February 23, 2009
And when the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, the Lord said in His heart, "I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man's heart is evil from his youth." Genesis 8:21a
The intention of man's heart is evil from his youth.
When the Lord said that to Noah, He knew what He was talking about.
As evidence, I point you to a crime that took place at Thurston's Restaurant in Frankfort, New York.
Thurston's is an eatery that has its own bowling alley. On February 7, the alley was closed for repairs. Sometime during the next few days, someone, or a group of some ones, broke in and robbed the place.
The thieves managed to maneuver around locked doors, daytime security cameras, and nighttime motion-detector security alarms.
Now the interesting part. Do you know what they took? You'll never guess. They took bowling balls. Not one bowling ball, not five, not a dozen. They took 150 bowling balls.
Now, what are crooks going to do with 150 bowling balls? Why steal bowling balls in the first place? They're heavy, they're bulky, and they don't cost that much. Why bowling balls? The thief can't sell them out of his trunk; he can't put them on eBay; he can't even hide them very easily. I don't understand.
Yes, the intention of man's heart is evil from his youth.
Now, you and I probably don't steal bowling balls. Even so, our hearts have their own flaws and failings. Since we are helpless to change what is inside us -- what is part of us -- Jesus was born into this world to fix us. By His holy life, innocent death, and glorious resurrection, we are saved.
In non-theological terms, the Holy Spirit has given us a heart transplant.
THE PRAYER: Dear Father, I am a sinner and a helpless sinner at that. I give thanks You sent Jesus into this world to create a new heart within me. Now may I witness to others the transformation You have brought about in my life. In Jesus' Name, I ask it. Amen.
Your church may have a wonderful men's ministry in place. If so, we'd like to hear about it. If you'd like to tap into some innovative Bible studies and ministry opportunities, please check out the LHM Men's NetWork. In less than 45 days, more than 1,000 congregations have registered. You can find the MNW here: http://www.lhmmen.com.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries