What does it mean to have a circumcised heart? What’s an uncircumcised heart? How does one go from having a hard and stoney heart to a soft heart upon which YHVH can write his Torah—his instructions in righteousness? This video discusses this critical, salvational issue.
Here is a study guide to go with this video—
The heart of man in its natural, spiritually unregenerted state is hard, obstinate and rebellious toward the Torah-instructions of YHVH Elohim. Man can’t help himself—this is just the way he is innately. This is the bad news. the good news, however, is that YHVH Elohim, man’s creator, knows how to fix the problem. The solution is the “rain” of YHVH’s Holy Spirit, which can fall on the stoney ground of men’s heart, soften that hard ground, and allow the good seed of Elohim’s Word to germinate, grow and eventually bear spiritual fruit. A day is coming in the near future prior to the return of Yeshua the Messiah when YHVH will pour out his Spirit upon many people causing them to forsake their wicked and rebellious ways and turn to him in loving obedience.
The Bad News: The Problem Is Man’s Sinful Condition
We must first discuss the bad news before we can talk about the good news. Sadly, modern gospel preachers often omit or only lightly touch on or water down the bad news of the sinful condition of man’s spiritually unregenerated heart. Here’s what the Word of Elohim has to say about men’s heart
Jer 17:9 The heart is deceitful [sly, insidious, deceitful, slippery] above all things, and desperately wicked [to be weak, sick, frail, to be incurable, to be sick]: who can know it?
Rom 3:10–18 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after Elohim. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of Elohim before their eyes.
Rom 7:14–25 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of Elohim after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank Elohim through Messiah Yeshua our master. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of Elohim; but with the flesh the law of sin.
Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Messiah Yeshua, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Messiah Yeshua hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, Elohim sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against Elohim: for it is not subject to the law of Elohim, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please Elohim. 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of Elohim dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Messiah, he is none of his.
Heb 3:7–19 Wherefore (as the Ruach HaKodesh saith, Today if ye will hear his voice, Harden [to render obstinate, stubborn] not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief [unfaithfulness, faithless, want of faith, unbelief, weakness of faith], in departing from the living Elohim. For some, when they had heard, did provoke [exasperate, to rouse to indignation]: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness? And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief [unfaithfulness, faithless, want of faith, unbelief, weakness of faith].
Heb 4:6–7 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief [obstinacy, obstinate opposition to the divine will]: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden [to render obstinate, stubborn, to be hardened, to become obstinate or stubborn] not your hearts.
Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of Elohim.
1 John 1:8–10 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
The Good News: The Father Is Calling His Prodigal Children Back to Him
Because of man’s sinful rebellion against Elohim, which commenced at the tree of knowledge, man has been in a state of spiritual wandering, separation and exile from a loving relationship with Elohim ever since. This reality is illustrated by two notable historical examples from the pages of the Bible. Because of sin and rebellion, YHVH cast Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden, and similarly, he cast Israel out of the Promised Land because of their apostasy from the Torah.
After years of punishing exile, it is the Father’s heart to regather his lost and scattered people. But first, something needs to happen. YHVH is whistling for his people to come home (Zech 10:8). YHVH is the one who initiates the call to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. This he does out of an intense, unconditional love for his people— the children of Abraham, and the unconditional promises he made to Abraham to make of his children a multitude of nations as numerous as the stars of heaven.
John 3:16 For Elohim so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
1 Peter 3:9 The Lord is … not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Matt 22:14 For many are called [a calling, invitation to a feast, of the divine invitation to embrace salvation of Elohim], but few are chosen [Gr. eklectos].
2 Tim 1:9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling [a calling, invitation to a feast, of the divine invitation to embrace salvation of Elohim], not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Messiah Yeshua before the world began…
2 Pet 1:10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling [a calling, invitation to a feast, of the divine invitation to embrace salvation of Elohim] and election [the act of picking out, choosing] sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall…
The Gospel Preached Is Like Sowing Seed in Dry Ground
Most often this calling goes out only after the gospel has been preached; that is, the seed of YHVH’s word has been sown into the dry ground of men’s lives.
In the Parable of the Sower (Matt 13:1–9, 18–23), we learn that the seed was sown far and wide, but only 25 percent fell on the good ground and yielded a crop. The rest fell on bad ground representing various conditions of man’s evil, sinful, materialistic, rebellious, worldly and carnally-minded heart. When the gospel message is preached, the seed of YHVH’s word goes forth.
Rom 10:14–17 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of Elohim.
The Rain of the Spirit Must Water the Seed in the Ground
YHVH’s call to men can be likened to rain coming down from heaven on the dry and cracked earth, which is a picture of men’s unregenerate, hard, sinful and rebellious hearts. Rain or water in the Bible can be a metaphor for both the Torah or Word of Elohim (Deut 32:2; Eph 5:26) and the Holy Spirit of Elohim (John 7:37–39). Without rain falling on the dry ground, the seeds that have been sown in the ground can’t germinate and bring forth fruit. Similarly, YHVH’s Spirit poured out upon a person’s heart has the potential to bring forth spiritual fruit for the glory of YHVH.
A Conversion Process Begins
After the divine calling occurs, man must then respond to the call, and then YHVH begins the process of conversion in that person’s life (heart and mind). Conversion describes the process that causes a change in form, character, or function to occur. This process begins instantly but continues for a lifetime.
