Summary: There are so many different words that can be used to describe God. But if you had to use just one, that word would be Holy.
“Describing God in One Word”
Have you ever had to look for the right word to describe something? A place (Man, that’s beautiful, it’s breathtaking), A smell (ugh, that’s awful, it’s horrible), How about a taste? (uuumm, good, rich, yummy)
Sometimes it’s hard to put into words when we want to accurately describe something. Let me ask you a question, “How would you describe God?” Awesome? Loving? Merciful? Gracious? Just? What if you could use just one word to describe Him? Could you do it?
Turn if you will, to Psalm 99. I’ve entitled tonight’s message, “Describing God in One Word”. There are only 9 verses in this psalm and in these 9 verses we’re going to get the answer to the question I asked a minute ago. (Read Psalm 99/ Pray).
Well, as you can see in this psalm if you could use just one word to describe God I believe it would be “Holy!” I’ll tell you some reasons I’m convinced of this. Now, we used some other words a minute ago to describe God like awesome and love and God certainly is both of those. But when we pick up our hymnal and sing praises to God, do we sing “Awesome, awesome, awesome, Lord God Almighty?” No! We sing “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty.”
I’ll tell you another reason. In Isaiah chapter6, Isaiah said, “I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. Above it stood Seraphim (that’s a certain type of angel that were some type of agents of cleansing), each had six wings; with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one cried out to another and said, Love, Love, Love is the Lord God Almighty! Eternal, Eternal, Eternal is the Lord God Almighty? Faithful, Faithful, Faithful is the Lord God Almighty? Wise, Wise, Wise is the Lord God Almighty?” No! They cried out, “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of Hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory.”
Folks, God is Holy! Holiness is probably the most significant of all of God’s characteristics. The word “Holy” in the Greek is the word “Hagios”, which means separateness, a separation from sin or any kind of evil or impurity. God is the only One who possesses that characteristic in absolute perfection. Psalm 111:9 says, “Holy and reverent is His name.” Job 6:10 refers to God as “The Holy One.” I Samuel 2:2 says, “There is none Holy like the Lord for there is none besides Thee.” (Again that’s a part of the Holy, Holy, Holy hymn)
Folks, when we look at the word of God we see the words “Holy Bible.” His word is Holy. Not only is His word Holy, His day is Holy. In the Old Testament when the Tabernacle was assembled, the place behind the veil, where the Ark of the Covenant was located was called “The Holy of Holies” because that’s where God was. He said, “To those who approach Me I will show Myself Holy.” He even tells us to be Holy because He is Holy (Lev. 11:45). Speaking of the Ark of the Covenant, if you’ve ever seen a picture or a drawing of it, you’ll see two angels on top of it with their wings covering the Ark. That type of angel is known as the Cheribum. They are responsible for guarding the Holiness of God.
Well, holiness is one of His characteristics and in Psalm 99 there are 3 areas that show the Holiness of God.
The first one is that God is,
I.Holy in His Person – verses 1-3.
Did you know that God is a person? He’s not just a force that guides us through life. He’s personal! He has intellect. He has emotion. He has will. That’s what personality consists of – mind, will, and emotion. It’s what make a person a person.
Verse 1 says, “The Lord reigns, let the people tremble. ”Well, let me tell you something folks, only a person can lead! Look at verse 2, “The Lord is great in Zion, and He is high above all the peoples.”
Remember Isaiah chapter 6 earlier – high and lifted up? That’s what Holy means, “to be set apart from.” God is set apart from sin. He can’t be around it. Did you know that God has 2 different kinds of characteristics that make Him God?
First of all, He has what are called “Natural Characteristics.” They all start with the letter “o.” They are Omniscience, which basically means that God is all knowing. He is unlimited in knowledge. He knows everything. He knows everything you’ve ever done or will do. You can’t hide anything from God so don’t try.