by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
My son, give Me thy heart!
[Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.] We come now to what is undoubtedly one of the greatest utterances to be found anywhere in the whole realm of Holy Scripture. Anyone who realizes even something of the meaning of the words,
"Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God," can approach them only with a sense of awe and of complete inadequacy....
It is, of course, the very essence of the Christian position and of the Christian teaching. "Blessed are the pure in heart." That is what Christianity is about; that is its message.... The Gospel of Jesus Christ is concerned about the heart: all its emphasis is upon the heart. Read the accounts which we have in the Gospels of the teaching of our blessed Lord, and you will find that all along He is talking about the heart....
Our Lord undoubtedly puts this emphasis here because of the Pharisees. It was His great charge against them always that they were interested in the outside of the pots and platters and ignored the inside. Looked at externally, they were without spot. But their inward parts were full of ravening and wickedness. They were most concerned about the external conjunctions of religion; but they forgot the weightier matters of the law, namely, love to God and the love of one's neighbor. So here our Lord puts this great emphasis upon it again. The heart is the whole center of His teaching.... He puts His emphasis upon the heart and not upon the head... He does not commend those who are intellectual; His interest is in the heart....
We must ever beware lest we stop at giving only an intellectual assent to the faith or to a given number of propositions. We have to do that, but the terrible danger is that we stop at that.
Studies in the Sermon of the Mount, i, pp. 106, 108-9
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