"The steadfast of
mind (“Yetser” = imagination) You will keep in perfect peace, Because he trusts in You (Isa. 26:3).
I memorized this verse as “The steadfast of mind…” but it is correctly translated, “The steadfast of imagination You will keep in perfect peace, Because he trusts in You.”
Imagination “frames up” one’s reality
According to Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon, the Hebrew word “yetser,” translated mind in this verse (Strong’s #H3336) means imagination, which forms and frames up.
Imagination is the first step to creation. The creative person will see or hear in his mind before he releases it in the physical. The sculptor “sees” the beautiful form in the block of marble. The musician “hears” the melody that he inscribes on paper. The architect “sees” the building then plots out the specifications. Without imagination there would be no creativity in the world.
My imagination creates the form on which my reality is built. It “frames up” my existence. What I picture in my mind creates inner states of peace or unrest. If all I can see in my mind’s eye is a stack of unpaid bills and a bank account with a balance near zero, I will live in fear, doubt, worry and anxiety. My stomach will begin to churn; my head will pound. I will be impatient with my spouse and children. My inner picture, my imagination, will have created a reality of a sick body wracked with pain and strained or broken relationships with those who are most important to me.
But if instead I see in my mind’s eye God’s promises that He will never leave me or forsake me - that my God will supply all of my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus - if I picture instead the truth that I have been young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken nor their children begging for bread – if I focus my mind on the times when the Lord has met my needs in the past - if I see that God, MY God, holding that stack of unpaid bills, I will feel excited to see what He is going to do for me! I will be full of faith and peace and joy. My body will relax and function at its peak. I will speak with love and understanding to my family. What I imagine will have created a reality of a healthy body, loving relationships and a strong spirit.
If I enter a situation seeing myself being rejected, I send out a message to all saying, “Reject me,” and I act in such a way as to promote being rejected. If I imagine I will be accepted, I send out a message saying, “Accept me.” I act according to what I am imagining, and acceptance is what I create.
God has given us an incredible gift in our imaginations. I believe it is one of the ways in which we most strongly reflect His image. By it we can create our own heaven or hell on earth. By it we can be co-creators with Him, releasing His Kingdom on earth as it is in Heaven. If we truly trust in Him, our imagination will steadfastly see and frame up and form all He has promised to us, and nothing else.
Look at how the KJV translates “yetser” the nine times it appears in the Bible
- Imagination, 4 times (Gen.6:5, Gen.8:21, Deut.31:21, 1 Chron.29:18)
- Imaginations, 1 time (1 Chron. 28:9)
- Frame, 1 time (Ps.103:14)
- Framed, 1 time (Isa.29:16)
- Mind, 1 time (Isa. 26:3)
- Work, 1 time (Hab. 2:18)
“Feel” the definition of “yetser” by meditating on all nine times it is found in the KJV Bible
- 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 (Gen 6:5).
- For the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth (Gen 8:21).
- And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are befallen them, that this song shall testify against them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I sware (Deut. 31:21)
- The LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: (1 Chron. 28:9)
- LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this forever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee (1 Chron. 29:18).
- For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust (Ps. 103:14).
- Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee (Isa. 26:3).
- Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter's clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding (Isa. 29:16)?
- What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it; the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols (Hab. 2:18)?
The root of yetser is yatsar
The root word of “yetser” (Strong’s #H3336) is yatsar (Strong’s #H3335) which shows up 62 times in the KJV Bible. According Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon, the primary meaning of yatsar is “to form, fashion, frame, make, especially as a potter.”
Here is the first use of yatsar in the Bible: “The LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Gen 2:7). See how closely its meaning is tied to creation?
What reality am I forming or framing up for my life?
I will experience perfect peace, divine creativity, blessing and healing if my imagination is set steadfastly and ONLY on the Lord and His revealed purposes for me.
For example, God placed into Abram’s imagination the millions of stars in the sky as a picture of the number of descendants he would have (Gen. 15:1,5). This caused faith to burst forth (Gen. 15:6). Abram chose to believe and see only what God had spoken to him (Rom. 4:20 - 22). He became the Father of all of who believe (Rom. 4:11), modeling faith and how a miracle is released (Gen. 21:1,2).
Satan would love to have me imagine and frame up his realities!
- The antichrist rather than the risen Christ (Heb. 12:1,2)
- The increase of wickedness rather than the increase of God’s government (Isa. 9:7)
- Sickness rather than by His stripes I am healed (Isa. 53:5)
- Weakness rather than being strengthened in Christ (Phil. 4:13)
- Defeat rather than victory in the high praises of Christ (Matt. 21:16 quoted from Ps. 8:2)
- Lust, rather than pure marital love (Song of Solomon)
My decision is …
- I imagine Jesus at my right hand all the time (Ps. 16:8; Acts 2:25; Heb. 12:1-2).
- I imagine vibrant health (Isa. 53:5).
- I imagine unity (Jn. 17:1).
- I imagine purity (Matt. 5:8).
- I imagine the increase of God’s government (Isa. 9:7).
- I imagine I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
- I imagine… (What does your imagination need to focus on so there is no place for an evil, unbelieving imagination to frame up destruction for your life?)
If God didn’t speak it as part of His revealed will for my life, then I spend NO TIME imagining or picturing it. To do so would frame up destruction for my life, preventing me from enjoying my Promised Land. The Israelites died in the wilderness because they were imagining, believing and speaking that they would die (Ex. 14:11,12,35). I choose to believe all that God has promised to me. I choose to enter into rest and peace (Heb. 4; Isa. 26:3).
A steadfast imagination produces an emotional response of perfect peace, which in turn frames up and creates my reality.
Look how King David uses the eyes of his heart in his morning devotions, according to Ps. 5:3.
- My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up (H6822 NKJV).
- In the morning, O LORD, You will hear my voice; In the morning I will order my prayer to You and eagerly watch (H6822 NASB).
Brown/Driver/Briggs Definition of H6822 tsaphah - Part of Speech: verb
1) to look out or about, spy, keep watch, observe, watch
1a) (Qal) to keep watch, spy
1b) (Piel) to watch, watch closely
- A training package on how to hear God’s voice and receive His visions: Hard copy or electronic.
- Blogs on what the Bible teaches about visualization.