THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT -- LESSON SIX
"Blessed Are The Pure In Heart"
I. This is probably the best known, the best loved, the most
comprehensive of the beatitudes, and perhaps the most rewarding
to experience and difficult to understand.
II. IT SPEAKS OF THE WONDERFUL VALUE OF PURITY AND THE
GIFT OF SIGHT.
A. It speaks of and promises the possibility of our seeing God.
1. This possibility is a badge of human greatness.
2. In this man is superior to all earthly creatures.
3. "Thou hast crowned him with glory and honor" (Psalm
B. It tells of man's deepest longing and highest possibility.
1. A cry older than human history: As old as man himself.
2. "Oh that I knew where I might find him!" (Job 23:3; 14:14).
3. "Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us" (John 14:8).
C. This beatitude speaks to our supreme need.
1. Any human audience has many different burdens and pressing
needs which only God can understand, meet and lift
(1John 1:6, 7; 2:3).
2. Not all people have the same vision, for different reasons.
3. Three kinds of vision: Natural, mental, spiritual
(1 Corinthians 2:9).
4. Consider: (a) What some desire and pay to see; (b) Some
things "I want to see;" (c) Some awesome scenes.
5. The one big need of all of us is to come to God and ask Him to
fill our needs and solve our problems (Phil. 4:19).
I. WHY IS PURITY OF HEART ESSENTIAL FOR SEEING AND
COMING TO GOD? (John 15:3; Acts 15:9)?
A. God has always required purity for he is pure (Isaiah 6:3,5).
1. The words of God are ultra pure and flawless (Psalm 12:6).
2. The precepts and commandments of God are pure and right
3. The Son of God is pure (1 Peter 2:21,22).
B. Children of God must also be pure (Titus 2:11-14; 1 John 3:1-3;
Ephesians 1:4; 5:27).
1. The most blessed life is a pure life (Phil. 4:8; Heb. 12:14).
2. Heaven is prepared and reserved for the pure: Nothing
impure shall enter the heavenly eternal kingdom (Revelation
II. WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE "PURE IN HEART"? CLEAN,
FREE FROM EVIL AND UNDEFILED?
A. On the surface it sounds forbidding and suggests the impossible.
1. But to be pure in heart does not mean to be sinless.
2. Neither does he say, "Blessed are the perfect."
3. Nor does he say for us to cleanse the outside of the cup and
the dish or platter, like the Pharisees did (Matthew 23:25,26).
B. To be "pure in heart" means to be clean, undefiled, and free from
evil: Mentally, morally and doctrinally.
1. It means purity of mind: To be pure in thought,
understanding, faith (John 15:3; Acts 15:9; Prov. 23:7; Matt.
13:15,16; Rom. 10:10; Phil. 4:8). It is primarily the inward
man that needs to be pure (Mark 7:20-23). When the inward
man is pure, the outward man will then be clean and the
words and deeds will take care of themselves.
2. It means purity of affection: To be pure in desire, love and
trust (Romans 10:1; Matt. 22:37; 1 Cor. 13:6; Colosians 3:1,2;
Proverbs 3:5). To be pure in heart means to be free inwardly
from evil desire and pollution; to be free of guilt: Forgiven,
innocent, clean, unsoiled and unadulterated.
3. It means purity of purpose: To be pure in purpose, will,
intention and obedience (2 Corinthians 9:7; Romans 6:17;
Hebrews 4:12; Philippians 3:13,14; Titus 3:1). This includes
sincere motives and undivided loyalty and allegiance to God.
A pure heart is singleminded and free from dishonest motive
and purpose, loyal and true to one supreme purpose, Master
and God (Matt. 6:22-32; John 15:17-19).
III. HOW DOES ONE WHO HAS SINNED BECOME PURE IN
HEART, FREE FROM EVIL?
A. It certainly does not happen by accident, chance, or just by
"thinking happiness thoughts."
B. Nor does it happen by human effort alone (Romans 4:4,5).
1. When we are guilty, conscience condemns (1 John 3:20).
2. And conscience cannot cleanse itself (Hebrews 9:22).
3. There must be a foundation for true happiness thoughts, a
truly adequate soil in which to grow a truly happy mind.
C. This requires high motivation and wholehearted obedience to the
gospel: Sincere acceptance of pardon through God's law
1. This transformation includes believing "unto
righteousness," "repentance unto life," and being "baptized
into Christ," where there is no condemnation (Romans 10:10;
Acts 11:18; Gal. 3:27; Romans 8:1).
2. Through obedient faith in and obedience to the gospel or
word of Christ, the unclean sinful heart may be purified,
cleansed and sanctified (John 15:3; Romans 10:17; Acts 15:9;
I Peter 1:22,23).
