Home » Monday: Heart Work    


Monday: Heart Work — 16 Comments

  1. Part of the problem of being a grandfather and a mathematician is that you automatically become the defacto maths tutor. about 4 nights a week I have to help out with his maths homework. My grandson is a typical teenager. He does not like maths and sees most of it as unnecessary. Who uses quadratic equations? What the use of factorization and expansion? Who cares what the surface area of a pyramid is?

    He does his homework grudgingly because he has to, with lots of sighing and rolling of eyes. And, he usually gets good marks in his tests and examinations.

    My hope, of course, is that somewhere in the next couple of years he will start to love mathematics and enjoy the challenge. Then all the grunt work of junior high school maths will serve as a foundation for his enjoyment.

    Part of our spiritual growth is the transition from "having to keep the law" to "loving to keep the law". The Bible is full of admonition and examples of the transition in our thinking. The comparison between the old and new covenants is not about the convenants at all. It is really about the change in our own hearts (and attitudes).

    Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10 KJV

    Some of us are spiritual teenagers and a bit of maturing needs to happen in our lives.

    • Excellent illustration. I am at a loss to help someone who insists that despite bible study and prayer they can't get beyond the transitional stage. They feel that if they loved God "enough" they would be victorious but addictions persist. I keep encouraging them not to give up but discouragement is taking its toll physically, spiritually and mentally.

      • Maybe suggest getting involved in some kind of service for others such as volunteering in their community. I would also suggest they pray about finding a professional counselor or therapist to help them work through their addictions, and most likely trauma they have experienced.

        Keep praying for the Holy Spirit to work in their lives!

        • Getting involved in service for others is a really great suggestion! Service for others takes the focus off self - and focus on attempting to overcome bad habits is a focus on self. Satan doesn't care whether we focus on our faults and failures or on our supposed goodness, as long as we keep our eyes off Jesus.

          At the same time, make a concentrated effort on getting to know Jesus better - spending time daily in His Word and in prayer, praising Him and asking for direction. Quitting smoking, or whatever it may be, may not be the most important change needed. Just keep focusing on Jesus and trust Him to work out His character in the heart. The needed changes will come.

    • I can relate to the idea of living as a spiritual teenager. I did so for all of my twenties and most of my thirties. (I’ve still got much growing to do) but over the last 6-7 years I’ve seen the benefit of the law on personal interactions and society. I see it as God trying to show us or give us a heavenly experience. Who wouldn’t want to live in a world where everyone loved God and each other.

      The world want the love each other part with no God. The church struggles with loving our neighbors.

      That free will act of choice comes into view again. Which will we choose every single moment of the day?

      Praise God that He will write His law in our hearts and He gives us the desire to get closer to Him.

      What an amazing husband! He does it all!

    • good luck with being tutor for mathematics.....and thanks for the analogy to the work that The LORD does to save us for The New Earth.

  2. The LORD's plan has always been that His Principles of Life would be in His people's heart and they knew that was the plan, however they often only took it literally and tied little boxes on their foreheads and arms with the texts in them like the following one.

    Deu 6:4-9 ISV  "Listen, Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone.  (5)  You are to love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength.  (6)  "Let these words that I'm commanding you today be always on your heart.  (7)  Teach them repeatedly to your children. Talk about them while sitting in your house or walking on the road, and as you lie down or get up.  (8)  Tie them as reminders on your forearm, bind them on your forehead,  (9)  and write them on the door frames of your house and on your gates."

    In Moses' last instructions to the Israelites he reminded them that the LORD said that what they had said at Mt Sinai "we will hear His words and do them" was good but it needed to also be in their hearts.
    Deu 5:28-29 MKJV  And the LORD heard the voice of your words when you spoke to me. And the LORD said to me, I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken to you. They have well said all that they have spoken.  (29)  Oh that there were such a heart in them that they would fear Me and keep all My commandments always, so that it might be well with them and with their sons forever!
    Deu 30:6 ISV  Then the LORD your God will circumcise both your hearts and those of your descendants so that you can love him with your heart and with your soul and therefore live.

  3. And when they came to Na-chon's threshing floor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God. 2 Sam 6:6-7.

    'If someone came to you and said, “I want a new heart, I want the law written in my heart, I want a heart to know the Lord — but I don’t know how to get it,” what would you say to this person?'

    I would say to them, it is by accepting Jesus as your personal Savior, Friend, Go To Person 1st and last in everything, Councilor, Advisor. Start praying, reading and studying the bible by yourself or with a trusted person who also trusts Jesus. Trust Him for your everyday directions, He will hear you and answer you as you speak to Him.

