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Blessed Are The Pure In Heart

"1And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: 2And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying, 3Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  4Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted.  5Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.  6Blessed are they that do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled.  7Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.  8Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.  9Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.  10Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  11Blessed are you, when men shall revile and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake.  12Rejoice, and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." 
Matthew 5:1-12

We have made our way through the first five beatitudes and now we come to one of the most blessed of them all!  They are all wonderful in their own way.  However, this one has a most powerful and dramatic effect on us as Christians.  By way of a short review, we need to remind ourselves that at the first, we must see ourselves as of no consequence.  We are nothing without Him.  Have you come to that realization?  The first three beatitudes have revealed to us our desperate need.  They show us how much we are full of ourselves!  We realize that in Christ Jesus lies our only hope and we mourn over the discovery of our sinfulness and impurity.  What I learn about myself causes me/us to hunger and thirst!  Yes, to hunger and thirst with the promise that follows, THEY SHALL BE FILLED!  To hunger and thirst is a very powerful thing.  It is pivotal.  It is like a hinge on a door.  The door opens and closes by way of a hinge.  We say things, like, "The whole case hinges upon the evidence...".  This means that so much depends upon our hunger and thirst!  So much is resultant from and depends upon this hunger.   From this we see the powerful results, such as, being merciful, purity in heart, and peacemaking.  The last beatitude is Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake...   What is this?  It is the end result of all that has gone on before this.  Look out!  Some people are not going to like this new-found faith of yours!  They will not be pleased with your new outlook on life.  It will rub them the wrong way.  It will cause them to be annoyed.  Many times, this is due to the fact that your life is a "conviction" to them.  It is the Holy Spirit trying to stir their hearts and draw them to the Savior.
To begin, we will look at this beatitude using the following outline:
              I.   Position
              II.  Definition
              III. Acquisition
I.  Position  
This beatitude is in the sixth position.  It follows and is resultant from hungering and thirsting after righteousness.  It is also the outflow of a merciful individual.  It is found in a structure called "correspondence".  This figure of speech in Greek is called EPI-BOLEE.  It means to throw upon, or overlaid repetition.  Hey, sometimes it is good to stretch yourself a little, right?  Don't worry, it's not as complicated as it may sound.  LOL.  Let me show you a diagram that will help to make it clear.  You ready?  Here it is:
1. Blessed are the Poor in spirit
      2. Blessed are they that Mourn
         3. Blessed are the Meek
            4. Blessed are they that do Hunger and Thirst
   1. Blessed are the Merciful
      2. Blessed are the Pure in Heart
         3. Blessed are the Peacemakers
            4. Blessed are those who are Persecuted for...
How many see the correspondence?  Number one and number one correspond to each other.  Number two and number two as well.  And on it goes.  You can see the "overlay".  Do you see it?  This is so exciting!  Why is it so exciting?  Well, let me show you another diagram that may throw some light upon it.
At the bottom of the "mountain" is poor in spirit.  As we make our way up the mountain, we come to mourning, which is the result of being poor in spirit and so on.  The correspondence of one to the other can be seen by drawing a line connecting the corresponding beatitude.  Let's do that.   We will draw a line from poor in spirit to merciful.  Now, from mourn to pure in heart.  Then, from meek to peacemaker.  And, from hunger and thirst to persecution.  Your diagram should look like this:
There it is.  This is why it is exciting.  Let's look at a couple of these.  Poor in spirit corresponds to the merciful.  Those who are poor in spirit, who have a correct view of themselves, can have a correct view of others.  They are the ones who can extend mercy to others for they know that they themselves are bankrupt and have received undeserved mercy.  Do you see why we need MORE of this poor in spirit beatitude?  It will enhance the mercy.  Look at the ones who mourn.  What did they mourn?  They mourned over what they saw.  What did they see?  Their sin.  Listen to it.  "Blessed are the pure in heart..."  Who are the PURE in heart?  Those who are mourning over the IMPURITY of their heart.  Have we seen the impurity of our heart?  If we have, we will mourn over our condition.  There is only one way to have a pure heart.  It is to surrender the impure heart to Jesus for cleansing by His precious blood!  Hallelujah!  So, we see that this beatitude is in the sixth position and it emphasizes to us that the pure in Heart are those who mourn over the impurity of their heart.  A people, a church, who do not mourn over their sin will have an issue with purity.  Let's pray and ask the Lord to do in us as the psalmist did in Psalm 139:23, when he said, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my thoughts."   Could it be, that, to the degree that I mourn over my impurity I will experience the joy of purity?
II. Definition
The definition of pure in heart is most important to an understanding of the beatitude.  To be pure in heart is not sinlessness.  If we as Christians say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  (I John 1:8) We see the mistakes and sins of others in the Bible.  Abraham, David, Moses, Jacob.  Men in the New Testament, such as Paul.  In Romans 7 he stated that the things he didn't want to do, he did.  Then he said in the 24th and 25th verses of Romans 7,
"Oh, wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death?"
Notice he said, WHO!  Friends, the Who is Jesus Christ.   That is the cry of a man who has seen himself, mourned over what he has seen, repented, and cries out for deliverance on the inside.  One evidence that a person has a pure heart is the consciousness that he carries and the burden that he has for the IMPURITY that still dwells within him.  

