The King Of Hearts
“The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.”
- With the effeminate, milquetoast preaching of today, most men have no idea God overrules hearts.
- The Sovereign of the universe owes no respect to the human heart or the emotional choices thereof.
- Men can scream and squabble over the free will of man or man’s free moral agency all they want!
- From a human perspective, God magnifies His sovereignty by using the hearts of men for Himself!
- God does not put evil in men’s hearts, because there is enough evil there already (James 1:13-16).
- Because men sin freely and willfully, God righteously judges them (Acts 2:23; 4:28; Rom 9:18-20).
- There is no confusion between God’s secret and revealed wills – obey what is revealed (Deut 29:29)!
- If the Fatalist says all depends on God, use your wits and do what you can in the name of God. Glory!
- What a boon to prayer! If God controls kings’ hearts, he can move nations for us (Jeremiah 29:4-7).
- If God can move a king’s heart, which is not used to submitting to anyone, then He can move yours!
- God can enlarge a king’s heart with wisdom or give a king a beast’s heart (I Kings 4:29; Dan 4:16).
- And if He can do so to a king’s heart, far more of a heart than you have, then He can move yours!
The Fact of the Matter
- God put terror into the hearts of the cities of Canaan to protect Jacob and his sons (Gen 35:5).
- God hardened the heart of Pharaoh, so He could destroy him for His own honor and glory and perpetual reputation (Ex 4:21; 7:3,13; 9:12,16,35; 10:1,20; 11:10; 14:4,8,17; Rom 9:17).
- God put fear into the hearts of the Canaanites to cause them to turn their backs to make it easier for His people to destroy them (Exodus 15:16; 23:27; Deut 11:25; II Chron 17:10).
- God promised to restrain the hearts of Israel’s neighbors three times a year (Exodus 34:24).
- God hardened the heart of Sihon, king of Heshbon, to die in battle against Israel (Deut 2:30).
- God hardened the hearts of all the cities of Canaan to be destroyed by Joshua (Josh 11:20).
- Samson’s heart craved the woman of Timnath, but God’s was against Philistia (Judges 14:4).
- Eli’s sons did not respond to his warning, because the Lord would kill them (I Samuel 2:25).
- When God would punish Israel, He moved David’s heart by Satan (II Sam 24:1; I Chr 21:1).
- God stirred up an adversary to Solomon after he turned from God to women (I Kings 11:14).
- Rehoboam’s haughty and wicked spirit was from the Lord to divide Israel (I Kings 12:15).
- God sent a lying spirit to deceive Ahab’s heart to go to battle and be killed (I Kgs 22:20-23).
- God stirred up the kings of Assyria to carry Israel captive for her disobedience (I Chr 5:26).
- God stirred up the Philistines and Arabians to punish Jehoram for his sins (II Chr 21:16-17).
- Amaziah would not listen to a warning, because God needed to judge Judah (II Chron 25:20).
- When God chooses to chasten or judge, He can give men up to their hearts’ lusts (Ps 81:12).
- God actually hardened the Egyptians’ hearts to make life miserable for Israel (Ps 105:25).
- God hardened the hearts of most of Israel, because of their wicked rebellion (Isaiah 6:9-13; 44:18-20; 63:17; Matthew 13:10-17; John 12:39-40; Deuteronomy 29:4).
- The king of Assyria thought one thing in his heart, but God used him for another (Is 10:7).
- Israel rightly confessed that God had hardened their heart against His fear (Isaiah 63:17).
- The crowd of zealous Jews at Stephen’s trial had their hearts cut by his words (Acts 7:54).
- When men reject God, He hardens their reprobate hearts (Rom 1:21,24,26,28; Eph 4:17-19).
- God sends strong delusion to deceive the hearts of truth-rejecting Catholics (II Thess 2:9-12).
- Ten kings of Europe did not know why they gave their kingdoms to the beast (Rev 17:17).
- God knows and tries the hearts of all men – He regards no human laws of privacy or secrecy (I Kings 8:39; I Chron 28:9; Psalm 7:9; 44:21; 139:4; Proverbs 15:11; 17:3; 21:2; Jer 17:10; Luke 16:15; 22:31-34; Acts 1:24; 15:8; Romans 8:27; I Thess 2:4; Heb 4:12-14; Rev 2:23).
