Clean Hearts

Posted on 04/14/2013 by Rev. Jennifer L. Faust

AUDIO: dialup - broadband - podcast

TRANSCRIPT: (does not contain everything found in the audio above)

*** listen to the audio for introduction and prayer ***


Public Prayer Requests:

*** there are no public prayer requests this week ***


JOYFUL JOYFUL WE ADORE THEE

Joyful, joyful, we adore thee
God of glory, Lord of love
Hearts unfold like flowers before thee
opening to the sun above
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness
drive the dark of doubt away
Giver of immortal gladness
fill us with the light of day

All thy works with joy surround thee
earth and heaven reflect thy rays
Stars and angels sing around thee
center of unbroken praise
Field and forest, vale and mountain
flowery meadow, flashing sea
Chanting bird and flowing fountain
call us to rejoice in thee

Thou art giving and forgiving
ever blessing, ever blest
Well-spring of the joy of living
ocean depth of happy rest!
Thou our Father, Christ our brother
all who live in love are thine
Teach us how to love each other
lift us to the joy divine

Mortals, join the mighty chorus
which the morning stars began
Love divine is reigning o'er us
binding all within its span
Ever singing, march we onward
victors in the midst of strife
Joyful music leads us sunward
in the triumph song of life!


BRINGING EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE

Bringing every thought captive
Bringing every thought captive
Bringing every thought captive to the Lord

Bringing every thought captive
Bringing every thought captive
Bringing every thought captive to the Lord

Purify me O Lord
Purify me O Lord
Let the meditations of my heart
be pleasing in your sight

Purify me O Lord
Purify me O Lord
As I meditate upon your Word
victorious in your might

Purify me


And with every thought brought captive to
obedience to Christ
And your Word hid in my heart so I can
live a holy life
Come and fill me with your Holy Spirit
melt my heart with fire
'Til my mind becomes your mind and my heart
burns with your desire

Purify me


CREATE IN ME A CLEAN HEART

Create in me a clean heart oh God,
And renew a right spirit within me.
Create in me a clean heart oh God,
And renew a right spirit within me.

And cast me not away from Thy presence oh Lord,
And take not Thy Holy Spirit from me.
Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation,
And renew a right spirit within me.



*** listen to the audio for the message introduction ***


Father God, as we continue this service I ask that our eyes, ears, minds, and hearts be in tune with what You want us to receive. I ask that my words would be only ones which You would have me say. Speak through me, God, Your servant. I am but the vessel of what I know to be on Your heart today. I ask Holy Spirit to cover us with your presence as I share. I pray all this in Jesus' name, Amen.

Please be seated.

Today's fireside chat is titled Clean Hearts. The main focus of this fireside chat is our spiritual hearts, but I will talk first about our physical hearts because taking care of our bodies is important.

So, what do we do to have clean physical hearts? To have a healthy heart we eat right and we exercise (gasp I said exercise! Lol) to name two main things. I don't know about you, but I need to take better care of my physical heart. I need to take care of my spiritual heart even more.

Our spiritual hearts are unseen. We can't "touch" them with our physical hands. We do know they get dark with sin because if not there would be nothing in the Bible that says "Purify my heart" or "create in me a clean heart." We need this cleansing to make us more like Jesus.

In Psalm 51, David talks about these things...having a clean heart. He wrote this Psalm after Nathan came to him to tell him about his sin with Bathsheba. David committed sin and so he poured out his heart to God and he wrote it down for us to see. We can learn from his words.

Let's look at Psalm 51 for a bit. I'll read the whole thing. Bare with me as I read.

1 Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.

3 For I acknowledge my transgressions,
And my sin is always before me.
4 Against You, You only, have I sinned,
And done this evil in Your sight—
That You may be found just when You speak, And blameless when You judge.

5 Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
And in sin my mother conceived me.
6 Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, And in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.

7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Make me hear joy and gladness,
That the bones You have broken may rejoice.
9 Hide Your face from my sins,
And blot out all my iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, And sinners shall be converted to You.

14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, The God of my salvation, And my tongue shall sing aloud of Your righteousness.
15 O Lord, open my lips, And my mouth shall show forth Your praise.
16 For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart—These, O God, You will not despise.

18 Do good in Your good pleasure to Zion;
Build the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then You shall be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, With burnt offering and whole burnt offering; Then they shall offer bulls on Your altar.

I would like to say a little more about where David was when he wrote this Psalm. This was written after David committed adultery with Bathsheba and then had her husband murdered to cover up the adultery. One sin can not atone for another. We can not fix our sins on our own. There is but one Atonement and that is the blood of Jesus.

David realized after Nathan told him a story which David understood. He then wrote this Psalm about that event. The story of David and Bathsheba starts in 2 Samuel chapter 11. If you wish to read it later, please do.

