DAILY DISCIPLINE #78
By Colleen Donahue
Solomon, no doubt out of his own life experience, was concerned for his sons and knew that it is from the heart that all life proceeds and therefore is of more concern than just the development of the physical body. It is the heart or "the soul" that stands for our personality and is what makes mankind different from the angels and animals. According to scripture, God has given man a spirit, a soul, and a body. Here is an explanation of this found in Watchman Nee's writing......
"In the history of man's creation we read, 'The Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground' - thus was his body made -' and breathed into his nostrils the breath' --or spirit-- 'of life': thus his spirit came from God; 'and man became a living soul, a living person with the consciousness of himself. The soul was the meeting-place, the point of union between body and spirit. Through the body, man as the living soul, stood related to the external world of sense; could influence it, or be influenced by it. Through the spirit, he stood related to the spiritual world and the Spirit of God, whence he had his origin; could be the recipient and the minister of its life and power. Standing thus midway between two worlds, belonging to both, the soul had the power of determining itself, of choosing or refusing the objects by which it was surrounded and to which it stood related.
In the constitution of these three parts of man's nature, the spirit, as linking him with the Divine, was the highest; the body, connecting him to the sensible and animal, the lowest; intermediate stood the soul, partaker of the nature of the others, the body that united them and through which they could act on each other. Its word, as the central power, was to maintain them in their due relation; to keep the body, as the lowest, in subjection to the spirit; itself to receive through the spirit, as the higher, from the Divine Spirit what was waiting for its perfection: and so to pass down, even to the body, that by which it might be partaker of the Spirit's perfection and become a spiritual body." (Quote found in Latent Power of the Soul by Watchman Nee P. 12-13).
So THE SPIRT is what makes us conscious of God and relates us to Him. It is THE SOUL that relates us to ourselves and others. The soul consists of man's mind, will, and emotions. The BODY causes us to be related to the world. It is to the matter of the soul or man's heart that Solomon speaks to us today.
PROVERBS - Part 7 - Guarding Our Hearts
Day 1- Very early in Proverbs Solomon gives a very important command.
Day 2 -To "keep your heart with all vigilance" suggests that we are able to guard and guide what the mind thinks about, how the emotions affect us, and what our "wills" will do. This is so important that it is repeated many times throughout scripture. Here are a few.
Deuteronomy 4:9 / Proverbs 22:5 / Philippians 4:6-9 / Jude 1:20-21
Day 3- Solomon, who knew the deceitfulness and filth in his own heart despite being a "good king" in the eyes of history, was right when he asked this question.....
Day 4- In fact, if our heart is unclean can anything truly good come from us?
Proverbs 23:7 / Matthew 15:18 / Luke 6:45
Note: Proverbs 23:7 is a picture that we see often. It's of a person that says one thing but speaks and acts another. There is a duplicity in their character that shows first in their speech and then their actions.
Day 5- Since the sin of Adam, every man's spirit has been cut off from fellowship with God. He has been left to live with his soul (mind, will, emotions) and with his body. But with the spirit unable to guide men's hearts what has happened?
Day 6- So, as God looks down upon EVERY MAN what does He see?
Genesis 6:5/ Psalm 53:1-3 / Mark 7:21-23
Day 7- What had to be God's judgment upon fallen mankind?
Genesis 6:6-7 / Zephaniah 1:2-3
Day 8- Each one of us is under the sentence of eternal death. It is one thing to talk in terms of "mankind" but since Adam's original sin you and I were born into sin and as such are born to die physically and eternally.
Day 9- Read David's words when he sees that this applies to himself personally.
Day 10- So why hasn't God struck us dead yet?
John 3:16-17 / Romans 5:6-11/ Romans 6:23
Day 11- That's right - God the Father substituted our death for His own Son's death so that our dead spirits might become alive to God again and fellowship restored. This one act in history (ie. Christ's death) was to benefit all mankind- even us who had not yet been born.
