Your question is so important, for we told in 2nd Corinthians 10:5 that believers are to be “bringing EVERY THOUGHT into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (NKJV). In the context, this is referring to not allowing the thoughts and reasoning of ungodly men to influence our thinking, but it also sets forth a principle that “God’s thoughts” should always be forming “our thoughts.”

One of the most valuable resources we have to “overcome blasphemous and insulting thoughts” is PRAYER. In Psalm 139:23-24 David prayed this prayer: “Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my THOUGHTS: and see if there be any wicked way in me.” (KJV). This should be our prayer each and every day, for “the heart is deceitful and desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9). Because the heart is wicked, we should desire to have God, Who knows our hearts much better than we do, search them out. If we honestly ask our God and Father to search our hearts and minds, we can surely count on Him to reveal any wicked thoughts that we are entertaining. David’s prayer didn’t dwell solely on the negative, for he ended it by saying, “and lead me in the way everlasting.” If God does manifest wicked thoughts in our hearts, He will expect us to “confess and forsake” them. Proverbs 28:13 declares: “He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy” (NKJV). The moment we truly confess them God FORGIVES them and CLEANSES us from them, as we see in 1st John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to FORGIVE us our sins and to CLEANSE us from all unrighteousness.” Having been forgiven and cleaned from sins (including SINFUL THOUGHTS), our Father can then “lead us in the way everlasting.” We see this same truth from David in Psalm 23:3, “He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.”

Beside PRAYER, we also have the WORD OF GOD to keep us from blasphemous and insulting thoughts. In John 17:15-17 Jesus prayed to His Father, “I do not ask that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. SANCTIFY THEM BY YOUR TRUTH. YOUR WORD IS TRUTH.” Jesus knew full-well that He would be leaving His redeemed people in a world of defilement and thus He prays for the Father to keep them from Satan who would seek to drag us into sin. He then prays very specifically that God would SANCTIFY (which means “to make holy, purify, set apart”) us through the WORD of God. The Lord Jesus Himself is also using the WORD to SANCTIFY us, as we read in Ephesians 5:25-26, “Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might SANTIFY and CLEANSE her with the washing of water BY THE WORD. As we read and meditate upon God’s WORD, our minds and hearts will be cleansed from the defiling thoughts and actions of the world around us. This is what the apostle Paul had in mind when he wrote Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—MEDITATE ON THESE THINGS.”

Even after applying PRAYER and the WORD OF GOD, evil thoughts “may” still creep in. Some believe the “fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:16) include Satan injecting these blasphemous thoughts into our minds, even at times when we would least expect it (such as in a meeting where we are worshiping and praising God). Others believe that these thoughts come from the FLESH (our fallen, sinful nature which we still possess) and not from Satan. No matter where they come from, what are we to do when they come? I read a very good tract many years ago titled, “Evil Thoughts Unbidden” and the writer said when they come we should treat them as we would treat a suspicious-looking character in a dark alley; we should PASS THEM BY. In other words, don’t dwell on them but continue thinking GOOD THOUGHTS as we saw in Philippians 4:8. If we do, the unwelcome thoughts will disappear. (276.7) (DO)