Pastor James J. Barker

Text: ROMANS 8:1-14


  1. We have an important contrast here in Romans 8.
  • those who "live after the flesh" and those who are led by the Holy Spirit (8:1, 4, 11-14)
  • "they that are after the flesh" and "they that are after the Spirit" (8:5)
  • "to be carnally minded" or "to be spiritually minded" (8:6)
  1. Those who walk in the flesh are "carnally minded" (8:6), that is, they mind the things of the flesh. This is what drives them on.
  2. On the other hand, those who walk in the Spirit are "spiritually minded" (8:6), that is, they mind the things of the Spirit (8:5, 6).
  3. "They that are in the flesh cannot please God" (8:6-8).
  4. The modern mind is becoming more and more confused, unsettled, and unbalanced, because it is altogether carnal.
  5. Ephesians 4:17 says, the "Gentiles (heathen) walk in the vanity of their mind."
  6. On Thursday (March 14, 2013) New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sent a letter to the National Football League Commissioner, warning him not to discriminate against homosexuals. Can you imagine such a thing? It is absurd.
  7. The U.S. government now has over $16 trillion in debt. The national debt continues to increase an average of $3.86 billion each and every day. Yet our government recently spent a million and a half dollars on research to find out why most lesbians are fat!
  8. People with deranged minds are running this country.
  9. And they are running it straight into hell!
  10. "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God" (Psalm 9:17).
  11. Mayor Bloomberg supports abortion and homosexual marriage. To him these are good things to support. But he is adamantly opposed to large cups of soda! I realize it is not healthy to drink soda, but killing babies and promoting perverted sex is far worse! And wicked!
  12. You cannot get AIDS from drinking a 32 ounce cup of Coca Cola.
  13. Romans 1:28 refers to "a reprobate mind." I could give many more examples. Modern society is hopelessly confused because modern man has rejected the Word of God.



  1. This is the type of mind dominant today -- in the schools and universities, in the media, in entertainment, in the courthouses, in politics, etc.
  2. Colossians 2:18 warns about the man that is "vainly puffed up by his fleshly (carnal) mind."
  3. Cf. Philippians 3:18, 19.
  4. "Who mind earthly things" (Phil. 3:19). They are not interested in heavenly things, only earthly things.
  5. They can only see things from an earthly perspective. I remember a few years ago hearing someone refer to death as a "dirt bath." I thought, "How terrible to talk that way!"
  6. The Christian does not talk like that or think like that.
  7. We do not think of "dirt baths." We think of what our Lord said, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also" (John 14:1-3).
  8. The apostle Paul said, "For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing" (II Tim. 4:6-8).
  9. Stephen said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God" (Acts 7:56).
  10. Augustus Toplady wrote the great hymn, "Rock of Ages," which was first published in 1776. Right before he died, Toplady said, "Oh, what delights! Who can fathom the joy of the third heaven? The sky is clear, there is no cloud; come Lord Jesus, come quickly!"
  11. D.L. Moody last words were, "Earth recedes, Heaven opens before me! It is beautiful. It is like a trance. If this is death, it is sweet. There is no valley here. God is calling me, and I must go."
  12. But carnally-minded sinners do not leave this world the way God's people leave this world! They "mind earthly things" (Phil. 3:19). They are not interested in heavenly things, only earthly things.
  13. There is an interesting expression found several times in the book of Revelation -- "them that dwell upon the earth." It refers specifically to worldly, sin-loving people during the coming tribulation.
  14. The expression is first found in Revelation 3:10. Then in Revelation 8:13 we read, “Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth.”
  15. Revelation 11 describes how the antichrist will kill God's two witnesses. Their dead bodies shall lie in the street of Jerusalem for three and a half days, but no one will give them a decent burial.
  16. Then Revelation 11:10 says, "And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth."
  17. "They that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry," but God will have the last word (Rev. 11:11-14).
  18. Revelation 13:8 says, "And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship" the antichrist.
  19. Oh, the danger of the carnal mind! "The carnal mind is enmity against God" (Rom. 8:7). This means opposed to God, in a state of rebellion against God, and at war with God.
  20. "For it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God" (Rom. 8:7, 8).
  21. The carnal mind is ignorant of God. Willingly ignorant. First Corinthians 2:14 says, "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."
  22. Let me emphasize that the carnal mind cannot be improved by education or religion, etc.
  23. Paul says in Romans 7:25, "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God..."
  24. In order to serve God this way, one has to be born again (John 3).
  25. Ephesians 4:23 says, "And be renewed in the spirit of your mind."



