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James 4:8 “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
As God’s child, we all should desire a close walk with God, and if we do there must be a diligent effort on our part to draw near to Him by faith.
When God seems far away, it is not because He has left you, but rather that you have strayed from Him. At times a person may feel that God is distant, but it is during those times He may be the closest.
Not sensing God’s presence does not necessarily mean He is not near. He could be a chapter or verse away, just open your Bible; He could be just a metre away, just get on your knees.
However, it is God’s desire that we draw near to Him with a genuine approach.
Hebrews 10:22 “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.”
1. A True Heart
The people of Israel drew near to God with their mouth, and honoured Him with their lips, but their hearts were far from Him (Mat_15:8). We ought to have a strong desire to love God with all our hearts.
2. Full Assurance Faith
As we seek the Lord, we trust in Him with all our hearts. We rest in the fact that the Lord loves us and desires a relationship with us. The truth is He died to make that possible. If we doubt God, we undermine His integrity and goodness.
3. Cleansed Hearts
W. McDonald said, “This can be brought about only by the new birth. When we trust Christ, we appropriate the value of His blood. Figuratively speaking, we sprinkle our hearts with it, just as the Israelites sprinkled their doors with the blood of the Passover lamb. This delivers us from an evil conscience.”
James 4:8 “…Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
Cleanse your hands means “to make clean or purge”; Christians must continue to be sensitive to the stains of sin that leave long- lasting marks in a person’s life. Sin not only damages, but also severs relationships, especially our relationship with God!
Note: Unconfessed sin will keep you far from God and hinder your relationship with Him.
4. Purify your heart
Purify your heart means “to make pure”; Christians are to have a pure heart toward the things of God, and not to be in two minds. Either you stand with God or you stand against God.
James 4:4 “...whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”
We must come before the Lord and confess our sins to Him with a pure heart. Do not treat sin lightly. Remember it was sin that Jesus died for. We ought to abhor it instead of justify it; we ought to own up to it instead of trying to blame others; we ought to come to God and weep having a holy hatred toward what God hates.
James 4:9 “Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep...”
1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
1 John 1:6 “If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:”