Monday, November 20, 2023

No One “Believes” With Their Mind But Not Their Heart

Acts 8:35-38, “Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.”

Kindly, I am careful not to distinguish between the words "faith," "believe" and "mental assent," because they are the same thing.

There is a religious tract that I absolutely hate. It is titled, "Missing Heaven By 18 Inches" (the distance between the brain and the heart muscle). The very idea makes no sense, because our heart muscle has nothing to do with the new birth. There is no such thing as believing with the mind but not the heart. The heart is in the brain!

Having said that, it is possible to know the facts of the Gospel, but not believe (personally trust) the facts of the Gospel. But knowing some facts is not the same as "mental assent." The word "assent" means to agree. If someone agrees with the facts of the Gospel, they are saved. We need to be very careful in our choice of words in this matter of discerning between head knowledge and heart's faith.

We read in Hebrews 4:2 that Moses preached the Gospel unto the Jews wandering in the Wilderness for 40 years, but it was not mixed with faith in them that heard it, and they sadly perished and went to Hell. Those Jews were very familiar with the facts of the Gospel, since they heard it year after year from Moses. But they did not mentally assent (agree) with the Gospel, or else they would have been saved.

So, I discourage believers from trying to discern between believing with the mind versus the heart, because that is impossible. "Believing" is the wrong word to use to describe an unbeliever who is merely familiar with the facts of the Gospel. In fact, they DO NOT "believe" in their mind. To believe in one's mind is to believe in one's heart, there is no difference.

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