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Power Point - March 15, 2005


This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart…

-Ephesians 4:17-18


I remember when I was playing baseball in college and getting ready for the season to start, it would take a lot of batting practice. At the beginning of the practice session, my hands would become almost raw and blistered because I was taking so many swings. The more I swung the bat, the more my hands became callused and the pain would go away.


This same thing can happen to a person’s heart. When you first begin to hear the Gospel, maybe you did as a child, you’re sensitized to it. That’s why Jesus said to let the little children come to Him, because the kingdom of God belonged to them (Luke 18:16). But as we grow older, it’s easier to reject the Holy Spirit as He pricks our hearts. The Bible tells us that we can become spiritually hardened.


The Bible says, “Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts…” (Hebrews 3:15). A person cannot doubt the Spirit of God working in his or her heart. It is no compliment for someone to say they he or she can sit in a service, hear the Gospel, and never be moved by the message of Christ.


People who live like this are mentally darkened. Solomon’s story, found in Ecclesiastes, was similar to those who experience this. He tried it all—wine, women, song, pleasures, profit, and possessions. He had it all too, but he ended up saying, “Vanity of vanities! All is vanity!” It was all empty for him.


People who are mentally darkened have a distorted way of thinking. There is no comprehending the things of God apart from Jesus Christ. And we wonder why friends and family who are lost don’t say yes to Christ or respond to the Gospel message. But, we must understand that they are alienated from the life of God.


If you know of someone who is close to you that is in desperate need of the new life found in Jesus, then begin praying fervently that the Holy Spirit would prick their hearts with the message of Christ. Pray that they would not reject the calling of God, and that God would use you as an instrument in keeping their heart pliable and open to salvation.





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