Is it biblical to have an open mind? Many in the church today would probably say no. Open-mindedness is often associated with worldly thinking and culture. It’s an acceptance of all faiths and lifestyles in a way that says, “There are many paths to God.” But the truth is that open-mindedness was actually God’s idea. Not in the way that it’s preached today, but in a way that says, “My mind is open to things of God, and I want to fill it with nothing but Him.”
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Here’s what the Bible has to say about it having an open mind:
Now He said to them, “These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. – Luke 24:44-45
That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth. – Acts 17:10-11 (NLT)
And here’s what the Bible has to say about having a mind that is closed:
They know nothing, they understand nothing; their eyes are plastered over so they cannot see, and their minds closed so they cannot understand. – Isaiah 44:18 (NIV)
In whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. – 2 Corinthians 4:4
I couldn’t help but notice one important thing as I read these passages – an open mind leads to understanding and salvation, but a closed mind makes us blind to the truth.
The enemy has no ability to create, so he makes every effort to distort, mimic, and/or redefine the things of God. The enemy’s definition of having an open mind is tolerance. We open our minds and fill it with anything and everything. But that was never God’s intention. He longed for our minds to be open so that we could fill it with nothing but Him.
So how do we pursue an open mind in Christ?
But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. – 2 Corinthians 3:14-16
When we turn to Jesus, we are given an open mind. The veil of our mind is removed and we can clearly see the truth.
Apart from Jesus, our minds are closed off. The truth of God’s Word sounds like foolishness, and we lack understanding when it comes to things of God.
So the choice is ultimately ours to make, do we turn to Christ with our hearts and minds open? Or do we choose to live behind a veil in darkness?
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*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.