To be pure in heart is not mere externalism.  Only what you see on the outside.  It is not ceremonial correctness, or outward holiness.  Man does not see how God sees.  Someone said many years ago that legalism is what man sees and holiness is what God sees.  I like that.  Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart.  There it is!  The Pharisees in the New Testament were all external.  They were concerned with the outside.  But Jesus said,
"Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man."  Matthew 15:11

"For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies..."  Matthew 15:19
So, the heart needs attention.  Listen to the scripture.
              "Keep [guard] thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." Proverbs 4:23
Out of the heart the boundaries of my life are drawn.  What is the one most important area I need to guard?  My heart!  This must be my focus.  Why?  Listen to Jeremiah:
"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"
 Jeremiah 17:9
Ah, this is proof that we cannot legislate righteousness.  Our inner man is the "heart" of the matter.  Yes, it is good to make good laws.  Legislation that lines up with the Word of God is desperately needed in our nation.  But we must be plain about it.  We must not skirt the issue or beat around the bush, as they say.  While making good laws are necessary and a must, the law can never change the motive of a man's heart.  God said that He would write HIS LAWS ON THEIR HEARTS!   Hallelujah!  So, if God can do that, then it will not matter what man does.   Let me put it this way to show how important the heart is.  If every woman in America was born again by the blood of Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit, it would not matter if man's law says abortion is legal.  For the law of God would be written on the heart of every woman.  So, God's law written on the heart would be the standard of behavior.  One more Hallelujah! 
Listen, only God can change the heart.  So, it's not a "head" religion (Christian creed) or a "hand" religion (Christian service) but a heart religion that leads to the outward manifestation of the inward change.  So, what does this beatitude mean?  

Consider the "heart".  
"For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he."  Proverbs 23:7
Notice, it says, as he THINKETH.  Think.  Where does he think?  IN HIS HEART.  There is a connection between the head and the heart.  Our heart is the place where we think, feel, and make decisions.  We are made up of Intellect, Emotion, and Will.  These are the elements that make up personality.  We all have the ability to think, to feel, and to choose.  Sin has infected the human race.  Sin has corrupted man's personality.  He's not thinking right, therefore, he misinterprets the facts of what’s going on in his life and that affects his feelings, his emotions.  They, too, are not correct.  This in turn can cause a person to make decisions he or she will ultimately regret.  So, my heart needs to be changed because it is the problem.  Listen to Jesus' words again:
"For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies...." Matthew 15:19
Man's trouble is not his environment.  Many people say that if they only had a better neighborhood to live in, or a better job, or a world that didn't have so much evil in it, they would then be able to live a Christian life.  I remind us of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden.  A garden that the Lord created.  A perfect environment.  Yet, they still fell.  They still disobeyed and by that act, sin came into the world and death by sin.  (Romans 5) So, placing man in a perfect environment will not fix his heart problem; it will not save him.  Also, education will not fix the problem.  It cannot save him.  There are professors of the highest IQ in colleges and universities who cannot keep their marriage together!  NO, it is sin that infected us as human beings.  It is sin that has destroyed our God-given faculties.  Our intellect has been marred by sin.  My understanding is darkened.  The Bible says that the minds of men have been blinded by the devil.  Our emotions have been twisted.  My feelings are those of misery and without purpose.  My will is then perverted because of sin and I choose evil.  I choose wrong.   But Christ came and He meets the need of my heart!  He is the heart changer!  Let me show you something.  Are you up for it?  Why, certainly you are!  Listen, as I stated before, because of sin, our whole personality has been corrupted.  My intellect, emotions, and will.  My ability:
  • TO KNOW
  • TO FEEL
  • TO CHOOSE
Jesus knows this and He meets that great need of mine to have my heart put back to a right relationship with the Father.  He came down to this earth to be the Savior of my soul.  He fulfills a work that only HE can.  What is that work?  It is the work of a prophet, a priest, and a king.  In the Old Testament, they had prophets, priests, and kings.  What was the office of prophet?  A priest?  A king?  What was their "job", or calling?
The Prophet = To tell them the truth about their sin and illumine their mind and call the nation back to God.  To let them know what sin is. - Revelation.
 
