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What Does It Mean To Have a Hard Heart?

2011 March 17


Before the Storm

“For they had not understood about the loaves, because their heart was hardened.” Mark 6:52

This verse grabbed my attention because of its context. We read about the disciples struggling at sea, getting scared when they see Jesus walking on the water and then jaws dropping when they realize it’s Jesus. Then all of a sudden verse 52 reads: “For they had not understood about the loaves…”

When I read that I had to stop and read it again because it seemed out of place.

So I have two questions:

    1. What does the miracle about the loaves have to do with the storm?

    2. Why were their hearts hard?

Jesus said that they did not understand about the loaves because their hearts were hard. But what did they not understand? Was the feeding of the five thousand training ground for the miraculous? Was Jesus implying that they could have stood up and spoke to the storm instead of rowing in fear? I don’t know.

As I read this I also feel like I don’t understand (and I even have the luxury of the written word to study). I’ve heard other preachers teach on this but I want to understand it myself.

I’m concerned that too much of what I believe is only head knowledge. While I’m grateful for other people’s teachings and interpretation of scripture, I believe I must begin to learn more lessons directly from the Holy Spirit.

I want a soft heart towards God as I bet you do too. But what does it mean to have a soft or a hard heart? I believe this would be a great lesson for all of us to learn. Lord, give us soft hearts so we may grow in understanding!

About Josh Monen

Josh is born-again believer and the founder of Beyond Cliches. He lives in the country north of Battle Ground, WA with his wife and kids. Josh was a big time drug addict and small time drug dealer before Jesus saved him in 2004. He's been clean and sober since and is still in awe of God's amazing grace.

2 Responses Post a comment
  1. March 17, 2011

    Hey bro, I’m still reading and enjoying your blog. It’s kind of crazy, I’m reading the Gospel of Mark right now and I think I read that verse last week. But I had to look it up and I think I completely missed it somehow. It does almost seem out of place. I can’t claim to have some great understanding here but it does seem like it has to do with the disciples’ astonishment in verse 51 that Christ could calm the storm after He had just fed the five thousand.

    That God would soften my heart is a very frequent prayer of mine. I often feel that I am very hard-hearted.
    Matt Perkins recently posted..Apostle of Ireland

    • Joshua Monen permalink
      March 23, 2011

      Thanks Matt. I’m glad you’re enjoying it.

      I know, that verse really caught my attention when I read it too. What I think it means is that there are lessons to be learned in the miracles. It’s easy to read about or witness a miracle and just be totally amazed by it (which is good) but I believe God wants to expand our understanding of His ways. That’s why I think signs and wonders are so important because when we see them or hear about them we get another glimpse into the ways of the Lord. “He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.” Ps 103:7

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