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THE HUMAN MIND HAS GONE MAD!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord’s Day Evening, March 29, 2009

“With the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
(Romans 10:10).


Dr. John Gill went right to the core of this verse when he said that faith does not lie

…in the brain, so not in the tongue, but in the heart; it is not rational knowledge of things to be believed; nor is it saying that a man believes; but it is heart-work, a believing with all the heart…it is a seeing of the Son [of God], a beholding of the glory, fulness, suitableness, ability, and willingness of Christ as…Saviour…it is a going out of the soul to Christ…a giving up itself unto him…leaning and relying on him (John Gill, D.D., An Exposition of the New Testament, The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1989 reprint, volume II, p. 521; note on Romans 10:10).

That is what it means to believe in Jesus. You must believe in Him with your heart, not merely, as Dr. Gill put it, in “the brain.” Your heart must go out to Jesus and rest in Him – “a going out of the soul to Christ…a giving up itself unto him.”

This month marks the one-hundredth birthday of Pastor Richard Wurmbrand, founder of the Voice of the Martyrs. The well-known Presbyterian minister, Dr. D. James Kennedy, said, “The written and spoken message of Rev. Wurmbrand is one which needs to be published and broadcast through every available channel of communication today.” I completely agree with him. I have read Pastor Wurmbrand’s book, Tortured for Christ, more than ten times. And I am now reading it again, a little every morning. In Tortured for Christ, Pastor Wurmbrand told how he was converted. He had been a Jew who was an atheist.

But an old carpenter high up in the mountains of Romania prayed, “My God, [I pray] that I should not die before I bring a Jew to Christ, because Jesus was from the Jewish people. But I am poor, old, and sick. I cannot go around and seek a Jew. In my village there are none. Bring a Jew into my village and I will do my best to bring him to Christ.”

Wurmbrand said, “Something irresistible drew me to that village. Romania has twelve thousand villages, but I went to that one.” The old carpenter gave him a Bible. Then Wurmbrand said, “I had read the Bible out of cultural interest many times before. But the Bible he gave me was a different kind of Bible…The Bible he gave me was written not so much in words, but in flames of love fired by his prayers. I could barely read it. I could only weep over it, comparing my bad life with the life of Jesus; my impurity with His righteousness; my hatred with His love – and [Jesus] accepted me as one of His own” (Richard Wurmbrand, Th.D., Tortured for Christ, Living Sacrifice Books, 1998 edition, pp. 12-13).

Pastor Wurmbrand's mind was not moved by logic. Though he was a brilliant man who could speak in several languages, it was not his mind, but his heart that believed in Jesus.

“With the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
      (Romans 10:10).

I believe this is what happened to Moses. He was born in Egypt at a time when all male Jewish babies were forced by law to be killed. His mother hid him as long as she could. At last his screams were too loud. So she made a little basket, put the baby into it, and let him drift away down the Nile River. Pharaoh’s daughter took the baby and raised him as her adopted son. But Moses’ own mother had been called to nurse him. Thus, his real mother taught him from childhood that he was a Jew.

Now, at forty years old, he saw an Egyptian beating a Jew. He murdered the Egyptian and buried him in the sand. But someone saw it and was going to report the murder. Moses fled from Egypt, far out into the desert of the Sinai Peninsula. He became a shepherd in the land of Midian until he was eighty years old. Only then was Moses converted.

“And he led [his] flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb” (Exodus 3:1),

only then did Moses encounter God. Only then was his heart set aflame. Before this he knew about God in his mind, but now he knew God in his heart.

“With the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
       (Romans 10:10).

Yes, I know he had a measure of faith when he forsook Egypt. I know he endured “as seeing him who is invisible” (Hebrews 11:27). But this seems to me to be only the edge of faith, only faith in his mother’s God, not a living, justifying faith in God Himself. We do not read of God speaking to Moses’ heart until the third chapter of Exodus,

“And when the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God” (Exodus 3:4-6).

This was Moses’ encounter with the pre-incarnate Christ!

“With the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
       (Romans 10:10).

I do not agree with Pastor Wurmbrand on every point. After all, he was a Lutheran and I am a Baptist! But I do agree with him when he said,

The human mind has gone mad, and you attain reality only when you pass beyond reason (Richard Wurmbrand, Th.D., If Prison Walls Could Speak, Living Sacrifice Book Company, 2000 edition, p. 63).

That is a profound statement. Please say it out loud.

The human mind has gone mad, and you attain reality only when you pass beyond reason (ibid.).

The Bible says,

“The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (I Corinthians 2:14).

The word “natural” is translated from the Greek word “psuchikos,” which means “sensual,” of the senses (Strong). This refers to man in an unconverted, natural state. He lives by his senses. He has no contact with God.

Adam sinned against God, and thus brought ruin and guilt to all of his descendants. The whole human race was plunged into sin by Adam, and our “natural” state of sin was inherited from him.

“By one man’s disobedience many were made sinners”
       (Romans 5:19).

That was how you became a “natural” man who receives “not the things of the Spirit of God” (I Corinthians 2:14). By the sin of Adam,

The human mind has gone mad, and you attain reality only when you pass beyond reason (Wurmbrand, If Prison Walls Could Speak, ibid.).

This is because,

“The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God…” (I Corinthians 2:14).

The Word of God tells us that our ruined sin-nature came from Adam at the dawn of history. 

“Wherefore...by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin” (Romans 5:12).

"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners"
      (Romans 5:19).

Including you! 