The Priest = To express the love of God to them; showing there is a way back to Him through the redemption that is in the blood! -  Mediation.

The King =  To show them the only way to make right decisions is by allowing God to be the ruler of their hearts. - Regulation.
Here is the great news!

Jesus is our PROPHET!
Jesus is our PRIEST!
Jesus is our KING!
As PROPHET, He illumines my mind and shows me what sin is!  As PRIEST, He tells me He loves me by dying on the cross for my sins and shedding His own blood on that tree of Calvary!  And as KING, Jesus becomes the ruler of my heart and teaches me how to make decisions that will glorify Him!  My personality has received a divine make-over!  I now think differently, feel differently, and I choose differently!  Can there be anything so marvelous as this?  NO, a thousand times, NO!

Christianity is an inward HEART thing, but shallow religion is just an outward show thing.  Change begins in the heart.  But know this, the change on the inside will always be seen on the outside.  Blessed are the pure in heart.
Consider the pure.
 
What does this word mean?   One could say, single.  Also, sincere.  It means unmixed.  It is not Jesus and something else.  Pure means, undivided.  Another way to say it would be, without pleats.  It is the opposite of duplicity, or double dealing.  We may have heard someone say about another person that they are "two faced".  So, divided has the idea of two-ness.  Pure has the idea of singleness.  Or, not divided.  Blessed are the undivided in heart.  Listen to it:
"Unite my heart to fear thy name."  Psalm 86:11
Unite is a good word.  One part of me wants this, and another part of me wants that.  O, Lord, UNITE my heart.  I want what you want, O, Lord!  I want my will to be united to yours.  The purer the heart, the more conscious I become of the filth of my own heart.  I mourn over my pride, my impatience with my spouse, or family.  I weep in private over my unholiness.  I see that I have a form of godliness, but I am denying the power.  I see the fountain of my impurity.  Ah, but that causes me to come, and cry, and weep at the altar wherein lies a fountain filled with blood!  Hallelujah!  Do we do this?  Do we weep over the impurity we see in our own heart?  God will answer.

Listen to it:

Jeremiah 32:39 says it this way:
"I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for the good of them,          and of their children after them."
So, it is when we allow something else to come in and be in competition with God that we get into trouble.  Think about it.  Hasn't that happened to you?  It has happened to me.  It is not that I am rejecting God, but I am putting Him on the sideline, or as they say in football, "on the bench".  We disregard Him.  We mislay Him.  Friend, there are things that are striving for the mastery in your heart.  As one preacher said years ago; we begin by wanting God and something else.  If that is allowed to continue, it changes to wanting the something else, and God.  And I am talking to someone today who needs to hear this.  God will not be in competition with us and something else.  Let me share a verse with you that may shed some light on what it is to have a divided heart.
"Israel is an empty vine...their heart is divided." Hosea 10:1-2
Wow!  God said their heart is not single, not pure, not united.  Jesus said if our eye is single our whole body will be full of light.  So, if it is not single, we lose light.  We forfeit the ability to see clearly.  Hmm, no wonder things are not in focus for me sometimes.  But, hey, when you read what the Lord is saying to the people in Hosea 10:1,2 we see what this divided heart is actually doing.   Looking into this word, divided, we see that the Hebrew word is "smooth".   How can "smooth" mean divided?  In those days, they used smooth stones as dice.  They would throw them in an act called "casting lots" because they wanted to divide something.  So, it is a gambling term.  Your heart has become a gambling house.  We would call it, a Casino.  They were gambling with God.  Kind of like tossing a coin.   "Heads, we go to church and worship God; Tails, we play golf!"   When it comes up "Heads we go to church", we quickly shout "Two out of three!"   The truth is, we really want something else.  Their heart had become a Casino - divided, not pure, mixed, not single, not united.

