A NEW HEART TRANSPLANT

Reading: Ezekiel 36:16-28

 
  INTRODUCTION
  [a] When Dr Christian Barnard, the South African surgeon
  operated on Philip Blyburg, and gave him a new heart, the
  whole world buzzed with this amazing news!
  [b] This operation is now common-place! It isn't news any
  more! In fact, they are now in some instances using plastic
  hearts!
  [c] No longer is the eyebrow raised at the thought of someone
  else's heart beating away inside you.
  I remember hearing a distressed woman on the television on
  one occasion! Her husband's life had been saved with a heart
  transplant, but all this woman could say was, "He used to
  say he loved me with all his heart! But now that can't be
  true any more, because he has someone else's heart!!"
  [d] In fact, in one corps we had a young woman called Isobel.
  Isobel was a sort of bounty hunter for hearts, as well as
  eyes, kidneys, and all the rest! She used to stop people on
  the street, and get them to sign on the dotted line. It's now
  common place to carry donor cards.
 
  POINT 1 
 
  [a] They're not looking for brains yet are they - not that
  I think they would want mine!
  [b] I know we joke about such Frankenstein type enterprises,
  but did you know that experiments have actually been done to
  transplant a brain!.
  [c] I remember reading about a monkey whose brain was removed
  after it's skull had been carefully dismantled.
  The brain was then immediately connected to the blood supply
  of another monkey.
  This resulted in the fact that although the body of the
  monkey was dead, it's brain was still alive and active.
  [d] Theoretically, the brain could have been taken and
  placed within the skull of another monkey, transferring the
  nature, the abilities, the thoughts, even the memory of one
  monkey into the body of another!
  [e] I remember finding out about some experiments done in
  Russia where the complete heads of animals had been
  transplanted onto other animals of a different type - you
  know, pigs that would bleat, and sheep that would bark!
  [f] One suddenly decides, that maybe science fiction is
  coming a little too close for comfort! The science fiction
  and impossibilities of yesterday, are in many
  instances, the scientific facts of today!!
  [g] Is it possible, with modern knowledge, to replace the
  HUMAN brain in a new body? Maybe you'll hear about it in
  tonight's news!
 
  POINT 2 
 
  [a] Now before we flew of on a nightmare tangent, we thought
  of the first heart transplant! OR WAS IT??
  [b] How would you feel if I told you that HEART TRANSPLANTS
  were taking place THOUSANDS OF YEARS AGO?
  [c] Anyone who believes the Bible must believe that, for God
  says in Ezekiel 36:26, "A NEW HEART WILL I GIVE YOU."
  [d] This is no SECOND HAND HEART, but a RE-CREATED HEART
  about which we speak!
  This is the CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE - AND OF US, saying that
  HE WILL GIVE US A NEW HEART!!!
 
  POINT 3 
 
  [a] Our natural heart pumps the blood around our bodies, and
  if that flow of blood is stopped for any length of time, we
  die! It is essential to life, and must continue to flow!
  MEN FROM ANCIENT DAYS, HAVE LONG LOOKED AT BLOOD AS LIFE,
  HENCE THE TERM LIFE-BLOOD!
  [b] As our natural heart is in a sense the centre of life
  within our bodies, so our SPIRITUAL HEART is the centre of
  SPIRITUAL LIFE WITHIN US!
  [c] If there is something wrong at the HEART of our SPIRITUAL
  EXPERIENCE, then EVERYTHING will be wrong, for this heart it
  is, which pumps the VERY LIFE OF GOD not only through our
  bodies, but through our whole lives!!
 
  POINT 4 SPIRITUAL HEART DISEASE
 
  [a] I find many people today, who have a form of SPIRITUAL
  THROMBOSIS!
  [b] They appear to have a very high spiritual
  cholesterol, and there is so much clogging up their spiritual
  arteries that not only is the BLESSING being RESTRICTED, but
  also THE VERY LIFE OF GOD which is absolutely essential to
  maintain our Christian life and experience!
  [c] I've known quite a number of people who have had heart
  bypass operations, where they surgically removed veins
  from the legs, and bypass some of the clogged arteries in
  the heart.
  [d] There are some who seem to have a spiritual
  blood-clot in their system! They are so possessed about one
  certain thing, that it's blocking up their whole system and
  causing problems, by stopping the flow of God's life in and
  through their lives! We cannot allow a part of our system
  where the spiritual, abundant and eternal life is not
  reaching!
  [e] We mustn't forget also, those who have had a kind of
  spiritual stroke, and half their spiritual life is paralysed!
  It means that the other half of their spiritual life is
  frustratingly immobilised - one half wants to serve God - the
  other half won't respond!
 
  CONCLUSION
 
  [a] For you or I to receive a heart transplant, there would
  have to be a donor - Someone who through their death was able
  to give us life!
  [b] Almost 2000 years ago on Golgotha's hill, there was a
  Donor, who willingly gave His life on a cruel Roman gibbet
  that we might live!
  [c] God has been giving men women, boys and girls, heart
  transplants for thousands of years.
  [d] How is YOUR spiritual heart?
  The Lord is the greatest TRANSPLANT SURGEON of all time - He
  can deal with any problem - if we allow Him to!
  [e] There is something else that is also quite applicable:
  When someone is given a new heart, the body tries to reject
  it, and special anti-rejection drugs must be taken for the
  rest of their lives.
  [f] Our human nature - our 'old man' of the flesh, will try
  and reject the new spiritual nature springing from this new
  heart.
  [g] It is therefore imperative that we allow the Great
  Physician to administer to us through the Holy Spirit, that
  healing balm, which will strengthen us in our battle, and
  give us victory over the old nature!
  GOD CAN AND WILL GIVE US ALL WE NEED!
 
  SALVATION ARMY SONG BOOK
 
  SONG TUNE
  394 786
  386 761
  CHORUS - "THINGS ARE DIFFERENT NOW"
  534 838