• Matt Beaney

#284 – CREATE IN ME A PURE HEART (11/2/21)



This week we are considering the sixth Beatitude,

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

We can define a pure heart as unmixed or sincere in its devotion to God. It’s authenticity. It’s doing things to be seen by God rather than doing things to be seen by people.


This week we have seen that the heart is the centre and source of our lives; we’ve seen that the Holy Spirit changes our heart on conversion; we’ve considered how the most important attribute of a pure heart is it’s sincere and unmixed trust in Jesus for salvation and all that we need.


Today, I want us to remember that a pure heart is one which hungers and thirsts for greater righteousness. A Christian is saved and secure by grace, but the grace that saves them is at work in them, creating a desire for greater holiness of heart and life.


Prayer purifies the heart

If we want to have increasingly sincere and unmixed devotion to God, we need to reach out to God in prayer. David records his prayer,

“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me… My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.” (Psalm 51: 10,17)


God’s word purifies the heart

The Bible is food for the soul. Our hearts - our motives, desires, loves - are realigned as we expose ourselves to the truth of scripture. The author to the Hebrews wrote,

‘For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.’ (Hebrews 4:12).


RESPONSE

Prayer and God’s word are two ways that God has given to us to nurture and transform our hearts. Many of us are weak, discouraged and have plateaued because we are not feeding the soul.

If you've found this blog helpful, please feel free to share it.



COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY - BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART


Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.

In particular, if you are married, do sign up for our marriage evening on 13th February.


Suggested opener/Ice-breaker

Are there circumstances in which you feel that you have to put on a 'show' - you are tempted to be inauthentic?


Introduction - please share in your group

This week in our discipleship series, we are considering the sixth of the Beatitudes,

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

We can define a pure heart as unmixed or sincere in its devotion to God. It’s authenticity. It’s doing things to be seen by God rather than doing things to be seen by people.


Jesus regularly pointed to the religious leaders of his day as those who looked good on the outside, but who were doing their acts for a show; they were often not pure in heart! Jesus said of them,

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” (Matthew 23:27-28

We are often more concerned about the outward, but Jesus is most concerned for the hidden - the motives of the heart. Jesus urges us,

“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. (Matthew 6:1)

On Sunday we were encouraged to move from an attitude which says, 'I want to be seen by people to be...' to 'I want to be seen by God to be'.


Discussion questions

1. Did God speak to you about anything in particular from Sunday's message or the blogs this week?

2. On Sunday we were encouraged to move from an attitude which says, 'I want to be seen by people to be...' to 'I want to be seen by God to be'. What does this mean and what does it mean for you personally?

2. Read Matthew 6:1. What are the various things that we can do as a show?

4. Read Psalm 51:10, 17 and pray for one another.


Investing and inviting

1) Who has God put into your life that we could pray for together?

2) How are you planning to 'invest and invite'?

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