The Role of the Intellect in the Spiritual Life

The “dust particle” practice

Everything we do begins in the mind with thoughts. The author of Proverbs is entirely correct when he says, “As a person thinks in their heart, so they are” (Proverbs 23.7 paraphrased).

The Greek word, “nous,” is a key word in the Bible. It is difficult to convey the full meaning of “nous” in the English language. The word, “mind,” is often how it is translated in the Bible. “Intellect” may be a better reading. The mind or intellect is the spiritual vision that we all possess. It implies a direct, intuitive appreciation of truth, where we apprehend the truth not simply as the conclusion of a reasoned argument, but we simply see that something is so.

The “intellect” is the spiritual vision that enables us to recognize truth, as soon as recognize it.

Jesus taught, “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” (Matthew 6.22-23).

The “intellect” that is pure and does not offend God is similar to an eye that does not even accept the smallest dust particle. Remember a time when you got something, possibly just a piece of dirt, in your eye. When this happens to me, I can’t wait until I get it out of my eye. What if negative, distracting, or evil thoughts were treated like foreign objects in the eye? Wouldn’t our inside condition be much better.

The purified intellect, enlightened by God’s grace, is designed to be the eye of the soul.

Think about it!

As I have read an excellent book by Anthony Coniaris, “Controlling and Confronting Thoughts,” I’ve been more conscious of the thoughts that enter my mind. Like particles of dust they accumulate and hinder my spiritual eyesight. Recently, I have challenged these thoughts. As Coniaris teaches, “When the enemy knocks on your door, send Jesus to answer it.”

Coniarius’ book is available on Amazon Kindle Unlimited for free or for the purchase price of $8.99. It will be worth your time to pick up a copy and read it.

Prayer for Today

Dear God, please help me to be as quick to remove bad thoughts from my mind as I do a dust particle in my eye.

Bob Spradlingflowerinsta-2-of-8

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