I admire a philosopher willing to push his beliefs to their logical conclusion. Alex Rosenburg does that. He believes only in “physical facts,” a world without God. He concludes, “The illusion that there is someone inside who has thoughts about stuff is certainly as old as the illusion that there are thoughts about stuff. If the physical facts fix all the facts, there can’t be a me or you inside our bodies.” Since there is no God, there cannot be a thinking me.
I would counter that since we can think, God exists. How could sentient beings emerge from non-sentient matter? Time and chance are not plausible answers. Yet if there’s anything you can know, it’s that you think!
One category of thoughts is “self-talk.” Everyone has that inner voice, which reacts to the world around you. This continuous soundtrack reflects your experiences and built-in biases. The bad news is that it may not be true or helpful since it is afflicted by the fallen human condition.
Listen to this self-talk. “I have never been eloquent. I am slow of speech,” said Moses. “I am a man of unclean lips,” said Isaiah. “I do not know how to speak because I am a youth,” said Jeremiah. All three expressed fear to the God who would empower them to overcome their fear. Peter thought he should defend Jesus with violence, then his thoughts drove him to deny Jesus. Self-talk can struggle to tell the true, right story.
Your calling as a believer is to “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Rom. 12:2). With God’s help, your mind overrules your human brain with thoughts higher than protecting or promoting yourself. Paul experienced this. He promoted his own cause by persecuting followers of Jesus, until Jesus changed his mind on the road to Damascus. He later wrote, “We have received the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God…We have the mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:12,16).
Lyrics by Casting Crowns describe a transformed mind. “The giant keeps on telling me time and time again, boy you’ll never win. But the voice of Truth tells me a different story. The voice of Truth says do not be afraid!” Here are other thoughts from a transformed mind: I love the people I dislike because God loves them. God walks with me through this trial I face. My failures do not define me – God does. God’s purposes will prevail. Greater is He that is in me than he who is in the world. I know the truth – His name is Jesus.
In a world created by God, you are no illusion. He made a thinking you inside your body. In Christ, you can be transformed with a renewed mind!