Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called "Today," lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
— Hebrews 3:12-13
Where is one of the easiest places to get a hardened heart? Any place where God's people gather. It isn't in a bar or around a bunch of people who are doing wicked things. No, the easiest place to get a hardened heart is where you hear the Word of God being taught. Knowledge brings responsibility. And the same sun that softens the wax hardens the clay. The same message that transforms one life can cause another to say, "I don't believe."
If you go to church or a Bible study week after week, hearing the Word of God but refusing to believe it, you can actually get an irreparably hardened heart. I am not saying that you shouldn't go to church. But I am saying that you should go to church with the right heart, with an open heart. Otherwise, you could get a hardened heart. You could be judged by the very message that should have set you free.
That's why preachers' kids and others who were raised in the church are often some of the most notorious sinners. They've taken God's Word for granted and hardened their hearts against it.
The J. B. Phillips translation of Hebrews 3:12–14 says, "You should therefore be most careful, my brothers, that there should not be in any of you that wickedness of heart which refuses to trust, and deserts the cause of the living God. Help each other to stand firm in the faith every day, while it is still called 'today', and beware that none of you becomes deaf and blind to God. For we continue to share in all that Christ has for us so long as we steadily maintain until the end the trust with which we began."
May God help us to keep tender hearts.