David was honoured for his decision to allow God to search and try his heart, even when the going got rough and David went walkabout! His son would learn, in some way, from his father’s struggles with his heart and would come to this understanding –
“above all else, guard your heart. Prov 4:23
The state and condition of the heart cannot be separated from the state and condition of our lives, after all, the reason Solomon and the Holy Spirit were so adamant about guarding our hearts is this: that’s where the issues of life spring from. Prov 4:23. This final blog on God as a committed and highly proficient cardiologist, concerns guarding against developing a double heart Ps 12:2 and an unbelieving heart Hebs 3:12
A Double Heart. Ps 12:2
The word double here literally translates as ‘a heart and a heart!’ What David has learnt from his experiences with Saul and his own son Absalom, he pens here. His hard-learnt advice is – watch out for deceiving and flattering words because they reveal a double heart. Saul used lies and deception in his attack against David and David’s son used flattery to influence people against his father. A heart and a heart, a double heart, speaks of a person who is saying one thing but internally they hold an entirely different sentiment or attitude. See Prov 23:7
A prime example of this is reality TV!
Seven Psalms later David would write these words – may the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer. Ps 19:14
may the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer. Ps 19:14
Contemporary words for this double heart condition would be incongruence or lack of integrity.
An Unbelieving Heart. Hebs 3:12
Context is king, and the context of Hebrews 3 is important to what an unbelieving heart is, and it is all about not responding in faith!
Hebrews 3 is a summary of servants who hear the Holy Spirit speaking and, act accordingly in faith and accomplish what the Father is commanding. The servants in this chapter are Jesus vs 1-6, Moses vs 3-5, the Founding Father’s generation vs 8-11 and the present generation of covenant servants! Vs 12-19
The overarching narrative of God to all these servants has three parts to it – out of Egypt, through the wilderness and into the promised land and the umbrella word for this in the New Testament is salvation. At the core of this epic journey is the leadership of the Holy Spirit, seen through the pillar of fire and cloud, the ark of the covenant and leaders!
In this summary chapter of their Exodus journey the Holy Spirit speaks and some of the servants are described as having an evil unbelieving heart which one commentator describes as a ‘lack of confidence in God!’ Review the Exodus generation’s journey and you’ll see that God asks some pretty big stuff of them but always He backs it up with a re-occurring promise –
“I will be with you! The classic example is the twelve spies. See Numbers 13.
The journey of salvation always includes crossing boundaries or borders! When the people of God left Egypt, it is implied that they are headed to another boundary or border. At these border crossings, there are attended guards – fear and discouragement. See Joshua 1:8&9. All God asks is that we trust Him and enter in, no matter what or whom might be in the way. Ten spies gripped by fear and having no confidence in God’s promise shrank back and spread their contagion throughout their tents. See Number 13:31-33
Only Caleb and Joshua had a believing heart, and they and their kin went and saw the provision of God in the next part of their salvation journey. David understood that he would face border and crossing-over opportunities –
“the boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places, surely I have a delightful inheritance.” Ps 16:6
So, lets us continually guard our heart, so we are ready for those boundaries, crossing over moments and, to especially guard them if we successfully negotiate the crossing over point! Read Deut 8
Question: what was God giving to believers in 1 Pet 5:5-12?
Grace has two equal sides to it: one is unmerited love, the other is unrivalled power.
Father, gives His sons ‘can do power,’ when they humbly admit, they’re in a ‘can’t do situation. See 2 Cor 12:9&10
The key to this ‘can do power’ of grace is humility –“God opposes the proud but gives grace [unrivalled power] to the humble. 1 Pet 5:5.
Like all bullies, intimidation draws a line in the sand and then declares what will happen if you cross it. Like David we need to run towards the line, cross it, sling our stone and let Father do the rest.
“You cannot take ground off the enemy, if he’s got ground in you!”
People approval, fear of failure, confrontation or rejection are classic reasons why people ‘stay in the lights, and the enemy exploits these ‘soul ties!’
A mind that can still think and reason, even under immense pressure.
“Battle lines and shouting is not engagement, run into the valley!”
They were like boys in the playground, standing either side of an imaginary line, shouting and declaring what will happen if you crossed the line and Israel was hoping that no one would!
Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. 1 Sam 17:36
David had already experience, in private, the can do power of God and so he puts Goliath on the ‘already been sorted list.’ Now that’s confidence!
Lions intimidate through their roar, bears by standing on their back feet. Goliath was a combination of both and David had been there, done that, and got the tee-shirt!
Mark it down: When you are in a situation that creates fear, but you face it head on, you will feel a rush of satisfaction in knowing you displayed courage.1
Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities…because it is the quality which guarantees all the others.” Winston Churchill