“As a Man Thinketh” is Not What People Thinketh

Recently, I was looking for books to read about thinking, and I gave Joyce Meyer another chance– don’t yell at me just yet. I borrowed Battlefield of the Mind from the library and started reading. I’ve also been reading through Proverbs in my Bible, and that’s where this story gets interesting.

Joyce opens Chapter 2 with Proverbs 23:7, clipped, so that it says:

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.

Proverbs 23:7

She begins the chapter by saying, and I quote:

“This one Scripture alone lets us know how very important it is that we think properly. Thoughts are powerful, and according to the writer of the book of Proverbs, they have creative ability.”

Battlefield of the Mind, by Joyce Meyer, Chapter 2

“Wait a minute,” I immediately thought. “I just read through Proverbs 23 and took notes, and I don’t remember it saying that thoughts have creative ability.”

Not only that, but that is the new age concept called The Law of Attraction.

The Law of Attraction states that thoughts create things. For instance, you think of a car, a specific make and model and color, and you get that car, literally that make/model/color. Or if you think of being sick, you get sick. On the flip side, if you think of good health, you stay healthy! Your thoughts make your reality, according to the LOA. There is even a book called As a Man Thinketh (by James Allen) — the title is this clipped Bible verse, but inside it is not about God or the Bible, it is all about the Law of Attraction.

But why am I talking about the new age? This is Joyce Meyer we’re talking about here! She’s a Christian!

So, I opened my Bible, because she obviously had the wrong verse. I had read Proverbs 23 only hours before, and it was still fresh in my mind. I knew I didn’t see this lesson of “thoughts have creative ability.” Nowhere in the Bible could I remember reading that. EVER. Could the Bible have said it and I just missed it all the times I’ve read it?? Well, this is what I found:

Do not eat the bread of a miser,
Nor desire his delicacies;
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.

“Eat and drink!” he says to you,
But his heart is not with you.

The morsel you have eaten, you will vomit up,
And waste your pleasant words.

Proverbs 23:6-8 NKJV, emphasis mine.

I didn’t think I saw it because I DIDN’T. What Joyce Meyer says is not what Proverbs 23:7 says.

Proverbs 23:6-8 is not about thoughts having creative ability. It’s about hypocrisy.

It’s about people who say one thing, but are thinking another. Simply put, you could ask yourself:

When you’re thinking one thing, but are saying another… which one is the REAL you?

When a cheap man tells you, “Go on, eat, I don’t mind!” but he’s thinking “Wow, he’s eating like a pig and it’s going to cost me money!” it means that out of those two, what he’s thinking is the real thing. AKA as he thinketh, so he is.

Here’s another example. You have a neighbor that detests you. Maybe he’s been super rude and mean in the past, so it’s clear that he doesn’t like you. One day, he says, “Yes, your birthday guests can go ahead and park in my driveway, I don’t mind!” He has a big ol’ grin on his face, but he’s thinking, “There goes this idiot again!!” Which is the real him? The guy that is generously smiling… or the scowling man inside? The real him is the one inside. His thoughts, the thoughts in his heart, the way he feels inside, what he truly believes is the real him, not his outward grin.

It means that a man’s real self is what he’s thinking and not the sugary words he’s saying. When thoughts and words are in opposition, it’s the thoughts that are true.

There it was, clear as day, the meaning not even hidden or difficult to understand in this Bible verse. It isn’t a metaphor. It isn’t a parable. It’s simply and clearly stated. To find the TRUE meaning of that verse, all I had to do was read a couple of lines before and after Proverbs 23:7. And it is NOT what Joyce Meyer said in her book. And it is NOT what the new age says in their books.

The ONLY way it can mean what Joyce says is if you cut out everything that comes before, and everything that comes after Proverbs 23:7. First you would have to clip the sentence so that it is only half a sentence, like Joyce Meyer did in her book ~ but not only that, you’d have to clip the entire Bible before and after that sentence, too. Maybe then you can twist the verse to mean that. But cutting sentences in half is not how Christians read the Bible (or any other book, for that matter).

Believe it if you wish, but not because “it’s in the Bible,” because it is NOT in the Bible.

