GOD SETS US APART UNTO HIMSELF TO BE HOLY
“Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy.” — Leviticus 19:2 —
God alone is holy. He reigns in majesty, splendor and holiness. All heaven reveres the One who is so perfectly holy. And He has called us to be holy as He is holy.
How is this possible? How are we to live a holy life in a fallen world? Are we to live a monastic existence… apart from worldly ways and worldly people?
“You are to be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy; and I have set you apart from the peoples to be Mine.” — Leviticus 20:26
God sets us apart unto Himself because of His deep love for us. He calls us to be holy in the midst of unholiness… a high calling. Only the One who is holy can make this possible. We may live in this fallen world… rife with sin, immorality and evil… yet we are not of this world. We are not of the darkness but of the Light.
“For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.” — 1 Thessalonians 4:7
Immersed in this world, we can easily fall into to its way of thinking. The world’s values can permeate our lifestyle. Where our thoughts go our actions will follow.
Think of the people with whom you associate… the movies and television you watch… the books you read… the websites you visit regularly… the music you choose. Are they subtly seeping into your thoughts and changing your outlook? Are they drawing you away from God’s kingdom?
All are either leading us toward God or away from God. We need to keep up our guard so as not to allow the world to affect our spiritual walk. Its influences can slowly desensitize us. Truth gradually becomes less clear… the inappropriate more acceptable… the lines between good and evil less delineated.
“God has one destined end for mankind – holiness! His one aim is the production of saints. God is not an eternal blessing-machine for men. He did not come to save men out of pity. He came to save men because He had created them to be holy.” — Oswald Chambers
If we seek to be holy, as we are called to be by our holy God, we cannot allow ourselves to be conformed to this world. Darkness cannot coexist with Light. We cannot allow the evil of the world to overtake us.
Living a holy life does not mean we will never sin. This could not be possible for we are not perfect. Holiness is being devoted to Christ, the Holy One Himself. It is listening to His words in the Bible written for us… following the guidance of His Spirit within us… turning away from the lures of sin… and seeking to live a life that is righteous.
As followers of Christ, we live out His kingdom values. Daily, we find that these values we seek to live by collide with the values of the world. Yet Jesus has set us free from the power of this evil world. We are no longer trapped to live by its principles. We choose for Him to live in us and to make us holy.
“For by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” — Hebrews 10:14
Jesus has made us perfect in God’s sight. God now sees us through His Son whose shed blood has made us holy. Jesus has set us apart for Himself and His kingdom. We walk His walk of sanctification… His walk of holiness… as He makes us more and more like Him.
As believers, we have power from on high… power to live a holy life. We cannot ignore the Spirit’s power and try to be holy on our own. We will continue to miss the mark… to fall far short of the holiness that only Christ can give us.
All our thoughts, our values, our goals are given to our loving Savior. He works in and through us to align our lives with His. We choose to obey… choose to turn from sin… choose to live right… choose to be righteous.
“Holiness, as taught in the Scriptures, is not based upon knowledge on our part. Rather, it is based upon the resurrected Christ, indwelling us and changing us into His likeness.” — A.W. Tozer
We do not live our lives driven by our feelings, our expectations, our desires. We do not give in to rationalizing our wrong behaviors. As we yield to Christ, we grow to become a clearer reflection of Him.
Jesus works His mighty power to bring us to holiness. He takes away our darkness, our unrighteousness, our unholiness and replaces it with Himself… all that is good, righteous, holy. Only then can we live a holy life.