Colossians chapter 3 starts with the words, “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” We are told to set our minds on things above. But what does that mean? Do we just spend our time thinking about things above, about heaven? A phrase, we all seem to remember is, “Some people are so heavenly minded that they are of no earthly good.” We do not want to be of no earthy good. However, that phrase, is not in the bible.
“Set your mind” literally means think on. “Things above” are to be given a large place in our thought life. That does not mean we do nothing but think about heaven. But that we have a different perspective gained by thinking that realises there is another world to consider. And we are to keep seeking “the things that are above, where Christ is.” Our thinking is to be preoccupied with Christ. So that we think as he would think, which then influences what we do and say. And how to we change our thinking? We give time to reading the bible and learn what God teaches us within its pages.
Why should our thinking be different? Because, “you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in in God”. A death took place at the time of our salvation, it was our death. When Christ died for our sins, so we also died in him, and so the penalty for sin was paid. We are now a new creature, and have been born a new. Now with new thoughts and desires, becoming more like Christ. “And your life is hidden with Christ in God”, so we are covered by Christ, and secure in him. We are now of another world, and that is where our thoughts should dwell.
Does that mean we are “no earthy good”? In reality it should be the complete reverse. We are reminded to “put to death what is earthly in you” (Col 3: 7). All that is selfish and thinking about what we can gain for self is to stop. And we are to put on “compassionate hearts” And whatever we “do in word or deed do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Col 3:17). We should be working to reach others so they can be part of Gods kingdom through what we say and do. C S Lewis said, “If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were just those who thought most of the next.” Therefore, to be of some earthly good, we need to be so very heavenly minded.
Contributed by David Keith (MMN Trustee)