Multiple times in Jeremiah the Lord’s indictment against Israel was that they followed the dictates of their heart. He entreated them through His prophets to follow Him, but they refused.
Remember the ruined sash? Jeremiah 13:10 says, “This evil people, who refuse to hear My words, who follow the dictates of their hearts, and walk after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be just like this sash which is profitable for nothing.”
Let John 6:63 remind us again that our flesh profits nothing.
Jeremiah 15:19 says, “…If you return, then I will bring you back; you shall stand before Me; IF you take out the precious from the vile, you shall be as My mouth…”
Jeremiah 16:19 called lies worthless and unprofitable things. That is exactly what the devil wants to do. He shoots his fiery dart-lies in a way they will penetrate. His design is to get them inside our heart so that he can set up inner strongholds of evil thoughts. You think a believer doesn’t have evil thoughts? Matthew 15:19 says, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts…”
2 Corinthians 10:4 says that it is God’s word in our heart that will pull down those stronghold-lies. Satan is a dictator. The Lord never dictates. He invites!
To follow the dictates of our heart means that we unequivocally and absolutely act independent of God. He is not in that equation. It is all flesh which profits nothing.
How do we take out the precious from the vile? First we acknowledge that we have sinned against God alone. The dictates of our heart are pride! Like 2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “…will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then…”
We cannot turn with a proud heart. God resists the proud. Verse 14 goes on to say, “…I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” We humble ourselves through confession of our sin. If we don’t, the Lord will bring His ways to humble us.