A Challenge to Live a Life Marked by Purity
Text: Matthew 5 : 1 - 12
The truly penitent would seek forgiveness and cleansing. However, he would not stop there if he is truly sincere. He would desire to live a life that is marked by purity. This meaning was also included in the Beatitude,
“Blessed are the pure in heart,
For they shall see God.”
All who came to Jesus were told to repent from their sins. There would be full forgiveness and God would cleanse the heart from sin. Those who desired to follow Jesus must also determine to live a life of purity and then they would “see” God.
DEEP OLD TESTAMENT TRUTHS
David learned to love the Lord dearly. We can well understand why this was so. David had been forgiven of much, and thus understandably, he loved the Lord much. He also experienced countless blessings from the Lord. God’s hand of blessing was evidently upon his life. In David’s growing knowledge of God, he understood an important truth.
“With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful;
With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless;
With the pure You will show Yourself pure;
And with the devious, You will show Yourself shrewd.”
God’s response and relationship with man was directly proportional to the degree the individual desired to walk with Him. Did he desire to walk with God and to “see” Him? Then he must also seek to live a life marked by being “merciful”. He must desire to live a blameless life. He must seek to live a life that is pure. Then he would be able to understand and appreciate God.
THE NATURE OF GOD – PURITY
God has many attributes. Each attribute is an absolute one. God was PURE! Anyone who wishes to know Him, to serve Him, and to “see” Him must of course be cleansed and be made pure. The demand that a person attempts to live a life of purity stems from this truth- “God is pure!”
THE NATURE OF GOD’S WORDS
As God is pure so His words took on the same characteristic. This was something that the psalmist David observed.
“The words of the Lord are pure words,
Like silver tried in a furnace of earth,
Purified seven times.”
The disciples were going to be taught pure words! Nothing could be purer than the teachings of Jesus! If ever the disciples were to fathom the significance of the pure words of Jesus, then they must desire to have pure lives!
THE CHARACTER OF JESUS – ABSOLUTELY PURE
As the disciples watched how Jesus lived, they could not help but recognize the purity of His life. His heart, words, deeds – His very life exuded the beauty of purity! What a privilege it was to see the pure Jesus!
“FOR THEY SHALL SEE GOD”
The word “see” if taken in a wooden-literal sense could cause us to misunderstand what Jesus meant! God is Spirit! He has no form! Thus He cannot actually be seen with the human eye. This was something that Moses emphasized.
“And the Lord spoke to you out of the midst
of the fire. You heard the sound of the words,
but saw no form…”
What then does this phrase “For they shall see God” mean? Let us consider yet another text from the Book of Psalms.
“Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
Or who may stand in His holy place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol,
Nor sworn deceitfully.
He shall receive blessing from the Lord,
And righteousness from the God of his
1. To see God is to have access to Him.
2. To see God is to receive His blessings.
3. To see God is to enjoy His imputed righteousness.
TRUE AND FALSE DISCIPLES
Many followed Jesus and thought themselves disciples of His. However, some had their own ulterior motives as to why they followed Him. In time, all their hidden motives would be exposed. John in his Gospel recorded an incident when many “disciples” of Jesus turned their back on Him when they could not get Jesus to agree to become their “king” (Cf. John 6).
Only the pure-hearted disciple would make it. The pure in heart follows Jesus because he loves purity. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”