Let's face it, we are having trouble with a divided loyalty.   A pure heart is a loyal heart, a clean heart.  Not a sinlessly perfect heart.  No.  But it is a heart that is no longer divided.  A heart that recognizes that in me dwelleth no good thing.  A heart that says like Paul,

"I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do; forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth to those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 3:13-14

I have found that the closer I get to Jesus, the more I realize my need of Him.  I want to tell you something that happened to me that brought this truth home to my heart.
Some years ago, I was flying a kite with my son and my father in an open field.  My son was small, and my dad was watching as I started to run with the kite on that very windy day.  As I ran, the kite being close to me, it rattled and shook as it tugged and jerked in my hand.  The wind then began to catch the kite and took it soaring into the air.  Up and up it went.  It reached a height that was almost out of sight.  The string that I held in my hand, connecting me to the kite, was not tight.  It was looped and I could move my hand about and experienced no jerking nor tugging of the line!  It was as though I had nothing in my hand!  I felt no tug at all!  NONE!  This was a very powerful lesson to me.  In fact, I remember saying to myself, "I feel no tug."  Then the Lord spoke to me immediately.  Yes, right then I heard the voice of the Spirit say these words to me.  "Jerry, that's right, when you are far away from me, you feel no tug like you do when you are close to me."   I was convicted at that instant.  I knew that to be close to the Lord meant that He would put His finger on me.  I learned that He would jerk, or tug the line of my spirit, my inner man because He chastens those who are sons and daughters.  I thanked the Lord that He loved me enough to confront this misguided attitude of mine.  For, sometimes, we think because we feel no tug on the line that we are in good shape spiritually and that we are one of God's favorite children!  I prayed from that time on that the Lord would confront me, and not let me stray from Him, but "jerk" my chain, "tug" that line and let me know that the closer I draw to Him, the closer He comes to me.  But when that happens, look out!  He's about to rattle your cage.   Don't resist.  Just say, "Thank you, Lord."
III. Acquisition

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.  There it is.  What is the acquisition?  They shall see God.  Yes, I want to see God.  Do you?  Not just when I die, but even right now.  But how?  Through Jesus the Son.  The scripture says:
"No man hath seen God at any time; but the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him."  John 1:18
Jesus said,
"He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father."   John 14:9
So, we start there.  Come to the One who can take that impure heart and cleanse it from sin.  And you will get a glimpse of the Savior who has died for you.  From this we come to understand that seeing God depends not upon our own understanding in the natural, but upon the cleanliness of our hearts.  My friend, above all else, get your sins forgiven and this will open a line of vision for you to see and know your God.  You will see His grace, His mercy, His counsel, and His will.  You will see God in your circumstances.  You will begin to see Him for you will be looking for Him.  What will seeing God do?  Well, I give you one thing it will accomplish in you.  Acts 7:2 says it like this:
"The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham, and said unto him, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and come into the land which I shall show thee."
Wow!  Praise the Lord!  What will a glimpse of the God of glory do for you and me?  It was seeing the God of glory that caused Abraham to get up and move away from all the things in the world that were in competition with his relationship with the Lord.  One glimpse, one vision, one sighting of the God of glory (Jesus) will do wonders for you and me.  It is that one beam of glory seen in the face of Jesus Christ that will send away that lust in your heart.  It will push you in HIS direction.  It will cause you to abandon the thing that is holding you back.  And the closer you get to someone, the easier it is to see them.  Get up, take a step towards the Lord of glory.  Don't be passive.
"Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.  Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts ye doubleminded."  James 4:8
It is a blessed thing to do so!  Yes, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."   Why shall they see God?  An old preacher from England said many years ago that the reason the pure in heart shall see God, is because they are the only ones who want to.

