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Summary: People have 1 of 4 heart conditions.

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Heart Conditioning God’s Way

Stand-Alone Sermon

July 3, 2005 FBC, Chester Mike Fogerson, Pastor

Introduction:

I In 1998, 459,841 people (or 1 out of 5 deaths) in America were attributed to coronary heart disease.

A The Lord has allowed the medical field to learn about the condition of CHD & repair.

a Take a vein out of the leg, bypass it around a clogged artery...it’s amazing.

b To watch that person have their heart intentionally stopped, worked on, restarted, and see that person come home a few days later.

B KJV: the English word "heart" is mentioned 830 x’s.

a Hebrew word is mentioned 840 x’s in the OT alone

b God’s word has a lot to say about the heart to say the least

C The Bible’s most common usage of "heart" is not the pumping muscle in the chest

a Center of our being, seat of reason, emotion, personality

b If our heart is in good spiritual condition...we’ll be a person of compassion, encouragement, cooperation, love.

c If our heart is in bad spiritual condition...uncompassionate, discouraging, divisive, and unloving person.

T.S. There are 4 conditions of the heart....

I A heart that is hard. So this I say, and affirm together with the Lord, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; 19 and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness. Eph 4:17-19 (NASB)

A 3 key words

1 Darkened (v. 18). May believe they’re enlightened, know scripture...reality is they’re in the dark.

2 Ignorance. The truth and the life go together!

• If you believe the truth, you have the life!

• Lost, hardened heart enslaves them to the evil one.

3 Callous. Lost all sensitivity, no longer responds to moral stimuli.

• Their heart is so atrophied that sin registers no stab of pain.

B The longer a heart is hardened, the less sensitive it becomes to the movement/leading of the Holy Spirit.

a When do you feel more conviction, the first time you commit a particular sin or the 100th?

b A lost person under conviction...never turn to God, may no longer feel conviction/leading of the Holy Spirit when the gospel is presented.

C Symptoms:

a Reject the preaching/teaching of the word (not for me)

b Uncompassionate outlook (Levite, Priest, Good Samaritan)

C Uncooperative spirit towards those who don’t do things "my way." (Pharisees towards Christ!)

II A heart that is rotten. "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 "So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness. Matt 23:27-28 (NASB)

A The men Jesus was talking to were men who thought they had their lives together for God.

a Never touched any unclean thing, obeyed the Bible, full of pride!

b On the outside, their lives looked impeccable, on the inside, their lives were incredulous.


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