Matthew 5:8 (NIV): Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Only those who are pure in heart will see God in this life, and will live in His presence for all eternity. It is a vile heresy that says that it doesn’t matter how a person lives or what he or she does; that if they are among the elect, God has accepted them for all eternity. Those who have corrupt hearts, shown by their corrupt deeds, have neither seen God nor know Him. (1 John 3:4-6)
The first sign of a person who has truly seen God and has come to know Him is a pure heart, out of which springs a holy life. If a person receives Jesus as their Lord and Savior, accepting the salvation bought for them at such a high price, and then returns to the sins that they had committed beforehand, their last state will be worse than their first, despite any “professions of faith” or “testimonies” of a “salvation experience.” Only those who receive a pure heart from God by repenting, forsaking all sin, and being washed by the blood of the Lamb, and then who steadfastly KEEP their hearts pure by willful obedience to God in every thought, word, and deed, will live in His presence now and forever.
A pure heart is both a gift and an obligation. It is a gift given by grace through faith when someone comes in repentance for forgiveness. It is an obligation in that it is up to the person to maintain their new heart in the pristine shape that they received it. It is appalling how many “Christians” focus more time and energy on maintaining their car in great shape than they do on maintaining the purity and cleanliness of their hearts! But only those who steadfastly maintain the purity of their hearts will ultimately see God.
Father, thank You for the amazing gift of a pure heart. Help me to keep my focus each day on maintaining that purity through a steadfast focus on You, complete obedience, and continuing to consciously live in Your presence. Amen.