Devotional - 2007-01-04 - Heart vs Mind
Acts 11:23 Then when he had come and witnessed the grace of God, he rejoiced and began to encourage them all with resolute heart to remain true to the Lord; (NAS)
Our society often places a good deal of emphasis on the intellect of mankind or an individual person. With the power of the mind, calculating and perceptive, great things are accomplished. The idea is that the mind is the driving force, the source of the will behind things.
Luke seems to take up opposition to that concept. The driving force in encouraging these brand new believers in Jesus Christ was from the heart, or the cardia (gr.). The bowels were considered the seat of the emotions while the heart is the seat of the will. Salvation is often referred to as a change of heart when someone turns from their past and to Jesus. It is a surrendering of the will, the cardia, to Jesus.
Rom 10:10 for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. (NAS)
Is it the heart that is regenerated at salvation.
Why the heart and not the mind? The mind is more changeable than the heart. During the process of making a decision between two or more things, the mind will go back and forth. The heart, or will, is the source that drives the direction of our lives. Our considerations and pronouncements will be colored by our beliefs - the things that our will holds firmly to - things that have taken a good deal of time to determine, things that are very settled.
James 1:6-8 But let him ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. (NAS)
I have heard the phrase double-minded, or of two minds, but never double-hearted or willed. If your basic, driving beliefs and principles - your faith - were uncertain you would be a basket case. This is not just true for a Christian either. But with those fundamental ideals settled in the heart, the only thing that can be doubled is the mind. If your faith is firm, your mind will soon be cleared and rarely doubled for any period of time.
Lord Jesus, Help us to grow in You by reading and thinking through your instruction in the Bible. That growth will mature and settle our faith which is our foundation. Without a stable base, the mind has nothing to stand upon and it will shake and rattle with every new idea that comes along. A solid cardia will keep us from being double-minded, for Your honor and Your glory. Amen.
Grace & Peace,