Saturday, October 31, 2020

Changing the Heart

For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it;
You do not delight in burnt offering.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart—
These, O God, You will not despise. – Psalm 51:16-17

Psalm 51 is a prayer of David.  He is asking God to do three things.  He asks God to forgive his sins.  He asks God to allow him to be reconciled to God.  Lastly he asks God to renovate him, to change him. The verses above are near the end of the prayer when he requests that God change him.  David understands the process very well! 

Outward sacrifices will not do it.  What you give, what you do in service, what you say to others – these do not change the man or woman you are.  They are wonderful things, but even the most evil and vile person can do these things.  At the root of mankind’s sin is our heart.  The heart is created in original sin – the sin of all mankind. 

The heart of man is the source of our spirit.  Our spirit being our personality, which includes our wants, desires, hatred, anger, and every emotional element, as well as our will.  Our will causes our emotions to be played out in actions.  

In Genesis 6:5 it says that every intent of the thoughts of man are evil continually.  

Psalms 141:4 states “Do not inclined my heart to any evil thing”.  

Jeremiah 17:9 says “The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it?”   

Without a change in the heart, man does not change.

David then speaks of what God will receive as a sacrifice for our sins: “A broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart.”  To receive God’s forgiveness, we must come to Him broken over our sin. When we’ve emptied our heart of ourselves, when we’ve seen who we are as God sees us, then we know we need forgiveness.  David also prayed in verse 10 of this chapter “Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.  A new heart is the beginning of renovation of our soul.  

In Ezekiel 36:26-27 God Himself speaks of this renovation saying: “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.

Friends, I know a lot of folks have been asked to go to the front of a church, or maybe pray from their seats in an assembly and receive salvation.  If you are one of those, and do not have a renovation of your heart, and therefore your will, I would suggest you pray and seek God’s truth about your relationship.  Salvation is renovation – and it begins in the heart. 

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