Romans 7:18 NASB
“For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.”
This verse, written by the Apostle Paul, speaking about himself, in his Epistle or letter to the Romans.
If one wishes to correct a problem, one needs to initially know and acknowledge what the problem really is and according to what God tells us, between the two covers of the Holy Bible, the problem has been and currently is, the fallen or self centered heart of man or humanity. And when God speaks of the heart in Scripture, He speaks of not only how we think but also the motivation behind why and what we think. In essence, He speaks of who we are, within ourselves, at our deepest conscious root level, as well as what we project outwardly, towards others, about ourselves.
The thing is, God doesn’t reason like us and God doesn’t judge like us. In short, God’s “heart” is very different from ours (Isaiah 55:8-9). And of course, Jesus had much to say about the heart of man.
Matthew 15:18-20 NASB
“But the things that proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and those defile the man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders. These are the things which defile the man; but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile the man.”
This was the response that Jesus gave to the Pharisees and scribes when they questioned Him why His disciples hadn’t washed their hands before eating (Matthew 15:1-3), where following traditions conflicted with keeping God’s commandments, came into play.
To defile something means to desecrate or misuse something from what it originally was meant to be. You turn something that was meant to be clean or wholesome in God’s sight into something that is unclean or defiled. And in this particular verse as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is pointing out that defilement originates from the heart within man, where the intent of something good that God has created or sanctioned, is defiled or made unclean by changing the original God sanctioned purpose into fulfilling self centered reasoning or satisfaction, with marriage being the good intent and adultery being the defilement of that good intent, as per one of many examples.
The sheer volume and magnitude of defilements taking place within our society right now are literally going through the roof and these defilements not only pertain to non-believers, they are also very prevalent within far too many members of the body of Christ.
I could give you many examples but that in itself is not the point that I wish to stress.
These defilements are there because hearts have not been changed. For non-believers, that would be, not at all, and for believers, not nearly enough.
And what really bothers me is that if I can see it, and I readily acknowledge that my heart also needs more changing, then I have a hard time imagining what God sees when He looks at us and listens to how we talk, think and deal with one another and the reasoning that we use and propagate to others.
It literally scares me when I consider some of the reasoning that is not only being used by professing Christians but also propagated as furthering God’s cause. When the Apostle Paul admonished the Corinthians about not being ready for meat because they were still being fed milk (1 Corinthians 3:2), what we are dealing with in far too many cases is similar to pre-kindergarden classes. FaceBook and Twitter are awash with Christian comments that use humanistic half truth logic, masquerading as Christian objective truth. I hesitate to use the word “pathetic” but it truly is. And please note that what I see has nothing to do with me being any great intellect, because that is obviously not the case, but some logic being used and propagated by some Christians today literally leaves me speechless. “Studying God’s Word to show yourself approved” (2 Timothy 2:15) is not an optional curriculum.
Hearts need to be changed. And the only way that I know that happens is when people are introduced to Jesus, convicted by the Holy Spirit and nurtured into the family of God.
Why we do what we do only changes when our hearts are changed by Jesus. When Jesus said that without Him we could do nothing (John 15:5) He wasn’t kidding.
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!