Out of the Abundance of the Heart

Matthew 12:35-37(NKJV) 35A good man out of the good treasure £of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. 36But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. 37For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Yesterday we looked at verses 33-34 of this section of scripture. Jesus is confronting the Pharisees concerning things they said about how he cast out devils. Their words were blasphemous because they attributed to the devil something God was doing. He then begins to teach about words and their power. In describing the Pharisees, he says that they are evil so they cannot produce good things with their words. Even when they speak things that sound good, their words produce evil things because they come from an evil nature.

In today’s scripture, Jesus begins to reveal that we can produce good things if our heart is good. Our words will reflect what is in our hearts in abundance. Jesus says that a good person produces good things out of the treasure in his heart. The evil treasure in a person’s heart will produce evil things. It is possible to speak words from our hearts that produce good things in life.

Let me point out something here. Jesus is speaking to the Pharisees who are not born again. No one was born again at that time. The only truly good person was Jesus. That is not the case today. The reality of the new birth is that anyon who receives Jesus becomes a new creature in Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:17-18(NKJV) 17Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation.

The Christian has not simply changed his beliefs or his religious affiliation. Christianity is not simply a way to give him peace or get in touch with his “spiritual side.” Christianity is a complete change of nature that happens to the person who receives Jesus as Lord. They are changed in the deepest part of their being. Ephesians 2:3 says that we were all “by nature children of wrath.” Those who receive Jesus as Lord are no longer children of wrath by nature but children of God.

The Pharisees could not produce good things because they were evil. That is what Jesus said about them. We are no longer evil because our spirit is born again in the image of God. A Christian is good. Therefore, he or she has the potential to bring forth good treasure from their heart. However, the heart is not what is born again. The spirit or nature of man is what is changed. The heart is another matter.

Man is a being made up of three parts. When God created man, Genesis 1 says he created him in the “image and likeness of God.” This phrase means a being like God. God is a spirit. (John 4:24) When God created man, he created him in his image and likeness, so man is primarily a spirit. However, God placed man in a world that is physical. God is unlimited. We call his world heaven. It exists on a different level than the physical world we live in. Man, in his essence, is part of God’s world. He is a spirit but God placed him in a physical world.

To exist in the physical world he had to have a physical body. The first seven verses the second chapter of Genesis give the detailed account of how God created man. For all other living things, we see that God simply spoke and they appeared alive. We see this in chapter 1 verses 20-25. In verse 26 God speaks of creating man, but it is in chapter 2 that we see how he created man. There is no indication that the creation of any other living thing consisted of anything but speaking them into existence.

Man is different. Let us look at the account.

Genesis 2:7(NKJV) 7And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.

The Lord formed man’s body out of the physical earth he had already made. I see great care in this. He made it with his own hands. Yet when he finished forming the body he intended for man, it was dead. It had no life in it at all. It was not until he “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life” that man became a living soul. What did God breath into man? I believe he breathed a spirit, a being made of the substance of his world into that dead physical body. The source of man’s life was not the physical but the spiritual.

When Adam committed sin in the Garden of Eden, something happened to him. We see in Genesis 3 that there was a fundamental change in him. He became fearful. He hid from God because he knew he was no longer right with God. He blamed his wife for his actions. It is this change of nature that is reversed in salvation.

When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, our spirit is made right with God once again. However, nothing happens to our body. There is a third part of man that is only marginally affected in the New Birth. Since our spirit is the inward most part of what we are, there has to be a way for the spirit to communicate with the body. We call that part the soul. It is made up of our mind, emotions and will.

When man’s spirit fell, it affected his body and his soul. His body began to die physically. It took over 900 years for that to happen, but without the fall it never would have happened at all. His soul took on a different role. Instead of being the channel for the spirit to communicate with the body, it became the insulator between the death within man and his outward life. God created the spirit to be the part of man that controlled him, but man could not let that part be in control now. After the fall man was by nature, or in spirit, a child of wrath or the devil.

The deepest part of the soul or intellect is the heart. We often call it the subconscious mind. The heart is like a computer hard drive. Everything that is ever put into a computer is on that hard drive. Even when files are deleted, they remain on the hard drive unless sophisticated technology is used to remove them. There are files that the computer needs to operate which most of us have no idea are there. There can also be files that should not be there and can do damage to our system or communicate information we do not want others to know. These are called viruses. They are all there as long as the hard drive exists.

In the same manner, the human heart is the place where every word that has been said to you and every experience in your life are stored. The human brain is the most sophisticated and powerful computer known to man. We still do not understand how it works, but science has confirmed it has the power and capacity to store all these experiences. Some are good experiences and some are bad.

We have gone a long way to get to a simple point. Jesus said a good man brings forth good things out of the good treasure of his heart. An evil man has no good treasure because his spirit is corrupted so nothing in his heart is, in the end, good. However, we are born again. Our spirit is not evil it is good. We can produce good things, but not all of the treasure of our heart is good. If we want good things to come forth, we must tap into the good treasure that is there. If we want to increase our capacity for good things to come forth, we must increase our good treasure and decrease the evil treasure. How can we do that?

Romans 12:2(NKJV) 2And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God…..Stay with me. I believe this will all come together in tomorrow’s post.

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