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Good Enough (Part 1)

Wed, Apr 3, 2013

Featured, Identity

The heart.  It must be the most talked about, analysed and romanticised part of us.  And for good reason – after all, the two most important things we’ll ever do in life require our heart: we need it to find God, and we need it to love God.  The Bible says,

“You will seek me [God] and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer 29:13, NIV)
“Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” (Deut 6:5, NIV)

More than anything else, it’s the heart that God’s interested in – after all, it’s who a person really is.  Someone who has a generous heart is, by necessity, generous, while someone with a deceitful heart is, well, deceitful.  How we see our hearts, then, is how we see ourselves – Prov 27:19 says, “As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man.” (NIV)

Many Christians view their heart based on a verse from Jeremiah:
“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.  Who can understand it?” (Jer 17:9, NIV)

That’s not a very consoling thought; in fact, it’s somewhat bleak.  Because if our hearts are ‘beyond cure’, what hope do we have?

But God’s answer to a deceitful heart has always been, and still is, in a sense, a heart transplant.  He says to the Israelites in the book of Ezekiel:

“I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.” (Eze 11:19, NIV)
“Cast away from you all the transgressions which you have committed, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit…” (Eze 18:31, NIV)

A new heart and a new spirit are at the start of our transformation into new life.  For whoever is in Christ “… is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”  (2 Cor 5:17, NIV)  That includes a new heart – and a good one at that, which we’ll need if we’re going to grow in God.

Jesus confirmed the possibility, and indeed the necessity, of us having a good heart when he explained the Parable of the Sower.  Without a such a heart, we would not be able to take in and understand his words.  He said:

“But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.” (Lk 8:15, NIV)

And perhaps it’s because we have a new heart – a noble and good one – that God’s willing to fulfil its desires.  So he says in Psalms: “Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Ps 37:4, NIV)

If God’s happy to go with our hearts, then perhaps they’re good enough.

— Joey

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    A Question of Law

    Fri, Apr 12, 2013

    3 Comments

    In a dispensation of grace, what kind of law – including penalties and punishments – should Christians apply among themselves?

    And with the separation of Church and State, what kind of law should Christians promote for their country, that would govern both Christians and non-Christians?

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