A Renewed Mind
Excerpts from the writings and sermons of Evangelist Lester Roloff
“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth In Thee” (Isaiah 26:3).
“As he thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7).
The Bible is surely not silent on the importance of the mind. It is not silent on what we believe, what we think, and what we eat…our soul, mind, and body.
When I was a boy, I do not remember anybody being able to spell psychiatrist or veterinarian in our community, but that did not greatly disturb us because we didn’t need either one. With the coming of education, more books, and higher learning has also come the veterinarians, the psychiatrist, the psychologist, tranquilizers, sedatives, stimulants, drugs, and shock treatments.
On one college campus, there were sixty-seven attempted suicides in one year. Now I make no apology for bringing you to the Word of God if you want your mind straightened out. And if you want your mind kept, you’re going to have to turn it over to the One who made it.
Now first of all, let me give you what the Bible says about the mind. There are at least twenty-seven kinds of mind mentioned in the Bible.
A Sorrowful Mind (Deuteronomy 28:65)
A Willing Mind (I Chronicles 28:9)
A Working Mind (Nehemiah 4:6)
A Wicked Mind (Proverbs 21:27)
A Hardened Mind (Daniel 5:20)
A Ready Mind (Act 17:11; I Peter 5:2; II Corinthians 8:19)
A Reprobate Mind (Romans 1:28)
A Carnal Mind (Romans 8:7)
A Vain Mind (Ephesians 4:17)
A Lowly Mind (Philippians 2:3)
A Fleshly Mind (Colossians 2:18)
A Shaken Mind (II Thessalonians 2:2)
A Sound Mind (II Timothy 1:7)
A Defiled Mind (Titus 1:15)
A Renewed Mind (Romans 12:2)
A Forward Mind (II Corinthians 9:2)
A Spiritual Mind (Romans 8:6)
A High Mind (Romans 11:20; I Timothy 6:17; II Timothy 3:4)
A Feeble Mind (I Thessalonians 5:14)
A Sober Mind (Titus 2:6)
A Double Mind (James 4:8)
A Despiteful Mind (Ezekiel 36:5)
An Evil Mind (Acts 14:2)
A Blind Mind (II Corinthians 3:14; 4:4)
A Corrupt Mind (I Timothy 6:5)
A Fainting Mind (Hebrews 12:3)
A Pure Mind (II Peter 3:1)
So the mention of the mind surely occupies a prominent place in the Scriptures. And this generation must consider it important because of the money that is spent on education—twelve years to get a high school education and from four to eight years for higher education which would make some sixteen to twenty years of education of the mind.
And when you consider the tranquilizers and the dollar-a-minute fee for the psychiatrist’s couch and the shock treatments, we’d all agree that the mind is an important matter and part of the human personality.
Now I’d like to give my candid opinion and my heartfelt conviction on what I believe is wrong with the mind. We’ve heard a good deal about split personalities and dual personalities, but that’s nothing new. Paul talked about that when he said, “For the good that I would I do not: but the evil that I would not, that I do. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me” (Romans 7:19-21).
So we see the two-fold nature presented in the Word of God. But he reaches the conclusion when he says, “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” And then he gives the answer, “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind, I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin,” (Romans 7:24-25)
So I believe that the same thing that makes a sick body makes a sick mind and that’s trash and filth. What you put in your mind is going to determine the health of your mind. That’s the reason I’ve had to cross swords with the newspapers, magazines, and television.
We’re living in a time of depraved, corrupt, evil, wicked, defiled and reprobate minds. And say what you will, there’s nothing that has so captured and conquered and corrupted the mind as the television set. It has taken up so much of the time and has deprived the children and parents as well of needed physical exercise. Exercise is necessary for a wholesome body and mind. I say again that a two to five mile walk in the open air with one mile of that jogging will invigorate your body and mind and will prepare you for the right kind of rest.
Back in my boyhood days, my daddy would come down that old ranch house hall and in thunderous tones, but a jovial manner, say, “Wake up, Jacob, day’s a-breakin!” And even though day wasn’t “a-breakin,” Melvin, Edell, and Lester hit the floor at the same time and sat on that old homemade bench, and we ate breakfast together and were in the field by good daylight. We worked, sweated and came in about sundown. We milked the cows, and we hit the bed a little after dark, well tranquilized. We needed no sleeping pill or tranquilizer.
