The “Quick Guide” to Miracles
– Chapter 2 –
CLEAN HANDS & A PURE HEART
Psalms 24:3 gives us the first steps to preparing ourselves to “Walk in the Works God has prepared ahead of time”. These first steps may prove to be the most difficult, even for the most sincere and devout. (For a description, see Matthew 4:1-8 )
But, like a combination lock, being close just isn’t going to work. This must be accomplished, in order.
A Psalm of David
v1 The earth is the LORD’S, and all it contains,
The world, and those who dwell in it.
v2 For He has founded it upon the seas
And established it upon the rivers.
v3 Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD?
And who may stand in His holy place?
v4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood
And has not sworn deceitfully.
v5 He shall receive a blessing from the LORD
And righteousness from the God of his salvation.
v6 This is the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face—God of Jacob.
Verse 1 names the ‘earth’ and to the ‘world’, which is all encompassing. These two ancient Hebrew words, together, refer both to the entire physical planet and all of the inhabitable parts along with its uncleanness, impurity of lustful, luxurious, profligate living and impure motives. In other words, despite its faults – despite our faults – we are the Lord’s creation. It is important that we recognize our RELATIONSHIP and our CONDITION before God. This is the only way to begin.
Verse 2 seems a bit mysterious, but, the context of the ancient Hebrew words will help us understand. (a) The ancient Hebrew word ‘seas’ has the context of ‘mercy’. In fact can mean “House of Mercy”.
(b) And the ancient Hebrew world ‘rivers‘ is in the context of ‘to move by the use of the hands; take in hand, to manage, administer and govern’.
Taken together we can understand that God House is a House of mercy and He shows us His mercy by His Own Hands, as he guides and manages our lives.
This reassures us that He Loves us and cares for us even though we are yet sinners. We must understand, acknowledge and embrace this truth before we can ever hope to ‘ascend the hill of the Lord’.
Verse 3 asks the question we must all ask. “Who can ascend the hill of the Lord?” The context of the ancient Hebrew word “who” means “what kind of person” is permitted and refers to the “invisible mountain” of God; and the word “hill” carries the idea of “invisible”.
So, we ask, what kind of person, indeed, is permitted to ascend this most Holy of Mountains? And, how are we to find the invisible?
Verse 4 gives us our answers.
(A) The person who has “clean hands“. The ancient Hebrew words “clean hands” carry the context of
Bowed down in reverence and in submission; clean, free from, exempt, clear, innocent
free from guilt, clean, innocent
free from punishment
free or exempt from obligations
(B) And, the person who has a “pure heart” (interestingly, the context can be found to be that of a “vine”, as found in John 15 – Heart = Kardia; Clean = Katharos, purified by as by fire, i.e., cauterized. )
emanating from within the heart, soul and mind, the core of a person, pure, clear, sincere
This cleansing and being made free from guilt and punishment which emanates from the very heart, soul and mind of a person, is possible only by complete and utter surrender to Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior.
(C) This person who can ascend the Hill of the Lord is one “Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood and has not sworn deceitfully” is where things become difficult, for who has not? But, this word is rich with meaning and goes much deeper:
This person is one “Who”, has not committed acts contrary to law and justice, prohibited by law, illicit, criminal.
Who has not acted on their will of passion, of the emotions nor is a person of dubious character
This word, “Who”, refers directly to Aceldama, or the “Field of Blood”, a field purchased with Judas’s betrayal money, located near Jerusalem; So this someone “Who” would not betray another.
A person whose word or acts are never of emptiness, nothingness, vanity, lying or of worthless conduct.
Be keenly aware that verses One through Four are more than just reminiscent of Jesus being led by The Spirit into the wilderness to be tested (Matthew 4:1-11) they are prophetic foreshadowing of things which have come to pass and continue to come to pass.
Jesus sets the example of The Testing we must all endure and complete. His example is the standard for all who follow. He show us all how we are to “ascend the Hill of the Lord”.
Then in Matthew 5:1“He (Jesus) went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him. 2 He opened His mouth and began to teach them, saying,”
3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
5 “Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.
6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
7 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
9 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God
10 “Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.
The significance of the Blessing and the Righteousness from the Lord cannot be overstated. Think and meditate on what happens to the disciple who completes the course of testing set out by the Lord:
For mine is the kingdom of heaven
For I shall be comforted
For I shall inherit the earth
For as I hunger and thirst for righteousness, I shall be satisfied
For I shall receive mercy
For I shall be pure in heart and I shall see God
For I will become a peacemaker and I shall be called the son or daughter of God
For when I am persecuted for the sake of righteousness, mine is the kingdom of heaven
Now, we are to Go and walk in the footsteps of Jesus. He has told us that “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
We must find and embrace acceptance of His Mercy and His Complete forgiveness, by God’s Grace through faith in Jesus’ completed work on the cross…
We are made Clean
Free from all guilt
Free from punishment