Part II: He Is the Same… December 1, 2011


Charlotte, North Carolina

Jesus knows the hearts of people. It would be ridiculous to have a friend–especially if he insisted on being your savior–if he possessed no human inclinations or understanding of the feelings and emotions of being a person. Would you agree? It would be like dating a robot. All the right moves would be made with no real comprehension of the passion.

Jesus knows the hearts of people.

What did that knowledge give him? It told him when to be compassionate and when to avoid contact with folks. Both actions are merciful. There are times when people need compassion and tenderness towards the immediate concern—and then there are occasions when the best thing we can do for another person is leave them alone and not allow ourselves to become frustrated by their arrogance, indecision or just confusion.

The perfect example is the feeding of the five thousand, when Jesus had compassion on the multitudes because they were starving. But just short days later, when they were following him, pretending to be disciples when all they really wanted was another miracle of bread and fish, he challenged them and when he did, they pouted and departed.

This is why he tells us that every word out of our mouths comes from the abundance of our hearts. Shall we call it the “exchange system?”

For instance, there is a lot of concern in our society that violence and sex are causing our nation to become a vicious society with a preoccupation with the lurid. Honestly, that’s not the way it works. Watching a violent movie does not make people want to go out and kill each other. There is a switch in the human heart. When we see violence, we develop an emotional tendency towards impatience. We drive more aggressively; we complain more about businesses that keep us waiting and we certainly are not willing to sit for an hour to allow God to enlighten and bless us. When violence comes into the human field of vision–into the eyes–what the heart changes it into is impatience.

The same exchange happens when we see an overabundance of sexuality or pornography. It does not cause people to rape and fornicate. In the “exchange system” of the heart, it becomes frustration. Frustrated people are capable of doing all sorts of stupid activities because they feel they have been cheated.

Likewise, I put forth the same contention about excessive sarcasm in comedy nowadays. It makes the human heart feel that “if life is just a joke, then what’s the big deal?” So it promotes laziness in us.

And finally, all the sadness on the news which is funneled into us daily is translated by the human heart and exchanged out as fear. “If this tragedy happened to them, then what’s going to happen to me?”

Do you see what I mean? Jesus knows the hearts of people.

Compassion given to a starving person is mercy. Mercy given to an arrogant person rubber stamps self-satisfaction and nastiness. So as we understand the exchange system, we comprehend that out of the abundance of our heart we will speak, and if our emotions have been inundated with violence, the abundance we share will be translated into impatience. If we are titillated with sexuality, we will put forth frustration. Too much cynicism and sarcasm in our humor jades us and causes us to lose our motivation and begets laziness. And a constant barrage of melancholy, sad tales produces fear about our next decisions.

If we’re going to understand HOW Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever, we must begin by realizing that he took the time to know the hearts of people. And since everything comes from the emotions and the abundance of those expressions, we have to be careful about what we allow to rule our roost.

Jesus knows the hearts of people:

  • Give them violence and they’ll become impatient.
  • Over-sex them, and they are frustrated.
  • Tell them life’s a joke and they’ll turn lazy.
  • Repeat one sad tale after another and the abundance that will pour from their hearts is fear.

He took the time to be human so that in understanding humans he could help humans emotionally give a better abundance of human quality.

And that leads me to my next point: what is the most inhuman part about being human? Let’s talk about that tomorrow.


Here comes Christmas! For your listening pleasure, below is Manger Medley, Jonathan’s arrangement of Away in the Manger, which closes with him singing his gorgeous song, Messiah.  Looking forward to the holidays with you!

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