In Christ’s Sermon on the Mount one particular verse stands out as reversible and interpretable with many deep possible meanings. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” As I have reflected on what it takes to live the gospel, I have realized that our perceptions and understanding are possibly the most important aspects to attaining eternal happiness (at the bottom of the page is a line-by-line description of how seeing makes us who we are). I don’t believe this scripture’s reference to sight to be literal. I also believe this verse to be reversible, which is what inspired the “Test for the Pure in Heart:” (found at the end of the document). The test measures whether or not we see God, or even see as God does. If we do, then we can consider ourselves pure in heart. I believe that the word “see” is very open to interpretation. There are countless examples in the New Testament in which the blind actually saw Christ better than many who were supposedly "seers" or interpreters of the law. Many blind men recognized Christ as the Son of God who healed them. Others with supposedly perfect vision of God and truth were actually blind to the very Christ that stood before them, causing them to kill the very God they professed to know so much about. All of this occurred because their perceptions were off by a little. It was simply an error of understanding that led them into the Devil's grasp, which could be Satan's most effective tool. People who thought they understood something about God crucified that very God they worshiped. They were blinded by what they saw to be understanding and knowledge. The Pharisees’ blindness caused them eternal damage, whereas a carefully applied blindness may actually be the answer to our eternal happiness.
The entirety of my analysis relies on variations of ways we can see God in all things and try our best to see as God does. The Test itself has many of my insights as to ways we can see God and your own interpretations on this type of sight are welcome. It is interesting to note that to see in this way may actually require us to be blind. The blind see as God does. He cannot judge on appearance yet recognizes others by alternative means. The purpose of my project is to help people open their eyes; this requires them to see as the blind do. To blindly see is paradoxical, yet very necessary for to our salvation. If we compare the words “blind” and “pure” they can be synonymous. Both imply a sort of blank slate, starting from nothing. Blind in this sense could mean non-judgmental, with no prior prejudice.
If we substitute the words in the verse its meaning changes very little. “Blessed are the blind-hearted, for they shall see God.” This opens many doors to ways of interpreting this verse. The Test itself represents many ways that I believe we can see God. Unfortunately my space is short and my explanation brief, I ask that you allow your mind to run freely as you imagine different ways your own perceptions could change to see more of our loving God in all things, and to see all as God does. I will provide below a few alternative ways that this verse could be worded that I believe emphasize certain aspects of this deep scripture. The remainder of this post will not be paragraphs but simply thoughts and interpretations that can open one’s mind to the importance of testing our ability to see God while blinding ourselves to judgment. One can explore the importance of understanding, or in the least perceiving and “seeing.” Though misunderstanding can be seen as one of the greatest tools of the adversary then the opposite must be true; genuine understanding and a clear vision of God and his purposes should lead us safely to his presence.
How seeing is being: The importance of perceptions.
Seeing deals with our perceptions
Our perceptions form our attitudes
Our attitudes cause our actions
Our actions make a us who we are
Seeing is being.
What is expected of those that “see God”
To see God, is to be God-like in our perceptions;
One who sees God is blind to circumstances and does not judge, but sees everyone's divine potential;
One who sees God yearns to reach perfection, yet loves and appreciates the imperfections of others;
One who sees God is a seeker of truth, knowledge, light, and beauty;
One who sees God understands His plan, even if it isn't always convenient to understand;
One who sees God is devoted to other people's happiness;
Those who see God are servants to all and never feel above another;
If we see God in all things in this life, we can be sure that our hearts are pure;
And we will see him in the next.
Variations of the verse (there are many more possibilities)
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall be god-like in all they do"
"Blessed are those that see God, for they shall be pure in heart"
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God in all things"
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see as God does"
A Test for the Pure in Heart, Do you see God??
True or False
I can't help but smile around children, especially when they are throwing a tantrum
I find people's weaknesses beautiful
I love everyone I meet, even if expressing that love means correcting their behavior
I often find myself reflecting on nature's beauty
It is more important for me to get good grades and succeed in school than develop loving friendships
When I listen to music it is a learning experience
I love my family, especially when we don't get along
Homeless people have something to offer
I express my love for others, physically and verbally
Scripture study can be boring
I feel responsible for other people's happiness
I prefer walking over driving, it gives me time to enjoy the fresh air and be grateful for what I have
I plan on making money for mine and my families needs, once that is taken care of I will worry about others
I pray for things to go well in my life
I pray for things to go well in the lives of everyone I know, sometimes it takes a while and my knees get sore
I have witnessed my prayers being answered
I have witnessed my prayers for others being answered
I am scared of strangers
I understand God, I don't have a perfect knowledge of why things happen but I know that he loves me regardless
I am commonly impressed by how good people are
I avoid people that are different from me
My greatest desire is to share the gospel with everyone, it hurts deeply when people don't care about it
I can imagine facing God in my current state
I see every day as an opportunity for me to be better
I see every day as an opportunity to help someone else be better
I am critical of others people's faults
I do service because I know that I have to
I frequently attend the temple, it is my favorite place on earth
I look forward to church on Sunday and when meetings end I want to stay longer
I literally see others as God's children, I feel the love he has for them
Sometimes it seems that children teach me the greatest lessons
There is nothing better than singing, or listening to, a well-sung hymn
The spirit prompts me daily to show God's love to others
I see people for who they are, not what they appear to be
This is not a public journal. There is no theme, agenda, or overall purpose. I need a reason to write and it needs to be well informed. I consider myself an expert in only one subject, my own thoughts. I am reflecting my experiences onto the internet because this seems to make them more beautiful to me, especially when they are idealized and inaccurate. This is not a mirror for me to see myself looking back, nor is it a mirror that reflects a detailed image of myself to others. This page is but a jumble of letters, words, and ideas that will be interpreted differently for each person, including myself. There are no mirrors because these thoughts are directionless, inaccurate, and fuzzy; a vague, splotchy reflection of McKinley.