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Home The Light Articles from 2005 Keep Thy Heart With All Diligence

Keep Thy Heart With All Diligence

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Keep Thy Heart With All Diligence
by G. Steve Watts

The Lord is knowledgeable about what it takes to keep mankind in line and approved by him. His instructions are for humanity’s safe keeping. He knows what is in man and what man is all about. Not only that, he knows the faces of temptations that come the way of all who travel the earthly plane. God is replete in sharing all vital information for the preserving and saving of the soul. He wants to and can stop the advancement of the tidal waves of sin that drown men in the storms of sinful practices.

When God enters the pulpit of life, He is there for the purpose of saving the souls of mankind from ruination. We may not always like the ways nor the words of this supreme orator, but it is the fool that removes the belief in God. God has shown He can and should be trusted. He has viewed the destroyed lives, mutilated families, sin oppressed travelers, and serves warning and shares vital instructions for our good. As He expostulates to the soul of man–"blessed is he that has ears to hear."

The Statement of Wise Solomon

In the long ago a wise man with an unclouded vision of life raised an inspired pen and wrote words to help us grasp the greatness of our God-shared protection system. Yes, God has amply designed and created man for victory. Knowing the pitfalls of life, God planned man in such a way that his purpose for man would be realized if such was the focus and intent of man. God knew the coming turbulence that would surround the lives of men. "Full of trouble" his spirit had Job to describe our allotted journey’s pathway, thus sharing a common thread of hard times in life at best. "Vanity" is also used to describe the life ahead for the newborn among us. Yet God is always there to help although we live in a world that men ushered sin into by disobeying God.

Solomon wrote about the heart, indeed a blessing of God. "My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh. Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee. Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee. Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil" (Prov. 4:20-27).

If I could ascribe to my posterity that shall walk the roads of life, gaze upon the radiant sunsets of the evenings and finally be ushered into a cold resting place among the silent beds of a graveyard…this would be my prayer for them and all in whom God has placed the breath of life. It prepares one for life in every aspect. There is not a country where it will not work for one’s good. There is not a family but which would be blessed as a result of it. Nor are there mourners that would not be the more comforted to know in reflection that this was a legacy of their deceased–faithful to Proverbs 4:20-27.

Its Meaning

Words simply share an action or picture to us. Their meanings make us aware of actions, people, places, desires, intents, and a great number of other vital points of information. This is likewise true with the words Solomon penned in the long ago as the Spirit helped to move his pen and preserve his mind. "Keep thy heart with all diligence" shares a wealth of information.

Diligence– "mishmar, a guard (the man, the post or the prison); a deposit (fig.); example guard, office, prison, ward, watch." Here Solomon shows the heart should be very important in its area of spiritual guidance. Like a security checkpoint at the airport, this is a vital point of imputing the necessary precautions to ward off and refuse the enemies of life and souls…and to receive powerful input of the correct. This is God’s way of equipping man with the ability to protect his soul and body. This is the guard-building area of life. He also visits that same thought in speaking about the heart.

Heart– "towtsa’ah, (geographical) boundary, or (figuratively) deliverance, (actively) source:--border(-s), going(-s) forth (out), issues, outgoings." Here also the guards are positioned to protect and check the goings in and comings out of the soul of man. This is the checkpoint of acceptance or refusal.

Ramifications

If I might suggest the ramifications of this set of statements by the writer, he is revealing the safety system that comes standard on all models made by God. Some items on our appliances are standard yet often never used by the owner–timers, remotes, etc. This is often true of the wonderful creation of our God–man, made in His own image. Friend, here is something that we must use and we will be amazed at its great and important value. This sets your boundaries. The Heart is the Depository of Character. Here is where you can set what you will do. This is a great part of your security system. This is what Job set with proper God ordained teachings. These teachings established His eyes "boundaries" about "looking upon a maid." King David could have used Job’s setting for a great help. This is where you set the controls of how far you will allow the devil to mess with your mind. "O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things" (Matt. 12:34-35).

What a grand help parents have from God in the future of their children’s lives if they will use it. By setting the checkpoints in the home, the children can live in an influence where the devil has been prohibited from entrance. The heart is the storehouse of the character’s border building essentials. Not only will they learn from and be blessed by a "drug-free zone," we can work to have as much of a "sin-free zone"as possible, if the proper checkpoints are established. As a message of help, hope and power, the Word of God reveals and helps to establish the boundaries of life.

Preparing the Heart Prepares the Person– "O Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee: And give unto Solomon my son a perfect heart, to keep thy commandments, thy testimonies, and thy statutes, and to do all these things, and to build the palace, for the which I have made provision" (1 Ch 29:18-19). "For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he" (Pr 23:7). "And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord" (2 Ch 12:14). "For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments" (Ezra 7:10). "Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart" (Psalms 119:2).

Conclusion

Who or what will help you in times of temptation? Our lives may enjoy times when the wind is fair and favorable. Yet before long we may find ourselves in a storm of strong, driving, and tempestuous winds of adversity and temptation. "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word. With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee" (Ps. 119:9-11). Without the

 

setting of boundaries, we may experience many fruitless attempts at reformation. On the other hand, if permanent set prohibitions are set in place, reformation can be permanent. "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart" (Heb. 4:12). Eternity is a long time to be wrong! –582 Murray Kittrell Road, Readyville, Tennessee 37149

 

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