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Philippians 4:4-8


Intro: As each of us knows, man is a tripartite being. That is, every man is made up of body, soul and spirit. The body allows us to interact with the physical world. The soul allows us to respond to the intellectual and emotional world. The spirit allows us to relate to the spiritual world. Each part of this system is extremely important! Without the body, we would have no contact with the world. Without the soul, we would have no ability to think or feel. Without the spirit, we would not have the ability to commune with God.

Of course, when we leave this world, the body ceases to be a part of who we are. Even when the body is raised, it will be a different manner of body than the one we wear today, 1 Cor. 15:42-44. If you are saved, your spirit has already been made alive in Jesus and is sealed by Him until the "day of redemption", Eph. 4:30. In other words, the body will drop away and be changed. The Spirit has already been changed. What we are left with is the soul.

The soul can also be called the mind. It is the seat of the intellect, the will and the emotions. It is where we think, feel and decide. It is also the place where all of the conflicts we face in this life begin! You see, the mind is the ultimate battlefield of life. The Lord, the flesh and the devil are all battling for control of our minds. Why does the battle rage there? Because the Bible says, "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he...", Pro. 23:7.

We need to understand that this battle that is raging in the mind is a spiritual battle. Ultimately, it is a battle between good and evil for the control of our lives. Since this is a spiritual battle, we must fight it with spiritual resources, 2 Cor. 10:3-5; Eph. 6:10-18. Today, I want to let you know that you do not have to lose the battle for your mind! You do not have to be defeated in your walk with the Lord. You do not have to be a slave to worry and fear. You do not have to live a life controlled by the lusts and desires fo the flesh! You can live your life under the control of the Spirit of God. You can win the battle.

How, you might ask? First, it doesn't happen automatically! You have to take certain steps that will allow it to come to pass, Rom. 12:2; Eph. 4:23; 1 Pet. 1:13. (Note: As we take the step in 1 Peter to "get a grip on the mind", we put ourselves in a position to receive the ministry of the Lord as He renews the mind. The word "transform" in Rom. 12:2 and the word "renewed" in Eph. 4:23 are both passive voice. They are something to and in the child of God.) Second, we need to know that we do not have to do this alone. We have the Lord's promise in the matter, 2 Tim. 1:7. Therefore, today, I want to take these verses we have read and show you Paul's plan for victory in the battlefield of the mind. I want to share with you four simple steps that teach us all How To Fortify The Mind. If followed, these steps will help us to build a wall of protection around our minds. They will help us to achieve victory in the daily struggle we all face.


A. Paul commands the believer to "rejoice". This word means "to be glad" (Note: It is in the present tense, active voice and imperative mood. This means that the believer is commanded to "go on being glad in the Lord.")

B. Now, let's face it, much of life does not lend itself to our happiness! In fact, when Paul penned these words, he was bound between two soldiers in a Roman prison. Still, Paul knew that regardless of the circumstances of life, God never changes. That is why we are told to "rejoice in the Lord." You see, people will change, circumstances will change and life constantly changes, but the Lord never changes!

C. Since this is true, we can learn to rejoice in Who He is, what He has done for us, and what He is doing in our lives. Even if the road is hard, remember that He has planned your path, Psa. 37:23. He has promised to make all things work for good, Rom. 8:28. He has promised to go with you through everything in life, Heb. 13:5. He has promised you abiding victory, 1 Cor. 15:57; Rom. 8:37. He has promised us that the destination will be worth every mile of the trip, Rom. 8:18; 2 Cor. 4:17. Therefore, even when you can't be happy about your life, learn to be happy in the Lord! Built the wall of praise!


A. The word "moderation" literally means "gentle or gracious spirit". It has the idea of being patient with others. Of giving way to the rights and wishes of others in this life. It does not mean a compromise in doctrine. It does mean that you have a willingness to take the back seat in favor of other people. This is the idea of Phil. 2:4.

B. Paul is saying that the reality of our faith should be demonstrated in how we deal with other people. If the focus of our lives is on ourselves, then when people hurt us, slight us, cross us, etc, there will be a desire to retaliate and get vengeance. Paul wants us to get the focus off of ourselves, and get it on others. When we are focused on those around us, we will be less likely to hurt by what other people do. What they say won't sting us so bad. How they act can be passed over more easily.

