Matthew 5:8 Jesus says “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God”.
I have a picture of a little boy probably about 7 years old. He has his arms outstretched, his head thrown back, his eyes closed and his small laughing mouth wide open. It looks as if the sun is shining on his face and he is answering with a radiant joy. It is the kind of picture you cannot look at without smiling. It lifts your heart. It speaks of purity and innocence. One of the common spiritual goals of all the great Religions, is a pure heart. Jesus is using universal language here that speaks to everyone no matter what their persuasion may be.
Although we desire purity, we may be tempted to give up the journey. It seems so elusive and often in the world in which we live, we may feel that it is impossible to have a pure heart. Perhaps it is because we live in a world where very often we have to wear a mask or put up some kind of façade.
The writer, John Stott, has suggested that this beatitude has to do with singleness of heart. What Jesus is calling for here, is a self that is not divided. In other words, a person with a pure heart is one that presents their true self to God and man. I would love to be my true self. Is it not a beautiful thought that Jesus actually calls us to be our ‘True Selves’ as we were made to be and to which we can be restored. Then we can know what it is to be “Blessed”. You may know that the word for blessed is makarios. It can be translated as ‘happy in spirit’ or ‘prosperous’. Today I choose to translate it as meaning “Enriched in Spirit”. And so the beatitude may read “Enriched in Spirit are the Pure in Heart for they shall see God”. This is an enrichment that requires a deep work in the heart by the Holy Spirit.
- Matthew 5:8