Weekly Devotional 7-9-18 Possessing a Calloused Heart
Last week we considered that a calloused heart is much like the callouses found on one’s hands or feet. That both kinds of callouses of the hands and feet and of the heart are formed by being exposed to irritants. We considered that the longer a person is exposed to irritants, the harder the callouses become. In considering the calloused heart we should realize that a calloused heart is different than callouses of one’s hands or feet. In that the callouses of one’s heart are spiritual and internal. There are external irritants that affect the heart, but those irritants must be allowed by the person.
All Christians are daily faced with issues that affect us spiritually. It is what we do with these issues that determine the extent of our spiritual callousness. When recognized, if we don’t deal with these irritants our hearts will be hardened toward God. Turning to 1st John 1: 5-10 we read; “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. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.”
Sin, which is an internal irritant, must be dealt with by recognition, confession, repentance of (turning) from sin, and asking for forgiveness and cleansing. We should not expect that our hearts, our inner being, will be softened toward God if we will not admit to our sins, repent of them, confess them to God, and ask Him for forgiveness and cleansing. Un-dealt with sin interferes with our communication and fellowship with God. We become even harder of heart and we may fall back into the sinful lifestyle in which we were delivered. Satan, of course, delights in this. He brings all sorts of temptations to us. In our weakened state (a result of non-communication and fellowship with God) our hearts become even harder. This is a sad state-of-affairs for sure.
The Lord gives us an example of this in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. With love and concern for them he wrote; “16I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:16-25).
Paul warned that having a calloused heart toward God would eventually result in things that are unimaginable for a Christian. Paul went on to remind his readers that a truly born-again Christian has crucified or has put to death the old nature with its passions and desires. Further, he admonished the Galatians to live lives led by the Holy Spirit; they were to walk in dependence upon Him. And, just before closing, Paul added; “7Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” (6:7).
Lord, thank you for your indwelling Spirit. May we be sensitive to Your work in our lives and may we renounce the sin in our lives that harden our hearts toward you.
Transforming Power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man