Think outside the box
How to do the impossible

The phrase "think outside the box" has been used 1 and misused for years, including, in regards to spiritual matters, some inappropriate references to God and ministry 2. For a moment, try and set aside those images and ideas and consider a new one. While this leads to a very simple statement as a conclusion, a few points of reference (premises) first must be established.

Premise #1

    The world is the box. As physical creations living within time and space, it is only natural to fill our thoughts with images, sounds, ideas and limitations normal to this environment. Unfortunately the box is full of corruption. From the time of Adam and Eve, the taint of sin affects how we view even the world around us and any understanding that there could be something outside of the box. 3

Premise #2

    The spiritual realm is outside the box. The only way we can have right understanding of anything out of the box is by revelation. Not only must this revelation come from One who is outside the box, but it must come from One who speaks only the truth and has full understanding of all that is. 4 Any witness in the spiritual realm that is capable of deception and lies, much less having a limited understanding of it, is useless to those in and out of the box. This automatically excludes all created beings in the spiritual realm, for even un-fallen they have limited knowledge and understanding 5 and are in fact limited themselves since they too had a beginning. 6 How much more useless are those that are fallen, full of deception and lies and bound over for imminent doom. 7

Premise #3

    Jesus Christ is the only one who forever exists outside of the box, plus who has lived in the box. With perfect knowledge of all that is, He alone is the One who can provide understanding outside of the box, as well as a correct perspective of all that is in the box. True revelation of Jesus was given by God himself - with all Scripture being a testimony of Him. This revelation teaches of our need and the only cure for our fallen state. Only those who have found forgiveness of sins and salvation in Jesus Christ, through faith in His completed work, have been given access to God through Jesus Christ. 8 Only they have been enabled, by His grace, to think, dream, and do, outside the box (even while living within it)! 9


To think outside the box

You must fix your eyes on Jesus... 10


Only those who see the invisible 11 can do the impossible! 12


1. Thinking outside the box is a catchphrase often meaning to look at a problem from a new perspective without any preconceptions. This slogan is widely used in business environments, especially by management consultants, and has been used (directly or indirectly) in a number of advertising slogans and campaigns.

2. Even the Atheists Online store ( uses the tag line, "Think Outside the God-Box. Step into the Light of Freethought (sic)." Many others use statements, such as "Don't try to put God in your box", with a clear implication that thinking outside the box means you are to accept whatever constructs others desire to place on God. In like manner, thinking outside the box in ministry has come to represent adopting unorthodox and spiritually innovative ideas solely on pragmatic grounds (absent, or in opposition to, any Scriptural mandate or example).


Romans 5:12-13 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin , and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned- 13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world. (NIV)

Romans 3:10-12 As it is written: "There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one." (NIV)


Hebrews 6:18 ... it is impossible for God to lie... (NIV)

Isaiah 46:9-10 Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me. 10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please. (NIV)

Isaiah 43:10-13 "You are my witnesses," declares the Lord, "and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am he. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me. 11 I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior. 12 I have revealed and saved and proclaimed - I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses," declares the Lord, "that I am God. 13 Yes, and from ancient days I am he. No one can deliver out of my hand. When I act, who can reverse it?" (NIV)

Isaiah 65:1 "I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me; I was found by those who did not seek me. To a nation that did not call on my name, I said, 'Here am I, here am I.' (NIV)

John 17:6 "I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. (NIV)

John 17:17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. (NIV)

1 Peter 1:18-21 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God. (NIV)

5. For an example of holy angels lacking in knowledge, see 1 Peter 1:12.

6. Angels are listed as just another of God's amazing creation. As with all His creation, they were created to bring praise and Glory to Him.

Psalms 148:2-5 Praise him, all his angels, praise him, all his heavenly hosts. 3 Praise him, sun and moon, praise him, all you shining stars. 4 Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. 5 Let them praise the name of the Lord, for he commanded and they were created. (NIV)


John 8:44b He [the devil] was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (NIV)

1 Timothy 4:1 The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. (NIV)


Hebrews 7:23-27 Now there have been many of those priests [of the Law], since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24 but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. 26 Such a high priest meets our need - one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. (NIV)

Ephesians 2:4-10 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (NIV)

Acts 4:12 Salvation is found in no one else [other than Jesus], for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." (NIV)

9. Christians are called to dream big dreams for God.

Ephesians 3:20-21 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (NIV)


Hebrews 12:2-3 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (NIV)


1 Timothy 1:17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen. (NIV)

Hebrews 11:27 By faith he [Moses] left Egypt, not fearing the king's anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. (NIV)


Matthew 17:20 He replied, "Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." (NIV)

Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength. (NIV)

Matthew 19:26 Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible." (NIV)

Luke 1:37 For nothing is impossible with God." (NIV)

Written by Brent MacDonald of Lion Tracks Ministries. (c) 2007
Duplication permitted as long as the source is cited.