We Need a New Heart
Yes, we have a problem. Jeremiah 17 says
that the heart is desperately wicked and
"deceitful above all things . Who can know
it" (v. 9). Yet before we can begin to look at this
problem of the deceitful heart, we need to address
another problem-an issue that has been part of
Christendom for generations.
The Impossible Dream
* * *
God has brought me into relationship with a few secular
people. In other words, they are not saved, and
they do not go to church. They were, however, born
and raised in the church. In my witnessing to them,
one of them said to me, "We look over into
Christendom and see either people who are very
dogmatic about what they believe or who are so shallow
in their beliefs that it is hard to accept that God
can stabilize a person's life."
That surprised me. I was amazed, first, that he
would even say it, and second, that he had made a
valid point. Then this gentleman made a statement
that knocked me off my feet: "If you can find a way,"
he said, "if somebody in Christendom can find a way
to make living for God attainable and reachable,
then you do not know how many people would come
I do not believe his standpoint was that the
church should teach mediocrity. It struck a note
inside of me concerning the Word that God had spoken
to me about the new heart. While we were talking,
I began to reflect about this new heart, and I
remembered the reason why God had prompted me
to write this message.
Take Me Back .
* * *
I had first heard about the new heart from Mother
Estella Boyd, a powerful woman of God from Detroit.
A lot of people know Mother Boyd and how powerful
she is in the Spirit. There are times that she would
say "deep" things, things that would scare me,
because she ministers and speaks revelation from
the third realm.
One night I was in a church meeting that Mother
Boyd was leading. On this particular night, we were
in one of those "afterglow" services (that is what we
call it when we have had church and the power of
God has fallen, leaving everyone kneeling and prostrate
all over the place, praising God and wiped out-lying
there in the presence of the Lord or sitting still
in His presence), Mother Boyd spoke out, "We gonna
be alright when we get that new heart." Half of us
were on the floor or resting in the pews, clothing
disheveled and hair out of place after persevering in
worship during the service that night. It was unsettling
to hear Mother Boyd telling us that we needed a
"new heart" and that we would be all right when we
got it. It was five years ago that Mother Boyd spoke
that Word, and it has never left my spirit.
At some point I stored it away in the deep part of
my mind, thinking to myself, You know what? That
is deep. When I was first saved I believed that if I just
kept working at it-kept letting God do what He was
going to do in me-eventually, He would "fix" my
heart. So I had learned to stash away such revelations
deep within my mind so God could somehow
just use that information to do His "fix" on me.
Mother Boyd's words about the new heart had
really stung me, and they were always there in my
mind, just deep enough that I never forgot them. Yet
I never acted upon them. Then after my experience
in Chicago in May of 2000, I started "guarding" my
heart. But I did not begin to pursue the "new heart"
until almost a year later, sometime around January
That day when the gentleman suggested to me
that people were looking for a God who was attainable
and reachable, I asked myself, "Is God attainable?"
I realized I could not answer that question.
But I stood there trying to figure out how and why
the Lord had brought back to my memory His earlier
message to me as I sat in my driveway about the
Why is this happening? I thought. I did not understand
exactly what the Lord was doing.
Time to Walk Out the Problem
* * *
I began to question God about this new heart. I felt
strange, like some kind of cancer was eating away at
me, something that I could not shake off. I knew that
I was getting some signals from God. Not only would
I preach this message-I was about to learn how to
"walk it out."
I realized that since the night I first heard Mother
Boyd speak about a new heart, I had felt as if I were
falling all over myself trying to understand what she
meant. I had to come to terms with God and with
I started to observe people in ministry. I looked at
the church-perfectly structured. I saw the choirs
dressed in beautiful robes and the praise and worship
teams with their matching outfits. One pastor would
have on a nice, Versace suit and tie, and his wife would
be sitting there with a St. John knit on-it all looked
so perfect. It oozed "spiritual perfection" to the point
that it became a problem for me.