- God punishes and rewards men according to their hearts (Deuteronomy 5:29; 29:14-28; 30:9-10; I Samuel 7:3; I Kings 2:4; 8:23; 11:9; II Chronicles 6:14,30; 16:9; Psalm 18:26; 73:1; 36:10; 24:3-6; 15:1-5; 7:10; 125:4; Proverbs 11:20; 6:16-19; Ezekiel 14:1-11).
The Blessing of the Matter
- God kept King Abimelech from touching Sarah through either his heart or body (Gen 20:6).
- God overruled the wicked hearts of Joseph’s brothers to save the whole family (Gen 50:20).
- God prepared Saul to be king and the men with him by changing their hearts (I Sam 10:9,26).
- God enlarged the heart of Solomon, and not yours, according to His own will (I Kings 4:29).
- Elijah prayed for God to send fire down from heaven and revive their hearts (I Kings 18:37).
- David blessed the great God for putting generous giving into their hearts (I Chron 29:9,14).
- In the days of Hezekiah, God prepared the hearts of His people (II Chronicles 29:36; 30:12).
- God stirred up the heart of Cyrus to rebuild Jerusalem (II Chron 36:22; Ezra 1:1; Is 45:13).
- Men’s hearts are desperately wicked, but God restrains the wrath He does not use (Ps 76:10).
- God put into the heart of Artaxerxes to beautify God’s house in Jerusalem (Ezra 6:22; 7:27).
- God put into Nehemiah’s heart things to do for the restoration of Jerusalem (Neh 2:12; 7:5).
- David knew that God prepared the hearts of His people even to pray to the Lord (Ps 10:17).
- God promised to put His fear in the hearts of His people (Jeremiah 32:40; Ezekiel 36:26).
- The revival under the preaching of Haggai was by the Lord working in hearts (Haggai 1:14).
- The crowd of zealous Jews on the Day of Pentecost had their hearts pricked (Acts 2:37).
- He opened Lydia’s heart so she believed the preaching of a stranger named Paul (Ac 16:14).
- Titus had exceptional care for the Corinthians by God putting it into his heart (II Cor 8:16).
- If you have any will to do the good pleasure of God, it is because He put it in you (Phil 2:13).
- When God grants repentance to a man, he can be delivered from the devil (II Tim 2:25-26).
- The new covenant includes the term of God writing His laws in the hearts (Heb 8:10-12).
The Prayer for the Matter
- If God leaves your heart for a while, you will quickly reveal your sinfulness (II Chr 32:31).
- You are capable of committing any sin, no matter how evil, if God were to leave you to yourself and withdraw His holy restraint (Jer 17:9; Rom 7:8; I Cor 10:12).
- If the preparations of the heart in man are from the Lord, we should beg Him (Prov 16:1).
- Jesus prayed that Peter’s faith would not fail entirely during Satan’s sifting (Luke 22:31-34).
- David prayed for God to prepare the hearts of Israel and keep thoughts in them (I Chr 29:18).
- Solomon prayed for God to incline their hearts toward Him and His ways (I Kings 8:57-58).
- After his heinous sins, David prayed for God to give a clean heart once again (Psalm 51:10).
- David was confident God would enlarge his heart in more affection toward God (Ps 119:32).
- David prayed God to incline his heart toward truth and away from covetousness (Ps 119:36).
- David asked for his heart to be sound in God’s statutes, which implies the need (Ps 119:80).
- Along with watching over his lips, David asked God to keep his heart from evil (Ps 141:4).
- Let us pray for God to work in us that which is wellpleasing in His sight (Hebrews 13:21).
- Your heart is the most important part of your being and from which come the issues of life (Pro 4:23).
- It is out of the abundance of the heart that our words and our deeds come (Matt 12:34-35; 15:10-20).
- You should glory in the sovereign power of our God over the hearts of even the wickedest men.
- You should rejoice in the sovereign power of our God to open the hearts of men to Christ and truth.
- You should prayer for the sovereign power of God to enlarge your heart and incline it toward heaven.
- Stop right now whatever you are doing, and beg God to keep your heart, enlarge it, and instruct it!
- Should you wait for God to move your heart to do His will? No! Work it out right now (Phil 2:12)!
For Further Study:
- Proverb Commentary: “Proverbs 16:1,” which deals with God’s preparation of the heart and tongue in men.
- Proverb Commentary: “Proverbs 21:1,” which deals with God’s control and direction of even kings’ hearts.
- Sermon Outline: “The Heart of David,” covers David’s exceptional heart and how he kept it to God’s glory.
- Sermon Outline: “A Pure Heart,” covers all the aspects of heart religion and how to improve and increase it.