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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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The Hebrews regarded the heart as the source of wit, understanding, love, courage, grief, and pleasure. Hence are derived many modes of expression. "An honest and good heart," Luke 8:15 , is a heart studious of holiness, being prepared by the Spirit of God to receive the word with due affections, dispositions, and resolutions. We read of a broken heart, a clean heart, an evil heart, a liberal heart. To "turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers,"

Malachi 4:6 , signifies to cause them to be perfectly reconciled, and that they should be of the same mind. To want heart, sometimes denotes to want understanding and prudence: "Ephraim is like a silly dove, without heart," Hosea 7:11 . "O fools, and slow of heart," Luke 24:25 ; that is, ignorant, and without understanding. "This people's heart is waxed gross, lest they should understand with their heart," Matthew 13:15 ; their heart is become incapable of understanding spiritual things; they resist the light, and are proof against all impressions of truth. "The prophets prophesy out of their own heart," Ezekiel 13:2 ; that is, according to their own imagination, without any warrant from God.

The heart is said to be dilated by joy, contracted by sadness, broken by sorrow, to grow fat, and be hardened by prosperity. The heart melts under discouragement, forsakes one under terror, is desolate in affliction, and fluctuating in doubt. To speak to any one's heart is to comfort him, to say pleasing and affecting things to him. The heart expresses also the middle part of any thing: "Tyre is in the heart of the seas," Ezekiel 27:4 ; in the midst of the seas. "We will not fear though the mountains be carried into the heart (middle) of the sea," Psalms 46:2 .

The heart of man is naturally depraved and inclined to evil, Jeremiah 17:9 . A divine power is requisite for its renovation, John 3:1-11 . When thus renewed, the effects will be seen in the temper, conversation, and conduct at large. Hardness of heart is that state in which a sinner is inclined to, and actually goes on in, rebellion against God.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Heart'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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Tuesday, October 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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