Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Beatitude Series #10: Pure In Heart

“Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8

Not the way to Heaven

Jesus is not teaching that if we try to live a pure, sinless life we can be worthy of Heaven. He is not teaching that we are saved by our own merits or our own efforts. Ephesians 2:8-9 and Titus 3:5-6 teach that it is not by our works of righteousness that we are saved. He is not teaching we must seek an experience whereby we attain perfection. In fact, we learn in I John 1:8-10 that if we say we no longer sin, we are deceiving ourselves and are making God a liar.

All the great saints of the Bible were men and women of faith in God, but they all sinned without exception. Noah got drunk. Abraham lied. Moses lost his temper. Job cursed the day he was born. David committed adultery and murder. Peter denied Jesus and Paul struggled with sin; but their sins do not give us an excuse to sin. If we are Christians, we have a heart that longs to do right. When we are controlled by our flesh; we do wrong. Only as we are controlled by the Holy Spirit, can we do right.

Consider three words in this beatitude: heart, pure and blessed.

The Heart

What do we mean when we talk about our hearts? Certainly, we are not talking about the organ that pumps blood through our body. Rather, we are talking about the non-material, innermost part of our being from which flow our actions, speech and attitude. Our heart involves our intellect, our emotions and our will.

Read what the Bible says about our hearts.

1. Guard your heart for out of it are the issues of life. Proverbs 4:23

2. God sees our hearts and knows exactly what we really are. We can’t “fake Him out”. I Samuel 16:1

3. Our hearts are desperately wicked, even more than we can imagine. Jeremiah 17:9

4. God alone can change our hearts. Ezekiel 36:26-27

5. Conviction takes place in the heart. Acts. 2:37

6. Salvation takes place in the heart. Romans 10:9-10

7. When our hearts are changed by the power of God; our thinking, our attitudes and our conduct radically

change. II Corinthians 5:17

Pure

In Hebrews 10:19-22 we learn that we are cleansed of sin and our conscience is made pure through the shed blood of Christ. By trusting in His sacrifice for sin, our sins are transferred to His account and He transfers His righteousness to our account.

When our hearts are purified, everything changes: our thinking, our affections, our interests, our priorities, EVERYTHING! We are radically changed to the depths of our being! We begin to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. Though sinful and imperfect, our heart cries for purity. We do not enjoy sin. We hate sin in ourselves. We have no taste for it. It is repulsive to us. Read David’s confession recorded in Psalm 51 after his sin with Bathsheba. Read in Romans 7 of Paul’s frustration, grief and burden of sin and how he longed to be cleansed. Both of these cries are evidence that David and Paul had pure hearts, even though they did not enjoy perfection on earth.

We hunger for the Word of God because we know it cleanses us from sin. Psalm 119:1, 5, 9-16. The true Christian loves God’s Word. He does not merely give intellectual assent to a doctrinal statement. He gives heart-assent to God and to God’s standards and God’s will for His life. Psalm 119:10

In John 13 we have a record of Jesus washing His disciple’s feet. From this story we can learn a lesson about purity. Two Greek verbs are used in the story; louo and nipto. Louo is a verb that means to bathe the whole body as in a tub or shower. Nipto describes hand washing as in a wash basin.

When Jesus came to Peter, Peter refused at first. “Thou shalt never wash (nipto) my feet.” Jesus responded by explaining to him that if he would not allow Him to wash (nipto) his feet, he did not belong to Jesus. Then Peter, the extremist of the group, went to the opposite extreme. He cried out, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.” He was asking Jesus for a bath.

Jesus replied to Peter “He that is washed (louo), needeth not but to wash (nipto) his feet, but is already clean.”

Among other lessons, Jesus is teaching us here that if we have had the louo bath of salvation, we don’t need to repeat that bath whenever we sin. Rather we need to confess our sins each time and allow Him to give us the nipto washing. Going back to John 13:8 Jesus is teaching us that if we have no desire for the nipto washing and if we reject the need for it, it is evidence that we do not belong to Christ. We are not Christians.

So purity is given to us by the grace of God when we trust Christ as Saviour. But if we have had the bath of salvation, then we are going to have the desire to stay pure by going to His Word for daily washing and confessing our sins to God and receiving the cleansing of Jesus’ blood. I John 1:9 If we have no desire for the daily washing of the Word, it is evidence that we have never had the bath of salvation.

Blessed

The blessed promise to the pure in heart is that they will see God. When does that take place? We see Him now by faith. Moses saw God by faith and was able to endure. Hebrews 11:27.

By living in His presence now, we can behold His beauty. Psalm 27:4

Isaiah, in a time of tragedy, saw the Lord. As he saw the holiness of God, he became aware of his own sinfulness. When he confessed his sinfulness, God cleansed Him, purifying his lips and using him mightily for His glory. Isaiah 6

When our heart is pure, we can be used of God. II Timothy 2:19-22

“Now ye are clean through the Word that I have spoken unto you. John 15:3 If you have received The Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, you’ve had the bath of salvation. If you daily receive His Word in meekness and humility and if you daily deal with known sin by confessing it to God as sin; you can know the blessing of a pure heart, seeing and walking with God by faith.

I Corinthians 13:12 explains “For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” One day we shall see God in all of His glory when we awake in His presence. David said in Psalm 17:15 “As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied when I awake with Thy likeness.” To think about this is a purifying hope. I John 3:1-3

March 5, 2006 - Posted by | Beatitudes Series

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