Pursuing Answers to Questions of Faith & Life

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Blessing, Beatitudes, Pure in Heart & Seeing God

Last night we at UBC continued our study of the Beatitudes. We spent more time focusing on “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

By “blessed”, I’m focusing on the Jewish culture blessing and the act of laying on of hands. In this sense, I’m taking the “blessed” to parallel the “hand of God” being on someone.

So paraphrasing, “the Hand of God is on the pure in heart, for they will see God.” The act or ceremony of Blessing brought someone close—you couldn’t bless someone in this way from a great distance. Jesus brought the children to Him. Jacob brought Joseph’s sons to him, as did Isaac bringing his son close to him. You get a good look at someone when they are that close to you.

We also looked at what it means to be “pure in heart”. Tonight at least, the definition of “pure” that really stood out was in the Levitical sense—clean—the use of which is not forbidden, imparts no uncleanness. Something didn’t have to be perfect in order to be clean—just set apart for the purpose of being used. A clean item is one which could theoretically be brought into the Temple to be used in ceremony of bringing glory to God.

That is what we are—we are being built into a temple, brought into His presence to be used for His Glory—we have been made clean and set apart for the master to use

2 Timothy 2:20-22—“ In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. 21 If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.
2TI 2:22 Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”

The gold and silver are not the only things that can be used for noble purposes: even wood and clay can be used for noble purposes that are useful to the Master. We are to strive to be and instrument in the Hand of God, prepared to do any good work. And if He wants us to do something, He will empower us to do it—“I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”

When we are an instrument in His hand, we are not only close to Him—but we are seeing Him at work in our lives. We see God, not only in the ultimate salvific, eternal, return of Christ kind of way, but also in the way He chooses to use us, in the way He answers prayer, in the way, when we respond in obedience to His leading we see that we are His instrument in a higher calling. I for one want to see God more in this way—to see God more and more at work in my life. Pure in heart in many ways is about making yourself available to his hand.

Lord, make me pure in heart, a vessel set apart and clean for Your use—Help me to see You.

“Open the eyes of my heart, Lord. Open the eyes of my heart. I want to see You.”

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