Not only is there physical heart disease, there is also spiritual heart disease. Unbelief, and the deceitfulness of sin the writer says are major causes of spiritual heart disease. Unbelief (the refusal to believe) and Sin, little droplets of death, harden the heart.
The writer here outlines three keys that can prevent spiritual heart disease, (1) Listening well (2) One anothering (3) Identity
“Take care.” Watch your step, don’t get tripped up by unbelief or be deceived by sin, don’t be casual, be diligent. Today if God says, “Let’s walk away from this, lets get help for this. Let’s walk towards this. Take care to make sure you have a heart that listens to God’s slightest correction. To walk straight with God is the key to growth, fruitfulness and peace.
Verse 12 Take care brothers. This is written to a community of believers, the new life is outworked in a new Community. Don’t be a loner. We have a responsibility towards one another.
We love each other by being honest with one another. “What you are doing right now is spiritually dangerous”. Walk deeply with one another, encourage one another to choose the right thing in difficult circumstances, be obedient to His voice even if it’s not easy.
And as you endure, remain obedient, and persevere the writer wants you to see all this evidence of gradual Growth and maturity, AS wonderful evidence and proof that you are in Christ.. I haven’t quit because He keeps me
(VERSE 14 If indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end) The if here doesn’t mean if you slip you can lose your salvation, the IF isn’t meant to leave you feeling Am I in? Am I out? Am I not in? Nothing can snatch you from your Fathers hand.
But Neither should assurance be false. Because if there has NEVER been evidence of perseverance, faith and obedience there is real reason to question was I ever saved?
At the root of why these spies point blank refused to believe God was an issue of identity, they still saw themselves as a slave nation, as small and they were terrified. They couldn’t see how grasshoppers could do it. They had lost sight of their identity as the people of God.
If we don’t understand our identity in Christ, we can end up acting more like slaves than Sons. Small in our own eyes, just grasshoppers in a sin enslaved world. We are not powerless. We have come to share in Christ. That’s our new identity. We have a new nature we are saints.
Before Jesus did a thing He heard “You are my son and with you I am well pleased” Likewise The Holy Spirit marks us out as adopted. We are Christians. Little Christ’s. When the Father looks at us He sees the image of the Son He Loves.
He is your Father and He is good, you can trust and obey Him. We have an identity that is not based on performance or comparison. You are royalty, you have dignity, value and worth.
Royalty doesn’t habitually look for satisfaction in little droplets of death? Remember who you are, focus on who He has called you to be, the beloved of God. A royal priesthood. An outpost of the Kingdom here in London.