Current wisdom encourages people to “follow their heart” because it will lead them in the right direction. While this may be true some of the time, we would be wise to recognize that the heart itself is capable of either righteousness or sin, wisdom or foolishness, sacrifice or hoarding, desire for holiness or lust for wickedness, surrender or rebellion. This isn’t a statement about “other people,” this is a statement about our own personal heart.
Our heart is capable of not only being deceived by others, but it is actively capable of deceiving itself in order to fulfill its own unholy desires.
“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? ‘I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.’”
~ Jeremiah 17:9-10
Whatever the sin-damaged human heart can desire, it can convince itself that it is permissible to satisfy that desire. The rebellious heart deceives itself, twisting every scripture until multiple doctrines of “divine approval” for the fulfillment of its desires are formed, and then the heart embraces its newfound sense of self-righteousness and innocence.
We see this taking place in our own society and even in parts of the church of today. Topics include being a Christian and practicing a gay lifestyle (Homosexuality); being a Christian and in a loving and monogamous same-sex marriage (Gay Marriage); being a Christian with multiple wives or husbands (Polygamy); being a Christian with multiple romantic and sexually active relationships (Polyamory); being a Christian who uses drugs recreationally (Drunkenness); being a Christian who binges on food (Gluttony); being a Christian who cheats on their taxes (Greed); being a Christian who holds on to their anger (Unforgiveness); and the list can go on.
A friend who is a counselor one day was conducting a court-ordered therapy session with a convicted child molester. Though his client did not consider what he had been doing to children to be wrong, he was offended when the counselor asked him if he had ever stolen from his employer: “Well of course not, that would be wrong!” was his reply.
The human heart has great capacity to voluntarily deceive itself and to voluntarily twist any sin into an acceptable activity, and twist any sin-prohibitive scripture into a God-approved activity.
God may permit people to play this deadly game within themselves for a period of time, but there will always be a day when their twisted scriptures will once again be made straight, and their guilt will be held up for them to see.
“Their heart is deceitful, and now they must bear their guilt. The Lord will demolish their altars and destroy their sacred stones.”
~ Hosea 10:2
I pray that you will join me today in the prayerful and careful examination of our own heart, and surrender to the search light of Christ as He examines and exposes our own personally twisted pieces of His truth (the scriptures) that we harbor in the deepest recesses of our heart for our own justifications of sins.
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