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Heart and Conscience
HEART and CONSCIENCE
Not enough without the Spirit to spirit encounters.
The secret of living a life of excellence is merely a matter of thinking thoughts of excellence. Really, it's a matter of programming our minds with the kind of information that will set us free. Charles R. Swindoll
The differences of how we interpret, the words we hear, read, study, observe and the life we are to live is closely followed by the actions we daily do. We attempt and strive, we labour very hard, we have attitude, we push and pull, pressured on every side. We listen and we hear, much of the time, only what we want to hear. We do largely, those things we believe in our heart, mind, and conscience that we are to be doing. Our spirit may linger, slumber or even be delayed in responding due to many causes or foundational roots.
Put us all in a room together with a powerful teacher, lawyer, salesman, pastor, preacher, guru and we each come away with a certain interpretation of the said oratory.
Is there something wrong with our hearing or our listening skills, our ability to properly decipher the subject, our state of mind, spirit, flesh-man, or even our heart?
Perhaps in part it is all of the above?
Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be. Abraham Lincoln
Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds. Franklin D. Roosevelt
We are destined to interpret, discover, consider, manage, take into account every learnable, discernible lesson to be learnt, put into practice and every action rendered from the experiences we consider through our imagination, our intellect, feelings, emotions, our every individual ability to grasp the depth, width, height and weight of the matters. But, we are subject to our individuality, of how we learn and though men would believe that all men learn equally well within the standpoint of certain respected teaching techniques ground down through the ages; we still remain individual persons with complex mannerisms, although we may seem on the surface to be like minded... truly we are not.
We have been whittled down to personality traits, but even these have been steadily modified over the years. Also more and more companies will put you through a testing of questions or specifics to tell them whether you are a good fit, a poor administrator of your actions, a quality mind, body and temperament that meets their strict criteria or if they should quickly pass on you. This is done in many ways to exclude you without discriminating against you. If their bottom line is money, often morality, conscience and emotion are not an issue.
So the question which arises is this. What does God expect of us, as he already knows of our complexities, and who we are at the heart?
If he concentrates on the heart, what should that tell us will really matter in the end?
Few is the number who think with their own minds and feel with their own hearts. Albert Einstein
Now I will make a case that we cannot allow our heart alone to be our guide, that is why we have a built-in monitor in conscience, and the great necessity of Holy Spirit to also remind us by convictions, of what the word of God in us should be accomplishing. But, in all of this we are bound by laws. Laws according to our individual make-up, core values, accepted teachings, or manipulations, our belief structure, morality clause, even lies we have been told, or half truths we have accepted about ourselves, the world, friends and neighbors. What about the word of God, his Spirit, Jesus the son and of God himself?
In some respects we have the actions we think are necessary, thought out and ready to perform, before our heart is ready. This only makes us religious and any person can accomplish this, it is proven over and over in every religion of the world. Becoming religious is probably the one most singularly effortless accomplishment that any single person can do without much thought. Jesus advised of the downfall of this type of heart as he cautioned and warned the teachers of the law.
Abram to Abraham, Saul to Paul
In God's visitation with Abram, before he became Abraham, God already KNEW his heart. Was Abram perfect? Was he saintly in all his actions? Was he the greatest of all men on the earth? Was he handsome, rich, a great business man, had special abilities to do great wonders? Was he a powerful warrior? Was he a church going, tithe paying member in good standing?
He was an ordinary man, who lived in tents with his family, and servants; a nomad wanderer always seeking the best pasture land for his livestock.
Yet God chose him specifically to inherit a blessing for all of time, for all of mankind.
When we have as close an encounter of this kind with the creator, through a means of his choosing, by which he is more than capable, something gives way within us and we will come away changed. Abram, gets a new name. We in this day and age get a new heart, and spirit, a chance to see the child of promise come to fruition.
