The Battle for Men’s Minds

MEMORY VERSE: “Putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.” —Ephesians 4:25, RSV


THE Bible was not given as an instrument for gaining control of the minds of the world of mankind in general. Although Timothy was admonished to preach the Word of God, and this included a public ministry of the Gospel, it was not with the thought that he would convert great numbers of the public, but that he should bear witness at least to all who would give ear. Those who did give evidence of interest were further nurtured by the Gospel, and if God was calling them eventually they became followers of the Master.

The time in God’s grand design when the truth of God will be brought to bear upon the minds of men in general is during the thousand-year reign of Christ. Satan, the great deceiver of mankind, will then be bound, and the knowledge of the Lord will be caused to fill the whole earth as the waters cover the sea. (Isa. 11:9) It will be then that the Lord will turn to the people a pure message, that they might be enlightened and thus enabled to serve the Lord with one consent.

Those who then refuse to hear and obey the truth of God, but turn aside from it in willful disobedience, will be destroyed from among the people. (Acts 3:23) This destruction of the willfully wicked is described as the “perdition of ungodly men,” and as “the second death.”—II Pet. 3:7; Rev. 20:14

While those who reverence God and his Word are noble exceptions, the vast majority of the people the world over are less and less interested in religion of any kind. We are living in a world of indifference and unbelief, and those who have mistakenly supposed that the present is the age in the plan of God for the conversion of the world must of necessity be discouraged as they realize how futile their efforts have been and continue to be. God’s plan in the present age is to convert a called-out class from the world.

There is much more to preaching the Word than to declare the evangelistic message of the Gospel. Those who have displayed a “hearing ear” for this message should be encouraged to go on to a full dedication of themselves to the Lord and to his service. Then there is the work of reproving, rebuking, and exhorting which, of course, should be done in love, “with all longsuffering and doctrine.”

The need for this, Paul explains, is because the time would come when the believers would “not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts [RSV, according to their own liking] shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”

Throughout the history of the true church there have always been those not satisfied with sound doctrine, who preferred fanciful interpretations, or “fables,” as Paul calls them. The sound doctrines of the pure truth are wonderful, but some seem weary of these and look to teachers who can give them something “new.” It is the privilege of the Lord’s people now more than ever before to “contend earnestly for the faith once delivered unto the saints”


The objective of the Christian so far as the renewal of his mind is concerned is beautifully stated by Paul. His mind should be directed toward, “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there be any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise.” This includes the instruction of our memory verse: “Putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.”

How wholesome is Paul’s admonition: “What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.” Jesus, of course, is our true Exemplar, but we will do well also to follow the example of Paul in his zeal for the Lord.


When will the world be converted to serve the true God?

What is the purpose of preaching the Gospel at the present time?

Dawn Bible Students Association
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