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It's the heart versus the Bible ^ | 3/16/04 | Dennis Prager

Posted on 03/15/2004 9:57:21 PM PST by kattracks

I recently interviewed a 26-year-old Swedish student about her views on life. I asked her if she believed in God or in any religion.

"No, that's silly," she replied.

"Then how do you know what is right and wrong?" I asked.

"My heart tells me," she responded.

In a nutshell, that's the major reason for the great divide within America and between America and much of Europe. The majority of people use their heart -- stirred by their eyes -- to determine what is right and wrong. A minority uses their mind and/or the Bible to make that determination.

Pick almost any issue and these opposing ways of determining right and wrong become apparent.

Here are three examples.

Same-sex marriage: The heart favors it. You have to have a hard heart not to be moved when you see many of the loving same-sex couples who want to commit their lives to one another in marriage. The eye sees the couples; the heart is moved to redefine marriage.

Animal rights: The heart favors them. It is the rare person, for example, whose heart is not moved by the sight of an animal used for medical research. The eye sees the cuddly animal; the heart then equates animal and human life.

Abortion: How can you look at a sad 18-year-old who had unprotected sex and not be moved? What kind of heartless person is going to tell her she shouldn't have an abortion and should give birth?

The eyes and the heart form an extraordinarily powerful force. They can only be overcome when formulating policies by a mind and a value system that are stronger than the heart-eye duo.

With the decline of Judeo-Christian religions, the heart, shaped by what the eye sees (hence the power of television), has become the source of people's moral decisions.

This is a potentially fatal problem for our civilization. As beautiful as the heart might be, it is neither intellectually nor morally profound.

It is therefore frightening that hundreds of millions of people find no problem in acknowledging that their heart is the source of their values. Their heart knows better than thousands of years of accumulated wisdom; better than religions shaped by most of the finest thinkers of our civilization (and, to the believer, by God); and better than the book that has guided our society -- from the Founders of our uniquely successful society to the foes of slavery to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and most of the leaders of the struggle for racial equality.

This elevation of one's heart is well beyond self-confidence -- it is self-deification.

One of the first things you learn in Judaism and Christianity is that the eyes and heart are usually terrible guides to the good and the holy. " . . . (D)o not follow after your own heart and your own eyes, which you are inclined to whore after" (Numbers 15:39); "the heart is deceitful above all things . . . " (Jeremiah 17:9).

Supporters of same-sex marriage see the loving gay couple, and therefore do not interest themselves in the effects of changing marriage and family on the children they do not see. And since they venerate their hearts, the biblical ideal of male-female love, marriage and family is of no significance to them.

Animal rights supporters' hearts are deeply moved by the animals they see experimented on, not by the millions of people they do not see who will suffer and die if we stop such experiments.
Likewise, the hearts of the people who support PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) are so moved by the plight of slaughtered chickens that the organization has a campaign titled "Holocaust on your plate," which equates our slaughtering of chickens with the Nazi slaughtering of Jews.

For 25 years I have been asking high school seniors across America if they would save their dog or a stranger first if both were drowning. The majority has nearly always voted against the person. Why? Because, they say with no self-doubt, they love their dog, not the stranger. An entire generation has been raised with no reference to any moral code above their heart's feelings. They do not know, and would not care if they did know, that the Bible teaches that human beings, not animals, are created in God's image.

So, too, those who cannot call any abortion immoral are moved by what they see -- the forlorn woman who wants an abortion, not by the human fetus they do not see. That is why abortion rights groups are so opposed to showing photos of fetuses that have been aborted -- such pictures might move the eye and the heart of viewers to judge the morality of many abortions differently.

It is undeniable that many people have used their minds and many have used the Bible in ways that have led to evil. And some of these people have been truly heartless. But not one of the great cruelties of the 20th century -- the Gulag, Auschwitz, Cambodia, North Korea, Mao's Cultural Revolution -- came from those who took their values from the Bible. And the great evil of the 21st century, though religion-based, doesn't come from the Bible either.

Meanwhile, the combination of mind, Judeo-Christian values and heart has produced over centuries the unique success known as America. Reliance on the heart will destroy this painstaking achievement in a generation.

©2004 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Contact Dennis Prager | Read Prager's biography

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: dennisprager; homosexualagenda
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1 posted on 03/15/2004 9:57:22 PM PST by kattracks
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To: kattracks
And what if my heart tells me I don't like ugly people or fat people or redhaired people or smelly people or evil judgmental right wing Christians, and they deserve any misfortune I might dish out to them? How is subjective preferences or desires any sort of sound moral reasoning?
2 posted on 03/15/2004 10:04:28 PM PST by Unam Sanctam
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To: kattracks
3 posted on 03/15/2004 10:12:05 PM PST by LiteKeeper
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To: kattracks
The Heart says give a hungry person fish.

The Mind (and Bible) say teach him to fish.

The former is easy, and gives immediate (temporary) gratification and relief. Both parties are weaker, by this option.

The latter takes character (for both parties), may involve short term difficulties, but yields better long term results. Both parties are stronger, by this option.

