By Andrew Sandala
"As in water face reflects face; So the heart of man reflects man" - Proverbs
"This People Honors me with their lips, But their heart is far away from me,"
Matthew 15: 8
When Jesus was saying these words before some Pharisees and Scribes, He
seemed to be saying, it is not enough to memorize the commandments, teach
them and reason in your mind on how to uphold them. You need to keep the
commands of God in your heart.
"...there is no good tree which produces bad fruit; nor, on the other hand, a
bad tree which produces good fruit," Luke 6:43. This spells a very bad
condition, but I wonder, what was Jesus trying to say when He said these
words. He proceeded with the build up to the very core of His subject. He
was talking about the heart. No, not the biological organ that sends blood
all over your body, but the seat of your passion or emotions. Some would
rather call it, the core of the human being, and some simply call it the
spirit. Whatever impression we have of the heart, its contents are expressed
by the body. Desires are born in the heart, and so does hate, anger and
From within the heart
Mark 7:21..."For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil
thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and
wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and
foolishness." All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man.
Defiles the man?
Oh, pollutes the man, now we all know what polluting is. In its simplest
term, it is 'to make dirty', no wonder God says it is far away form Him. God
is a Holy God, 2 Corinthians puts it this way, "...Come out from their midst
and be separate," says the Lord. "And do not touch what is unclean; and I
will welcome you." God says BE SEPARATE , in other words be set aside for my
use only, be absolutely obedient to My word, be godly, "BE HOLY, FOR I AM
HOLY" 1Peter 1:16. Notice, the bible says "Do not Touch what is unclean; and
I will welcome you." that sounds like asking us not to be POLLUTED (Defiled).
God has principles for human living, He made man, so He has guidelines on
how we should use the life in us. Just like any good manufacturer will print
a user's manual for his products.
Jeremiah 17:9 "The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately
If the Heart is a sick thing it needs to be looked at, you know, examined to
find a possible way of healing it.
Jeremiah 19:10 "I, the LORD, search the heart,.." No wonder God can't trust
man easily, He knows us too well. "Jesus, on His part was not entrusting
Himself to them, for He knew all men, and because He did not need anyone to
bear witness concerning man for he Himself knew what was in man" John
2:24-25. Once, the Scribes and Pharisees were mumbling to themselves
concerning Jesus and He asked them, "Why are you reasoning in your hearts?"
Luke 5:22. Apart from all the wicked things listed down in Mark 7:21, we can
reason in our hearts....!
If God searches and knows our hearts, then, He must have a remedy for the
sick state of the heart. What plan has He got to take care of this problem
once and for all.
How does one know what is in the heart?
Jesus is able to tell what is in our hearts, but there is a may we can tell
what is in our hearts. Jesus said "You will know them by their fruit "
1. What we say :- Things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart,
and those defile the man (Matthew 15:18)
2. What we do :- A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree
produce good fruit (Matthew 7:18)
What does God want?
Deuteronomy 10:12-13, "What does the Lord your God require from you, but to
fear the Lord your God , to walk in all his ways and love Him, and to serve
the Lord your God with all your HEART and with all your soul, and to KEEP
THE LORD'S COMMANDMENTS."
The reason why God says we are far away from Him is because, what is inside
our hearts prohibits God from drawing us close to Him. He wants to welcome
us, in James 4:8, it says, "draw near to God and He will draw near to you."
"Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD? And who may stand in His holy
place? He who has clean hands and a pure HEART" Psalm 24:3-4, "Cleanse your
hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double minded" James 4:8
Pure hearts? We can actually have pure hearts?
What can we do about this :"...Love the Lord your God with all your Heart, and
with all your soul, and with all your mind Matthew" 22:37
What will God do about this?
"I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse
you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. Moreover, I will give
you a new HEART and put anew spirit within you; I will remove the heart of
stone form your flesh and give you a heart of flesh." Ezekiel 36:25-26, But
is that all? No, v.27 says, "And I will put My Spirit within you and cause
you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances."
This was the biggest problem the Israelites had, to keep the Laws of God in
their HEARTS, they rebelled, and unfortunately we too have this problem. But
God, well God knows how to do things and do them right. He decided He was
going to put the laws in the HEART, the problem area, to overwrite the
things that defile us. He said " I will put My laws upon their HEART, and
upon their mind I will write them" Hebrews 10:16. Why does God insist on
putting the law on our hearts? Well, Hebrews 4:12 says it is ABLE TO JUDGE
THE THOUGHTS AND INTENTIONS OF THE HEART. Having the law of God in our
hearts is like being washed with water. Getting rid of all the ways and
practices of the world.
Pure in Heart
Will enable us to have a closer walk with God, being separated, He will
continuously use us, further more the bible, in
Matthew 5:8, says "Blessed are the pure in Heart, for they shall see God."
We need to be Pure in HEART for the sake of drawing near to God, else He
will keep His distance and we will never see Him. We should be alert, and be
concerned with the state of the Heart, it is 'desperately sick'. We have a
healer we can run to, but it is not entirely up to him. We have to desire to
have a pure Heart, we can either submit or rebel. But James seemed to have a
good idea on what we ought to do, in Chapter 4 and verse 7, he says, "Submit
therefore to God ..."
Some helpful things to do
1. Accept Jesus as Lord of our lives :" ...Whatever you do in word or deed,
do all in the name of the Lord Jesus"... Colossians 3:17. ..."And because you are
sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying
"ABBA! Father!"... Galatians 4:6 and John 14:23 says; "If anyone loves Me, he
will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and
make Our abode with him." Luke 6:46, "And why do you call Me, Lord, Lord,"
and do not do what I say?" If truly, Jesus is the lord of our lives, we
will obey His word.
2. Purpose in our hearts to seek God :..."Set your heart and soul to seek
the LORD your God"...1Chronicles 22:19
and 1Chronicles 16:11 says, "Seek the LORD and His strength; Seek His
3. Meditate on His word :-"His delight is in the law of LORD, And in His law
he meditates day and night " Psalm 1:1-2 and again in Psalm 4:4 it
says, " Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still."
4. Guard the Heart :- "Watch over your heart with all diligence. For from it
flow the springs of life" Proverbs 4:23
"...Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and
spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart
to the Lord" - Ephesians 5:18 -19.
You may say to me, But we are not under law, but under grace- Romans 6:4.
See, Jesus said "If you love Me, you will keep my commandments" John 14:15.
You may say, But Jesus is not here. Yes, but The Holy Spirit is, and Jesus
said ," ...the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name,
He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said
to you" and again in 16: 13, "...When He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He
will guide you into all truth ." We need to obey the Leading of the Holy
Spirit Who lives in us. Why else would sin be called 'Lawlessness,' if we
didn't have any law to follow.
"The wise heart will receive commands" Proverbs10:8
Blessed are the pure in heart.
All scripture, unless otherwise mentioned, is taken from the New American
Friends - 1998
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