Counter Culture: Hard Hearts = Worthless Minds

“So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.” (Ephesians 4:17-18)

As we jump into a week or so in the back half of Ephesians 4, Paul seems to be saying some pretty harsh things about these Gentiles. (That was the word for everyone who was not Jewish.) Paul is writing to Christians here, especially those who had not grown up as Jewish believers in the one true God.

ctc_350People who worship others gods — or no god — cannot come to the right conclusions about the universe. All their best thinking is wasted because it starts in the wrong place. Without that understanding of God — and of His Son — they will always be separated from the truth. They’ve hardened their hearts to truth, to God, and even their most brilliant ideas lead to dead ends.

Paul wanted these new Christians (and us!) to catch something: Our lives should look radically different from the lives of those who do not know God. Why? Because we start from a wildly different understanding of . . . everything.

Think: How would you briefly describe the difference between your worldview and that of someone who has not trusted in Jesus for his or her salvation?

Pray: Ask God for the courage to live according to what you actually believe. Ask Him to help you not to live like those who have rejected Jesus.

Do: In the next week, we’ll see some specifics about what it means for our outer life choices to reflect our inner faith in God. Write down one area of your life that you’ve thought maybe you should find a way to change.