Matters of the Heart
Living in this broken world means dealing with outside influences that can corrupt, taint and lead astray. Bad company, persuasive co-workers and an onslaught of impure images (thrust in our faces virtually everywhere we turn) make honoring God a difficult task. But Jesus says that outside influences are not our greatest problem. Something else is.
- 01. The source of defilement is within: the darkness of the human heart.
“[This] does not mean that all men are equally bad, nor that any man is as bad as he could be, nor that anyone is entirely destitute of virtue, nor that human nature is evil in itself… what it does mean is that since the fall man rests under the curse of sin, that he is actuated by wrong principles, and that he is wholly unable to love God or do anything meriting salvation.” Loraine Boettner
- 02. Clinging to human tradition (and even outward obedience) makes it easy to miss the main problem.
NT Wright: “By focusing on outward purity, [we] avoid the much deeper challenge of the gospel, the challenge to the human heart.”
- 03. True cleansing must come from without.
We tend to look at things as though the problem is outside (evil influences, bad people, wicked society, etc.) and the solution is inside (trying harder, doing more, etc.) but the reality is the problem is inside (our own sinfulness, rebellion and self-righteousness) and the solution is outside (the grace of God in Jesus Christ).