If you are interested in finding what is really truth—what the Bible really teaches, then the subject of this article will be of great interest to you.
After dealing with the backsliding of the children of Israel, warning them of sure judgement for their sins and transgressions, the Lord promised a remedy for their unconverted and hardened hearts.“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.” - Ezekiel 36:26-27
We see from this promise that God is in the business of actually changing people’s hearts. God is able to operate on the cold, hard, stony heart with no love for right or for Him and change it into a soft, warm, responsive heart, full of love for the things of God and everyone else. What a mighty God we serve! A willful, wicked heart into a submissive, obedient heart. Praise His Name!
At the time that Ezekiel penned these words, the promise was in the future. Turning to the New Testament, we quickly find that the brethren of that day found it a blessed reality.“This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” - Hebrews 10:16-17. The writer of Hebrews is quoting the Old Testament promise as a current possession. He regards the promise as fulfilled in his heart and the hearts of others. Now, he states, they have“a true heart.” - Hebrews 10:22 Earlier, the brother states that this entire new covenant is established upon better promises than were obtainable before the New Testament. And what is the nature of these better promises?“This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people.” - Hebrews 8:1
The testimony of the Apostle Paul to the Corinthian brethren:“Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.” - 2 Corinthians 3:3
The testimony of the Apostle Peter to the gathering at Jerusalem, describing both the experiences of the gentiles and their own:“And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.” - Acts 15:8-9. The New Testament not only emphatically teaches a changed heart, but a changed heart that is subsequently purified, as well.
In Matthew 18:3, Jesus stresses the absolute need of a heart change in the following words:“Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”When does this conversion take place? When we repent, when our sins are blotted out - Acts 3:19. When our sins are forgiven - Mark 4:12.
It is so great a change, a change wrought by God in the heart of an individual, that it is referred to as being born again. Nicodemus did not understand this, although a master in Israel, because he had not the experience. As Jesus told him,“We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen.” - John 3:11. Nicodemus did not have the testimony.
“The blood will work a perfect cure,
Will cleanse the heart, and keep it pure;
The blood, the blood,
The precious blood of Jesus.”
If God has changed your heart in this Biblical fashion, you do not need to be persuaded of the reality of the experience. You already have the testimony. But, dear reader, if you are lacking in this crucial aspect, be warned:“Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” - John 3:3