Weekly Devotional 7-2-18 The Calloused Heart
Callouses on one’s hands or feet come from prolonged irritation causing a hardening of the skin. Often it takes considerable time for said callouses to form and the more the exposure to the irritant, the harder the callouses become. It is the same with the human heart. The more it is exposed to and infected by whatever irritant, the harder it gets. The heart that I am referring to is not the muscle that pumps blood throughout our body, but the seat of our personality, the core of our being, our emotional make up. It is subject to influences both external and internal.
Adam, our federal head, was created in perfection knowing only the external and internal influence of God, his creator, but when tempted to be like God he succumbed to the temptation and immediately became subject to external influences. Adam died spiritually toward God (became spiritually separated from God) and no longer had the exact internal witness of God with which he had been created. This exposed him to corruption. His heart became calloused toward God and this corruption of heart and callousness was passed to all of his off-spring, to all of humanity.
Adam’s offspring were born in his image (Genesis 5:3), not the image of God in which he had been created (Genesis 1:26), but with spiritual defect. Adam’s offspring were and are affected to the deepest level. Mankind’s heart, his inward being, is born with treachery and deceitfulness in its core. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” In other words, the fall has affected us at the deepest level; our mind, emotions and desires have been tainted by sin—and we are blind to just how pervasive the problem is.
Jesus pointed out to the Jews of His day the condition of the human heart when he said, “From within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man unclean” (Mark 7:21- 23). Certainly then, man’s biggest problem is not external, but internal. Mankind has a heart problem. This is bad news for sure. But is there a known solution? Not for the unregenerate person (the natural man), but for the Christian there is.
The solution is a heart change. Mankind must gain a new heart, a new inner being. God accomplishes this when He births from above those persons that come by faith to Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sin and salvation. In His grace, God can and does create in said persons new spiritual life filling our hearts, our inner being with new desires, idea’s and new wisdom (Jeremiah 31:31-34). Jeremiah 31:31-34 is part of a prophecy concerning national Israel to be enacted sometime in its future. What God has promised to do for Israel, He is doing in individuals during our time, the church age. However, even though many are being born again (being reborn from above spiritually) still all persons, born again or not, are affected by a nature that is against God. When that nature is fed the heart becomes more calloused. We Christian’s must fight against this.
The apostle John was inspired to write; “5This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. 6If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. 8If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1st John 1:5-9).
The only way for us to have fellowship with our Lord is to deal with our sin. Recognize it, turn from it (which is to repent of it), confess it, and know that when confessed, He has cleansed us of it. Then we will experience a clear conscience and our hearts will lose the callousness that harden our hearts.
Thank you, Lord, for Your work in our lives.
Transforming Power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man