Summary: A message of encouragement for those finding it hard to understand scripture, and making decisions in life

Understanding Heart

Foundational Text:

1 Kings 3:5-14 In Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night: and God said, Ask what I shall give thee. (6) And Solomon said, Thou hast shewed unto thy servant David my father great mercy, according as he walked before thee in truth, and in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with thee; and thou hast kept for him this great kindness, that thou hast given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. (7) And now, O LORD my God, thou hast made thy servant king instead of David my father: and I am but a little child: I know not how to go out or come in. (8) And thy servant is in the midst of thy people which thou hast chosen, a great people, that cannot be numbered nor counted for multitude. (9) Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people? (10) And the speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. (11) And God said unto him, Because thou hast asked this thing, and hast not asked for thyself long life; neither hast asked riches for thyself, nor hast asked the life of thine enemies; but hast asked for thyself understanding to discern judgment; (12) Behold, I have done according to thy words: lo, I have given thee a wise and an understanding heart; so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee. (13) And I have also given thee that which thou hast not asked, both riches, and honour: so that there shall not be any among the kings like unto thee all thy days. (14) And if thou wilt walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as thy father David did walk, then I will lengthen thy days.

Proverbs 4:5 Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.

Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

Proverbs 16:16 How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!

I. What is an Understanding Heart?

A. The word understanding literally means to hear:

Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.

Genesis 3:17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

1. He is asking God to empower him to hear His voice in his spirit.

2. Do you see how this would please the Father? “And the speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing.” Solomon is recognizing his need for his heart to hear from God. What Solomon is asking for the spirit of revelation to operate in his life.

B. Apply your Heart to understand!

Proverbs 2:2-6 So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; (3) Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; (4) If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; (5) Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. (6) For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.

1. God gives understanding!

a. Job 12:12-13 With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding. (13) With him is wisdom and strength, he hath counsel and understanding.

b. Psalms 147:5 Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.

c. Isaiah 40:28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.

Our Bible gives the account of Solomon as God speaking through a “dream by night” We will see New Testament proof of our turning this dream into reality.

II. Turning a dream into reality!

God is telling us this morning that we also can now have an understanding heart like unto Solomon.

A. That’s fine and good concerning Solomon, but how is this relevant to my life today? Can I make this dream a reality.

Ephesians 1:16-18 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; (17) That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: (18) The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

1. Remember what God said unto Solomon? Ask what I shall give thee. Paul is praying that God would give unto the church the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him.

a. (AMP) [For I always pray to] the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, that He may grant you a spirit of wisdom and revelation [of insight into mysteries and secrets] in the [deep and intimate] knowledge of Him,

2. Verse 18, The eyes of your understanding being enlightened;

a. Eyes of your understanding referring to Metaphorically the eye of the mind or the eye of the heart is the power of perceiving and understanding.

b. The eye of your mind being enlightened? From the Greek word phōtízō meaning To give light to, to shed rays, that is, to shine or (transitively) to brighten up (literally or figuratively): - enlighten, illuminate, (bring to, give) light, make to see. This is the Greek word in which we get our word photo, or photograph, and Photology which is the doctrine or science of light, explaining its nature and phenomena.

2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

3. In a very powerful way, Paul is telling us that we can also pray for an understanding heart.

III. Another Witness of an Understanding Heart

Colossians 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

A. Notice once more that Paul is making a request known unto God on the behalf of the church? He is asking once more! The word desire is simply to ask. Who do you suppose Paul is asking? Can you see what Paul is asking? That we would, as the church, be filled with the knowledge of his will, in all wisdom, and spiritual understanding.

1. (AMP) For this reason we also, from the day we heard of it, have not ceased to pray and make [special] request for you, [asking] that you may be filled with the full (deep and clear) knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom [in comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God] and in understanding and discernment of spiritual things—

2. Look at the word “understanding”. to comprehend, reason out. Comprehension, perception, understanding. The word denotes the ability to understand concepts and see relationships between them. This word comes from the root word suníēmi entails the assembling of individual facts into an organized whole, as collecting the pieces of a puzzle and putting them together. The mind grasps concepts and sees the proper relationship between them. Such understanding includes the moral and religious awareness of man’s heart. When the word is confined to the sphere of mental perception it means to hear, notice, perceive, recognize, understand, reason things out and make sense.

Conclusion: It is clear this morning that God desires, and ever so wants us to have a hearing heart, an understanding heart. He show us in the Old Test. Through Solomon, then reveals this key to the Kingdom in the letters to the church. We can also see plainly that when we ask for an understanding heart it pleases the Lord. We want hearts that hear, and hearts that respond to the voice of God.