Hebrews 9:28 / I Peter 2:24 / I Peter 3:18
Day 12- Although we were spared a terrible physical execution, God could not just give us a new spirit but leave our old sinful nature intact. This old nature is totally deceitful and corrupt (Reread: Jeremiah 17:9). So in His death at Calvary, God in a cosmic miracle included the hearts of all of us into His Son's death.
Romans 6:3-4,6-7 / 2 Corinthians 5:14/ Colossians 3:3
Day 13- He destroyed what the Bible calls our "old man" or old heart and then He remade us. He gave us a brand new heart to cooperate with our new and alive spirit.
Ezekiel 36:26 / Romans 6:4-5 / 2 Corinthians 5:17 / Ephesians 2:1-6 / Colossians 2:13-15
Day 14- There are many today that are ignorant of these facts. They may see that Christ died for their sins but they don't see that their old heart has been destroyed and remade. They are trying to put new wine into old wineskins!
Matthew 9:17 / Ephesians 4:17-24 / Colossians 2:20
Day 15- Every man and woman must take by faith what Christ has done for them at Calvary and then walk in this new way of life.
Romans 6:4, 11-14
Day 16- Now King David, living many years before Christ, did not know all that Christ would do to remake man's sinful heart. But he saw the great gap between a holy God and his own corrupt heart which made him cry out for purity.
There is no doubt that David had much to teach Solomon about the heart, and Solomon with God's wisdom desired to pass along what he knew to his own sons. Therefore we come back to his important command to them... "keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life."
HOW DO WE KEEP OUR NEW HEARTS?
Day 17- First by knowing God's Word and living by it. Today we might rephrase this to knowing Christ and letting Him live in our heart.
Psalm 119:9-11 / Proverbs 2:1-12/ 4:1-2,13/ 8:1-12,32-35 / 13:13-14
In these New Testament times -- since Jesus came -- Paul says it this way: Colossians 3:16
Day 18- Obedience.
Proverbs 3:1 / 6:20-23/ 7:1-3
Day 19- Trust in the Lord.
Proverbs 3:5-6 / 3:26/ Isaiah 26:4 / Isaiah 50:10
Day 20- Fear the Lord.
Joshua 24:14 / Proverbs 3:7 / Ecclesiastes 12:13
Day 21- Hold onto what is good
Proverbs 3:3 / 4:20-22/ 2 Timothy 1:14
Day 22- Reject what is evil and turn from it.
Proverbs 4:14-15,26-27 / 5:7-14
Day 23- Control what your eyes look at.
Job 31:1 / Psalm 119:37 / Proverbs 4:25 / Matthew 6:22
Day 24- Train your tongue.
Proverbs 4:24 / 13:3/ 17:27 / 22:11/ Colossians 4:6 / I Peter 3:10
Day 25- Know what God hates and hate those things too.
Proverbs 6:16-19 / Luke 16:14-15 / Ephesians 5:10
Day 26- Look to the example of others that love God.
Proverbs 23:26 / Philippians 3:17/ 4:9 / I Timothy 4:12/ Titus 2:7
Day 27- Discipline your thoughts
Psalms 104:34 / Ephesians 4:17-18 / Philippians 4:8/ Colossians 3:2
Day 28- Why is it crucial to give to God every care and anxiety that comes our way?
Proverbs 12:25/ 15:13/ 17:22/ 18:14
Day 29- Our minds and hearts are the special targets of Satan and his legions. He wants us to be ignorant of what Christ has done for us.
2 Corinthians 4:4 / Ephesians 4:17-18
Day 30- What Christ has done for us is true for every man and woman that has ever lived or will live.....
Romans 6:3-11 / Colossians 3:1-4
Day 31- If we believe this, we will live it. How will our lives be different? Go slowly and make a list for yourself.
Ephesians 4:22- 5:21 / Colossians 3:5-17
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