Veiled Hearts, Blinded Minds
The apostle Paul referred to the Jews of his time as having a veil over their hearts preventing them from seeing the truth of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. He used the veil that Moses put over his face to hide the fading radiance of being with God as an illustration for how Jews could not see past the Law of Moses to accept its present fulfillment in Christ. Paul wrote, “Unlike Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the end of what was passing away. But their minds were blinded. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ. But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away” (2 Cor. 3:13-15). By refusing to believe in Jesus, the Jews kept their hearts “veiled” from the truth.
Many today have veiled hearts as well. There are those who choose to put things between themselves and the Lord. The veil of the first century Jews could serve as a fitting illustration for the millions today who refuse to submit to Jesus. Let’s consider a few of the many “veils” that are used today to separate people from God.
1. The veil of unbelief. It is a barrier that could easily be removed if the unbeliever would consider the evidence of the existence of God all around them. Nature cries out for the existence of God. Paul wrote, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Rom. 1:20). The psalmist wrote, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork” (Ps. 19:1), while also stating, “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God'” (Ps. 14:1). The veil could be lifted if the unbeliever would weigh the evidence of nature and scientific law, and then receive the faith that comes by hearing God’s word (Rom. 10:17).
2. The veil of human wisdom. Many would consider believing in God only if they could justify His existence within the parameters of human wisdom and reasoning. These folks could be labeled as agnostics. Paul spoke of this type while writing to the church at Corinth. He said, “Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe” (1 Cor. 1:20,21). The veil will be lifted when faith is placed in the wisdom of God and His revealed word instead of the fallible and finite wisdom of mankind.
3. The veil of emotionalism. There are those who choose to base their relationship with God on the sincerity of the emotions and feelings they have toward Him. Emotions are an important part of a person’s faith, but they cannot be a standard of absolute truth since they are subjective and relative. The Bible warns of the danger of trusting our feelings. It says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Prov. 14:12). This veil is lifted when we base our relationship with God on the absolute truth of His revealed word. We can absolutely know for a fact that we are pleasing to God (1 John 2:3-5). So, our emotions should be in response to our correct actions, not what drives our actions to begin with. -Ed