Fasting at times and giving to the Lord are both good and appropriate things to do, but these in themselves do not prevent us from having evil thoughts.  We read in Genesis 6:5, “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the THOUGHTS OF HIS HEART WAS ONLY EVIL CONTINUALLY.” Since the heart of the unregenerate person is evil, then how do we, as believers on the Lord Jesus Christ, refrain from having evil thoughts? 

Let’s start off by reading 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, THINKS NO EVIL; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.”  When we are controlled by the love of God, it has incredible impacts of our lives.  Notice these characters of love.  It takes us away from thinking of ourselves and causes us to consider the needs of others.  Therefore, when we allow the love of God to rule in our hearts, we will not be thinking evil thoughts.  Our eyes and our hearts will be upon Him, and our thoughts will be led by Him.

All those who have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their savior have the love of God in their hearts as we read in Romans 5:5, “…the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”  The love of God is literally poured out in our hearts.  We need to allow that love to rule in our hearts.

The Bible tells us what kind of thoughts we should have.  Philippians 4:8-9 says, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsoever things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are of GOOD REPORT; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, THINK ON THESE THINGS. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.”  The Lord would have us occupy our minds with these things.  He wants our thoughts to be pure, not thinking of evil against others, not having hate in our hearts, not taken up with impure sexual thoughts. 

Is that even possible today?  Certainly, it is!  I have often said that the Lord will never give us anything to do that He does not give us the ability to do. We read in 2 Corinthians 10:5, “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and BRINGING INTO CAPTIVITY EVERY THOUGHT TO THE OBEDIENCE OF CHRIST.”  The Lord wants us to obey Him in all things, even the things we think about.  If we should spend our time thinking of how mad we are at someone…that is sin.  If we should spend our time occupied with jealous thoughts…that is sin.  If we should spend our time with lustful thoughts…that is sin.  EVERY THOUGHT is to be brought into the obedience of Christ.

What if you are struggling with thoughts you want to get rid of, but find it difficult to rid yourself of evil thoughts?  PRAY…then OBEY.  Ask the Lord to help you control your thoughts.  “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”  (1 Peter 5:7).  The Lord will help you control your thoughts when you ask Him.  He will help lead you into thinking of those things we read about in Philippians 4:8-9.

In Matthew 22:37 we read, “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”  We think about loving the Lord our hearts and our souls, and we should, but we should also love Him with our minds.  When we give the Lord first place in all things, the things we think about will be the things the Lord would have us occupy our minds with.  (419.6)