Blessed Are the Pure in Heart

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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"God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God."

Matthew 5:8

From a biblical point of view, a pure heart is a heart of integrity. It entails singlemindedness in devotion to God. Moreover, those who honor God with their whole hearts will also live out their inner purity in their daily lives. Their integrity will be, not just inner wholeheartedness, but also consistency between inside and outside, between heart and action. Those who are pure in heart will do what is right, not just as a show, but rather as an expression of inner being.

Jesus' promise that the pure in heart will see God echoes Psalm 24:3-4:

Who may climb the mountain of the LORD?
Who may stand in his holy place?
Only those whose hands and hearts are pure,
who do not worship idols
and never tell lies.

Notice that the one who is able to stand in God's presence has pure hands and hearts, right actions and intentions.

When we look honestly at our hearts, however, we can't deny our own lack of purity. We are people of divided hearts. We seek our own selfish interest even as we serve the Lord. Sin continues to haunt us after we have given our lives to Christ. Thus, our desire for a pure heart leads us to confession and supplication, echoing the words of the Psalms:

Against you, and you alone, have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your sight . . .
Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean . . .
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.
Psalm 51:4,7,10

As we ask for purification, we share in the confidence of the Psalmist that when God washes us, we will be "whiter than snow" (Ps. 51:7). By God's grace, our hearts will be pure so that we might one day see God face to face.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: What is the state of your heart today? Are you aware of impurity within? Is there consistency between your heart and your actions?

PRAYER: Gracious God, how I yearn to see you, to know you more fully, to understand you, and to experience you in new ways. Thus when I hear this promise about those with pure hearts seeing you, I yearn for such a heart.

But I must acknowledge to you the impurity of my heart. How often have I known what's right, but chosen otherwise! My desire for you and your holiness is compromised by an opposite desire for that which dishonors you. Thus, with David in Psalm 51, I confess that I have done what is evil in your sight. I ask you, Lord, to purify me and to create in me a clean heart.

Teach me your ways, O LORD,
that I may live according to your truth!
Grant me purity of heart,
so that I may honor you.
With all my heart I will praise you, O Lord my God.
I will give glory to your name forever,
for your love for me is very great.
You have rescued me from the depths of death.
Psalm 86:11-13

All praise be to you, O God, because you purify me. All praise be to you, because by your grace I will one day see your face. Amen.