“We live in a depraved world!”
Those were the words I heard…
My response was… “We sure do”
“The heart is more deceitful than all else
And is desperately sick;
Who can understand it?
The KJV… The heart is deceitful above all things
and desperately wicked; who can know it?
The NIV… The heart is deceitful above all things
and beyond cure. Who can understand it?
I have seen a lot in my life, but with social media and the constant news alerts and updates, we are seeing all this play out in realtime. The unconscionable, immoral, and indefensible things people are doing to each other. Not just to each other, but to defenseless old people, to defenseless homeless people.
We watched as a bad cop in Minnesota pressed the life out of a human being made in the image of God. I recently watched a man walk down the street and punch a 95-year-old lady to the ground, he looked back and just kept walking. I watch a young lady violently grab another lady while she was sitting holding her toddler in her lap. This lady grabbed her hair so hard and flung her to the ground and you could see the toddler flying through the air.
I could go on and on with examples, but you get my point. What does this say about these people, let alone the ones that are taking the video? What about the simple observer who stands around laughing, doing absolutely nothing?
The above text gives us the answer to the problems in our society. If we used this text to address the problems of society we would know some important answers about why the world is what it is.
What’s the problem?
We have a heart issue!
Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Genesis 6:5
…only evil continually?
The human race has one basic problem, they have a bad heart and it’s beyond cure, who can understand it?
You can recognize and diagnose a physically bad heart, there are symptoms that come out. Shortness of breath, pain in the left arm, or high blood pressure.
It’s just as easy to recognize a spiritually bad heart too! We are watching it play out in realtime every day.
Listen, I get it!
Not everyone is as bad as the next person. By God’s grace, we are not as bad as Hitler or Mussolini! There are those who do good things. As one writer puts it… those who do good without Christ, their deeds are good-bad, but they are playing with a bad corrupt heart. They have a spiritually dead heart too.
The human race doesn’t become spiritually dead because they sin, no, by nature we are spiritually dead because we are sinful. Ephesians 2:1 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins.
The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked. The heart of man is crooked. It lies and it does not tell the truth, it is very skilled and clever at deception, above all things. The heart is desperately wicked, (אָנַשׁ anash), the word means incurable.
The heart is full of sin and sickness and there is nothing in you to heal it on your own.
Desperately wicked is a good description of the many people we see today on social media and on TV or even in our neighborhoods. They are dedicated to causing destruction and love to do evil.
We shouldn’t be surprised, we have seen it for decades with hypocritical Hollywood, as they constantly invent new ways of doing evil, then filming it for the human hearts that love it.
Why do we have so much crime, why do people get drunk, do drugs, murder, rape and are immoral? It is because the heart of mankind is bad, it’s spiritually dead, and they don’t even realize it!
Martin Luther said…
Man…does not do evil against his will, under pressure, as though he were taken by the scruff of the neck and dragged into it, like a thief…being dragged off against his will to punishment; but he does it spontaneously and voluntarily. And this willingness or volition is something which he cannot in his own strength eliminate, restrain or alter.The Bondage of the Will, p. 102. Martin Luther
Here’s what they don’t need…
- They don’t need to be told to live your best life now!
- They don’t need their felt needs taken care of first!
- They don’t need a social gospel!
- They don’t need a prosperity gospel!
- They don’t need a God-shaped hole filled in their heart!
- They don’t need to recite a prayer!
The heart is incurable, it’s dead, spiritually dead! And as the NIV rightly puts it…the heart is beyond cure!
- All humans are born in sin. Psalm 51:5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.
- All humans are enslaved to sin. Romans 6:6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
- All humans have rebelled against God, and have fallen short of His glory. Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
- All humans are spiritually dead in our sins. Ephesians 2:1 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins,
- All humans’ best religious deeds are polluted in His sight. Isaiah 64:6 For all of us have become like one who is unclean, And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment; And all of us wither like a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
- All humans without Christ are without any hope of heaven. Ephesians 2:12 remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
- All humans deserve the wrath of God in hell. Romans 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God,
It’s going to take an act of God!
They need God to perform surgery…He literally performs a spiritual circumcision of the heart. Colossians 2:11 and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; Romans 2:28-29; 2 Corinthians 4:6
They need a holy God to save them, they need the breath of God to breathe life into them. They need a new heart because the old one is dead!
Ephesians 2:1 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins,
Jeremiah 17:9 ends with “Who can understand it?”
The answer is God. God knows the heart of men and knows all about mankind.
“I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give to each man according to his ways,
According to the results of his deeds.
Is there a cure?
But God… Ephesians 2:4-5…But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
This is what God does for the man with a spiritually dead stony depraved heart…
Ezekiel 36:26 says….“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
How does He do this?
Through us, the redeemed…
Through the preaching and sharing of the gospel of Jesus Christ. There is no other way. That’s His formula to bring man to Himself. Romans 10:17. We share the gospel, He breathes life into a dead man walking…
He left us with the ministry of reconciliation, We are His ambassadors, pleading with people on behalf of Christ to be reconciled to God. 2 Corinthians 5:17-21
THERE IS NO PLAN B!
The greatest act of love we can give to an unrepentant soul is the gospel of Jesus Christ, then we let God do His saving work on that soul.
Be kind, be loving, be helping, but be obedient to the word of God…