RELAX – RESPOND – REST
Many books have been written on the subject of holiness. Some are helpful; others, like the one I read recently, have angered and frustrated me because, instead of sticking to God’s Word, the authors have created their own version of holiness and what God requires of us to meet His standard.
I found that the book I read, although promising an exciting insight into the truth, is a yet another misleading, self-help volume that adds to the hard labour of an already over-burdened Christian reading public. Like the rabbis of old, a well-meaning but misinformed writer has garnished the simple truth of God’s Word with additions and prescriptions which have obscured what God intends to be a liberating and joyful experience.
In response, I decided to write my own book! Which I did! Which is on the threshold of release. Which is called The Heartbeat of Holiness.
I have made three simple observations and drawn two conclusions. It is impossible for me to rewrite the book for a blog but, over the next few days, I plan to give you a summary – and perhaps whet your appetite to read the book.
Point number 1 – Relax!
Have you noticed that God always does for us what He demands of us? Now isn’t that amazing?
Throughout the Bible, we see the same principle at work. He demands that we deal with our sin which requires death as payment for our debt. We can’t; because each sinner must pay his own debt, which is eternal death, so He sent His Son, Jesus to live among us as one of us, sinless and without any debt of His own. He died in our place so that God’s wrath against sin could be satisfied and the sinner be reconciled to the Father.
The same principle applies when we come to the subject of holiness. God is holy; He demands that we be holy. Without holiness we cannot “see” Him. What is holiness? God is totally separated from sin and separated to Himself. He cannot have anything to do with sin. He is always consistent with His own nature. We know that God is just, righteous, merciful and good because all His actions reveal who He is.
Since He created us in His image to have fellowship with Him and to be one with Him, it follows that we are also to have nothing to do with sin and to be separated to Him. Like our toothbrush which we share with no one else, God created us to belong exclusively to Him. We are His because He made us and because He bought us back from slavery to sin and Satan.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honour God with your bodies (1 Cor. 6:19-20).
Trying to be holy by ourselves is as futile as trying to save ourselves from our sin. Why would God demand of us what He knows we cannot achieve? No amount of self-effort, including self-awareness and self-scrutiny, endless confession of sin, repeated prayers to become holy, breaking so-called “generational curses” and…and…and…can achieve what God demands. We might as well give up before we start.
If we can’t make ourselves holy, no matter how hard we try, what is the answer? How will we ever achieve God’s standard to make it in the end? Will we fail to see God because we fell short in spite of being saved from sin by God’s grace? How will we know if we have satisfied God’s demand?
I have good news for you. Relax! God does not only demand that we be holy – He promised to make us holy. This immediately takes the pressure off us. Of course, it is impossible for us to be holy through our own effort but He has a simple plan to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves.
Watch this space. Tomorrow we shall explore His plan and discover that holiness as God requires, is completely within our reach because He does the work from beginning to end.
Scripture is taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Have you read my first book, Learning to be a Son – The Way to the Father’s Heart (Copyright © 2015, Partridge Publishing)? You’ll love it!
ISBN: Softcover – 978-1-4828-0512-3, eBook 978-4828-0511-6
Do you like this post? Then buy your own copy of my book, Learning to be a Disciple, which is also available from www.amazon.com or www.takealot.com in South Africa. You can also order a copy directly from the publisher at www.partridgepublishing.com
Watch this space!
My latest book, The Heartbeat of Holiness, will also soon be available.