Human Nature, (As falsely taught by the world as “Natural” – Evolution): Feel-Act.
The world says: “We act in response to how we feel,” “If it feels good, do it.” The world is obsessed with emotional feelings at the expense of rational discretion. It is the emotions that the media, entertainment, and politics utilize to move people in the direction they would desire. If they are losing an intellectual disagreement, they attempt to use emotions to either discredit the speaker, or discredit the cause.
The use of victimization both to promote an agenda, as well as a lifestyle; and a mindset is paramount to our current culture. The emotions of victimization are used as rationalities for any and all illegal, immoral, and unethical behaviors. This is seen in the utilization of “the ends justifies the means” type of rationality, which is an emotional based type of manipulation.
Human Improvement, (As taught by psychology, such as: REBT – “Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy,” formally, RET “Rational Emotive Therapy): Think-Feel-Act.
The more intellectual in the world say: “We act the way we feel, and we feel the way we think.” They say to correct this process, change your belief system (which is how we interpret things), then this will change how we feel, and thus change how you act. This humanistic type of therapy has produced positive results in the majority of those that utilize this psychological tool. However, it falls short of giving man the insight, and more importantly the ability to truly change his life, both physically and spiritually (Because man without God’s Spirit is dead, and therefore man cannot be spiritual without being born again – John 3:3. “For this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.” ~ 1 Peter 4:6; also see: Psalm 51:5; Romans 8:11; James 2:26; Romans 5:12).
Think right, Act right, and you should feel right because it pleases God, not because it pleases self. And if you still feel bad, that’s OK, you’ll live. Never let your emotions lead you; your mind must lead according to God’s Word. It is God’s Word that should determine how you act. If your feelings are troubled, this does not mean that you should do wrong to feel better. Feelings – emotions are almost always in response to something that has happened.
If you are angry it is because someone has insulted or assaulted you. If you feel good, it is because good things are happening to you (the word “happy” come from the word “happen,” which is an external condition, not an internal one, such as joy).
If you feel love is because someone’s actions produce in you the feeling of love (there looks, behavior, and being produce in you the feeling of love or being in love with them) or being in love, or their act of love (the act of love is simply putting someone else first, giving them preference before our selves. This is what Jesus commanded us to do – “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.” ~ John 13:34), towards you causes you to respond in love back towards them.
It is normally difficult to not love someone who loves us first, especially when our behavior does not warrant it, and they continue to love us anyway. Yet, man who is born in sin, and death; can always find a way (“We love him, because he first loved us.” ~ 1 John 4:19).
God’s Priorities ~ Heart
It is in understanding the human heart that we come to understand God’s priority in how we are to conduct our lives.
First, we need to understand the difference between the use of the word “heart” in the Bible (Hebrew: leb [H3820] ~ Greek: kardia [G2588]), as compared to the way that we in the English-speaking world understand the word “heart.”
In God’s Word, our emotions are not defined by the use of the word “heart.” Both Testaments never utilize the word “heart” – solely concerning the emotions (see our essay entitled: “The Heart and the Mind ~ What the Biblical Word heart Means“).
Biblically speaking, in both the Hebrew and Greek languages the word “heart” always entails the total internal part of man.
First, and primarily, the mind; next the emotions; and last the “seat of the will,” discretion; where choices are made (sometimes referred to as volition) between rational or sometimes emotive deliberations).
Concerning the word “heart,” Vine’s Expository Dictionary of the Old Testament and New Testament Words, states:
kardia (G2588), “the heart” (Eng., “cardiac,” etc.), the chief organ of physical life (“for the life of the flesh is in the blood,” Lev. 17:11), occupies the most important place in the human system. By an easy transition the word came to stand for man’s entire mental and moral activity, both the rational and the emotional elements. In other words, the heart is used figuratively for the hidden springs of the personal life. “The Bible describes human depravity as in the ‘heart,’ because sin is a principle which has its seat in the center of man’s inward life, and then ‘defiles’ the whole circuit of his action, Matthew 15:19, Matthew 15:20. On the other hand, Scripture regards the heart as the sphere of Divine influence, Roman 2:15; Acts 15:9…. The heart, as lying deep within, contains ‘the hidden man,’ 1 Peter 3:4, the real man. It represents the true character but conceals it” (J. Laidlaw, in Hastings’ Bible Dictionary).
The heart, in its moral significance, includes the mind, the emotions, and the will.
A simple example of the reasoning (mental / mind) aspect of the heart is seen in Psalms 119:11 (as well as: Matt. 9:4; Mar. 2:6; Luk. 24:38; Heb. 4:12) which states:
“thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee”
Emotions do not function using terminology, or store and retain words; but rather pictures, or scenes. Emotions do not use reasoning, and are not related to rational memory, or the logic of examination and determination; and are not based upon rational conclusion (as stated before, the emotions work on a different level, a responsive level where meaning is determined according to events that happen or words spoken, yet never in an analytical manner. Definition is according to the mind wherein the emotions need translation and interpretation, yet solely for those purposes; as opposed to rationality which can be based solely upon logic); it is with the mind that words are retained and understood, not the emotions.
In the above verse, the Hebrew word for “hid“ (Hebrew: tsaphan [H6845]), is a verb that means: “to hide,” “treasure,” “store-up,” “protect,” or “esteem something of value.” It is a word that refers to the use of the mind. It does not mean to handle something casually, but to handle it intricately and carefully. The idea of this Scripture is to treat God’s Word with the highest regard within your mind, to the extent that you regard it carefully, considering the choices that you make so as not to sin against God. It is in the power of the Holy Spirit, in one of His capacities to remind us of God’s Word, as well as to teach us and guide us (John 14:26; 16:13); wherein we are to consider our actions and choices in light of God’s Word, considering the value that it holds in our lives. This is just one Scripture which presents God’s Word concerning the value it should hold as we think upon it.
The Mind Must Interpret
Beyond this aspect concerning the mind, is the consideration of how the mind is utilized as the prime tool of interpretation and understanding in regards to everything that we as individuals say or do. At the most base level, the use of any Scripture mandates the use of the mind in figuring out what:
1) Individual words mean, then the use of our
2) memory in retaining them, and the
3) logic of rationality in understanding how the words fit together to bring a summation of what the verse truly entails.
It is with the full faculty of our minds that we comprehend what the words in this verse say to us. While the understanding of any verse may cause a response – an emotional feeling, this does not apply if the mind is not first functioning adequately. Without the mind, the use of the emotions is no more human, but animal in its manifestation, where pure emotions without common intellectual rationality would doom any specie, therefore God creates within animals instincts in order to protect them because of this lack of rationality – and when an attempt is made to suggest that man is to be led by his emotions, as animal’s are, the outcome is always atheism as is seen in evolution.
God has made man to be as He is, ruled by his mind, not his emotions; which why it is so important to teach the Biblical understanding of the word, “heart.”
It is with the mind that God communicates meaning, and it is with the mind that God teaches us His Word.