C. When we adopt the mentality of self-love that is all around us, we will always look at the things people do and say as a personal attack. It will cause us to wear our feelings on our sleeves and to be more easily hurt by the words and actions of others. This will cause us problems in the mind as we dwell on what was done or what was said. If we can learn to accept others just as they are and overlook how they act and what they do, it will protect the mind from dwelling in negative areas. It will build a wall of protection around the mind that others cannot penetrate!

The bottom line is this, if we can learn to live in genuine contentment, Phil. 4:11, then it will not matter what anyone says or does. The mind will be protected from the evil it likes to find in others. (Note: The devil loves nothing better than to get your eyes off Jesus and on the faults of others! The flesh loves nothing better than to go along with the devil in this matter. When this happens, the mind is in danger!)


A. Verse 6 warns us against the dangers of worry. The word "careful" has the idea of "anxiety". It refers to a state of mind that is agitated over the events and circumstances of life. Now, there is nothing wrong with having concern. We all have our concerns about certain things. It is when your concerns have you that the problems begin to arise!

Worry is so dangerous because it allows the mind to conceive false notions about God. Worry says "God is dead!". Or, "If there is a God, He obviously doesn't care about me and my situation." Both of those statements are false! God is alive, Heb. 7:25, and God does care, Heb. 4:15; 1 Pet. 5:7.

B. When the problems of life come our way, we are given some precious help in the verses.

1. V. 5b - The Lord is near - Not just His second coming, but He is always near to His children - Heb. 13:5-6.

2. V. 6 - Exercise the tool of prayer - Paul speaks of prayer, supplication and requests. These might be thought of a general praying, specific praying and detailed praying. The main thrust of this verse is that instead of worrying, the believer is to demonstrate his faith in the power and will of God by seeking the Lord in prayer!

3. V. 6 - Develop a thankful heart - Regardless of the situations you face in life, learn to praise the Lord through them all. Nothing brings Him nearer or drives the devil away any faster than a genuinely thankful heart!

C. The Lord's promise to us is that He will replace our worries with His peace when we come before Him in trusting, humble prayer. The word "keep" in verse 7 means "to garrison, or build a fort around, to post a guard". The Lord promises to post a guard around the heart and mind of the person who trusts Him with the needs of life. Instead of worrying yourself sick about things you can't change, learn to lean on the Lord in prayer! Build the wall of prayer!


A. All of these words Paul uses in this verse are a picture of the Word of God. It is true - John 17:17. Since the Bible is true, everything it says fits within the categories mentioned by Paul. It is honest (honorable), it is just (right), it is pure (holy, clean), it is lovely (beautiful), it is of a good report (good reputation), it is full of virtue (excellence) and praise (that which tends toward worship).

B. What we have here is a call to fix our minds upon the things of God. The source for finding our about those things in the Word of God. In other words, if we will fill our minds with the Words of God, there will be no room for evil, no room for worry, no room for fear, no room for vengeance, no room for confusion and trouble. A mind filled with and led by the Word of God is a stable mind!

C. If you want a stable, fixed mind, the only place to get it is in the Word of God. We are to take the initiative and force the mind to dwell on the Bible and what it says, instead of allowing the mind to run to evil, or gossip, or others and what they are doing, or our problems, etc. A mind saturated with and fixed upon the Word of God is a stable mind. (Note: This is something that you must do for yourself! We wonder why we don't get much out of preaching and church sometimes. The answer lies in the fact that everyday, we allow our minds to feed on the filth of the world and to dwell on the problems and problem people of life. If we would give as much energy to dwelling on the Word of God day by day, it would transform our time in the Lord's house!)

Conc: Your mind is a precious gift from God. It can be used for good or for evil and all the forces of good and evil are battling for your mind all the time. Who wins the battle is always determined by you! No one can control your mind, but you. We are told in the Bible that we need to fortify the mind, it is our job, individually, and it cannot be passed off the another.

This is a very critical matter, because how you think determines how you will live your life, Pro. 4:23 (READ!!). We are to see that our minds are in love with Jesus - Matt. 22:37. Until the mind is settled, all of life is out of control - James 1:8. I challenge you to fortify your mind!

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