The whole human race sinned in Adam, and every human being on earth inherited Adam's defiled sin-nature.  That is how all mankind came into a "natural state" of sin. 

“The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God…” (I Corinthians 2:14).

The human mind has gone mad. That is why

“The world by wisdom knew not God” (I Corinthians 1:21).

That is why the Bible does not give a logical argument to the mind. Instead, the appeal is to the heart.

“For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
       (Romans 10:10).

But the heart has also gone mad. The Bible says,

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9).

“The heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live” (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

God must convict your heart and break it, usually with tears, or you will go on in your madness, for “madness is in [your] heart while [you] live” (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

Isn’t that true of you when you read the Bible? Isn’t it true that you read the words of the Bible mechanically, that God never speaks to your heart, and that you receive no spiritual good when you read the Bible? Isn’t it true that you only read it because it is your duty to do so? Isn’t it true that God is not with you, speaking to your heart, when you do your Bible readings at home? Isn’t it true that you have never had an experience like that of Pastor Wurmbrand? He said that when he read the Bible the old man gave him he felt “flames of love…I could barely read it. I could only weep over it” (Tortured for Christ, ibid.). Isn’t it true that you have never had such an experience when reading the Scriptures? And isn’t it true that, at least sometimes, you should have a similar experience? And does not the absence of any such experience show that you have

“madness [in your] heart while [you] live”? (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

The same could be said of prayer. Do you ever come close to God in prayer? Does God ever come down in your room and fill your heart with joy unspeakable as you pray? And isn’t it true that, at least sometimes, you should have such an experience? And does not the total absence of such an experience show that you have

“madness [in your] heart while [you] live”? (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

Is not the same thing true when you come to church? Are you eager to hear what God will say to you through the preaching of His Word? Or do you come and look down at the floor, or off into space, never enjoying the sermons at all? It is not true that the only time you really listen to a sermon is when it probes your conscience and makes you feel guilty? And if that is true, is it not madness to come week after week and feel nothing but guilt at the best? Is it not madness to keep hearing things that only unsettle you and make you feel guilty? Is it not madness in your heart that keeps you from striving to be made free from a weekly torturing of your conscience by these sermons? And does not your unwillingness to strive to enter in to Christ show that you have

“madness [in your] heart while [you] live”? (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

Oh, that your heart might be broken by the Spirit of God and the Word of God! Oh, that you might be awakened from your madness while you yet live! Oh, that you might feel within your heart what Pastor Wurmbrand felt as a young man in an unconverted state! Oh, that you might feel “flames of love.” That you might say with Pastor Wurmbrand, “I could only weep over [the Bible], comparing my bad life with the life of Jesus; my hatred with His love – and [Jesus] accepted me as one of His own” (Tortured for Christ, ibid.). That was when Wurmbrand was converted!

His mind was not moved by logic. It was his heart that was broken by the Spirit of God. It was his heart that was broken by a sense of his sin. It was his heart that then believed in Jesus, the Son of God, who died on the Cross to pay the penalty for his sin.

“With the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
       (Romans 10:10).

Pastor Wurmband spent fourteen years in a Communist prison for preaching the Gospel of Christ. He was physically tortured, with red-hot pokers thrust into his back and neck. He was beaten with rods across the bottoms of his feet, so he could not stand while preaching. In our church, on this platform, he had to sit while preaching, so painful was it for him to stand. He said,

I have seen Christians in Communist prisons with fifty pounds of chains on their feet, tortured with red-hot pokers, in whose throats spoonfuls of salt had been forced, being kept afterward without water, starving, whipped, suffering from cold – and praying with fervor for the Communists. This is humanly inexplicable! It is the love of Christ, which was poured out in our hearts (Tortured for Christ, ibid., p. 55).

Oh, that your heart may be broken by the Spirit of God and the Word of God! Oh, that you may see the horror of your sin, and the eternal damnation of your soul in the Lake of Fire! Oh, that you may see the

“madness [in your] heart while [you] live”! (Ecclesiastes 9:3).

And isn't it true that this mental madness is what is keeping you from coming to Jesus? Oh, that you may believe in Jesus and be washed clean from your sin by His precious Blood! Oh, that the “love of Christ [may be] poured out in [your] hearts.”

“For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness”
       (Romans 10:10).

Now, to conclude this sermon, I am going to ask you a very pointed question: Are you searching for Christ with your whole heart? Are you searching and seeking Christ with all your heart? Is this the main thing in your life? Are you searching to find Christ with all your heart? Are you striving with all your heart to find Jesus?

There is a very great promise in the Bible. The pre-incarnate Christ said,

“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13).

Now, that verse is comforting in the promise it gives that you will find Christ. But there is a condition attached to this promise, “When ye shall search for me with all your heart.” There is no promise in that verse for you if you do not search for Jesus wholeheartedly, no promise there for you if you fail to search for Him with all your heart. May you begin now to search for Jesus “with all your heart.” Then you will find Himand only then will you find Him!

“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13).

Let us stand and pray for a conversion. But before we pray, listen to the words of this song by Dr. John R. Rice.

I walked the path of pleasure,
   I toiled for earthly treasure,
But peace beyond all measure,
   I found in only Jesus.
(“Jesus, Only Jesus” by Dr. John R. Rice, 1895-1980).

(END OF SERMON)
You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.realconversion.com. Click on “Sermon Manuscripts.”

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Ecclesiastes 9:1-3.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“Jesus, Only Jesus” (by Dr. John R. Rice, 1895-1980).