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I want to have a pure heart. If my heart is pure, I will see God. I want a heart that has no hypocrisy, no guile, no hidden motives. Jesus is faithful. Jesus has cleansed my heart. I am a new creation in Jesus. That is His gift to us all. Now that makes me want to shout and do a happy dance. That is very good news.

“Happy [blessed] are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8).

Jesus spoke this during His famous Jesus Manifesto (aka the Sermon the Mount). So what did He mean by “pure in heart?”

The Greek word for “pure is katharos. It means to be “clean, blameless, unstained from guilt.” Interestingly, the word can refer specifically to that which is purified by fire or by pruning. John the Baptist told people that Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit and fire. Malachi speaks of the Messiah as being like a “refiner’s fire”. Jesus refers to believers as being the branches and to Himself as being the vine. For a vine to produce fruit, it must be pruned. Those who are truly “pure,” then, are those who have been declared innocent because of the work of Jesus and who are being sanctified by His refining fire and His pruning.

Being pure in heart involves having a singleness of heart toward God. A pure heart has no hypocrisy, no guile, no hidden motives. The pure heart is marked by transparency and an uncompromising desire to please God in all things. It is more than an external purity of behavior; it is an internal purity of soul.

The Greek word for “heart” is kardeeah. This can be applied to the physical heart. But it also refers to the spiritual center of life. It is where thoughts, desires, sense of purpose, will, understanding, and character reside. So, to be pure in heart means to be blameless in who we are.

The only way we can be truly pure in heart is to give our lives to Jesus and ask Him to do the cleansing work.

“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)

God is the one who makes our hearts pure – by the sacrifice of His Son and through His sanctifying work in our lives.

  • Matthew 5:8 (NASB) — “Happy [blessed] are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
  • Colossians 3:1–2 —Therefore if you have been raised up with The Messiah, keep seeking the things above, where The Messiah is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.
  • 2 Timothy 2:22 —Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Master from a pure heart.
  • 1 Peter 3:15 — But sanctify The Messiah as Master in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;
  • 2 Chronicles 17:6 — He took great pride in the ways of the Master and again removed the high places and the Asherim from Judah.
  • Psalm 19:14 —Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O Master, my rock and my Redeemer.
  • Psalm 24:3–4 —Who may ascend into the hill of the Master? And who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood And has not sworn deceitfully.
  • Psalm 73:1 —Surely God is good to Israel, To those who are pure in heart!
  • Proverbs 7:25 —Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, Do not stray into her paths.
  • Ecclesiastes 10:2 — A wise man’s heart directs him toward the right, but the foolish man’s heart directs him toward the left.