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Pearls of the Kingdom 3/1/2023

Consider these verses from Proverbs with me today as we continue to linger in the area of the “spiritual heart.”

Prov 4:20-27 “My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.”

For this week, I have selected some key words in bold from this passage, that I want to draw our attention too “Guard your heart.”

I believe there are two ways to look at this word “Guard.”

1. One way to think of the word guard is in relationship to a jail or prison. Here it is the duty, responsibility of the guard to keep the prisoner from getting out, escaping.

2. The next way to consider this word guard is with a “military” understanding of, posting a soldier for guard duty. Here it is the duty, responsibility of the soldier on guard to keep watch and prevent the enemy from entering the camp.

I must believe that this portion of scripture in Proverbs has its focus of meaning on our 2nd thought above. Keeping the enemy from entering the heart.

Some have used words like, fortress, castle, and citadel to describe the human heart. I have this picture of the spiritual heart being like a castle. A place where there is a main palace, soldier barracks and courtyard area that is surrounded by a fortified tall outer wall for protection. Day and Night the soldiers (watchmen) guard the wall’s perimeter. They have control over who is allowed to enter and exit the castle through the main gate.

The soldier's main duty is to protect and defend those inside. Keeping a watchful eye for the enemy and stopping him from entering inside the castle walls. The soldier on guard must always be awake and alert for the enemy is a wise adversary. He will use any means to distract, deceive the guards to gain access into the castle. He will look for those who have fallen asleep while on duty. They become targets for the enemy providing easy access inside the walls. Remember the enemies’ goals are: rob, steal, destroy and if possible, take control of the castle.

Concluding thought for today, how important it is for each one of us to be like a soldier on guard duty protecting the castle. We must keep guard, keep watch protecting our hearts. Not that we are guarding our hearts to keep things inside, from escaping but guarding, keeping watch to prevent evil desires, negative thoughts from entering. Understanding that once these are allowed to enter, these will directly affect the purity of the heart.

But we have a helper, a comforter, an advocate, a counsellor, the Holy Spirit to help us in guarding our heart. We must listen to Hm when he speaks.

Jn 14:26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

Remember when your on guard duty, like a good soldier, come dressed for duty.

Eph 6:10 -17 “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

My friends, guard your heart, stay alert, stay watchful, be dressed and ready to defend the castle,

Pastor Jeff

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I look forward to your posts every week.

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