God comes and speaks with him and tells him of his future and that his barren wife in her old age will have a child, a son. He doesn't take the words into his heart, but only into his mind and his mind is struggling to grasp the concept. His wife hears and laughs in unbelief at such a thing because of the circumstance, according to their normal bodies and under all these normal human conditions. But this is the angel of the Lord visiting; many believe this to be Jesus or the Spirit of Christ in human form through Holy Spirit. This is no minor visit, yet the word of life is questioned. The WORD himself is doubted, that creation in the old womb can be completed. This is not a normal, but extra-ordinary encounter.
We even under these encounters do this very same thing, all the time... Why?
Because we live contained by our mindset and within the capacity of only what we can see, feel, touch, comprehend with a finite thought processor.
What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives, we need to stretch our minds. Wayne Dyer
God's visitation is often thwarted by our inability to accept his provision of a blood bought redemption through Christ who has saved us. We still believe that we have more to measure up to, to be accepted. But the word, Jesus, has made all of this visitation of his Spirit possible. There is no other way in which Holy Spirit can indwell us except by way of the blood. What we do with what he has done, said, and completed is yet an inner matter of hearing, adjusting, accepting in our heart and being fully persuaded in our mind that the flesh-man is dead and the spirit-man is alive... reborn. The promise passes from Abraham to Jesus. The Father has promised that through Christ a New and better covenant is formed. We are brought into this promise and did not have to do anything to gain it, except to believe. We are given the same choice to believe as Abraham; that inside of us will grow a new life, no matter at what age we come to Christ. Nothing shall be impossible for God, to be accomplished in us, if we desire and accept it.
We are given a New heart and a New spirit and must make a verbal confession that the matter is done and that there is nothing more that I can do about it except to live by the direction of the Spirit. This requires listening, interpreting, deciphering, acting upon the words of the Spirit, which are life to us. There is a new child inside of each one of us, a new birthing being created because of a visitation, not because of who we are. We are wanderers but yet God chose us. How we live from now on will be the key to our Spiritual growth and having teachers who walk according to this same Spirit that was in Christ will be an extremely important factor to the child's growth inside of us, that we may mature and become all that Christ is through the process of osmosis. What passes from God the Father to Christ is passed on to us, that we may become one in them. If we believe that we have something to offer, we are returning to the way of the law and to death. The Apostle Paul came to an understanding only after much heart, soul, mind and spirit searching. Apparently he spent three years in the backside of the desert undergoing some very deep changes in his Jewish mindset, and this New understanding of the Spirit. His name was changed also. He understood thoroughly the way of the law, but this walking in the Spirit was a new chapter to comprehend. He showed us how in the book of Romans.
We will actually kill the child who is growing inside of us, if we persist in the law. The child of expectation, joy, laughter and life. We also are in need of a three year pilgrimage of this intensity, but who of us can manage such a feat? We are pressed into Sunday morning teachings, or the odd retreat, conference or our own meditations to create in us the deep changes necessary to truly know the heart of God for us. God therefore has this assignment set in motion, to put us through various levels of testing, trials, life altering circumstances to see what we are really made of. Passing through his purifying fire to avoid another type of fire.
Heart alone cannot take us to this place, nor conscience, nor good intention, nor through much mind altering of thoughts and desires. Even the most pious of monks will tell you, sin is everywhere and that becoming a spiritual sojourner doesn't solve everything our life needs.
Someone has said, "We need to live in the space between the Father and the Son." Cooke
This is a suggestion of living in the Spiritual dimension where we then measure what we hear, interpret, judge, by means of our inner man (spirit man). But the ear of the spirit is only as good as the purity of heart, clarity of conscience and a near flawless character. Unfortunately none of us are this perfect and we will all make mistakes of choice, and will inevitably hear wrongly and act accordingly. The author of the above statement would agree with me. We are each bound to mistakes, but honesty within our heart will be the balance we need when we err, and God who judges the intent will forgive.
Can conscience alone be the one and only guide? Not really, because it is flawed by the laws we feed it, bound within our individual learning, circumstances, teaching, culture, and how we allow the Word of God to shape us. Consider all the doctrines of men manufactured over the years and ending up with a multitude of denominations, each with specifics they believe are constituted by God and his word.