Acts 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted [to turn to, to the worship of the true God, to cause to return, to bring back, to the love and obedience of God, to the love for the children, to love wisdom and righteousness], that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
This conversion process involves be converted or transformed into the image, character and nature of Yeshua.
Rom 12:1–2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed [Gr. metamorphoo meaning “to change into another form, to transform, to transfigure”] by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Rom 8:28–29 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Eph 4:11–13 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ; Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:
Just because YHVH initially calls a person, saves them (forgives them of their past sins—Rom 3:2, and begins the process of delivering them from bondage to sin, the world, flesh and the devil) doesn’t mean they will ultimately make it into the kingdom of Elohim and obtain immortality. Several things must occur:
- One must work out one’s salvation with fear and trembling (Phil 2:12).
- One must make one’s calling and election sure (2 Pet 1:10).
- One must be an overcomer—overcome the world, the flesh and the devil (1 John 5:4; Rev 2:7,11,17, 26; 3:5,12, 21; 21:7).
- One must endure to the end to receive ultimate and final salvation (i.e., glorification and adoption into the family or kingdom of Elohim, Matt 10:22).
At the same time, one can apostatize (turn from YHVH’s truth, 2 Thess 2:3), grow lukewarm spiritually and be spit out of YHVH’s mouth (Rev 3:15–16), become reprobate, succumb to the cares of this world and fall prey to the devil (Matt 13:18–22), become spiritually shipwrecked (1 Tim 1:19; 4:1).
After a person answers YHVH’s call, YHVH begins pouring out his Holy Spirit upon him.
John 6:44 It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.
YHVH then commences entering into a covenantal relationship with the person (i.e., the betrothal or engagement part of marriage). At that time, YHVH gives his people a new heart and enters into a covenant with them. This occurs in conjunction with an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the regathering of lost and scattered Israel back to their land inheritance.
Jer 31:23, 31–33 23 Thus says the YHVH Tz’vaot (Lord of hosts), the Elohim of Israel: “They shall again use this speech in the land of Judah and in its cities, when I bring back their captivity: ‘The Lord bless you, O home of justice, and mountain of holiness!’… 31 “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah—32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the Lord. 33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.
Jer 32:39–40 then I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them and their children after them. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me.
Jer 24:7 Then I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the Lord; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart.
Ezek 11:17-21 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “I will gather you from the peoples, assemble you from the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel.” ‘ And they will go there, and they will take away all its detestable things and all its abominations from there. Then I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God. But as for those whose hearts follow the desire for their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their deeds on their own heads,” says the Lord God.
Ezek 36:25–28 Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them. Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God.
Heb 8:7–13 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. Because finding fault with them, He says: “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
Heb 10:16–17 “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,” then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”
Deut 30:6 And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.
Attributes of a Man With a Right Heart
Ps 37:23–24, 31 23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, And He delights in his way. 24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand.… 31 The law of his God is in his heart; None of his steps shall slide.
Ps 40:7–8 Then I said, “Behold, I come; In the scroll of the book it is written of me. I delight to do Your will, O my God, And Your law is within my heart.”
Isa 51:6-7 Lift up your eyes to the heavens, And look on the earth beneath. For the heavens will vanish away like smoke, The earth will grow old like a garment, And those who dwell in it will die in like manner; But My salvation [Heb. Yeshua] will be forever, And My righteousness will not be abolished. “Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, You people in whose heart is My law: Do not fear the reproach of men, Nor be afraid of their insults.
2 Cor 3:1–18 Do we begin again to commend ourselves? Or do we need, as some others, epistles of commendation to you or letters of commendation from you? You are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read by all men; clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. And we have such trust through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God, who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. But if the ministry of death, written and engraved on stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of the glory of his countenance, which glory was passing away, how will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious? … Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.
The Flesh Vs. the Spirit
The power of the law of the spirit of life in Yeshua helps us to walk in the Spirit as we follow the Torah. Without this divine help—Messiah living in us, we’re left at the mercy of our flesh which is rebelliously opposed to YHVH and to his Torah.
Rom 7:21–8:11 21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. … There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Messiah Yeshua, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Messiah Yeshua has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Messiah, he is not His. And if Messiah is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Yeshua from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Messiah from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
The Power of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit, like a mother, is regathering her lost and prodigal children, and will draw the lost sheep of Israel back to YHVH by convicting them of sin (Torahlessness) and leading them into truth (Torah-obedience).
John 14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
John 16:8–13 And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.
This Must Be Our Cry and Desire
Ps 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Let It Now Rain!
We must seek earnestly and pray fervently for the rain of YHVH’s Holy Spirit to fall both on the dry ground of our own lives, that of our family members, on the lives of those around us and on the dry ground of our nation and this world to produce a spiritual, end-times harvest for the glory of YHVH and his kingdom.
The Bible prophesies that an end-times (fall) harvest will occur just before the second coming of Yeshua. For example, a great an innumerable multitude will come out of the great tribulation of the end days (Rev 7:9–17). At this time, YHVH will pour out a double portion of the Holy Spirit upon mankind like the fall (former) and spring (latter) rains coming together.
- Joel 2:23 (23–32 for context)
- Hos 6:3 (5:13–6:11 for context)
- Jas 5:7