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Summary: God is searching for people with a pure heart

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Heart Purification

Matthew 5:8

February 11, 2007

Morning Service

Introduction

How many of you have ever seen the show Dirty Jobs? The show is hosted by Mike Rowe and each week he goes and tackles another dirty job. The premise of the show is that Mike Rowe goes and works for one day at a specific job. The only requirement is that it has to be something where the person gets dirty in the process of doing the job. He has done all sorts of jobs Whale Autopsy Technician, cleaning the animal stalls at the San Diego Zoo, assisting in the cleaning of pipe organs and drilling thermal boreholes. Needless to say Mike tends to get into some very dirty occupations.

One of the dirtiest jobs that he had to do was being a part of the Sewer Maintenance Crew. The job was to replace a control valve in one of the holding tanks. At one point the crew had to walk through half a foot of raw sewage to repair the valve. One of the interesting parts of that episode was the process of water purification.

Mike Rowe was given water from one of the interior holding tanks and asked if he thought the water was clean. He answered yes only to find out that the water was only 98% pure. Then he was offered some of the water to drink and he decided he wasn’t thirsty.

How many of you would drink water with two percent sewage in it? When you looked at the water it seemed fine but in reality it still was far from being pure.

God desires for us to remain pure in the midst of a dirty world. Every time that you encounter temptation or flirt with sin; you run the danger of being soiled.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Matthew 5:8

The Reality of Purity

The Greek word that is used here is katharoi. This is the same word where we get our English term catharsis, which is a psychology term that means to be free from guilt. This Greek term was often used in reference to describe metals that were refined. The metal had the impurities removed to create nothing but pure metal.

Katharoi – Pure, clean or clear

To be unsoiled, unmixed, unpolluted, to be cleansed, purged or forgiven

To be free from corrupt desire, form sin and guilt to be blameless and innocent

To be holy, to have a single purpose

The understanding of purity flows from a moral, ethical and spiritual sense. Purity is seen as being in a blameless state before God. It is to be cleansed of the penalty of sin and set free from the guilt. This is to be given a guilt free standing.

Charles Wesley echoes this thought in his hymn O For A Thousand Tongues to Sing. In verse 3 he writes: He breaks the power of cancelled sin, He sets the prisoner free. Jesus not only forgives sin, He sets us free from our bondage to it.

This gives a deeper understanding of the psalmists words: Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Psalm 51:10

Six Kinds of Purity – John F. MacArthur

1.) Primal Purity: Essential quality of God Himself and found only in God.

2.) Created Purity: When God originally created all things they were in a state of absolute purity. This was prior to the Fall of Adam and Eve

3.) Positional Purity: When we accept Christ as our Savior, we gain the purity of his position and are seen through His divine purity

4.) Actual Purity: This is granted in the new nature of the believer. We are made into a new creation, the old is gone and the new has come

5.) Practical Purity: This comes from God but it also requires our effort. It is our practice of the purity we have been shown. This effects the way that we live on a daily basis.

6.) Ultimate Purity: The promise of being glorified by Christ

The purity that God wants us to have is applied to a direct part of our being. Jesus said: Blessed are the pure in heart. Why did he use the location of the heart?

A pure heart describes a person whose single minded loyalty to God has affected every area of life – Zondervan Illustrated Background Bible Commentary Vol. 1 p. 35

The heart was seen as the center of a person’s entire being. It is the direct representation of the whole person. There heart was seen as the center of many different facets of the human being. The heart was the center of the physical, emotional and spiritual life. The heart was the center of the thoughts, passions, and desires. From the heart came the nature of the will and the essential traits of character.

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