Standing Strong Through the Storm
THE PURE IN HEART
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Matthew 5:8
As our mourning to God begins the transforming process of our new life in Christ, so our lifestyle of purity amid the impure can become the beginning of reconciliation.
This Beatitude necessitates the strictest and most honest self-examination. We are to do everything with pure, unmixed motives. This demands the death of self and the springing to life of Christ within the heart.
So, blessed are those whose motives are unmixed and who operate in purity. They shall be given a vision of God Himself. As we draw closer to Him through purity, we shall see Him more clearly, love Him more dearly and follow Him more nearly. Thus:
Blessed are those whose motives are absolutely pure and whose life is characterized by purity, for they will be able to see God.
The area of moral purity is one major concern of Muslims. Great stress is laid on modesty in dressing and purity of relationships between the sexes. But Christians seem so nonchalant about such issues. Is it because we do not care about purity? No. The difference is in our starting points. In the Muslim view, purity is from the “outside in.” For the follower of Jesus it must be from the “inside out.” Thus, Muslims seek to cleanse themselves knowing they are in need of cleansing, whereas we know Christ has already cleansed us.
But we tend to disregard the danger that dirt can pose to us and we become careless. What is important to realize is that a careless disregard for even the “appearance of evil” will lead people to wrong conclusions and cause them to stumble. It is not enough to say we are pure. We must be seen to be pure.
A co-worker in China was teaching a class of believers in which two antagonistic-looking groups of students sat across from each other, looking as if they were facing enemies. As he was sharing, some students started crying and others were repenting. He told them that if they needed to apologize to others, they should sincerely ask the Holy Spirit to work, and to move them, and to give them the courage to admit their wrongs to others. He said that God delights in pure hearted children, and He wants to use submissive, humble people. Everyone was hugging and crying. Everyone was confessing his or her sins to each other. The cleansing brought purity to their relationships.
RESPONSE: Today I will seek to live my life in true purity before God with good motives.
PRAYER: Lord, I can only live this way if I listen and respond positively to the reproving of Your Holy Spirit. Help me to be sensitive to purity issues.