Summary: Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.
What holiness means; the word holiness is a noun that means "state or character of being holy." Holy is an adjective that means "belonging to, derived from or associated with a divine power” and also "set apart to the service of God. Holiness must be the goal of every person who is serious about their relationship with God in the here and now and the blessed hope of seeing Him then in the hereafter and throughout eternity. The doctrine of holiness and all it entails is one of the most essential and practical in application to the daily life of the believer. I pray God will use this piece of writing in the life of those it touches to enrich and deepen their walk and intimacy with God. Our textbook for learning how to live in holiness is the Bible. It contains God’s promises and the practical instructions on how to avoid evil and live as a righteous instrument for God’s purposes. As we read and study the Bible, we’ll learn the truth that sets us free from whatever sin besets us.
Our text is taken from the Book of Hebrews it says “Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. “(Hebrews 12:14)
The writer of Hebrews gives a specific and direct command. Make every effort to live in peace and holiness. Can it be any plainer than that? It's a frightening thought, especially in today's society where most of us are far from living a holy lifestyle. The thrust is strait forward – without being holy we will not see the Lord. This short powerful compelling verse is one that communicates a clear warning while at the same time confidence and hope. Nothing under heaven can be more confident than this; "for the mouth of the Lord has spoken it." And "though heaven and earth pass away, yet His word shall not pass away." No one who is not saved from sin here can be saved from hell hereafter. No one can see the kingdom of God above, unless the kingdom of God be in him below. Whoever will reign with Christ in heaven, must have Christ reigning in him on earth. And yet as sure as this is, and as clearly as it is taught in every part of the Holy Scripture, among all the truths of God, there is probably none which is less received by men.
Yet Bible says "Make every effort to live in peace", signifies an eager pursuit after it, in the use of proper means; exerting the utmost of a man's power to attain it, in all things possible: many things serve to enforce this upon the saints; this is most agreeable to all the three divine Persons; to God, who is the God of peace; to Christ, the Prince of peace; and to the Spirit, one of whose fruits is peace; and to the characters of the saints, who are sons of peace, and who are called to peace, and who make a profession of the Gospel of peace; and to the privileges they enjoy, being interested in the covenant of peace, partaking of spiritual peace now, and being entitled to eternal peace hereafter. We must be holy on earth before we die—if we wish to go to heaven after death! If we trust to dwell with God forever in the life to come—we must endeavor to be like Him in the life that now is. We must not only admire holiness, and wish for holiness—we must be holy.
“Holiness” is derived from the same root word in both the Hebrew and the Greek; “holy, hallowed, holiness, consecrate, saint, sanctify, and sanctification.” While the basic idea of the word is the same, there really is some variant in the meaning of the word “Holy.” Now, in the most basic meaning of the word “holy,” “sanctify” means to separate from the world and to consecrate or dedicate to God. Basically it means to dedicate. To be “holy” is to be separate from the world and to be dedicated to God. If our hearts have been regenerated by God, there should indeed be a desire and dedication for holiness; if you lack this desire, examine yourself to see if you are in the faith.
As sinful beings it is difficult for us to grasp the concept of true holiness when God is the only standard. We begin to formulate a religious list of does and don’t to follow. If we follow them perfectly we are holy, if we don’t, we are damned. Divine holiness is so far above us we cannot understand how unapproachable and unattainable it is for natural man. Only the Holy Spirit can awaken holiness out of the measure of faith and illumine the truth we possess thus imparting the knowledge of true holiness in our heart. God said, “Be holy for I am holy.” No man is holy in himself. Holiness comes when we are covered by God’s grace which empowers us to act like Jesus in contemplation, speech and accomplishment. When we seek harmony, no longer hurt others with our thought life, speaking unkind, critical or judgmental words or no longer act in a harmful manner we have become holy.