Jesus thought you were worth dying for. Do you think He is worth living for?
Seriously, He rescued you, He saved you, He wiped out every condemning thing against you. Every single thing. Gone. No rationalizing, no justifying, no lying, no begging will ever be needed to cover yourself and what you have done. You’re already covered in His blood of mercy and sacrifice of grace. You stand accepted and adopted by God not by your own merit or might but by the name of Jesus. He alone has given you more than you deserve and less than you can bear.
So is that it? Is that all there is? Game over, move on with life thank you very much for heaven? Hallelujah I have been saved and spared from worrying about the afterlife. Does that ring a bit hollow? Do you hunger for something more? Do you somehow know you need something more?
You hunger for it, you need it, you just didn’t know it. The aching of our spiritual wondering and sense of something missing can be found in holiness. Our longing for the seemingly distant will of God in our lives can be closer than we could ever imagine in holiness. The sure footing in this very unstable world is grounded in holiness.
You see, we were not just saved from something, we were saved to something. The Apostle Paul in the midst of teaching some great soteriology (truth of salvation) in first chapter Ephesians states this, “just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him.” (emphasis mine) This is not a statement of positional sanctification but of God’s desire for us. This verse lays the theological foundation for the later teaching in 4:22-24 where we are to put off the old man and put on the new man, “and be renewed in the spirit your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.”
Holiness fills the hole in our lives that self and sin once occupied, or at least it is supposed to. God not only made us new by breathing spiritual life into our dead souls but He is making us new at the same time by replacing old sinful ways with new holy desires. 2 Corinthians 5:17 & 18a echoes this thought, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God.” And God is what? He is holy. All things are now to become holy.
But are they? Is God and His holiness the passion of your life? Have you ever thought much about holiness and what it should look like in your life?
Maybe holiness is a word that conjures up thoughts some bygone eras fixation on what turned out to be legalism and you will not be found wearing that label. Maybe you are intimidated by the word. You know you and there is no way you could ever be holy so why bother chasing after the wind on that one. Maybe you a quite comfortable with something less in your spiritual journey even though you know God desires more.
Romans 12 gives us a clarion call to this matter, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (emphasis mine) We are to present ourselves holy by the renewing of our mind. How is that working for you? God did not save us to leave us where we were but to take us to where we belong; a place called holiness.
God reached down from heaven in the person and work of Jesus Christ to give you the very best. Peace. Security. Heaven. Everything you need for godliness. Will you give God your very best? Holiness. Righteousness. Godliness. And put it all on the altar of life and say I am “holy” yours?
A book that has had a profound impact and challenge to me recently is a work by Kevin DeYoung titled “The Hole In Our Holiness.” I believe a look, or for some, a revisit to this word and idea of holiness is a great need. Over the next several weeks I will post brief adaptations of the material presented chapter by chapter. I believe you will find this series to be refreshing, stimulating and just what your soul needs.
Let this fall be season you begin to pursue being holy His.