The more I looked at the problem, the more I was
forced to turn around and look within myself at my
own situation. "OK, Juanita," I said to myself, "what
is your problem? What is it that bothers you about
this so-called walk with the Lord?" I began to examine
this, and I remembered the lives of people who
had stood before me throughout the years. I almost
felt like a mouse that was chasing a piece of cheese,
one it will never catch because it is tied to a cat's tail.
That eat was running me all over the building! I
could smell the cheese; I could come near the
cheese; but I could never get a grip on the cheese
because the cat was always moving.
So I said, "What is my problem?" I realized that
through the years my problem had been my own feelings
of spiritual inadequacy. I would look at my
spiritual superiors and think to myself, I can never
become that. I can never be like Mother Boyd. I cannot
ever be like Bishop Stacks. I could never be like
the many people that God has placed in my life as
spiritual examples. I felt that I could never be like
them because they were the epitome of spiritual perfection.
Their status, to me, was unattainable.
Once I started my ministry, God helped me to
realize the error of my heart. People began to come
up to me and say, "Prophetess Bynum, you are such
a blessing." "Prophetess Bynum, you have really
blessed my life. You are such a woman of God."
Yet during that time there were areas in my life
where God was still dealing with me. God was breaking
some things in me and breaking other things off
me. In other people's sight, my own image had
become unattainable, but that was not reality. God
began dealing intensely with me about my need to
preach the "new heart" message.
If we consistently paint a picture that everything is
perfect, beautiful and wonderful-"You know you
have reached God when you look like me . dress like
me . walk and talk like me"-then we have totally
missed God! We have become a group of people who
constantly pursue an image-not God! Is this reality?
When we pursue the "image" of perfection, we cannot
strive to understand the heart of God.
Who is trying to understand what God requires of
us? Who is trying to understand that our life in
Christ, though part of Christendom, is founded on an
individual relationship that each one of us must have
with the Lord . alone?
The Brain Has Assumed Control
* * *
When I began to understand the basic truth God was
birthing in me about the new heart, I started to
understand that the heart is "desperately wicked."
We are all struggling in our own way, trying to
make sure that we "do right" from our heart.
Through my study, I discovered that this world has
become a brain world. It functions from the activities
of the brain, out of the intellect of our finite
brains. We are consumed with brain knowledge, and
because we are consumed with this knowledge, our
lives are constantly being constructed and operated
by the laws of the intellect. What that means is this:
If you do me wrong, then my intellect (based on the
information that I have gathered from you) reacts
and says, "I am going to do you wrong."
The brain teaches us how to scheme, lie, connive
and manipulate. Here is the truth. God has put a
spirit of conviction in our hearts, which corrects us
when we do something wrong. The world, however,
has trained us to bypass our heart's conviction and
to operate within the realm of our mind and emotions.
For this reason, we have a chaotic world.
This is also the reason why no one is seeking after
God for a changed, new heart. We do not want to
change; we only want to feel better-for the
moment. In order to get eternal gratification, we
have to give up something right now.
My mother used to say, "You know that you are
growing when you give up your right to 'be right.'"
You are maturing when you are the first to apologize,
the first to keep the peace, when you are the first to
say, "What did I do wrong?" rather than nailing the
other person to the wall for what they did to you.
You evaluate yourself and say, "What did I do to that
person? Was there something that I did to provoke
his or her response?" When you look at the issue
this way, then you can overcome a situation that has
stagnated our society.
Everybody is moved by their emotions through
their logical minds, which always look out for
"Number 1." Emotions and logic react to the "threats"
they perceive around them-everybody else is always
wrong. This is how the "old heart" rules. It is the reason
power struggles are so prevalent in our world.
What Does the Bible Say About It?
* * *
The Bible says that we are born in sin and shaped in
iniquity (Ps. 51:5). We are born with an "old heart"
nature that is already coated with the potential to do
wrong. When we come into the world, our hearts are
already shaped for this sin.
