Matthew 5:8; Ezekiel 36:26; Various
Matthew 5:8; Various
Date: Thursday, July 16, 2020
Good evening and welcome to BCCC and our nightly devotional study.
The blessings from the Sermon on the Mount or “Beatitudes” are blessings that Jesus pronounced on the crowd who assembled to hear him speak. Can you image what a blessing from the Christ would be like? I don’t know that I feel worthy… and I’m not. I should be asking God to bless Jesus. But Jesus asked for God to show his favor on us. These blessing bring a spiritual joy that comes from God into our hearts and floods them with His joy and love that should overflow to others
Tonight we are on our sixth blessing. Matthew 5:8 says, Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. I would like to see God. I would like to have a fellowship with him like Adam and Eve had when they walked with God in the garden of Eden. Walking together is a very intimate way to get to know each other. As we walk we share our thoughts on life and can get personal with each other. I like that idea.
But in this passage, Jesus is concerned with the condition of my heart. And that is a condition we see throughout the Bible. In 1 Samuel 16:7 we see that God accepts David and rejects Eliab because of the condition of the heart. Constantly God refers to the Israelites as having a hard and rebellious heart. In Ezekiel 36:26, God goes as far as wanting to give them a heart transplant. He said, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”
And let’s face it. He would have too. God doesn’t want a heart that is preocuppied with other matters and priorities. He wants a heart that is pure for him. And what’s that about anyway? On my best day I struggle to keep my heart in line… let alone pure.
In today culture we often think of purity in percentages. Ivory soap used to claim to be 99.44% pure soap. And do you know what I think about when I hear that? What’s the other .56% that is unpure soap? You can buy hamburger that is 70% pure lean beef. But I don’t even want to think of the other 30% unpure… fat, connective tissue, and whatever else they throw in the grinder… gross.
Jesus wants people who are pure of heart. The aim of Jesus Christ is not to reform the manners of society, but to change the hearts of sinners like you and me. In the Sermon on the Mount he says things like “You have heard it said… but I say.” The problem is that you and I see a sign that says “Don’t go over this line” so we go up as close to the line as we can get without going over… some might even dip a toe or two over the line. But Jesus says, “Don’t even get close to the line… stay over here.”
The heart is what you are, in the secrecy of your thought and feeling, when nobody knows but God. And what you are at the invisible root matters as much to God as what your are at the visible branch. So the heart is utterly crucial to Jesus. What we are in the deep, private recesses of our lives is what he cares about most. Jesus did not come into the world simply because we have some bad habits that need to be broken. He came into the world because we have such dirty hearts that need to be purified.
So how can we, the imperfection, gaze on the face of perfection. We do so through the grace of Jesus. Jesus is the face of God. He calls us to purify our hearts through him. We give him our impure, dirty heart and he gives us a new one of flesh and spirit. Our heads hang low in shame but when he puts a new heart in us he grabs our chin and pulls it up… “look at me.”
In John 14:7 Jesus told the disciples that they know the Father and have seen him. Philip said, “Show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” But Jesus replied, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”
Do you want to see the Father? Do you want to have fellowship with Him? Do you want to walk and talk with God… be with him in his heavenly realm? Look to Jesus. Let him give you a new heart…a pure heart.
PRAYER THOUGHT: Dear God Almighty, You are pure and holy and I am a sinful. I my best day I am not good enough. Thank you for helping me see you through your Son, Jesus Christ. Thank you for the purity that comes in knowing him. In Jesus name. AMEN!
“Good night and God bless you.”