5 And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.
“Hardness of heart” is synonymous with unbelief. The reference is to your “spiritual heart”, your ability to discern spiritual truths which is cut off by unbelief. Many Christians simply don’t believe what they say they do and that stubborn unbelief is hardness of heart. Jesus uses the term here in Matthew regarding the reason why God allowed (suffered) divorce under the Law given to Moses;
Matthew 19:8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.
In Romans 2:5, after giving the moral history of mankind, he blames this condition of hardness of heart, calling it impenitent which means unrepentant, for why people will face God’s wrath at what would be a reference to the Great White Throne judgment at the end of the Millennial reign of Christ in Revelation 20:11.
In the great chapter describing Satan, king of the children of pride, in Job 41, his heart is said to be hard which, in my opinion, has a dual meaning of physical and spiritual. He will not accept his just desserts. His pride won’t let him accept his fate just as it wouldn’t let him accept his position.
Job 41:24 His heart is as firm as a stone; yea, as hard as a piece of the nether millstone.
Your heart is hard when you refuse to let God speak to you through His words in His Book and apply them to your life. You won’t pray because your heart is hard. You won’t get up on Sunday morning and meet with the body of Christ, a group of people with like faith, which are the house or family of God (not the building, this isn’t the temple, you’re the temple). Your heart is hard when you believe the Bible is nothing more than the official ‘Emily Post Book of Etiquette’ on spiritual matters rather than a Living Book that can breathe new life into you and change your wicked heart, as the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, almost, in printed form.
Just remember, the Bible, in the part written specifically to the Christian, says not to gossip. But you can will yourself not to gossip because it’s a bad thing and still not be a Christian. The Bible says that sexual immorality is a bad thing and you can choose to be a chaste, monogamous, heterosexual and still be lost as a goose in a horse race. The Bible says to unite with your brothers and sisters in Christ, not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together and even more so as the end draws near and you can show up by your own sacrificial, submissive, and obedient decision every time the doors are open and still burst HELL wide open when you enter in thereto.
It has already been pointed out that not only is your salvation an act of God and not your own will as a response to your belief and trust in Christ, but so is your sanctification. You can choose to ACT like someone thinks a Christian should ACT and still be just ACTING. That’s where the word, hypocrite, comes from, an actor. You can’t fake the fruit, or proof, of the indwelling Spirit of God for long, though.
There are people reading this that have not been healed spiritually, Christian people. They haven’t had their hand restored like this man because of hardness of heart. Why is that? They think that the Bible is merely something you try to follow. That’s a religion of works, Satan’s counterfeit. And the more spiritual you are, they say, the more faithful to it you will be. This is a laugh and an insult. It’s a laugh because the people who believe that don’t have the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-24 flowing out of them and don’t follow it themselves. It’s an insult because it makes the struggling Christian doubt his or her salvation.
Repent of your hard heart, Christian, and submit to Christ’s words.
John 12:48 He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.
You will only be changed and set apart for God’s purpose by submitting to His Word, Jesus Christ, through His words, the Bible.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
Whenever someone tries to determine what your walk with Christ should look like, who will have you judged by their own convictions, their own obsessions, and their own conceit you judge yourself by the Book, our final authority in all matters of faith, practice, AND doctrine.
Notice that Jesus was angry. Now modern versions of the Bible, based on a couple of corrupt manuscripts whose names I’ve mentioned before, changed Matthew 5:22, removing “without a cause” so they could make Christ a sinner. What modern, simpering, milquetoast Christians lack is anger, righteous indignation. We have become so enamored of the Satanic view of a Christian as being an effeminate, limp wristed love, love, love type of guy, we’d rather men cry than take a stand against evil in the church. Jesus looked round about on them with anger.
Here’s a bunch of guys who are the spiritual leaders and they are opposed to Him healing someone who is hurting because they were more in love with their religion than they were with God. Jesus was real and He healed at His will. Here, the faith of the person being healed is not important although in other places faith is rewarded. In some places Christ will respond to faith and in others simply perform a miracle to glorify God in the eyes of hard hearted mankind.