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Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God

Matthew 5:1-16, Jeremy Bailey, January 20, 2019

Sermon Notes:
  • The message from v8 - "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God"
  • The Sermon on the Mount starts with "Blessed"
  • The Book of Psalms stars with "Blessed"
    • "Blessed is the man"
    • A way of living
  • Jesus does the same thing, states what a blessed man is like
    • These are the Beatitudes
    • 8 Beatitudes
  • Jesus is not saying if you try to live like this you will be blessed by God - this is not the way of salvation
    • Rather this is a description of those who belong to God
    • There must be repentance, a change of heart and calling upon God for salvation
    • This is what a Christian looks like
  • Focusing on v8
    • The most striking and heart searching of the Beatitudes
    • The most glorious promise
  • The Lord Jesus is speaking about the heart
    • Jesus was speaking to those with a Jewish understanding of the heart
    • Not a Western understanding of the heart - explanation
    • The Biblical understanding is that the heart includes the mind, heart and soul - the whole being
    • The Biblical understanding is lower, everything is moved downwards in Jewish understanding - explanation
    • Jesus is talking more than just desires - but the very centre of our being
  • How does it relate to the other Beatitudes?
    • The first steps are downwards
      • Poor in spirit
        • Empty
        • Nothing that you can bring to God
        • Not good
        • No credit with God - bankrupt
      • Mourning
        • Not only do you have nothing - you are a sinner
        • Not only do you lack credit but you are in debit
        • Your sins weight heavily upon you
      • Meekness
        • Recognising yourself as God and others see you
        • Humility
    • Then the steps are upwards
      • Hungering for God
        • You start looking up to God
        • You start hungering and thirsting
        • Crying out to God to be filled
      • Mercy
        • God fills your heart with mercy
        • You become more merciful to others
      • Pure in heart
        • Your heart has been made new by God
      • Peacemakers
        • You have been made right with God so you want others to be right with God and one another
  • The Beatitudes are a description of Christian existence
    • These things happen throughout our Christian life
    • It should be a constant process
    • God lifts us up - and then we become the object of the world's hatred
  • Our heart - is impure
    • Mark 7:20-23
    • The Christian understands the world
      • We understand why people do bad things
      • We understand why there is a tendency in the world to evil
    • It does not come from the environment, poor education, being poor or from bad company
      • It comes from a problem with the heart
      • Each of us has a heart that is desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9-10)
      • This is the testimony of God
    • This is something we understand as we go on more and more
  • The pure in heart
    • Not innocent
    • The Biblical explanation - an undivided heart
      • Going in one way - not pulling in different ways
      • Ps 86:11
    • The Biblical explanation - undefiled
      • A clean heart
      • A heart that has been cleansed and remade
      • Ps 51:7-10
    • It is essential to have this sort of heart - without this we cannot approach God
      • Ps 24:3-4a
      • Explanation
      • With holiness we cannot see the Lord - Hebrews
  • How can our hearts be purified?
    • The Bible and our consciences (if correctly calibrated) testify to our impure, sinful heart
    • In the cleansing of our sin by the Lord Jesus Christ
    • Rev 1:5
    • We must come in repentance and mourn our sinful hearts
    • Keep a short account with God - explanation
    • Have you had you heart cleansed with Christ?
  • Seeing God
    • A great promise to every believer - we will all see God
    • We will see God in heaven
    • Right now we can see God
      • 1 Cor 13:12
        • Dimly at present, a poor reflection
      • We see Him in creation - example
      • We see Him in world events
      • We see Him in our own lives and experiences
      • Moses saw God
        • Heb 11:23-27
    • One day we will see very clearly in heaven
  • Concluding remarks

Sermon Passage:

Matthew 5:1-16

1And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: 2And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying, 3Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. 5Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. 6Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. 7Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. 8Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. 9Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. 10Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. 13Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (KJV)

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