There is outward holiness and there is inward holiness, and you’ve got to have inward holiness if you’re going to go to Heaven. Stay with me.
Welcome to today’s Little Lesson as we continue working our way through the beatitudes. Another way of titling these beatitudes would be the characteristics of the blessed, or another way of titling them would be the marks of those who are going to Heaven or the characteristics of those who are saved, because all of these beatitudes are reflections of the transformation that occurs in the lives of those who truly believe in Jesus and believe the gospel. We’ve seen that over and over again through the first beatitudes.
In today’s Little Lesson we’re going to look at the next one on the list, one of my favorite ones. Although how could you possibly have a favorite beatitude? This is Matthew 5:8, “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.” Now don’t we believe that everybody who’s saved will one day see the face of God? I think that’s pretty easy to prove from Scripture. Everyone’s going to stand before Him to be judged by Him and so certainly those who believe in Him are going to not just see Him at the judgment, they’re going to see Him repeatedly. They’re going to be before His throne worshiping Him, right? Right.
Okay, so people who see God are people who are saved and so just like all the rest of these beatitudes, this is a characteristic of those who are saved. They’re pure in heart. Just let that sink in and minister to you. Blessed are the pure in heart for they, and only they, will see God. Because the antithesis is certainly true, those who are not pure in heart are not blessed. Those who have an outward purity but not an inward heart purity will not see God.
You can see that this is a requirement to be saved and it’s not something we have to muster up to get a pure heart. Oh, that’s the beauty of it. “Blessed,” see there’s an action of God. You’re blessed if you have a pure heart because God gave it to you. Now I’m not in that camp that says God sovereignly, arbitrarily gave it to you for no reason and for no reason doesn’t give it to other people. No, no, I’m not saying that at all because let’s not avoid the rest of the Bible here, okay?
It’s very clear that under the conviction of the Holy Spirit God expects people to make a heartfelt decision of faith and repentance and for those who do that little thing, God pours out this out on them. He does a transforming work in them, He blesses them by giving them pure hearts. From then on, they want to serve the Lord and they are not satisfied with just a thin veneer of holiness that’s there just as a show for other people to get their approbation.
They know that God looks on the inside and that God is on the inside and of course, He knows our thoughts, He knows our motives. He knows everything about us and we serve Him from a pure motive because we’re so thankful for the forgiveness that we’ve received and because He’s changed us and gave us a pure heart. I love hanging around pure-hearted people and I’m so blessed in that regard.
That’s the difference between religion and true righteousness. Religion is just a big show, that’s all it is, it’s just a big show. People pretending to be something that they really aren’t. And you put them in a situation, one of those x-ray situations, where things don’t go the way they want to go and all of this garbage comes out of their heart and just spews out of their mouth because as Jesus said, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.”
You can tell what’s in someone’s heart by what comes out their mouth, but blessed are the pure in heart because edification and mercy and love and gentleness and goodness, these are the things that are proceeding out of their pure heart. That doesn’t mean that they’re perfect or they don’t stumble or fall, it just simply means that they’re trying because they’re real and they’re not just religious, they love God and He’s blessed them with a pure heart, okay?
This is another way of examining ourselves to see if we’re truly among the blessed. Will I see God one day? Obviously, this is implying more than once because I believe everybody’s going to see God one day. Because we’re all going to be judged at his judgment throne, so this is beyond just that incident. Can you imagine the blessing? What could be a greater blessing than to say I’m going to be seeing God forever? Oh my goodness, He blessed me. He blessed me with a pure, pure heart and I love to serve Him and I hate it when I mess up because He’s changed me.
We know that the Bible teaches that we all have a residue of the old nature hanging around us and it’s called, in the Bible, the flesh. The Spirit wars against the flesh. These are in opposition one to another, so don’t be alarmed by that old nature creeping up trying to get its way again. Take note though of the opposing sense that you have of love and forgiveness and gentleness and all the fruit of the Spirit that God has placed within you because you’re blessed by Him and He’s purified your heart.
I just love thinking about this. I just love being so blessed to have experienced it. Okay, well we’re out of time for today. Thank you so much for joining me on today’s Little Lesson. God bless you.