  1. In contrast to the carnal mind -- the mind of the flesh -- there is the mind of the Spirit.
  2. Romans 8:27 refers to "the mind of the Spirit." When we pray, we can know the mind of the spirit.
  3. When we read the Bible, we can know the mind of the spirit.
  4. When we hear the Bible being preached, we can know the mind of the spirit.
  5. This world is in terrible shape, but this is the remedy. This is the solution. This is the antidote to all of man's problems and failures.
  6. Romans 8:6 says, "For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace."
  7. Frances Havergal wrote:
         Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are fully blest
         Finding, as He promised, perfect peace and rest.
  8. Do you have that perfect peace and rest?
  9. Romans 12:2 says, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
  10. If you are a Christian, then you should be spiritually-minded, not carnally-minded. And as the Christian grows in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, he becomes more spiritually-minded.
  11. As we maintain an attitude of surrender and obedience (Romans 12:1), a change takes place in our life (Rom. 12:1, 2).
  12. Second Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
  13. A daily change must take place. We should not be "conformed to this world" (Rom. 12:2). We are no longer conformed to the fashions and the practices of the world. This is why it is disgraceful to see young men who claim to be Christian walking around with their pants down, wearing ear-rings, etc. This trend started with sodomites in jail.
  14. Do you know what a chameleon is? A chameleon is a lizard that has the ability to change his color.
  15. A preacher said, "So many Christians are like chameleons that change their color according to their surroundings: you cannot tell the difference between them and the unconverted. That is one of the biggest stumbling blocks to the witness of the Christian church" (Stephen Olford, Basics for Believers).
  16. The mind of the Spirit is a renewed mind; it is a transformed mind (Rom. 12:2). Romans 8:29 says God has predestinated us to be conformed to the image of Christ. Not conformed to the world!
  17. This transformation is the work of the Holy Spirit (II Cor. 3:18).
  18. Stephen Olford gave this illustration in one of his books -- "On a wall near the main entrance to the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, is a portrait with the following inscription: 'James Butler Bonham -- no picture of him exists. This portrait is of his nephew, Major James Bonham, deceased, who greatly resembled his uncle. It is placed here by the family that people may know the appearance of the man who died for freedom.' No literal portrait of Jesus exists either. But the likeness of the Son who makes us free can be seen in the lives of his true followers" (Basics for Believers).



  1. One of the most wonderful statements in the Bible is found in I Corinthians 2:16, where the apostle Paul says, "But we have the mind of Christ."
  2. When we were born again we received "the mind of Christ." Sadly, some believers do not comprehend what it means to have the mind of Christ.
  3. They get saved but they do not read the Bible. They do not attend Sunday School, etc.
  4. Philippians 2:5 says, "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus..."
  5. What is the mind of Christ?
  6. It is an unselfish mind. All the glory that was His from eternity He gave up, in order to come down to this wicked, sinful world to die for our sins.
  7. It is a humble mind. He "made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross" (Phil. 2:7, 8).
  8. Charles Wesley put it this way:
         Emptied Himself of all but love,
         And bled for Adam’s helpless race.
  9. The apostle Paul introduces this by saying, "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus..." (Phil. 2:5).



  1. The apostle Paul said in I Corinthians 2:16, "But we have the mind of Christ."
  2. It is my prayer that all assembled here today could say the same.
  3. The Baptist pastor from England, F.B. Meyer, was on a ship crossing the Atlantic Ocean from America. While he was on the ship, the pure ocean air made him very keen to discern impurity.
  4. When he arrived in England he stayed with some friends. He was bothered by a foul odor but his friends could not smell anything bad.
  5. But F.B. Meyer was sure something was wrong so he started to investigate. Sure enough, he soon discovered the problem – about a mile away there was a sewage-farm that had infected the air.
  6. F.B. Meyer wrote, “My friends who had no training on the Atlantic were unable to detect it. So there are men who take up a novel full of impure thought and read it and not feel hurt, though the hurt has been certainly received; men and women who listen to uncharitable talk, and not detect its undertone; men and women who go in and out of the world and mix in its pleasure and sin, and still call themselves Christians, because they cannot discern good and evil.”

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