“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” (Matthew 5:8)
The beatitudes, or blessings, Jesus teaches in His longest and most famous sermon, the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5, all have one underlying theme in common: God is most concerned with our hearts and what we truly desire for our lives.
Unlike other religions, Christianity introduces a God that not only loves us unconditionally, but that also wants to know us, spend time with us and offer a grace and love that we will never deserve. We know this is true because of the countless times throughout the Bible that Jesus calls us to draw near to Him. In Matthew 11:28, Jesus says, “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Jesus wants us to genuinely seek Him in times of joy and trials and trust Him with our lives. Of all the beatitudes, this theme shines through the most clearly in the sixth beatitude, found in Matthew 5:8, which says, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”
When we are presented with the concept of purity, often our minds are led straight to abstinence, sobriety or having a clean, sinless life. Though these things do accurately define purity, they are external purities. Jesus says “pure in heart,” which is referring to an internal purity, once again showing His concern with our heart’s position.
Jesus doesn’t waste time speaking to our external lives because He knows that our hearts must first be changed. When we experience this heart shift, our behaviors, actions and external lives will also change as a result of it. Jesus wants our hearts to genuinely desire things that are pleasing to Him – then, our lives will reflect and produce things that are pleasing to Him.
When we receive Jesus in our hearts and make the commitment to follow Him, He begins a transformation in our hearts. Our love for Him will translate into a hunger to know Him and a thirst to live like Him. This is a pure heart: a heart that desires nothing more than to be with God because that truly is all our life should be about!
Within this beatitude, Jesus also promises that those who embody this pure heart will see God. Only those with a pure heart will know Jesus because that is what Jesus sees. He doesn’t fall for the words that we say or the act that we put on for people in our lives. God knows our heart and our desires and that’s what He is most interested in.
The truth is that even after we accept Jesus into our lives, we will still fail. But thankfully God continues to forgive us! He honors our heart’s desires, and if our heart truly desires Him and His will for our lives, even through our failures, then we are blessed and we will see God.
At Grand Canyon University, our goal is to honor Christ is all that we do. To learn about GCU’s Christian identity and heritage, visit our website or request more information by using the button on this page.