Keep the Heart to Keep the Life

James H. Cagle

The Bible (KJV) says, “Keep the heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (Pro. 4: 23).

To put it simply, this verse teaches that what is spiritual become physical. Anything in the heart, the spiritual part of man, the innermost part of man, will determine the life that is lived in public.

The word “issue” means to exit, to depart, to go out. As a child is dressed inside the home and then sent outside, so we in our inner man dress up the man we send out into public. The life is a reflection of the heart. (Mt. 7: 15-20, 15: 17-20).

The word “issue” also carries’ the meaning of consequence. The life that issues forth from the heart is the result or consequence of the choices we make in the heart of what kind of man we want to be. We make our choices and our choices make us.

The keeping or guarding of the heart is our personal responsibility. The fact that we’re held accountable at the Judgment for the life we live upholds the fact that the keeping of our heart is a personal responsibility. The moral content we allow into our hearts through the eye and ear gates will be the same material used to build our lives. The morality of the life we plan on building is decided by the moral building material we’ve stored in the heart. The more serious we are about living a holy life for Jesus, in an ungodly world, the stricter we’ll be about what we let in our hearts.

If we look at our life and see that it is not Christ like, then we naturally know that we have something in our heart that is not Christ like. We must then believe the evidence and examine our hearts and repent of any sin we see there. (Ps. 119: 59, 60). The heart is the laboratory of life, and everything must be examined in the light of God’s Word before it’s passed off as material for building our life. We live an “authorized” life because everything we do is authorized by God’s Word, and it receives its stamp of approval.

Keeping our hearts means keeping them pure for Jesus so He can live His life through us.


Keeping the Heart

My heart is something I must keep,
And its keeping is mine alone.
My eyes and ears being the gates,
That I must keep a watch on.
My heart is the spiritual man,
That no one but God can see.
But in the heart I make the man,
That I send out for the world to see.
What I choose to allow in my heart,
Is the material I use for building,
The man, the life that I’ll be living,
As the consequence of my choosing.
If I’m serious about living for God,
Then strict will be my watch o’re my soul,
For what comes in I know will go out,
A life that will reflect the state of my soul.
The heart’s the laboratory of life,
Where with God’s Word I closely test,
The life that soon will issue forth,
As each word and deed pass the test.
The laboratory’s cleaned with Christ’ blood,
And my building material is pure.
What comes in and goes out of the heart,
I’m sure is authorized and pure.
I am the keeper of my heart,
And I keep it pure for my Lord.
For in my heart we fellowship,
According to His precious Word.
I’ll keep my heart clean for Jesus,
Who kept His heart clean for me.
And became the sinless sacrifice,
That I from sin might be set free.
James H. Cagle

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *