Friday, January 23, 2015

What the Bible Says About the Heart

We see hearts on cards, wall paper, plaques, material, on boxes of food and just about anywhere and on any thing you can think of because hearts speak of affection. I am one that decorates her home with hearts and in our former house I had wall paper, in two rooms, that had hearts on it.   We see the physical heart in doctors offices in magazines, textbooks we are all interested in the physical heart and how it functions.

My husband has had triple by-pass heart surgery, so we are very interested in the physical heart.  Do you realize that the Bible has a lot to say about the heart?  The Bible speaks of the heart or hearts some 884 times (according to which translation you read), but the heart that is spoken of in the Bible  is not a card or it is not the heart that pumps the blood through our bodies.  The Bible is speaking of the center of our being, the spirit of a man.  The heart the Bible is speaking about, in most cases, is the connection between the physical, and spiritual being of a man.

1 Samuel 16:7 says, "But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”

 There are many kinds of hearts mentioned in the Bible.  We shall look at several of them.  

If we could see as God sees, what kind of hearts might we see? 

What kind of hearts might we have?

A Stubborn and rebellious heart - Jeremiah 5:23 reads, "But this people has a stubborn and rebellious heart; they have turned aside and gone away."

This type of heart wants to do what it wants to do.  It is not concerned about what God wants.  A stubborn and rebellious heart does not want to obey any one.This type of heart is one who wants to rule its own life and do as it pleases.

A Deceitful Heart - A lying heart -Jeremiah 17:9  reads, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"  A deceitful heart wants to do wrong and wants to blame others.  Example:  I did what I did because of someone else.

Or A Deceived Heart - Eve had a deceived heart.  Satan deceived her.  Sometimes others try to get us to do things and they tell us it won't hurt anything and you won't get into trouble.  We listen to them and do it  and we get into big trouble.  We were deceived to believe something that is a lie.
Proverbs 12:22 "Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight."

 A Proud Heart – Proverbs 16:5 reads, " Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished." 

God detests a proud heart – one who thinks he is better than others, or one that brags about what he possesses or his abilities. He has a 'ME FIRST' attitude, which says I am number one.  This person thinks he is great or at least more important than you.

The above hearts are hearts that God calls sinful.  

 A Sinful Heart A sinful heart is separated from God.
Isaiah 59:2 reads, " But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear."

God doesn't want us to have these kinds of hearts.  The kind of heart God wants us to have is a humble heart before God.  James 4:10 says, "Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up." You won't have to lift yourself up.  If you are humble before God, He will lift you up.  

 Broken Heart (a humble heart) God wants us to have a humble heart.  One that is broken before him because of his sin.  
 Psalms 34:18 reads, "The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit."

(The Lord  is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.)

A spirit that says, "I’m sorry for having a sinful heart." 
Do you have a stubborn, rebellious, deceitful, or a proud heart? Then you have a sinful heart.

God says,
1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

If you have any of the above hearts, will you confess it to God right now?

God wants to give us a heart like his – A heart that wants to please God.
How do we get this kind of heart?
1.  We need to recognize we have a sinful heart.
Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God."
2.  We need to know the penalty for our sin.
Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
3.  We need to know that God loves us enough to send someone without sin to pay our sin penalty.
That one was Jesus.   

God had a A Giving Heart – John 3:16 reads,"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

Romans 5:8 "God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."

Romans 10:9,10 "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in thy heart that God hath raise him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."

Saved from what?  The penalty of sin which is separation from God.  

John 1:12 says, "But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,"

We should give our best to God and others.  

Jesus lived an obedient life to the will of His Father.  He wants us to have a heart that is obedient to God.

 Obedient Heart – Romans 6:17 reads,  "But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,"

God wants us to have   A Peaceful Heart and Philippians 4:6,7 tells us how, "Be careful (or anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."   

To have a peaceful heart we must  trust Him at all time. I have certainly learned this through the years as I apply Proverbs 3:5,6 which says, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." As I apply this verse with all my heart I have a peaceful heart.  

God wants us to have  A Joyful Heart -  John 15:11 reads, "These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. 

Psalms 16:11 reads, "Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore."

Living in the presence of God, reading his love letter to us and talking with Him, produces a Joyful Heart. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit and it is lived out in our lives as we walk in fellowship with God.   
God gives us a Heart to Know Him.
Jeremiah 24:7 reads, "And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the Lord: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart."

Phillipians 3:10 "That I might know him and the power of his resurrection....."

We get to know Him as we study His word and talk to him through prayer.  One of my personal goal is to get to know him better each day in the year ahead by spending more time in his precious word.  

A Clean Heart – Psalm 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

Isaiah 1:18 "Come now, let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson,they shall be as wool."

I am so thankful that God cleansed my heart and gave me a heart that desires to please him many, many years ago.He gave me a clean heart when I received Jesus as my savior.  I am continually trying to keep my heart clean by confessing any known sin to God and seeking his cleansing. 

1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

Ephesians 2: 8,9 "For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast. 

What kind of heart do you have?  God wants to give you a clean heart, so you can have a giving heart toward others, an obedient heart toward God, a peaceful heart, one that is at peace with God and with self, as well as others. God wants to give you a joyful heart and a heart to know Him better day by day. God wants a personal relationship with each of us on a daily bases.  He proved it by His great love for us.     
John 15:13 “Greater love hath no man than this,  that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
Jesus gave his live for us that we could have life in Him today and life with him forever.
Now that is a real heart of love.  

God also wants us to have a Thankful Heart.  God says we are to give thanks in everything.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 "In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God, in Christ Jesus, concerning you."  Do you have a thankful heart for all that God has done for you.  I hope so, if not maybe today is a good day to start.

  Blessings to you,
This devotional can be used as a lesson in a Ladies Group or Children's Church setting.

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