I shall never forget my daddy’s disgust when the ten-hour day came to a close for our hired hands at six in the evening. They could lay their hoe down, but the three Roloff boys had to keep chopping, hoeing, or plowing until the sun went down. But say what you will, those were days of health. Hardly anybody ever went to the hospital or the doctor or the drugstore, and nobody needed a psychiatrist.
Fact is, I can remember the time when people went to church in old-fashioned brush-arbor and tabernacle revival campaigns to get the shock treatment. Some blessed old loud-mouth, trumpet-preaching preacher would shock the devil out of them, and they’d weep over their sins and confess and forsake them. But when the preachers and churches quit giving shock treatments, folks had to start going to the psychiatrists. And the psychiatrists would make an attempt, at a mighty cost to the mind, to shock the past out of them, when Jesus Christ said that His blood would cover the past, and He would remember our sins against us no more forever (Jeremiah 31:34).
The psychiatrist has sort of become an earthly priest to listen to the sinful sordid and satanic confessions of men and women. And I’ll say in no uncertain terms, I would not under any circumstances commit my mind to any unsaved psychiatrist who would – though sincere and maybe as honest as he could be – separate me from the Word of God, God’s people, and the Holy Spirit Who is the One Who can quicken the mortal mind. And let me say right here, I believe it is time for the preacher to get back in the pulpit and offer help for the soul, mind, and body.
A few months ago, I was in a seminar with psychiatrists and doctors, and they gave me the suggestion that I had one field and that was the spiritual field, a field of the soul. I was to stay out of the field for the body and the mind. But I believe the Lord has given us, through His blessed Word, hope and help for the complete man… his soul, mind, and body! I see no hope for improvement on the horizon of the future unless we can get our people back to the Bible which is the final authority concerning the mind.
Now, let’s look at some folk in the Bible who had real mental trouble and find out what the answer was for them. Saul rejected the Word of the Lord, and God rejected him. He wound up in the shadows with the witch of Endor. Nebuchadnezzar, through his pride and sin, hardened his mind and became insane. The prodigal son spent all that he had in riotous living and wound up at the hog pen and had to come to want and to himself before he would come to his father.
“There’s not much difference in being in sin and insane.”
In the land of Gadara, there was a crazy man running loose in the tombs, and Jesus made His way to that one lonely, depraved, defeated man and met his needs – and cared nothing about the killing of two thousand hogs to do it. When the men came, they saw the Gadarene demoniac sitting and clothes and in his right mind. There’s not much difference in being in sin and insane.
Insanity is one of the big pleas to get criminals free and what we call “insane” now, we called “in sin” a generation ago. Of course, a man that drinks liquor or takes dope is not in his right mind. If the leaders of America were in their right mind, we would immediately take the driver’s license away from every man who takes dope and drinks liquor and stop the murder of thousands of innocent people on the highways and streets of our country.
In our ministries we work with people who have troubled minds. But it’s always a sin situation that brought it about. We must come to the remedy, and you must believe what we are going to say if you want help. If sin is causing the trouble, then there’s only one answer, and that’s the Savior. We’re wasting time and money going to psychiatrists, medicines and drugs unless they are going to point us to Jesus.
And I give you now the Bible proof. Isaiah 26:3 says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.” If, according to II Corinthians 3:14 and 4:4, the devil is blinding the minds of the people, we’ll have to go to Jesus to get our minds opened. If your mind is fainting, Hebrews 12:3 says, “Consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.”
II Timothy 1:7 lets us know that a sound mind cannot be bought no matter how many contributions they ask you to make to mental health. “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” And Romans 12:2 tells us that He is able to renew our minds. Philippians 2:5 says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” I Corinthians 2:16 says, “We have the mind of Christ.”
In Matthew, Mark, and Luke, the three synoptic Gospels that present a common view of Jesus, we are told to love the Lord our God with all of our mind (Matthew 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27).
“A surrendered heart will certainly bring a sound mind.”
Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
A surrendered heart will certainly bring a sound mind. But we must know the peace of God before we can have a peaceful mind, and Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). Colossians 3:15 says, “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom’ teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him.”
In Romans, chapter one, God said He would give certain individuals up to unclean living, unclean learning, and unclean loving and that about wraps up the dismal and dark picture of this violent generation. If we would be wise in facing this sin of Sodom, we would abstain from the very appearance of evil. I conclude out of my thirty-five years of experience working with people, I believe that selfishness and laziness and dishonesty, rotten reading, homosexuality, and television have filled this country with reprobate minds that cannot retain God in their knowledge.
One other thing, I believe that the drugs taken by the people today are playing havoc with the minds. Lest we be further misunderstood, I do believe in Christian psychiatry. I have a wonderful Christian friend who is in this ministry who was, originally, a Christian physician. Finding so many people with mental sickness, he decided to enter this field with his Bible. Even before this time, he would write Bible prescriptions and found that the Lord would bless those who carried them out. When we leave out the Word of God, we’ve left out the only source of a sound mind. May we love the Lord with all of our mind.
“The cure that changes thinking can only be the mind of Christ, and the mind of Christ can only be found in the Word of God.”
Now here’s my suggestion and recommendation for a complete cure. The cure that changes thinking can only be the mind of Christ, and the mind of Christ can only be found in the Word of God. Therefore, I challenge every reader to join with me in memorizing one chapter of the Word of God every month for the next five years. I’m including those sixty chapters and a few more. I promise you that there will not be a person who will memorize sixty chapters but what in five years, you’ll say, “I’m enjoying a better mind and a richer life than ever before.”
We have been providing through the love and compassion of our radio friends a haven of rest for demented men and women, cursed by alcohol and dope. And I’ve seen folks come that have been in hospitals, jails, penitentiaries, and intuitions for the insane and in every other organization that would try to offer any hope. But like the poor woman that touched the hem of Jesus’ garment after she had spent all she had. She was nothing better, but had rather grown worse until she had a personal encounter with Jesus Christ.
As a result of the Gospel that we preach in our ministries, some are now preaching Christ and have been for five to ten years. Others are faithful husbands and fathers with good jobs and that’s proof enough to me that Christ is the Answer through the Word of God.
So, the next time somebody asks you, “What do you have on your mind?” let it be Jesus and His Word. Now if you know a better way or have another answer, you get in touch with us, but until you do, I’m going to continue to accept that sweet invitation of Jesus when He said, “Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you REST. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find REST unto your souls” (Matthew 11:28-29).
Finally, let me give you a warning and a challenge. The newspaper, the magazine, and the television set occupy such a tremendous amount of time daily, and none of these three could compare with what we would get if we spent a similar period of time reading the Word of God. It’s not always just the bad things that we get by observing the world’s medium of expression and communication, but it’s what we neglect while we are doing it.
Observe if you will the popularity and the price of the magazine, the newspaper, and the television set and then compare the popularity of the Bible. And then go back and board the old Mayflower that sailed the chartless sea, and the only thing that our pilgrim forefathers had was the Word of God when they knelt in the dimly lit cabin of the Mayflower and said, “We do now by the grace of God and for the advancement of the Christian faith plant the first colony.”
So here’s my challenge and a project for you to think about. Leave aside the magazine, newspaper, television, and worldly radio programs for thirty days and pick up the Bible and read and begin to memorize the following chapters and you’ll find the Bible is best by test and it will bring sweet rest.
Suggested Chapters to Memorize
Psalms, 1, 2, 3, 8, 14, 15, 19, 23, 24, 27, 34, 37, 40, 41, 42, 46, 51, 67, 73, 85, 90, 91, 92, 93, 100, 103, 116, 117, 121, 122, 124, 126, 127, 131, 133, 134, 150, Proverbs 16, 22, Isaiah 40, 53, 55, 58, Matthew 5, 6, 7, 28, John 3, 10, 14, 15, 17, 21, Romans 5, 8, I Corinthians 13, Colossians 3, Philippians 3, 4, Hebrews 11, Romans 10, Ephesians 2, 3, 6, James 1, I John 1, 5, I Peter 1.
(copyright Roloff Evangelistic Enterprises 2020)