4 posted on 03/15/2004 10:13:55 PM PST by truth_seeker
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To: LiteKeeper
The Bible says that "that the Heart is evil and desperately wicked above all things, who can know it?"
5 posted on 03/15/2004 10:20:19 PM PST by mdmathis6 (The Democrats must be defeated in 2004...." MDMATHIS6, The Anti-Democrat")
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To: kattracks
Any religious person believes prayer should be balanced by action. So here, in support of the Prayer Team's admirable goals, is a proposed Constitutional Amendment to codify marriage, as they enjoin, on biblical principals:

A. Marriage in the United States shall consist of a union between one man and one or more women. (Gen 29:17-28; II Sam 3:2-5)

B. Marriage shall not impede a man's right to take concubines, in addition to his wife or wives. (II Sam 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chron 11:21)

C. A marriage shall be considered valid only if the wife is a virgin. If the wife is not a virgin, she shall be executed. (Deut 22:13-21)

D. Marriage of a believer and a non-believer shall be forbidden. (Gen 24:3; Num 25:1-9; Ezra 9:12; Neh 10:30)

E. Since marriage is for life, neither this constitution nor the constitution of any State, nor any state or federal law, shall be construed to permit divorce. (Deut 22:19; Mark 10:9)

F. If a married man dies without children, his brother shall marry the widow. If he refuses to marry his brother's widow or deliberately does not give her children, he shall pay a fine of one shoe. (Gen. 38:6- 10; Deut 25:5-10)

Mayland C. Reilly, M.Ed., MS

Associate Director

6 posted on 03/15/2004 10:26:09 PM PST by breakem
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To: breakem
You're stretching it a bit aren't you?. Can you honestly read those passages and say THAT is what they mean. Jeesh.
7 posted on 03/15/2004 10:36:48 PM PST by I got the rope (I'm coming for you DUmmy!)
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To: I got the rope
Can you homsetly asy you follow all teachings in the Bible?
8 posted on 03/15/2004 10:42:32 PM PST by breakem
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To: little jeremiah
9 posted on 03/15/2004 10:42:37 PM PST by I got the rope (I'm coming for you DUmmy!)
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To: breakem
Do you mean...will I stone a homo?
10 posted on 03/15/2004 10:43:41 PM PST by I got the rope (I'm coming for you DUmmy!)
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To: I got the rope
After you sell your sister into slavery.
11 posted on 03/15/2004 10:44:36 PM PST by breakem
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To: breakem
Before or after you get sodomized?
12 posted on 03/15/2004 10:46:35 PM PST by I got the rope (I'm coming for you DUmmy!)
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To: Unam Sanctam
How is subjective preferences or desires any sort of sound moral reasoning?

If you don't know what God has written, Satan has a field day with your life. Fortunately Jesus knew what was written. This truth, revealed below in the scriptures, has been played out throughout all of history. What makes a Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Nero ....

Gen 3:1-5
1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Here is the lie that humanity has swallowed hook, line and sinker. You can be a God and determine right from wrong on your own. Who cares that every human being differs in their view of right and wrong, and death and destruction is the result.

Matt 4:1-11
1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered.
3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

13 posted on 03/15/2004 10:48:10 PM PST by bondserv (Alignment is critical!)
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To: kattracks
14 posted on 03/15/2004 10:50:30 PM PST by oprahstheantichrist
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To: kattracks
The heart versus the Bible?

Here are a few passages, directly from the Bible itself upon that subject:
(see )

Psalms Chapter 15:
[2] He who walks blamelessly, and does what is right, and speaks truth from his heart;
[3] who does not slander with his tongue, and does no evil to his friend, nor takes up a reproach against his neighbor;
[4] in whose eyes a reprobate is despised, but who honors those who fear the LORD; who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
[5] who does not put out his money at interest, and does not take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be moved.
[7] I bless the LORD who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me.

Psalms, Chapter 19:
[8] the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes;

Psalms, Chapter 37:
[31] The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip.

Proverbs, Chapter 2:
[10] for wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;

Ecclesiastes, Chapter 10:
[2] A wise man's heart inclines him toward the right, but a fool's heart toward the left.

Romans, Chapter 5:
[5] and hope does not disappoint us, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us.

Romans, Chapter 6:
[17] But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,

2 Timothy, Chapter 2:
[22] So shun youthful passions and aim at righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call upon the Lord from a pure heart.

15 posted on 03/15/2004 10:59:36 PM PST by RonHolzwarth
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To: I got the rope; breakem
This list of Biblical rules and so on is from a New York Post column on Friday by Liz Smith, who is, I belive, an "out" lesbian. So breakem, you have had your fun reposting this list. So relevent, so meaningful. We're all impressed and everything.

I'm convinced. I'm going to throw away all my linsey-woolsey clothes tonight, to make sure I don't go do hell.
16 posted on 03/15/2004 11:05:11 PM PST by little jeremiah ( of intemperate minds can not be free. Their passions forge their fetters.)
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To: little jeremiah
so if a homo quotes the Bible we disgard that part. What's your point?
17 posted on 03/15/2004 11:06:16 PM PST by breakem
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To: *Homosexual Agenda; EdReform; scripter; GrandMoM; backhoe; Yehuda; Clint N. Suhks; saradippity; ...
Homosexual Agenda Ping.

Prager makes interesting points. I would have stated some things a little differently. A lot of people don't think so much with their hearts, it's a different set of organs that dominates. But the seat of desires is in the mind, which flickers like a candle in the wind.

A bad anchor in a storm. A civilization which throws away moral absolutes is a ship without a rudder in a storm. Only a matter of time before shipwreck.

Let me know if anyone wants on/off this pinglist.
18 posted on 03/15/2004 11:08:54 PM PST by little jeremiah ( of intemperate minds can not be free. Their passions forge their fetters.)
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To: breakem
What's your point?
19 posted on 03/15/2004 11:09:45 PM PST by little jeremiah ( of intemperate minds can not be free. Their passions forge their fetters.)
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To: breakem
AFAIK grownups who study morality and ethics, whether through the Bible or not, do not patch together those bits of scripture to give advice to moderns. That post was a terrible insult and you should be ashamed of yourself.
20 posted on 03/15/2004 11:10:17 PM PST by NutCrackerBoy
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