Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 7, 1954

Check Your Attitude

Franklin T. Puckett, Calico Rock, Arkansas

Solomon declared that as a man "thinketh in his heart, so is he." (Prov. 23:7) A man's conduct is determined by the condition of his heart. If his conduct is wrong, it is because his heart is wrong. Simon the sorcerer sinned for his heart was not right in the sight of God. (Acts 8:18-23) Out of the heart proceed the sins of a man's life. (Matt. 15:19) From the heart comes obedience to the divine pattern of the gospel. (Rom. 6:17,18) Hence, the necessity of keep "thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." (Prov. 4:23)

A man's attitude of heart toward the truth determines his relationship to God. Paul speaks of those who are deceived by the man of sin as perishing "because they receive not the love of the truth that they might be saved." (2 Thess. 2:10) One must love the truth in order to be saved. Jesus declared that the truth by which one is sanctified or set apart unto God is the word of God. (John 17:17) If one loves the truth, he will believe and obey it. In it he will walk and by it his life will be ordered. A life so ordered is pleasing and acceptable to God.

It is Satan's purpose to keep or remove the word of God from the heart lest one "should believe and be saved." (Luke 8:12) In order to do this he must bar or destroy one's love of the truth. This he proposes to do with the trials, cares, riches, and the pleasures of this life. Every temptation to succumb to the trials and cares of this world, or to exalt and enthrone its riches and pleasures, is an effort on the part of Satan to destroy one's life through developing a wrong attitude of heart toward the word of God If earthly cares, temporal riches, worldly pleasures, and human wisdom can be enthroned, God will be dethroned. A wrong attitude toward God and His word has been developed and a wrong life will be the sure result.

Every departure from God has resulted from the development of a wrong attitude toward Him and His word. It was Israel's unholy desire to be like the nations round about that led her to become dissatisfied with God's arrangement and demand a king who ultimately led her into complete apostasy. It was the unrighteous desire for preeminence and ecclesiastical power that led away from the simplicity of the New Testament pattern of church government and to the development of the Roman Catholic hierarchy. It was dissatisfaction with the limitations of God's word and the desire to gain prestige in the world that led to digression in the ranks of the restoration movement. Dissatisfaction with the simplicity of the gospel and a desire for recognition, publicity, and prestige, always leads to disastrous results.

Since it has happened before, it can happen again. Let us examine our hearts and search our souls to see if there be any vain purpose or unrighteous motives found there. What about our attitude? Are we satisfied with God and do we love His truth? Are we content to stay within the bounds of Christ's teachings? (2 John 9) Do we will to do His will? (John 7:17) May we be able to answer in the affirmative at all times. If we keep our hearts right in the sight of God, we shall never err from His way.