Sentence Sermons (Christian Inspiration) #114 --- Purity of Heard and Mind
Quotations on Purity of Heart and Mind
Moral poverty is the sorest poverty. Moral failure is the only failure. The high art of living is for moral purity. I plead for the moral hero. ... Success purchased at the cost of purity is a failure.
—J.W. Abel, The Register and Leader, Des Moines, Iowa, May 16, 1910.
A wholesome thought’s a grain of wheat, which, planted in the brain, will strike deep root, and bring forth fruit, a wealth of golden grain. Most joyous is the harvesting of kindly thoughts we plant in conversations that contain no deadly toxicant. So here’s to all whose hearts are clean; whose thoughts are always kind; who bring no sorrow to a soul; nor leave regret behind.
—George Wood Anderson, Norwalk Hour, Norwalk, Ct., Nov. 13, 1933.
The Christian life should be a clean window through which may be seen heavenly landscape.
—William Henry Bucklew, The Starkville News, Starkville, Miss., Sept. 3, 1948.
You must pass through the straight gate of purity before you can gain admittance to the private chamber of felicity.
—J. Benjamin Lawrence, Baptist Record, Jackson, Miss., Aug. 20, 1914.
Clean up the mind, for he who thinks impurity surrounds himself with vice. Clean up the heart, for he who loves evil reproduces an evil environment.
—Howland Hanson, The Register and Leader, Des Moines, Iowa, April 26, 1915.
A deep sense of moral obligation exists only in a pure heart. It is nowhere else to be found; that is the only soil in which this plant of virtue thrives. The heart surrendered to vice is as incapable of supporting it, as the naked rock of sustaining vegetable life. The tender shoot grafted upon a diseased, rotten tree, would just as soon flourish there, in a state of vigorous health, as a deep sense of moral obligation exist in a corrupt heart. This purity of heart is the source from which flows the life of unblemished morality.
—Walter Colton, The Escritior, Albany, N.Y., Aug. 12, 1826.
Good thoughts are the foothills of heaven.
—John Andrew Holmes, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, Feb. 23, 1928.
We have our weaknesses. The greatest jewel that can sparkle upon our brow is the jewel of fidelity. We derive our strength from inspiration and shall flourish in the soil of humility. ... We want ... the standard [to be] upon purity of heart.
—George H. Brimhall, Daily Enquirer, Provo, Utah, May 12, 1890.
Right thoughts are invested with power and energy, for they come from the divine mind. By clinging to them we ally ourselves with omnipotent and omnipresent good. They are the word of God, quick and powerful to heal and to save. And every man, woman and child can, in large measure, think rightly; that is, insist that good is the actual and all-embracing, while evil, whatever form it may try to assume, is a falsity.
—Peter V. Ross, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, April 25, 1922.
Absence of a clean heart is the root of the sins of omission.
—B.A. Roth, St. Petersburg Times, St. Petersburg, Fla., Sept. 21, 1936.
Many of us make the mistake of thinking we can deliberately put something out of our mind and not put anything in its place. That's not the way to proceed. It can't be done. If you want to clear unhealthy, unhappy thoughts out of your mind you have to replace them definitely with something else. The mind in waking hours cannot be inactive. It is not made that way. Give the mind good food and it builds body and character. Just trying to keep it empty is no use. It won't work that way. There are plenty of definite, constructive things to think about, plenty of food for the mind.
—Grove Patterson, Milwaukee Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wis., July 19, 1930.
God has purposed that there should be power and beauty in every life. ... The foundation of character is purity. When men erect large buildings, they dig deep and lay broad foundations, for such a structure. So you must do, if you would build for time and eternity. Purity is the source of courage; evil destroys the bravery of man's life. ... Sin in the heart darkens the whole character. As sunshine behind the cloud makes it appear golden even so purity in the life makes the character bright.
—J.T. Griswold, Childress Index, Childress, Texas, May 28, 1913.
The pure in heart see God because He is visible only as reflected on the smooth, unruffled surface of at peace with Him, in harmony with Him. The impure in heart cannot see goodness anywhere in heaven or on earth, in God or man, in woman or child. So long as men live in sin the whole universe seems a jumble, a contradiction, a cheat, a prison, a pesthouse. When, through the renewing of the Holy Spirit, a bad man's heart is clarified by repentance and faith. Old things pass away and all things become new and all things are by God and through God and for God and the well being of the universe.