    • If someone came to you and said, “I want a new heart, I want the law written in my heart, I want a heart to know the Lord — but I don’t know how to get it,” what would you say to this person.
      I would say accept the Lord Jesus as your Savior. Believe on him with all your heart. Romans 10:9 Surrender your all to him. Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:5 Be obedient to His laws & precepts then the laws will be written in your heart and you will be a partaker of his covenant.

      • Doreen,

        You stated:
        Be obedient to His laws & precepts THEN the laws will be written in your heart and you will be a partaker of his covenant. (emphasis mine)

        Are you presupposing that in order for His laws to be written in our heart, that we must first keep His laws and be obedient to them?? If so, how is it possible to be obedient to something that is outside of you? We can't keep His law without it being in out heart, first.

        I believe God has to FIRST put His laws into our heart by faith, in order that we may be able to be obedient to them, and not the other way around.

        The covenant is God's promise to us of what He will do in us by faith. The covenant isn't an agreement God makes with fallen man so that He can do something after we prove we are worthy.

  4. We must go back to Genesis 3:15 to realize God was promising to save mankind from the power of Satan. Add to this the promise in Exodus 34: 6,7 that God would show mercy to “one thousand [generations]. In the light of the covenant promises of both Jeremiah and Hosea, God will never withdraw His offer at any age, no matter if any generations fail to believe. Every individual will receive the offer of salvation, and every soul must choose to accept or reject this offer. As long as one soul remains who has not rejected God's grace, the offer will stand.

    "If someone came to you and said, “I want a new heart,...what would you say to this person?"

    My first response would be "Why do you want this?" If they don't have a reason, then you would need to begin differently than if they do, and it would depend upon the reason, wouldn't it? Are they responding to Jesus' invitation, peer pressure, or urging of a well-intentioned but misinformed authority figure? I've seen all of these reasons demonstrated.

    Notice how Jesus always included the "how" when inviting all to "come unto Me"(Matt 11:28-30).

    • I reading the texts for today, I found it interest that the how is there. Turn away from, Tear down the idols etc. These were not in the verses, but they were just a verse or two above. The “how” is always there.

  5. The God of Creation was not yet finished with His work of Redemption in the hearts of the Children of Israel. There was yet the last phase of His redemptive work to be established. His New Covenant was to generate pure, childlike faith in His goodness, mercy, and grace as He wrote His Laws onto the mind and heart of man.
    Our heavenly Father works to establish peace in the heart of man so they can live in peace, each with its neighbor; though ultimately, to live their lives according to His Will.
    His Will is to direct mankind to live their lives reflecting the Glory of God – His Image, His Character.
    Yes, this new heart will know “that I am the LORD”; this is all God wants to impress His children with; and yes, ‘this work of God is the foundation of the New Covenant’, the foundation of everlasting life.

    In answer to the lesson’s last question:
    I would point out the fundamental requirement that this person build a personal relationship with the heavenly Father; assuring this person that the Father stays with him/her through good times and difficult times; to keep the faith strong, not to waiver in trusting the righteousness of God's Way; learn His Way of Life and Light and live accordingly.
    In short: ‘Aim to love God with all your heart, mind and soul; read His Word and talk with Him always to strengthen your faith as you live your new life.’
    Be patient as you learn to live this new life; He promised to give you a new heart and mind to direct your ways according to His Will.

  6. thanks for the commentary by Ellen White on todays lesson....The blessings of the new covenant are grounded purely on mercy in forgiving unrighteousness and sins. The Lord specifies, I will do thus and thus unto all who turn to Me, forsaking the evil and choosing the good. “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.” (Hebrews 8:12). All who humble their hearts, confessing their sins, will find mercy and grace and assurance. {TMK 299}...That I May Know Him, p. 299. ​....The same law that was engraved upon the tables of stone is written by the Holy Spirit upon the tables of the heart. Instead of going about to establish our own righteousness we accept the righteousness of Christ. His blood atones for our sins. His obedience is accepted for us. Then the heart renewed by the Holy Spirit will bring forth “the fruits of the Spirit.” Through the grace of Christ we shall live in obedience to the law of God written upon our hearts. Having the Spirit of Christ, we shall walk even as He walked. Through the prophet He declared of Himself, “I delight to do Thy will, O My God: yea, Thy law is within My heart.” Psalm 40:8. And when among men He said, “The Father hath not left Me alone; for I do always those things that please Him.” John 8:29. {PP 372.2}...Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 372​

  7. the new covenant is the same covenant made to Israel but was put into the minds and written into the hearts being reminded and made possible by the Holy Spirit. The same Law but with a positive note of justice and mercy as the Spirit of the Law.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags allowed in your comment: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>