A Sinner’s Mind, Eph 4:17-19

I have been thinking lately, “How is it that whole societies degenerate into sexual perversion and things as horrible as baby killing?”  You read about these things over and over in the Bible.  2 Ki 16:3 Ahaz made his son to pass through the fire, 2 Chr 28:3.  According to  2 Ki 23:10, this was done to worship Molech.  Of course, you know about the sexual sins of Sodom and Gomorrah.  These same sins cropped up again in the tribe of Benjamin, and during the reigns of Asa and Jehoshaphat.  Sodom and Gomorrah were completely destroyed and the tribe of Benjamin was nearly decimated, because of these perversions.  And now we see similar things happening in our own country.  How did we get like this?  The answer can be found in examining a sinner’s mind.  A sinner’s mind is:

A Vain mind – Eph 4:17-19, Ps 2:1.  Sinners walk in the vanity of their mind.  A vain mind is rooted in pride and conceit and the thoughts from it are foolish [Rom 1:21].  Evolution is the fruit of a vain imagination.  All of this so-called science is rooted in the minds of people who are not thankful and who do not glorify God.  If you are an evolutionist, who do you thank if you “say the blessing.”  You can’t thank God because God, in your mind, didn’t provide anything that the Bible says he created and made available to you, Acts 17:24-25, 28.  A vain mind is where the trouble with sin begins in a person’s life.  And this is where it begins in a society, as well.  

For example, idolatry is vain worship.  Idols can’t speak, hear, walk, see, or anything.  They are dumb idols.  In countries where idols are worshipped, you see sinners walking in the vanity of their mind. They aren’t thankful to God and they don’t glorify God. They’re superstitious, vain in their imagination, and think somehow that their idol is providing for and protecting them.

A Carnal mind – Rom 8:6-7, Col 1:21 – from a vain mind proceeds a carnal mind.  When you start thinking with a carnal mind, you become an enemy of God.  The carnal mind is enmity against God.  When a sinner’s mind is carnal, he minds earthly things, Phil 3:18-19.  Subtly, this is what happened to Eve in Gen 3.  She became an enemy of God before she disobeyed him.  In her conversation with the devil, she was convinced that God had held out on her.  She thought that God denied her access to this tree.  

And look how the devil set her up.  He said, “God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods,” [Gen 3:5].  You see, God knows you’ll be as gods, and that’s why he won’t let you have it.  Isn’t he a bad God.  Just look at this tree.  The tree is good for food (that appeals to you when your god is you belly).  The tree is pleasant to the eyes (men love pleasures).  The tree will make you wise (that’s very appealing when you are a lover of your own self).  Don’t you want to become gods?

Eph 2:2-3 shows you that this mind is influenced by the devil and evil spirits. With a carnal mind you become an enemy of God and a friend of the devil.  Whatever this mind can imagine it will do.  And there seems to be no limit on the wickedness of this imagination.

A Defiled mind – Titus 1:15-16.  After the mind becomes carnal and the sinner gets into more sin, the mind becomes defiled.  Nothing is pure to a defiled mind and the works the sinner does are abominable and disobedient.  At this point the sinner’s conscience no longer pricks him with guilt and shame for the sins he commits.  His mind and conscience are too defiled.  This is a bad place to be.  You can see how the influence of movies, television, internet and books contribute to a defiled mind because sinners become desensitized.  Sin doesn’t bother them anymore.

A Reprobate mind – Rom 1:28 – when the sinner’s mind becomes defiled and he continues in sin, God gives him over to a reprobate mind and any and all things go.  When men turn away from God, the Lord shows you where they will turn in Rom 1:29-31.  The end of these sins is death and sinners know it.  Sin is a killer, so the behavior becomes destructive to the point of death.  Men drink, drug, smoke, fornicate and gorge themselves to death. They know what’s coming and do it anyway, Rom 1:32.  

This is how sinners and societies degenerate into the condition you find in the Bible and into the condition we find ourselves in this country today.  It’s a mental problem as well as a spiritual problem.  Sinner’s minds have degenerated from being vain to being reprobate.  

Conclusion: the only hope of restoring a sinner’s mind is regeneration through Jesus Christ.  When Jesus delivered the man in the Gaderenes from the devil, the people saw that he was in his right mind, Mk 5:15.  When a sinner gets saved, Jesus can reset his mind.  If a saved sinner will follow Rom 12:2 and Eph 4:23, he can renew his mind and turn away from the effects of the vain, carnal, defiled, and reprobate mind he once had.  He’ll look back in horror at the things he did and wonder how in the world he could have done those things.  And now you know how.  And you also know how we have gotten into the shape this country is in today.