Look What The Lord Has Done

A Testimony Shared By Erica

On July 1st, 2020, my dad heard the words of Jesus, "Well done, good and faithful servant ... enter into the joy of the Lord."  He was home.

I've always been a Daddy's girl.  When I was little, he was my hero and in my eyes he was perfect.  He was always a good dad and I had no idea the life he was living.  I didn't know that when our car disappeared it was because he had gambled it away.  I didn't realize that when he was gone to "work" for days at a time, he was out drinking and doing drugs, or when we suddenly had to move away from our home, that it was because the bank had foreclosed.  The devil had him right where he wanted him, but God had bigger plans.

When I was four, my mom heard the gospel, saw herself for the sinner that she was, repented of her sins, and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as her Savior.  My sister and I were both saved soon after and for the next six years we never stopped praying that the Lord would reach my dad.  He wouldn't come to church with us and didn't want to be "preached" to, but the Holy Spirit started working in his heart.  He decided to see for himself what this was all about, so when no one was around, he picked up a Bible, opened it up, and read, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth."  He told us later that he instantly knew that God was real.  How powerful the word of God is!

On a Sunday morning, May 9th, 1993, while driving down the road, my daddy surrendered his life to Jesus, and nothing was ever the same in our home.  You can imagine the joy when he told us of his decision.  His past was forgiven, and he was a new creature in Christ!  His life was changed, and he wanted to share that with everyone.  He decided to go back to the bars so he could talk to his buddies and of course he would just drink sodas... you can imagine how that went... Satan was right there to tempt him back into his old habits.  God brought him to a crossroads where he had to admit that he couldn't quit on his own, and he asked God to deliver him from those old habits that held him.  God answered the cry of his heart, and completely took his desires away, even for cigarettes.   God is our deliverer, and if He can do it for my dad, he can do it for you!

Our family was now serving God together, what a change had taken place!  We were united in Christ; we had a beautiful home, and my dad had a good job as co-owner of a construction company. A few years had passed, and the Lord started to speak to my dad's heart about being partners with this ungodly man who had started being deceitful in business.  It was a big step, but he left the partnership and started his own company.  He called the new company, "Acts II Construction – Building Bridges for Jesus."  From almost the moment my dad got saved, he had a heart for souls and was very bold in sharing the gospel with those who needed to hear.  He used the profits from his company to support ministries and help missionaries reach the lost for Jesus.  He, himself witnessed to everybody, from guys on his job sites, to engineers, and waitresses at lunch time.  

In 2009 God called my dad to the mission field.  With a direct word from God, he headed out across the world to share the good news of salvation that had so changed his own life.  He would travel when he could, preach multiple times a day, and run his business back home over the phone and fax.  God was touching hearts and lives through his ministry, thousands were getting saved, healed and filled with the Holy Spirit.  In 2017, he felt led to close his business, and be on the mission field almost full time.  He traveled to 26 countries and preached to everyone he came in contact with, from the poorest homeless person to the president and congress of countries, and from the cab driver to crowds of thousands.

He spent 37 years of his life serving himself but spent the next 27 fully serving Jesus.  I can only imagine how many people have been changed because of this one man saying yes to Jesus.  When he came to the end of his life, and stood before God nothing in His past mattered, it was covered by the blood of Jesus!  Regardless of the decisions you have made and the life you've chosen to live, God can redeem or change it and turn your life completely around, for your good and His glory!  He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

His Way With Thee

Cyrus S. Nausbaum

Would you live for Jesus, and be always pure and good?
Would you walk with Him within the narrow road?
Would you have Him bear your burden, carry all your load?
Let Him have His way with thee.

              (Chorus)          
              His power can make you what you ought to be;
              His blood can cleanse your heart and make you free;
              His love can fill your soul, and you will see
              'Twas best for Him to have His way with thee.

                           Would you have Him make you free, and follow at His call?
                           Would you know the peace that comes by giving all?
                           Would you have Him save you, so that you need never fall?
                           Let Him have His way with thee.

                                         Would you in His kingdom find a place of constant rest?
                                         Would you prove Him true in providential test?
                                         Would you in His service labor always at your best?
                                         Let Him have His way with thee.

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