—William Warren Landrum, The Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta, Ga., March 5, 1900.
"Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God." (Matthew 5:8.) Each man carries his own world by the heart which he carries through it. He who is vulgar sees only vulgarity; and only the pure can see God.
—Gustive O. Larson, Millennial Star, London, England, June 1, 1939.
To be pure in character, we must be pure in deed. To be pure in deed, we must be pure in thought. To be pure in thought, we must be purely educated, or educated in purity. This purity touches not only our spiritual and moral natures, but our intellectual and physical natures as well.
—J.A. Gunsolley, Autumn Leaves, Lamoni, Iowa, February 1895.
A pure heart is worth more than all the splendid mansions of the world to bring peace, contentment, happiness and right living in this world. ... Holiness is the only condition of happiness.
—W.M. Leftwick, Arkansas Gazette, Little Rock, Ark., March 26, 1894.
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." (Matthew 5:8.)
Most of our human knowledge is unsatisfactory, because it is not perfect. We know in part and prophesy in part; when that which is perfect is come, that which is in part shall be done away.
The perfect truth cannot be contained in the imperfect heart. But the moment the heart becomes pure it has the capacity for the highest knowledge. It may know God, whom to know aright is life everlasting.
The clean heart is the heart emptied of all unrighteousness. The pure heart is the heart filled with the knowledge of God. To see God means to know Him as He is and to comprehend all the attributes of His divine nature. The saint pure in heart has the blessed prospect of penetrating to the very source of the knowledge of the Most High.
—J.A. Lord, Christian Standard, Cincinnati, Ohio, Oct. 16, 1920.
Love is purity of mind, or that quality which rejoices not in iniquity, refuses to make capital of another's faults, takes no delight in exposing the failings of others and always finds the good outweighing the bad. It is that quality which rejoices in truth and prefers the truth which tells of another's good deeds and not his errors.
—T.R. Murphy, The Daily Picayune, New Orleans, La., Feb. 27, 1911.
There is no real goodness except that which comes from God. That man that is living away from God cannot be good. The heart that is not reconciled to God is bad, radically bad: and a good thought or a good action cannot come from a bad heart any more than pure water can come from a foul fountain. The heart is the spring of all our actions, and the state of the heart determines the character of the action. There is a principle that lies back of all your actions. If that principle is the love of God, they may be good; otherwise they cannot be. As long as you are living in an attitude of unbelief everything that you do is stamped with your defiance of God. And yet you are trusting to your morality to save you! ...
Your heart, the center of your moral and spiritual life, must be pure from sin; it must be holy in the sight of God. The law demands perfect truth and justice and holiness. It condemns sin in every possible form. It affirms that "the wages of sin is death." (Romans 6:23.) It declares, "the soul that sinneth, it shall die." (Ezekial 18:4, 20.)
—H.W. Provence, The Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta, Ga., April 9, 1900.
The organ of spiritual vision is not primarily the intellect, but the affections. "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." (Matthew 5:8.) ... The word translated "pure" means without any mixture, as pure gold, that is, without any alloy of baser metal. Applied to morals, it means sincere, without deceit or falsehood--what our Lord calls in the parable of the sower an "honest and good heart."
The essentials, then, for the vision of God are not, you perceive, the mastery of all the difficult intellectual problems of science and philosophy, but rather, sincerity and holiness. Now this truth that God reveals Himself to our moral rather than to our intellectual nature is of the greatest significance. It places all upon the same level of privilege and responsibility. The difference between those who see God and those who see Him not is not in the original constitution of their nature, but in the state and condition of their conscience and moral character. There is always some defect or disease in their moral nature of him who does not see God. The difference between a believer and an unbeliever is a moral one.
Sincerity of purpose is essential to any vision of God. ... The "pure heart" must be sincere, but it must also be "holy." ... The quality of our own character defines the extent and range of spiritual vision.
—Alexander C. Garrett, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, May 31, 1909.
"Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God," is the text (Matthew 5:8) and it is with purity that we shall deal as the fairest flower of all. From the one source, God, this purity flows like a river throughout the life of the Father. Nothing in the garden can compare with its beauty. Wherever there is purity of life or plan or purpose, you will find loveliness, so Jesus said, "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God." Purity brings happiness and joy. It is from within and relates itself to all phases of life. It relates to man. He is so made he cannot fail to respond to the influence of purity. The kingdom of Heaven is within.
The Pharisees cleansed the outside but not the inside. They drew down upon themselves thereby the epithet of hypocrites.
It is as natural for purity to flow out as it is for a river to flow. The source tapped only as the spirit communes with God. It bubbles over from the soul.
But why did Jesus say, "Blessed are the pure in heart"? The only answer is found in the attributes of purity. First it is humble, it is not egotistical or self-assertive. "I am meek and lowly of heart," said Jesus. None come into His presence for aid and go away without it.
The meek person is always the one who serves. We must go down the road of humility before we can serve as did Jesus. Christ walked in the valley; so we must go down if we would climb the peaks of exaltation. ... Purity makes one a servant.
Purity is strong. I know of nothing stronger. Look into a baby's eyes and see the power of purity. Through Jesus' purity He was lifted up to draw all men to Him. Purity is the magnet of power, a dynamo of strength. Sin, wrong, cannot live in the presence of purity. It is the most powerful of all things.
I know of nothing more lovely than purity or the power that comes from the fountain of God's power. Purity is tender. Where there is holiness, righteousness, purity, there is tenderness. It touches the heart of man quickly. ...
Purity in the life of the Christian is needed to offset the tragedy and heartache of this world. Purity is glad, happy. It inspires souls and leads to God. Give purity a chance and it will push through sin and conquer in your lives, making the soul bloom with the whiteness of the lily. "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." We must be pure as God is pure. Then only shall we see Him. Happy is the man privileged to see God.
—D.W. McElroy, The Monroe News-Star, Monroe, La., Feb. 10, 1930.
There are two classes of thoughts which daily approach the thresholds of our minds. There are those thoughts which are normal and wholesome–they are messengers of good. They come right up to the front doors of our thinking--they ring the bell and ask for entrance–they fill for the time the very house of our thoughts and when they have gone they leave behind them the treasure of their wisdom and we are better for their healing and genial ministry.
But the problem in many a life is what to do with the other body of thoughts–they are messengers of evil and they leave behind them despondency, mental defeat and many times moral decay. They seek the approaches to the mind where there are no bells of warning--they ask no welcome–they come through the unguarded doors--they are the sneak thieves of thought!
"Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." (2 Corinthians 10:5.) Now the Apostle Paul is here telling us how to deal with these thoughts that defeat and destroy. He is saying that through the presence of Jesus Christ it is possible to cleanse even the secret places of a man's thinking. All of our thoughts may be brought into captivity that they may be obedient to Him. The grace of God is able to follow infection to its very source and to purify the fountains of our minds. This is a great plea for the only mental and moral hygiene and inner sanitation. It is to permit the antiseptic of the purity of Jesus Christ to make pure the hidden passages of our thoughts. This was the ardent belief of the great apostle that Christ can do that very thing. Happy is that man who has the benefit of this divine ameliorative. Safe is that man who has such a guard at the back door of his thinking!
Are you troubled with these sneak thieves of thought? Worry and discontent! Selfishness and fear! Malice and impurity! Bad temper and despondency! Do these sneak thieves enter without ringing the bell–because they come in at the back doors where we hang no bells of warning? Have you thought of putting a guard at the unguarded approaches? Have you felt the deadening and hardening influences of these messengers of evil? Well, here you have the remedy and the strength. Only the Son of God is both willing and able. Bring all of your thoughts into the captivity of a blessed obedience to Him. Ask Him to be the guard ... at the back door of your mind. ... He is here–and ready to save!
—Harry Clayton Rogers, Kansas City Post, Kansas City, Mo., Dec. 21, 1919.
To poison a man's mind is a worse sin than to poison his food.
—Roy L. Smith, Christian Advocate, Chicago, Ill., Oct. 16, 1947.
Life must be enriched by noble thinking if it is not to grow stale.
—Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., Nov. 7, 1939.
Depth of character can only find nourishment in a pure spirit governed by religious principles.
—Jeanette M. Yonnie, The I.S.C. Student, Ames, Iowa, June 14, 1898.