September 19, 2012

Guard Your Heart

Job 31

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
—Proverbs 4:23


Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8). To some, a pure heart does not seem particularly necessary. They may say, “Just so long as you don’t hurt other people, it doesn’t matter what goes on in your mind.” Others will hear Jesus and say with regret, “If only I could be pure!”

The Bible says it’s not just difficult; it’s impossible, unless we are born again. In Ezekiel 36:25-27 God says, “I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. 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. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.”

In Job 31, a seldom-read, wonderful passage, we see a man of God whose heart has been transformed. From the wellspring of its purity, generosity, and love flow justice and blessing to everyone around him, without political jockeying, strident demands, or bloodshed.

How a Christian longs for the purity of heart that will enable him or her to see God! Jesus promised the woman at the well, “The water I give … will become … a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14).

Come, Holy Spirit, give life to hearts of stone, and cleanse minds that are polluted. May we on the day of resurrection be counted worthy to see you in your holiness and glory, because of Jesus. Amen.

About the author — George Young

George Young, a native New Yorker, worked as a taxi driver in New York City before studying to become a pastor. Then he, his wife Ruth, and their children were missionaries for many years in northeastern Japan. They worked with ministers and believers from the Reformed Church in Japan to spread the good news of salvation in Christ and ­establish new churches. Now George and Ruth are retired and live in the northeastern United States, nearer to their children and grandchildren.

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