“And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” (Genesis 6:5 KJV)
The late Muhammed Ali made a striking statement about the heart in 1978: “The personality of a person, the ways of a person, the thoughts, the deeds and the actions, it’s all based around the heart. For what is a man? A man is his heart.”
Whenever God looks at us, His utmost desire of us is that our hearts be changed.
“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.” (Ezekiel 36:26 KJV)
The reason that He devoutly longs for this spiritual transformation is that He wants us to be like Him in our thoughts, deeds, and actions, as everything about us is based on our hearts.
“For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man.” (Matthew 15:19-20a KJV)
To know if we have unclean hearts, we must pay attention to our words, actions and lifestyles. If they are full of immoral thoughts and evil imaginations, it’s a sign that we need our heart transformed and cleansed. That’s how the heart is if we aren’t born again. It is also possible for people to live a clean, moral lifestyle, but to have a stony heart, if they have never surrendered to obey the lordship of Jesus Christ. And some of us become born again and still continue in worldliness. That’s also an indication that we need our hearts purged.
Friend, here is the good news: it is absolutely possible to have a clean heart, surrendered to Jesus, and cleansed and forgiven of our sin, no matter how dirty one’s heart might be. Paul tells us:
“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Romans 12:2a KJV)
In achieving this, firstly, we must be born again and Spirit-filled, by repenting of our sin and receiving the Spirit of Jesus.
Secondly, as believers, we must steadily fill our hearts with God’s Word daily, letting the Word dwell in us richly. We must resist and cast out every imagination from the devil to sin: lust, fornication, unforgiveness, anger, malice, hatred, and many others.
Lastly, we must ask God in our prayers daily to purge our hearts clean of every sin with the precious blood of Jesus.
Take time out and examine your heart today. Pray with me:
Prayer: Create in me a clean heart, O God, that I might not be far from You. Purge me of every filthiness, and renew a right spirit within me. In Jesus’ mighty name, I pray. Amen.
Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria
Reprinted from the PresbyCan Daily Devotional with the author’s permission