3. This is how "many of the Corinthians" were washed, sanctified,
justified, and became saints (Acts 18:8; 1 Corinthians
IV. HOW CAN WE REMAIN PURE IN A JUNGLE OF IMPURITY
WHERE WE ARE CONSTANTLY BOMBARDED BY IMPURITY?
A. To maintain purity requires "all diligence" (Proverbs 4:23;
2 Peter 1:5). Jesus said, "Watch and pray that you enter
not into temptation" (Matthew 26:41; Colossians 3:1,2).
B. By determination to maintain a pure mind, heart and hands
1. "Put away" and "to death" evil desire, anger, wrath, malice
(Colossians 3:8; 1 John 4:20).
2. Abhor and abstain from evil; clean to and hold fast the good
(Romans 12:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:22).
3. Concentrate and focus our thoughts on "these things:" The
true, honorable, just, pure, lovely and of good report (Philippians 4:8,9).
4. We remain pure by a continual walk "in the light" of God and
the message of his Son, which includes confession of sin,
contact with Christ's blood, and fellowship with God (1 John
C. A fundamental way to put down sin in our hearts: Just as you
expel darkness from a room, by turning on "the light of the world"
(John 8:12; Hebrews 12:2; Romans 12:21).
1. This may be done by looking into God's pure word daily and
by walking in its light faithfully (1 John 1:7-9; Colossians
2. By receiving the whole counsel of God and letting it dwell in
us richly and constantly (Acts 20:26,27; 18:6; Ezekiel 3:17-19;
3. By speaking "as the oracles of God" and following its
teaching (1 Peter 4:11).
D. By close, unbroken fellowship with God's church in its services
and work: Because, To see God is to become useful and zealous
for Him (I Peter 3:11; 1 Corinthians 15:33; Psalm 1).
V. WHAT IS THE VALUE OF SUCH PURITY IN SPIRITUAL VISION?
A. Many scoff at the idea (Psalm 1:1): Scoffers say there is no such
thing; but they merely reveal their ignorance and blind impurity:
"To the pure all things are pure: but to them that are defiled
and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and
their conscience are defiled" (Titus 1:15, 16).
1. But they really do not believe what they say, for purity in
some form / measure is considered by them a good thing.
2. Water; milk, pure food, drug and air laws, speech, etc.
B. Others greatly under-rate its value.
1. The impure at times seem to be blessed and loved of God as
much; but many overlook the fact that their prosperity is
brief (Psalm 37).
2. A good reputation is often treated lightly or with contempt.
Some say, "I don't care what people think;" but do not believe
them! A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches
and loving favor or good will rather than silver and gold
(Proverbs 22:1). Yet some go out to merely make a name for
themselves (Genesis 11:1-9).
C. Why then does Jesus insist, "Blessed are the pure in heart:
for they shall see God"?
1. Because that is the way it is! That is the way of life abundant
and of supreme blessedness: "He that would love life,
and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil,
And his lips that they speak no guile: And let him turn
away from evil, and do good; Let him seek peace, and
pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous,
And his ears unto their supplication: But the face
of the Lord is upon (against) them that do evil." (1 Peter
3:10-12; Cf. Titus 1:15,16).
2. It is the grand blessedness of seeing the invisible God Almighty
by faith, here and now: (a) In His works which declare his glory
(Psalm 10:1ff); (b) in His divine Book which
reveals His Son (John 14:8,9); and (c) in His people who
reflect and magnify Christ (Ephesians 4:6; Hebrews 11:24-27;
2 Corinthians 4:18).
3. And it is the supreme blessedness of seeing God eternally
face to face (1 John 3:2; Revelation 21:7).
D. The supreme value of purity therefore is that it is a quality and
condition essential to the most blessed life here, and it enables us
to see God forever (John 14:27; Hebrews 14:17).
1. It was a grand privilege to see Christ on earth (Luke 19:3,4).
2. It was an even greater privilege to see him after his resurrection
(John 20:1-18, 24-29; 1 Corinthians 15:1-6).
3. But to dwell with God forever is the supreme blessing.
I. Jesus did not say, "Blessed are the great philosophers, the greatest
comedians and entertainers, the intellectual giants, the great
presidents and/or kings: for they shall see God;" but "blessed are the
pure in heart: for they shall see God." The pure in heart are
granted a privilege denied the worldly wise and powerful.
II. The impure do not see God because they are blind to his works, word
and people. Let us pray, "Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold,
Wondrous things out of thy law" (Psalms 119:18). And then let us
live like we pray!!!
--Charles E. Crouch