✿ Panda Mom ✿

And if you believe thoughts have creative ability, then it’s within your right to do so. We have religious liberty in the U.S. and you have the right to believe anything. But I imagine you wouldn’t want to believe based on a lie, would you? Believe it if you wish, but not because “it’s in the Bible,” because it is NOT in the Bible.

Well, I feel stupid having picked up a Joyce Meyer book again, like falling back into an old habit. Luckily, I only got to Chapter 2 before returning the book (though I read it once in the past). I’m glad I didn’t waste any more time on it, since I don’t have an incredible amount of time to read in the first place.

It’s too bad, because I like the general concept of thinking good things, as Philippians 4:8-9 states (in full sentences), and lately I’ve been wanting to read a book on the topic. Oh, well. If you have biblically-sound books on this topic to recommend, I’d be happy to check them out! Otherwise, my search continues.

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:8-9 NIV

Thank you so much for reading, and God bless!

✿ Lovely Panda Mom ✿


  1. The only thing Joyce gets right is that the mind is the starting battlefield. May God give His people wisdom and discernment when it comes to people writing on His Word. Good theology moves from the head, to the heart, to the hand. What we think leads into our emotions and that directs our hands/steps. I am glad the Lord led you to this and helped you to process what Proverbs really said. You will not forget this anytime soon! Lots of love, hugs and blessings!!!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I know the “polite and acceptable practice” within the WordPress Christian blogging community is to withhold criticism of any denomination, movement, or leader, but just about everyone featured on TBN are word-of-faith, prosperity-gospel types like Mrs. Meyer.

    Liked by 2 people

    • And that’s a shame. Because (for example) this isn’t a direct criticism on her person, but rather on an error she’s teaching. And it’s not a minor issue, it’s an issue relating to the truth of God’s Word. Crazy that some people would let that slide for the sake of being polite 🤔 I’m familiar with TBN. I used to watch it for Kirk Cameron’s show, but not anymore. Thanks for reading and also for speaking up in your own blog! 😊👏

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I really loved the way you explained this, it was in a straight-forward way and helped me to understand. 🙂 I stay away from Joyce Meyer, too. My family warned me early. It’s sad that a lot of people are misleading others away from the truth. I think about how it’ll affect people new in the faith and baby Christians. Or even mature ones. 😦 Tbh, I’m still learning how to discern well.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, I’m glad to hear that 😊 And your family has given you great advice. When I was a new Christian I listened to Joyce Meyer. The only reason it didn’t affect me was because I had read the Bible, so a few things she said didn’t sound right to me. They didn’t line up with what I had read in the Bible. I think that’s the key to discernment – always read God’s Word 😊 Thanks so much for reading! 💕✨

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Kudos to you, for being a discriminating student of the Word! Reading the Bible side by side with other books is a wise study-strategy. As you’ve discovered, books alone can lead us astray if we’re not careful. I’ve found Jennie Allen to be passionate in her faith and wise beyond her years. She’s written a book called, Get Out of Your Head, that might meet your criteria for a good book about thinking. I’ve not read it, but believe she’s an author who can be trusted to be true to what the Bible says.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Interesting! Are you familiar with a book called “The Secret?” Someone I knew was excited about it when it came out years ago and I never checked but think it was something along the lines of creating what your thoughts are? Great job at using your Godly discernment.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I’m familiar with the book ~ and I used to have it! It was super popular when it came out (unfortunately) and it was all about the law of attraction.

      And something interesting is that on page 164 of The Secret, it says this:

      “You are God in a physical body. You are Spirit in the flesh. You are Eternal Life expressing itself as You. You are a cosmic being. You are all power. You are all wisdom. You are all intelligence. You are perfection. You are magnificence. You are the creator, and you are creating the creation of You on this planet.”

      And Genesis 3:4-5 says:

      “4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.””

      The Secret and the devil basically say the same thing, which is “you are God” or “you will be like God.” Interesting, huh? 🤔 The Secret is basically the first lie ever told!

      And thank you so much for reading, I appreciate your reading and comments! 😊


  6. Great post. My 82 year mother was a die hard Joyce Meyer fan for many years and (without me prompting her) a few years back she said that she was no longer going to read or listen to her teaching because it doesn’t match what the Bible says anymore. Yay Mom! Thanks for being willing to post the truth!

    Liked by 1 person

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