What Does 1 Corinthians 2:16 Mean?

For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, THAT HE WILL INSTRUCT HIM? But we have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:16(NASB)

Verse Thoughts

Creation, redemption, the eternal ages to come, and all the mighty acts of God, were conceived in the eternal mind of the incomprehensible Lord. His purposes and plans were birthed into reality from the day that Adam sinned, and then were transmitted to us through holy men of God, who penned the written the Word of God, for our learning.

No-one can instruct the almighty God. No-one can teach Him anything and nothing can surprise our heavenly Father, for He knows all things. Even the very hairs of our head are numbered, and every tear we shed is collected in His bottle. "Who has known the mind of the LORD, or has taught Him as His counsellor?" is the question Isaiah asked Israel. "Who has known the mind of the Lord and Who shall instruct him?" was Paul's question to the Corinthians.. and a question we should also consider. And then Paul discloses the most amazing truth, "But WE have the mind of Christ."

It was to the carnal-minded Corinthians that Paul opened up this timeless truth. It was a question, first voiced by the prophet Isaiah many centuries before, for the wisdom in the heart of a holy God cannot be known by the finite intellect of the fallen, human mind, nor can the infinite wisdom of the Lord be transmitted to the limited understanding of an unholy man.

The unsaved person.. 'the natural man', is ignorant of God's plans and purposes, for the things of God including the truth of the gospel, are spiritually discerned. But as post-Cross believers, we have the indwelling Spirit, Who gives us access to the mind of Christ. Sadly, carnally minded Christians place themselves in the same camp as unsaved people. Although they have access to the throne-room of God and the mind of Christ, they erect a sin-barrier between themselves and the Lord when they regress in their spiritual walk.

"My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. There is no person in heaven above nor the earth beneath that can know the thoughts of the omniscient God of Creation. "Who has known the mind of the LORD," is God's challenge to all humanity. Who is man, that he should presume to counsel the Lord or teach Him anything!

He is the eternal God. He is the infinite Father. He is the unfathomable Lord. He is the inscrutable Spirit of holiness. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts," declares the Lord.

And yet in this passage, we discover a tremendous truth, that was revealed to Paul concerning the mystery of the Church. In his various epistles, Paul unveiled the amazing privileges that God, in His grace, has determined for all who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. It is not a historical belief that Jesus lived 2000 years ago that saves a man. Nor is a belief that He was a great teacher, who did many miracles and was crucified by the Romans, which brings eternal life and gives us access to the mind of Christ - all of which are true.

The faith that saves the sinner and forgives his sin, is believing that Jesus, the incarnate Word of God, died for our sin, was buried, and rose again, according to the Scriptures. He is the light of the world, in Whom are the words of eternal life. And in this 'church' dispensation, believers have been given a most wonderful gift which is, "Christ in you the hope of glory." Indwelling our mortal body we have the immortal Spirit of Christ, so that through Him, we (believers) have the very mind of CHRIST.

The mind of Christ stands in stark contrast with the wisdom of the world. Through Him has been revealed mysteries that were hidden down through the ages, until Christ Jesus was sent to reveal the Father to us, and to show us the way. He came to reveal the character of God, the truth of the gospel, and the eternal hope that we have in Him.

We discover that the heart and mind of God is to redeem mankind, to restore creation, to teach us to be holy, and to guide us into all truth. To have the mind of Christ gives us a taste of heaven, a glimpse into His glory, an understanding of His heart of love, and the amazing truth that God the Father desires to save mankind from their sin, and bestow on us privileges that are beyond our understanding.

And when our life is submitted to Him, in humble dependence and childlike trust, the Holy Spirit will instruct us, correct us, lead us, and guide us into all truth... just as the Holy Spirit of God led and guided the Lord Jesus Christ during His earthly life. Christ walked the spiritual way of the Cross, for He learned and practiced obedience through the things He suffered.

He went to the Cross in obedience to the Father, for His heart-cry was always, "THY will be done" - THY. He went to the Cross to redeem His people Israel... and for love of His people, and all who would believe, He prayed, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." He went to the Cross for love of the Church and He went to the Cross and endured the pain, for the joy that was set before Him. The Son of God - Who is God the Son, despised the shame and stretched out His arms of love, embracing ALL who will believe on His name.

Christians similarly must walk that same spiritual path as their heavenly Lord, with the same humble mind and the same teachable disposition that was displayed in the life of Christ Jesus our Lord - so that we too can access the mind of the Almighty Son of God, as we abide in Him and He in us.

My Prayer

Father God, thank You that I have the mind of Christ. Please take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to You. Use my intellect to Your glory and help me to live like Jesus lived - in humble obedience before You, only doing those things that You would have me to do. Help me to place all my carnal inclinations on the altar of sacrifice, and live for You alone, for I want to live in spirit and truth, for Your praise and glory. In Christ's name I pray, AMEN.

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