Matthew 5:8 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 5:8, NIV: Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

Matthew 5:8, ESV: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Matthew 5:8, KJV: Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

Matthew 5:8, NASB: 'Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

Matthew 5:8, NLT: God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.

Matthew 5:8, CSB: Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

What does Matthew 5:8 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jesus adds another "blessed are" to His growing list of those who should rejoice in the way God sees them. Today, we refer to this litany as the Beatitudes. Jesus now says that the "pure in heart" are blessed, for they will see God. This doesn't mean they'll be happy, but it does mean they should not feel hopeless.

Modern Christians might associate "purity" with a freedom from sexual sin or moral failure. Those who first heard Jesus' words may have connected "purity" to performing the law of Moses, or perfectly following the rules of the Jewish teachers. This would carry the sense of being completely free from sin.

However, Jesus focused much more on the hearts of His listeners, instead of their ability to maintain the rituals of the law. He preached against obeying the law in action only, rather than out of true love for God. "Purity," in its most clear and original meaning, refers to the idea of something being singular, unified, un-mixed, or consistent. The pure in heart are focused from the inside out on one single thing. In this case, that thing is God.

Jesus promises here that, when the kingdom of heaven arrives, those who are pure in their devotion to God will see Him. This reveals a remarkable idea about God's kingdom. Most Jews would have learned at an early age that nobody can see God and live; He is too holy. Jesus, though, says that those who enter into the kingdom of heaven will see God.