Guard your hearts with all due diligence
MOTIVES OF THE HEART
There are times when we are speaking and acting out what is in
the deepest parts of our heart, that part of the heart that we have kept hidden, while we went along until an opportune moment presented itself; and we seized the moment to do what was in our heart to do! And oh did we seize the moment to deceive! People
can be exceedingly deceptive. However, God is capable of penetrating all hearts, minds, and motives and meeting out righteous judgement. Therefore my question at this point is this, what are the motives of your heart; for you may be able to hide your motives
from me, and others but, you can not hide them from God.
Jeremiah 17:9-10(NLT) 9 “The human heart is the most deceitful of all
things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? 10 But I, the LORD, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve.”
Leaders are in a unique category in that they have influence over the ones who are being led by them,
however the influence is either negative/positive or self-serving, and the self serving component or motive if you will is the part that can be deceiving and wicked. If the leader can not be trusted with the secret things of God, he can not be trusted
with the people of God! Paul admonished that human leaders are not, not essential, but salvation is received of Christ and not of man, and leaders must allow that foundational requisite to be in their hearts motive to usher people to Christ. Paul pointed out
in I Corinthians 4, the we should not judge one before the Lord returns or judge one of God leaders at the expense of another. We should all follow what the word of God says as not to bring out what is a lie and deception of one’s heart. Leaders should
speak what is edifying to the body of Christ. Paul draws our attention as leader to the following:
■ The apostle emphasized both the responsibility of leaders (4:1-5). Leaders are
not to exceed what is proclaimed in the Word of God, for in so doing we make the Word of non-effect and begin operating out of self as opposed to the will of God.
importance of their example (I Cor. 4:6-21). Paul points out how he and Apollos are mere servants and that they do not over step their boundaries in ministering to the people or placing one over the other, for that is a function of God alone. God rewards
each for their own deeds based on the motive of their heart, man can not know the motives of man’s heart, that is an ability reserved for God; we do not have anything unless we have received it of the Lord regarding our ability which is encompassing
of all those thing that make for a desired quality of life. Paul stresses true leaders will become spectacles on display and at times will be in need of the basics of every day life. We will be even made to look like fools in our dedication to Christ,
while others are being honored and placed on pedestals and become arrogant sitting in judgement.
■ “entrusted with the secret things of God”
(I Cor. 4:1). These secret things granted to these leaders are things that human wisdom cannot discover but can only be revealed by God to His people. God has given His leaders the ability to explain His mysteries which is a direct consequence of a covenant
relationship with the Father through His Son, Jesus Christ. The people can not hear the Word, if the Word is not heard by His leader who He has called and sent to proclaim the mysteries revealed to him. Romans 10:14-15(NASB) 14How then will they call on Him
in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? 15How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good
news of good things!”
THE TRADITION OF THE ELDERS
Allow me to illustrate the heart in action,
when you view the Jews back in the days of Jesus as He was here as Emmanuel, God with us, there were two sets of laws:
■ Mosaic Law, or in other words
the “Law of Moses” also (Torah of Moses) which remains and was written in the Old Testament Scriptures; first found in the Book of Joshua 8:31-32 where Joshua writes the words of "the Law of Moses" on the altar at Mount Ebal. The text continues
"And afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessings and curses, according to all that is written in the book of the law." (Joshua 8:34). The term occurs 15 times in the Hebrew Bible, another 7 times in the New Testament, one can also find it written
repeatedly in Second Temple period, , rabbinical and patristic literature.
■ then there was the oral law passed down by word of mouth and at length written
in the Talmud. The Talmud has two components. The first part is the Mishnah (Hebrew), the written compendium of Judaism's Oral Torah (Torah meaning "Instruction", "Teaching" in Hebrew). The second part is the Gemara, an elucidation (a making plain) of the
Mishnah and related Tannaitic writings that often ventures onto other subjects and expounds broadly on the Hebrew Bible. The term Talmud can be used to mean either the Gemara alone, or the Mishnah and Gemara as printed together. This second set of laws was
filled with ceremonial rites far more strict than the Mosaic ordinances, and it included additional teachings known as “the tradition of the elders.” The scribes and Pharisees spent most of their time observing these various traditions and considered
anyone unclean who failed to abide by these laws to the very letter. While they were strict in observing ceremony, in many cases their hearts were not right toward God. The Talmud contains the teachings and opinions of thousands of rabbis on a variety of subjects,
including Halakha (law), Jewish ethics, philosophy, customs, history, lore and many other topics. The Talmud is the basis for all codes of Jewish law and is much quoted in rabbinic literature. However as one can see the Talmud was exercised more as rituals
and ceremonial occurrences regarding one opinion as oppose to express instruction Moses received from God for the children of Israel.
By looking at the two individual sets of laws written and
oral it was typical of the oral law that one would instill his own mind set as to how things should and must be, as opposed to the written Mosaic Law of Moses given to by God.
One can not ignore the written Word, if it is written on the table of their heart, there would be less of a chance of heart deception due to the heart being permeated with God’s Word; for if you
feed the heart and mind with a non living Word, all you are going to get out is philosophy, opinions, and useless rhetoric which becomes a burden to the people and can not save.
No matter what a great intellect you as a steward may possess, it must be purposed in your heart to realize it came from above. Ref. James 1:16-18(NLT) 16So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. 17Whatever is good and perfect comes
down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. 18He chose to give birth to us by giving us His true Word. And we, out of all creation, became His prized possession.
Jesus illustrates in the 15th chapter of Matthew, something so profound, He makes it clear that we are not defiled by what we take into our mouth’s, but by what comes out of our
mouth’s. See what you eat will wind up in the sewer, but what you ingest into you heart, mind, and soul will come out of your mouth and defile you; so if we are not consuming the daily Righteous Word, we will possess the proclivity to speak and judge
that which is reserved for God, when He returns. Ref. Matthew 15:16-20(NLT) 16“Don’t you understand yet?” Jesus asked. 17“Anything you eat passes through the stomach and then goes into the sewer. 18But the words you
speak come from the heart—that’s what defiles you. 19For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander. 20These are what defile you. Eating with unwashed hands will never defile you.”
I leave you with this thought, are you defiling people (God’s children) with your mouth with un righteous motives from your Heart?