According to the Bible, the
heart is the centre not only of spiritual activity,
but of all the operations of human life. The process
of salvation begins in the heart by the believing
reception of the testimony of God, while the
rejection of that testimony hardens the heart (Ps.
95:8; Prov. 28:14; 2 Chr. 36:13). "Hardness of heart
evidences itself by light views of sin; partial
acknowledgment and confession of it; pride and
conceit; ingratitude; unconcern about the word and
ordinances of God; inattention to divine
providences; stifling convictions of conscience;
shunning reproof; presumption, and general ignorance
of divine things."
The Easton Bible Dictionary provides the following
definition, meaning and emblem for the Heart
Christian Symbol in the Bible.
"Heart" and "soul" are often used interchangeably
(Deut. 6:5; 26:16; comp. Matt. 22:37; Mark 12:30,
33), but this is not generally the case.
The heart is the "home of the personal life," and
hence a man is designated, according to his heart,
wise (1 Kings 3:12, etc.), pure (Ps. 24:4; Matt.
5:8, etc.), upright and righteous (Gen. 20:5, 6; Ps.
11:2; 78:72), pious and good (Luke 8:15), etc. In
these and such passages the word "soul" could not be
substituted for "heart."
The heart is also the seat of the conscience (Rom.
2:15). It is naturally wicked (Gen. 8:21), and hence
it contaminates the whole life and character (Matt.
12:34; 15:18; comp. Eccl. 8:11; Ps. 73:7). Hence the
heart must be changed, regenerated (Ezek. 36:26;
11:19; Ps. 51:10-14), before a man can willingly