Summary: The way to personal holiness.
Reading: 1 Peter 1v15-16
Modern day television programs have taught us the wrong way to deal with relationships,…how to deal with our money,…what we should and should not value,…and how to evaluate what is right or wrong.
In other words,…our culture is becoming more and more a mirror image of what is seen on the television screens.
However,…we as Christians have been called by God to become more like Christ,…not like the people we see on TV.
In fact,…God actually commands us to become more like Him in 1 Peter 1v15-16,
“But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy. For the Scriptures say, "You must be holy because I am holy.” (NLT).
In other words,…God wants us first to be holy,...and then to act holy.
Yet there are many temptations and almost irresistible sensual enticements standing between us and our goal of personal holiness.
It’s not easy,…but God says it s attainable,…because if God commands us to do something,…then its possible to do it in the power of His Holy Spirit.
God doesn’t expect you and I to do it in our strength.
God’s grace and His Holy Spirit will be there to assist us and to give us the power to accomplish His will for our lives to live holy lives.
…yet many people are not living holy lives because they have never resolved in their hearts to obey God’s command.
That’s why A.W Tozer once said, “The reason why many are still troubled, still seeking, still making little forward progress, is because they have not yet come to the end of themselves…”.
…but lets not beat around the bush - it will cost you much to achieve God’s goal
I want you to imagine the following scene.
You’re going for the most important job interview of your life.
You’re nervous,…because in just a couple of moments,…you are going to walk through that door and have one of the most important job interviews of your life.
In your hand you’re holding your all-important CV,…and in the other hand,…you’re holding onto some of your best work samples.
The interview seems to be going well,…until the vice president of the company asks you to write down three or four words that best describes who you are as a person - outside of work.
To your total surprise,…he pulls out a few files of letters written to him by your family and some of your best friends,…describing what kind of a person you are.
He had asked them the same question about you.
Now,…for a moment,…think about what your closest friends and family would have said about you in only three or four words?
“Would any of them have described you by the word HOLY?”
“Would they have even thought about that word?”
The word “Holy” seems to be such a foreign word these days,…isn’t it?
I’m sure if we went into the streets and asked people, “What does the word HOLY mean to you?,…you will hear all sorts of wonderful things.
They will say the word Holy reminds them of a man in a long robe with a beard and a somber look.
They will say that the word Holy reminds them of people living in isolation.
Strange that the world always associated Holy with an outward appearance,…isn’t it?
Yet God says its an inward thing.
Holiness is first of all an inward thing,…not an outward thing.
Holiness originates in the heart.
Question is though, “Do you think you would ever be described as HOLY?”
“Do you think that you would ever be able to get to that place in your life where people will describe you as HOLY?”.
I want you to remember,…that its God’s will for your life to be holy,…not just the other person sitting next to you,…but you!
…so what does the “holy” actually then mean?
Well,…it means to “separate”.
When something is separated,…it is separated from something,…as well as separated to something else.
In other words,…holiness means being separated from living a sinful life and separated to living a Godly life in Christ!
It means then that God wants you to become a separated individual.
That’s why God commands us to do the following in 2 Corinthians 6v17-18, “Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD. Don't touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you. And I will be your Father, and you will be My sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty.” (NLT).
In other words,…it says there,…that since you now belong to God and He resides in you by His Holy Spirit,…move away from unholy things in life.
Its interesting to note,…that some of this verse originates in the Old Testament from