The Heart Is A Mirror

If you want to understand your heart, and how important what is in your heart is, there are about 807 verses in the scriptures about the heart. People though, look at the actions of others and try to determine what is in their heart. Why do people do the things they do? Usually, these questions are asked when mass murderers act, or terrorists try to cause terror. But people also look at the actions of professing believers and decide if the professing believer is “real”. Even believers judge other believers based on what they see or hear about other believers.

You can not judge what is in a person’s heart by their actions. People fool people all the time, it is called deception. And legalism set a standard of “fleshly actions” to determine if someone is saved. And this legalism has turned hundreds if not thousands away from God and away from the church because people realized they could not match up to expectations.

Paul taught us, as believers in Christ, we have liberty. Some call this the grace doctrine. But we see grace and mercy and longsuffering from God, to man, throughout scripture. Didn’t David go to the temple and steal the shewbread because he was hungry? Didn’t David kill Urriah? Scripture shows us drunks, prostitutes, murderers, thieves, extortioners, rebellious people (Jonah), fornicators, adulterers, and other examples of mankind that God called, saved and uses for his glory. Religion would have shunned and turned these people away, rejecting them. Most of these are actions in the flesh.

For years, 1 Corinthians 3:16 has been taught this means drinking alcohol, tattoos, smoking, getting fat, gluttony among other fleshly actions. And none of these actions are good, but to say God will not save or use people doing these fleshly actions is not scriptural.  1 Corinthians 3:16 KJV  “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”
And notice the very next verse – 1 Corinthians 3:17 KJV  “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.”

Notice the word defile? What did Jesus tell us defiles man? Mark 7:18-23 KJV  “And he saith unto them, Are ye so without understanding also? Do ye not perceive, that whatsoever thing from without entereth into the man, it cannot defile him;
[19] Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all meats?
[20] And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.
[21] For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,
[22] Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:
[23] All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.”

The heart is a mirror of who the person really is.  Paul started 1 Corinthians 3 telling believers they were not spiritual but carnal, fleshly minded. How did Paul know they were not spiritual? By how long their hair was? No. By what they ate? No. By their clothes? No. Verse 3, Paul saw envy, strife and divisions. All three of these come from the heart. So their actions mirrored what was in their heart, strife, envy and divisions.

As we go through the chapter we see Paul explain to these carnal minded believers we all are labourers together with God. So there should be no strife, no envy and no divisions. The legalists will say, but we can not drop doctrine and all come together in brotherly love, that is ecumenticalism. We are not dropping doctrine but we are all labourers together with God so if you have strife with other believers over their doctrine, you are a carnal Christian. Because strife comes from within your heart.

You can not find two people who agree on everything in scripture, even in your own church. You can’t find a husband and wife who agree on everything. Does that mean the husband and wife speak against each other?

I, like you, have probably heard of Chrislam. Some “Christian” churches are blending in some of Islam’s teachings and calling it Chrislam. Well if you know anything about Islam and their teachings, you know their teachings do not line up with scripture. They do not recognize Jesus Christ as God manifest in the flesh. They teach Jesus was a prophet, like Mohammed. So why would a “Christian” church adopt some of Islam’s teachings and what about the pastors and members of those churches?

Paul tells us to purge out the leaven in 1 Corinthians chapter 5. Another words, if it does not line up with scripture, get rid of it. In the case of churches adopting unscriptural teachings, how do we handle that?

Matthew 18:15-17 KJV  “Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
[16] But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
[17] And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.”

Believers are not suppose to sow discord. Discord is defined as having different opinions causing strife, arguments, contention which produces anger or angry passions. Actually, that is an abomination in God’s eyes as Proverbs tell us.  Proverbs 6:16-19 KJV
” These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:
[17] A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
[18] An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
[19] A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”

Five of these seven come from the heart and two are fleshy actions. But in order to do the fleshly actions, something had to happen in the heart.

Friends, it is not about the clothes, the make up, the ear piercing, the food someone eats, the having a glass of wine or smoking that defiles someone, it is what is in their heart. And the heart starts out deceitful and wicked. But through teaching, reading and studying God’s word, God creates a new heart within us. And that new heart works with our soul to produce the fruit of the Spirit.

Until next time.

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