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Follow your heart?

Jeremiah 16:10-12 {NKJV}

  “And it shall be, when you show this people all these words, and they say to you, ‘ why has the Lord pronounced all this great disaster against us? Or what is our iniquity? Or what is our sin that we have committed against the Lord our God? Then you shall say to them, ‘Because your fathers have forsaken Me,’ says the Lord; ’they have served them {other god’s} and worshiped them {other god’s} and have forsaken Me and not kept My law. And you have done worse than your fathers, for behold, each one follows the dictates of his own evil heart, so that no one listens to Me. Therefore I will cast you out of this land into a land that you do not know, neither you nor your fathers; and there you shall serve other gods day and night, where I will not show you favor.”

    In the Lord's eyes, listening to one’s own heart for direction is worse than worshiping false gods and listening to them for direction. In the NKJV version, the word “dictate” is a Hebrew word that means stubbornness. However it is from a root word that means twisting, turning, and going in circles.  Whether we are aware of the etymological roots of the word “dictate” or not, the main emphasis here is that it is far worse to be directed by one’s own heart than to be directed by a false god.

    This seems absurd to us in these end times. We are inundated with advertisement and propaganda that encourages self-reliance and the value in “following your heart.” It is rare that we are encouraged to yield our will to any god- the true God or a false god. Why then would God indicate that to listen to one’s own heart is worse and is more offensive to Him than if one were to worship a false god?

    The answer to this question can be found if we look at human relationships. As an example let us say that there is a man of about 40 years. This man has never married because he knows that his ways would not be pleasing to a woman and he is unwilling to change them in order to gain a relationship. Now let us say there is another man of about 40 years who was married, and the marriage ended in his heartbreak at his ex-wife’s constant battering of his heart. Suppose now that you are a woman about to marry one of these two men. You must choose simply based on the data I have provided here. It would be a wiser choice to choose the divorced man over the bachelor. Why? Because the bachelor is absolutely unwilling to yield his position. He values himself and what he thinks more than he values the joy and fulfillment he could gain from the proper relationship. The divorced man, although in the wrong marriage, is at least willing to try and yield himself in order to gain a relational victory. 

    I adduce that this is God’s perspective entirely. It is far easier to win the heart of a man who has already yielded his heart to worship and obey something beyond himself than it is to win the heart of a man who is wholly unwilling to yield whatever. An un-renewed, un-regenerated heart is only evil continually and will always direct the owner to oppose humbling itself. It says to itself  “I am and there is none beside me” {Zeph 2:15}. This person has chosen, by an act of their own will, that God will not violate whatever the circumstances, that they will submit to no authority nor power over themselves. They make themselves incapable of worshiping anything including the one True God. 

    On the other hand, those who serve false gods need only be redirected in to the truth that their gods are not able to help them as the living God is. For their hearts are already willing to worship and obey the Lord. 

    Incidentally, we are under the New Testament so it should go without saying that God will not bring calamity upon us nor cast us out for He has sworn that He would not be angry with us. However, just because God is not bringing calamity upon us when we listen to the falsehoods of evil hearts does not mean that calamity does not come because we listen to them. 

    Therefore, if you are used to listening to the dictates of your heart {mind will and emotions} and those dictates are at all contrary to the truth as set forth in the Bible, then repent today, take hold of your heart and make it submit to the living God. For it is better to humble yourself under the mighty hand of God than for circumstances to humble you. 

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