Author: Michael Barrett
In Isaiah 61, verses 1 through 4 we find these words, "The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; 2) To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; 3) To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified. 4) And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations." Jesus quoted Isaiah, as recorded in Luke 4:18-21, and affirmed to all the hearers that this messianic prophecy was written about Him, and that the fulfillment had, in fact, come that very day!
Jesus came to set captive humanity free!! Paul said in Galatians 5:1, "It is for freedom that Christ has made us free." Jesus paid the ultimate price so that you and I would be set free from the bondage of the enemy.
One major area that the Lord Jesus came to free us in is the area of the broken heart. Isaiah said Christ was coming to "bind up the brokenhearted." Jesus said he came to "heal the brokenhearted." He did not come to only bind up, as if to say, to wrap something around the broken heart, resulting in a heart that is still cracked and leaking. No!! Jesus came to set us free! He came to completely cure the brokenhearted. To completely heal every broken heart!!
A Judicial Proclamation
I recently heard a brother say these words; "the problem with a broken heart is that it can't be filled." A broken heart can't be filled!! As I thought about this statement I began to realize that the church is filled with brokenhearted people. In Jeremiah 2:13 a very significant proclamation is recorded. In this passage we have a judicial proclamation from the Lord himself. We are told emphatically that a "broken cistern" can "hold no water." A broken heart can't be filled. No amount of teaching, preaching, telling, counseling, or any thing else can fill a broken heart! A broken heart has the same effect as the sand foundation of Matthew 7:26-27. Whatever is built on this unsure, weak foundation is surely subject to be ravaged by the tests of life. You and I are building something on some foundation right now. Hear this now!! The broken heart must be healed first, and then it can be filled. Later in this article I will discuss how the broken heart may be healed. But for now please understand that if you or I attempt to fill a broken heart we are putting the "cart in front of the horse." Again, please understand that a broken cistern can hold no water. A BROKEN HEART CAN'T BE FILLED!!!
The Power of a Broken Heart
I want to discuss briefly the power of a broken heart. In Luke 4:18 Jesus said he came to heal the brokenhearted. The Greek work translated "brokenhearted" according to Strongs Exhaustive Concordance is "suntribo." This word means to be crushed completely or shattered. The brokenhearted person is a person who has been crushed completely or shattered. This word actually is a combination of two words which mean "with or together" and "a rut or worn track." The power of a broken heart is that it imprisons that person and causes their life to be lived out of the rut or worn track of the experience or trauma that crushed their heart. This is what psychology calls "scripting." The experiences of our lives can literally "write a script" on our hearts. This "scripting" produces a rut or worn track like the grooves on a phonograph record. The net result of this scripting is a "conditioned response." A life lived reactively. When subjected to a particular situation having the same or similar circumstances, language or even implications as the old experience that caused the heart to be broken, a response ensues somewhat like a reflex action. The record plays the same tune it has played hundreds of times before. The record in fact can play no other song than the one recorded in its grooves.
The verse mentioned above in Jeremiah 2:13 speaks of a broken cistern. The Hebrew word in this verse, which is translated cistern, comes from a word that means, "to engrave" and figuratively means, "to explain." This same Hebrew word is found in Habakkuk 2:2, which says, "Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it." In this text, we find the same Hebrew word translated "plain." The experience or experiences, which caused the heart to be broken, have engraved the broken heart cistern. Some vision has been written on my heart and on your heart. Every person's heart has been engraved by the experiences of the past. The broken heart is scripted by the experience that caused it to be broken. This is why it is imperative for the broken heart to be healed. Otherwise, the same response will be played out time and time again. The record can play no other song!!
An Example of Scripting
One of the most widespread or common examples of scripting in the church is in the area of childhood experiences or experiences in early Christian development. If these collective experiences have not been representative of the Father's heart toward us, they can leave us with a very distorted view. For instance, if the experience of our relationship with our earthly father doesn't match what it was supposed to be by the Lord, then that experience will write a vision of fatherhood on our heart. This vision will affect our view of our Heavenly Father. This scripting will also affect every "father" relationship in our life until the broken heart is healed. We will find ourselves playing out the old script over and over again. Our life literally becomes an expression of the old experience. Until the broken heart is healed the cycle is repeated. Conditioned response is the order of the day until Jesus re-writes the script!
Based on the example just mentioned, let's play out the typical response of the broken heart prior to the heart being healed by the Lord Jesus. Let's say that the Lord introduces us to a new spiritual father-type relationship. The typical response before the broken heart is healed would range from absolute refusal to reluctance, suspicion and double-mindedness. Trust would be extremely difficult, if not impossible. The foundation of this new relationship would be at best shaky, thus affecting the potential of the relationship from day one. Again, the "father-figure script" that would be carried into this new relationship would be the Achilles' heel of the relationship. The broken heart must be healed if healthy, productive, interdependent relationships are ever to be enjoyed.
Jesus Came to Heal the Brokenhearted
Let us look once again at Isaiah 61:1. Isaiah said, "The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound." In Luke 4:18, Luke records that Jesus said He had come to heal the brokenhearted. The same anointing that was on Jesus during His earthly ministry has now been diffused into and throughout the Body of Christ. The church is the Body of Christ and is carrying the same anointing Jesus carried! Just as Jesus was anointed to heal the brokenhearted, so you and I are anointed to heal the brokenhearted. If you are brokenhearted, you need to get with a brother or a sister and have them pray with and for you so your broken heart can be completely healed. If this message has spoken to you and you find that you can truly relate to the scripting and conditioned response of a broken heart, you need to go to those who are over you in the Lord and have them minister the anointing to you to heal your broken heart. Hurt people hurt people. Healed people heal people. Get your broken heart healed so you can "build the old wastes, raise up the former desolations, and repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations." With a healed heart you will be able to help others that are brokenhearted. We need to see the Body of Christ rise up and be the Body of Christ!! Walking in strength and victory, amen? May every broken heart be truly healed by the very anointing of the Lord Jesus. May you be healed by that very anointing!! Amen!!