Iniquity is anything you do that God is not in. It is
anything done against the will of God or against the
laws or nature of God. If something is contrary to His
character, it is iniquity. You have been shaped in
that area by what society has taught you.
Because your heart is composed of the potential to
sin, your mind is gradually trained to become a professional
sinner. When your heart and mind "match
up" in the spirit, then you have the heart described
in Jeremiah 17:9 as "desperately wicked" (KJV). It is
desperately deceitful . who can know it? Who can
understand the depths of that heart?
How do I know that what I am saying is correct?
In Deuteronomy 8:11-14 we read:
Beware that you do not forget the Lord your
God by not keeping His commandments, His
precepts, and His statutes which I command
you today, lest when you have eaten and are
full, and have built goodly houses and live in
them, and when your herds and flocks multiply
and your silver and gold is multiplied and all
you have is multiplied, then your [minds and] hearts be lifted up and you forget the Lord your
God, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
When you look at our society, you see that this is
true-and I am not just talking about the secular
world; I am talking about the church! We are in
church, dancing and shouting and speaking in
tongues, yet we have hearts of iniquity just like the
world. How do I know this? Our barns are filled, our
flocks are fed, our herds are gathered, and we have
multiplied. We have built houses, and we have multiplied
our strength. Our silver has been multiplied,
our gold has been multiplied, and now our minds
and our hearts are lifted up-against God and
against each other full of pride. We have forgotten
It took the disaster of September 11 to bring a
"seek" back into this country. It took this attack and
the fear of ongoing terrorist attacks from another
country to bring us to our knees. It took this incident
to help us realize that in spite of all the cars,
houses and everything we have, we need the Lord.
Before September 11, our hearts and minds had left
the Lord. We were not seeking Him. When we walk
with hearts that are "shaped in iniquity," hearts that
are born into sin, seeking the Lord is not important
in them. This kind of heart does not come with a
"Yes, Lord," in it.
What Is Our First Priority?
* * *
We have a people and a church society that are
doing everything they possibly can to walk in the
ways of God. But Deuteronomy 10:12 says that there
is no way to walk in the ways of God unless you fear
the Lord and love Him "with all thy heart and with
all thy soul" (KJV).
In this scripture the word soul indicates all of your
mind and all of your emotions. Thus you cannot
walk in God's ways unless you fear Him as God-with
a fear unto obedience, not a fear that tries to
escape Him-a fear that submits to Him, totally and
completely. Above this, you cannot walk in His ways
unless, number one, you love Him from the center of
your being, your heart.
So how can this "old heart," which was "born in
sin" and "shaped in iniquity," love God? Real love
cannot come out of this heart. Only a phileo kind of
love (which means the natural human affection,
with its strong feeling, or sentiment) can come from
a wicked heart. Agape love (unconditional and eternal)
is never found in our "old hearts." The only way
that you can truly love God is to love Him with the
same love that He has given to you. It has to match
in the third realm. You cannot love God from an
earthly level, because God is eternal, and it can
never work to love Him from an earthly perspective.
Anything that is of the earth is temporal. That is
why 2 Corinthians 4:18 says, ". we consider and
look not to the things that are seen . for the things
that are visible are temporal ." Those things never
last. We must look toward the things that are eternal,
because only these things will endure throughout
eternity. Whether you realize it or not, you have
already been "built" to see the eternal-the choice is
Loving God brings about a commitment to Him.
When you love somebody, you are committed to him
in every way. There is nothing that you will not do
for someone you love. You would be willing to lay
down your life for your loved one. So when you say,
"I love You, Lord," but still walk in your own ways,
then you do not really love the Lord. You are still
going about in your "religious affairs," and you do
not have a real relationship with Him, which will
bring about a change of character and a change in
the way you walk. A real relationship with Him
enables you to walk in His commandments.