More on Holiness

George Stiekes

For an earlier meditation on Holiness, click here.

Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy (I Peter 1:13-16).

Holiness is a subject that ought to always be on our minds in as much as we have been instructed to be like the Holy Trinity. How does the holiness of God currently impact your life? Yes, it is a theological subject, yet it is very practical in considering who we are in Christ Jesus. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness (I Thessalonians 4:7).

The very meaning of the Word emphasizes that we are to be GOD LIKE, sanctified, set apart for God Himself, saintly. In order to be set apart UNTO God, we must be set apart FROM the world.

There are many expectations by God upon His children, but HOLINESS is the most important based on the emphasis in God’s Word. It is by no accident that:

  1. God is referred to as HOLY (Isaiah 6:3; Revelation 4:8).
  2. Jesus is referred to as being HOLY (Luke 1:35).
  3. The Holy Spirit/Ghost is called HOLY (Matthew 1:3).
  4. The Word of God is the HOLY Bible.
  5. Genuine Christians are referred to as “saints,” indicating that they are recognized as being set apart as a HOLY people (Philippians 1:1). Corporately, those who are in Christ are referred to as a HOLY nation (I Peter 2:9).

To say that God is holy is to recognize His most important attribute. His holiness is the only attribute that is expressed in threes – Holy, holy, holy. From another aspect, God’s holiness is far more than an attribute. This description goes to the very essence of God’s deity and it magnifies every other attribute. This means that His love, mercy, grace, omniscience, omnipresence, immutability, and every other characteristic are all holy, clean, pure, and righteous. And ye know that He was manifested to take away our sins; and IN HIM IS NO SIN (I John 3:5).

We ought to praise God that in Christ our sins are forgiven and will no longer be imputed to us (Romans 4:8). Blessed is the man unto whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile (Psalm 32:2). It seems so impossible, but then God imputes to us Christ’s righteousness (Romans 4:6). And even more incredible, the moment we see Christ, we will forever be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is (I John 3:2) – morally holy.

This is God’s command for all who belong to Him. In our text, holiness is an emphatic command with the emphasis being on the visible manifestation of God’s holiness. So if our God is holy and He expects us to be holy, then when the church gathers together, it should be recognized as a holy gathering. It was only natural for Paul to address the gathered believers at Philippi as SAINTS (Philippians 1:1).

Isaiah’s vision of the Lord in Isaiah 6 is so often taught and preached that we have become too familiar with it to the point where we do not stop to consider its implications in our lives. Yes, Isaiah was humbled and he was called to be God’s representative at that time. However, most important is the fact that in seeing God’s holiness, Isaiah saw his own vileness and cried out, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell int he midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts (Isaiah 6:5). It forever changed Isaiah’s life. Ask yourself today, What do my actions and speech tell others about my view of God and His holiness?

God is holy. For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones (Isaiah 57:15). He is holy and He dwells with those who have a humble spirit. Again, does your attitudes, speech, behavior and service reveal that you belong to a HOLY GOD? The more you seek Him and know Him in His Word, the more you will become like Him.

For an earlier meditation on Holiness, click here.

George Stiekes held successful pastorates in churches in Michigan and Washington among other places. He currently resides in North Carolina and blogs at Reverent Reflections. We recommend his ministry and republish his material by permission.