4.03.2014

Unite my heart

This post is last of a 3 part series.
Part 1 Wisdom
Part 2 Fear of the Lord

While studying and wanting to know more about "the fear of the Lord", I came across Psalm 86:11:

"Teach me your way, O LORD, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name."

Here's what I learned from this psalmist's prayer: I need a united heart in order to have fear of the Lord.

A focused, undivided heart.

I dug deeper and looked up passages related to having an undivided heart.

1 Corinthians 7:32-35

verses 33-34 says, "But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided."

verse 35 says, "I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord."

As you can see from verse 35 Apostle Paul isn't saying being married is bad, but laying out the reality of our hearts that things of this world divide our hearts. He's urging us of the importance of having undivided devotion to the Lord.

Here was another important discovery.

Matthew 6:22-24:

"The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money."


When reading this passage I wondered why the author started talking about healthy and bad "eyes" all of a sudden when he was just talking about "heart" in previous verses.("...for where your treasures is, there your heart will be also.")

What I learned was ESV translation uses the word "healthy" in verse 22, but the Kings James Version uses, "single". When I looked up the original greek word used, it's "haplous", which means "single". Literally it means, "without folds", referring to a single(undivided) focus.

In other words, healthy eyes have a focused single vision, not double vision. If you have bad eyes, you have double vision.

It made sense. My questions were being answered. Matthew 6:19-21 was talking about laying up treasures in heaven, because your heart is where you lay your treasures. And the same topic continues on in verses 22-24 with another illustration of having healthy eyes, single vision, that is focused on God, not on riches and possessions that come along with money. An undivided, single vision.

Matthew is urging us to have an undivided, united heart toward God. A warning to us that we can't serve two masters, God and riches(possessions). A warning against being deeply consumed with building up riches on this earth, because it's impossible to do that and serve God at the same time. Even if you're tempted to think you're an exception and you can focus on both, it clearly says, no one can do it.

Here's the lesson God was teaching me, If I claim to be a followers of Jesus, I need a united heart that is devoted to the Lord.

The lesson is all throughout Matthew 6. "Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness...", "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name." And what I shared above.

J.C Ryle in his commentary on this passage says, "Singleness of purpose is one great secret of spiritual prosperity."

My heart is prone to wander. At the time when God taught me this lesson, my heart was all over the place devoted to many things. Running my business, making money, anxiety over running my business and making money, paying bills, providing for my family, leisure, sports, watching sports, playing fantasy sports, friends, leading small group, watching the news, watching TV, spending time with kids, next vacation etc, etc, etc.

No wonder fear of the Lord was not functioning in my life. It was clear that I didn't have a united heart, I didn't have healthy, single vision eyes.

They seem like all good things. There's nothing terrible about each of those things, except, it divided my heart.

In my mind I was serving God, but in reality I was trying to serve God and everything money provided.(By the way, the ESV translations say, God and money, but a closer translations to the original term is mammon, riches, wealth possessions, a treasure people trust in.)

Am I free from all this now? No way. Far from perfect. But I'm now aware of my sickness and well aware of my need to ask the Lord for a united heart to fear his name.

I'm so grateful that the Lord gave me grace to dig deeper and he met me while I was prayerfully searching the bible. He showed me his love, care, and power which inspired me to keep doing it, and I continue to search His word everyday.

There's no way I can be devoted to him on my own. I need the strength he provides and the Spirits help and power everyday.

This is now my daily prayer, Lord give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name.

This post is last of a 3 part series.
Part 1 Wisdom
Part 2 Fear of the Lord