Let every man be free to act from his own conscience; but let him remember that other people have consciences too; and let not his liberty be so expansive that in its indulgence it jars and crashes against the liberty of others. E.H.Chapin, Living Words
The Apostle Paul showed us in the Book of Corinthians, that not all men have the same concise affiliation with their conscience. We differ in and by the way we interpret and what is best for our individual selves, as God works his work in us. Does this mean that I or my brother err because of our specific action? Paul using the incident over the use of meat in the marketplace proved his point. Only, we are to regard what we do in front of others as to their welfare, thus proving our love for them and for God.
Paul also speaks of how men in the future because of a continuation of sinful behavior will lose the effectiveness of a pure conscience and thus they become darkened and their souls are bound by the powers of hell.
Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. Albert Einstein
While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart. Francis of Assisi
So if God, according to the word in Ezekiel, is giving us a new heart and a new spirit there must be an outstanding reason. Wouldn't you think? It's obvious that God has done a lot of thinking about this necessity for our benefit. Here is his message to his beloved Israel, pre Christ and Holy Spirit being released from heaven. But they were missing the love for him and for his generous salvation. They refused to even put forth an effort.
Now here we are AD, with an even greater opportunity to fall in love with Christ, Holy Spirit and the Father.
I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Ez. 11:19
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. Ez. 36:26
Now this is repeated and when God repeats himself that usually means there is something we need to take note of.
So what is the benefit. From stone to flesh.
The action of changing the heart firstly is of great necessity or the new spirit will die. We cannot do this in reverse, because the heart of stone will be like a boulder over our lives and we will drown in the chaos of the world and our unregenerate lives.
That is why Paul is so adamant in his explanation through the book of Romans about our transformation into Spirit living.
The many languages of the heart, (if I may use that phrase) has I suppose bewildered many of us. The scriptures speak, from beginning to end of heart issues. Jesus himself giving input. The religious mindset that was prevalent in Jesus time has not gone away and with it is the continuing argument that what you know in your mind is better than what goes on in the heart, because they hold onto the one scripture that says, "The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" Jer.17: 9-10
The subject of our spirit is foreign to a lot of people and in some ways perhaps a little scary, or out there in another realm. The indigenous peoples of our nations, who held dear the action of the spirit has cast a bit of a strange light on the subject for many people and so we have not investigated the necessity within the Christian church its full importance, as God would like us to understand.
But we mostly miss the fact of love. If we love God as Jesus so graciously expresses to us and we get the picture of how this love action on our part can and will perform the work of not only completing in us all the requirement of the law, but will form into us a catalyst of grace and a new measure of glory every time we meditate upon what this love for him really means. It is the sole most powerful antidote for everything and anything that rises in the form of temptation, no matter the complication, circumstance, encounter to bring us to a place of rebellious sinfulness. Here is the exact place that the Father would have each and every one of us. In its entirety it seems almost too simple to be true, but that does not change the fact of its authenticity, because with this love we are thus joined to an everlasting covenant of his grace, and with that grace covering us we enter into the realm of eternity and of excellence.
This is the keeping power formed in us so that all that Jesus has done remains intact. Conscience, heart, soul and mind form an agreement that we will not sin against so great a benefactor..., but if and when we do we have an advocate with the Father, Christ Jesus our high priest, and there is forgiveness.
Our worry should not be that I might fall, but that I will not love enough. Here is where Holy Spirit, the ideal candidate of this higher love, a spiritual love, a love which can only come from heaven comes in on our behalf. He is the counsellor of such an element that needs to find a home in our heart firstly, then our soul and finally our mind, thus transporting us into the spiritual and into a state where the very thought of sin in any appearance is cast down and becomes an automatic response. This is truly the real power of love that will form a steadfast anchor in our new heart and new spirit.
We all (who are in Christ) have gained a New name, now we must all live up to it. With this new name comes a birth right, for we are no longer strangers, but sons and daughters. Amen
There is a comment section at the bottom of the page. Thank You L.
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