scriptures teach.

And the bottom line here in all of this mentioned so far is that these are the things our minds are to be set on and to dwell on and to take pleasure in, etc., not the things of this sinful world, and not the lusts of the flesh and the lusts of the eyes and the pride of life. And the love we are to be thinking about is God’s love not what is often referred to as “love” but is lust or it is definitely based in feelings and not in faith, and so it leads many astray.

Practice These Things

So, it isn’t just that these are the things we should have our minds set on and on which our minds should be dwelling and focused, but these are the things that we should be putting into practice in our daily lives. We should be truth tellers, in practice, not liars, and we should be living morally pure lives and not in sexual immorality.

We should not be taking into our minds, eyes, and ears the garbage of this sinful world, on purpose, but rather we should put a guard over our minds and hearts so that we do not desire what is sinful and so we will automatically block all evil and all immoral thoughts from even entering into our minds. And this means not going where we should not go with regard to TV shows, movies, videos, music, games, and the like which are immoral.

And when we walk in obedience to our Lord and in holiness and righteousness, and we tell the truth and we don’t live a lie, and we put into practice the things we are taught in the Scriptures to do, the God of peace will be with us. But if we live a lie, and we live in sexual immorality and/or in any other addictive and deliberate sinful behaviors, then God is not with us, and we don’t have eternal life with him. So, please know and obey the truth.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

The Battle for Truth

An Original Work / May 18, 2013
Based off Malachi 1-4

Truth is marching, truth is marching.

I love you. Honor me.
Tell the truth. You’ll be free.
Sing My praise all your days.
I will give all you need.

Truth is marching, truth is marching.

Turn from sin; cleansed within.
Stand in awe of My Name.
Teach what’s true. Walk in peace.
Follow Christ, in His ways.

Truth is marching, truth is marching.

Show to God faithfulness.
Do not be adult’rous.
Do not shed shallow tears.
Do not be insincere.

Truth is marching, truth is marching.

I have sent messengers,
Who have giv’n my address.
They call for repentance,
And they warn of judgment.

Truth is marching, truth is marching.

I, the Lord, do not change,
So return – blessings gain:
Healing comes; joyfulness;
Freedom from your distress.

3 thoughts on “Now Think About These Things

  1. Sue, when I am giving the Lord my mind for the day, I always ask Him to remove anything that is (1)depraved/unholy,(2) deceiving/untrue, (3) distracting/unimportant, and (4)depressing, distressing, and dark/unnecessarily negative. Then I ask Him to fill my mind with all the good things in Philippians 4:8. 😉 As you say, sometimes we need to think about negative things in order to deal with them, but it’s not necessary to dwell on those things just to be thinking about them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Annie, thank you. I always appreciate hearing things from your perspective. I really like what you do each day in how you give the Lord your mind. That is a wonderful practice!! Out with the bad, in with the good. Wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing that encouragement with me. God bless you in your walk of faith. Always so nice to hear from you.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s