Do you have the mindset of Adam or the mindset of Christ?
Having the mindset of Adam is like looking at yourself through a wall of glass bricks; it distorts how you see yourself and everyone else.
Paul talks about putting off the old self and putting on the new self in Ephesians 4 and Colossians 3. He makes it sound so simple. But it is not necessarily easy.
Paul talks about his own challenges in Romans 7:15-25. He knows what is right and what he wants to do, but struggles to do it because of the tendency to sin. He cries out in exasperation but then reveals the answer: Christ.
It is only through Christ that we find this freedom from sin. But the problem is that all too often we try to put on our new self in Christ without putting off the old self of Adam. You cannot have both but that’s what most of us try to do. We try to put on the new self before we put off the old self. That’s like putting on a set of nice clean clothes over the dirty ones you’re wearing from working in knee deep mud and expecting not to get the new set dirty.
You cannot go in two directions at the same time.
It’s all about your mindset
How do you see yourself? As a miserable sinner or the image and likeness of God? …or a combination of the two? Back to the problem of trying to put on the new self but holding on to the old self. You can’t have both.
The mindset of Adam, the old self, insists that we are all miserable sinners. The mindset of Christ, the new self, reveals that we are the image and likeness of God and heirs to the kingdom of heaven.
Paul doesn’t say to try to improve the old self or to get a better Adam mindset. He say’s get rid of it. He calls us to the holiness of the new self created in the image of God (Colossians 3:10).
Have you ever looked at someone through a glass brick wall?
That’s what the Adam mindset is like. It distorts the image of the person on the other side. You don’t need to pray for that person to be healed or restored to wholeness; they are fine. You don’t need to reorganize the refracted rays of light to get a better image.
All you have to do is walk over to the other side of the wall and you find the person completely intact and whole. They never had been distorted or deformed.
The belief that we are just a bunch of miserable sinners is like looking at ourselves and others through a wall of theological “glass bricks” that distort our original spiritual nature and identity as the children of God made in the God’s image and likeness.
In this episode I do into quite a bit of detail explaining how to make the shift from the Adam mindset to the mindset of Christ.
Previous episodes you may find helpful:
- 003 – Praying with the Mindset of Christ
- 037 – You Are the Image and Likeness of God. What the Heck Does that Mean?
- 051 – How Does God See Himself?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and any questions you have. Feel free to contact me.
Thanks for listening. Please share this with a friend.
Have a great week.
Bible passages in this episode:
Romans 7:15, 17-25 ESV
15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.
17 So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.
18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.
19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.
20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.
21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand.
22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being,
23 but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.
24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?
25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
Romans 8:1, 2 ESV
1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.
Mark 1:14, 15 ESV
14 Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God,
15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
1 Corinthians 15:22 ESV
22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive
Luke 9:23 ESV
23 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
Genesis 1:27 ESV
27 So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
Ephesians 4:17-24 ESV
17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds.
18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart.
19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity.
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,
22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires,
23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds,
24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
Colossians 3:1-17 ESV
1 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.
3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
4 When Christ who is your [some ancient mss: our] life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
5 Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
6 On account of these the wrath of God is coming.
7 In these you too once walked, when you were living in them.
8 But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.
9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices
10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.
11 Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
12 Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.
15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.
16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Romans 8:17 ESV
17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ,
Matthew 6:21 ESV
21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.