So, David had this sin that blackened his heart. He wanted to repent, to be closer to God and so he wrote "create in me a clean heart oh God..." It wasn't easy by any means.

This is the KING of Israel! David grieved the heart of God! We all have! Our sin grieves the heart of God! You can not say truthfully that your sin doesn't grieve the heart of God. If you do, you lie to yourself!

Our sin blackens our hearts. It turns us away from God. We fall into the pit of despair and sorrow. There is but one way to turn our hearts.

The Voice of the One who woos our hearts. We ask Him in our prayers and songs to give us clean hearts! To purify us! To cleanse us white as snow!

Jeremiah 17 verses 9 and 10 says "The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?
10 I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings.
We see here that only GOD can truly know a heart. That is why it is SO important to ask HIM for a clean heart and not search for the answer to our sinfulness anywhere else, but in the presence of a holy God who knows our hearts better than we know them.

Let's look at the Psalm for a bit. It's Psalm 51. Verses 1 and 2 read:

1 Have mercy upon me, O God,
According to Your lovingkindness;
According to the multitude of Your tender mercies, Blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.

This is a model for us. We should cry out to God to have mercy on us when we sin! For we have grieved His heart! We are His children and He wants the BEST for us! If we do bad things, wrong things, it breaks His heart! He can see the black tar start to cover our pure, white hearts and He wants to stop it. But it is our choice.

Verses 3 and 4 say:

3 For I acknowledge my transgressions,
And my sin is always before me.
4 Against You, You only, have I sinned,
And done this evil in Your sight—
That You may be found just when You speak, And blameless when You judge.

David is saying that he acknowledges his sin and that he knows God will judge him for what he has done. And God does. God will judge us for our sin. There are consequences for what we do. And I'm not just speaking to you all like I'm some perfect person. I'm not! I know that sometimes I sin and I know that sometimes I do things and don't even know I have sinned! But there is a Redeemer! He is so faithful, merciful and full of grace!

So it is important that we acknowledge our sins before God, instead of trying to excuse them or to convince ourselves that OUR sin isn't that bad.

Verses 7-9 read:

7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Make me hear joy and gladness,
That the bones You have broken may rejoice.
9 Hide Your face from my sins,
And blot out all my iniquities.

David is now asking God to cleanse him from his sin. Make me white as snow he says. Wash away all this dirt and filth. We are like that, too. We need God to cleanse us, to purify us, to wash us as white as snow when the blackness of sin has covered our hearts or maybe not totally covered our hearts, but has tried to cover it. We need God to rescue us from our sinful nature and with Jesus' blood, He has done that.

The last verses we will look at are verses 10, 11, and 12. The read:

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.

I looked up the word create on dictionary.com not because I don't know what it means, but I wanted to have a definition that wasn't mine. I found something interesting.

The definition I found for create says to cause to come into being, as something unique that would not naturally evolve or that is not made by ordinary processes. God created us by an extraordinary process. It wasn't a normal thing when God breathed life into Adam. When God creates a clean heart in us, when we ask Him to do that, we best realize that it won't be an ordinary process that occurs.
When God creates a clean heart in us, there will be some amazing and extraordinary things going on inside of us. Just because God works in you differently than He works in me doesn't mean the way He created your clean heart is wrong or better than mine. It means He knows and realizes that we are different people.

My clean heart and your clean heart will look different, but only God can create clean hearts!

My fellow believers, do you have clean hearts? Then, you may not need to pray for one, but need prayer for something else. Maybe you see the need in someone else's life. Come to the altar and pray for them.

Do you see some blackness creeping into your heart? Do you know that sin has overtaken your once white as snow heart? Or maybe you realize that you haven't yet arrived – God's not finished changing you into the image of Jesus – and you want all that flesh junk to be rooted out of your heart. Come to the altar and pray for God to create a clean heart in you. It might be painful. There may be tears, but God will be there! Let Him perfect His extraordinary work in you.

God is calling us to have clean hearts, my brothers and sisters. Are we going to answer His call?

I am willing to answer My Lord and My God! I will be at the altar praying for myself, and for us all.

Please join me. If you need prayer or ministry, please instant message one of us on the staff and we will be happy to help in any way we can. I will close in prayer. When I am finished, you are free to leave if you need to, and you're invited to meet us in the room to your left where we'll meet after this time at the alter for a time of fellowship.

Come, and let's see for God to create in us Clean Hearts.

Father God, here we are. Hearts open and ready for You to do Your work. We ask for clean hearts, God. Free from sin and the things of this world. Cover us in Your Blood, Jesus. Wash us white as snow. Guide our hearts in Christ Jesus. Convict us of our sin, Holy Spirit. Create in us clean hearts oh God for we know our hearts. Yes God, we know our hearts. In Jesus' name we pray all this, Amen.

May God create in you clean hearts that follow after Him and His righteousness! Go in God's peace!