Summary: This is a topical sermon dealling with the Holiness of God and man’s response to His Holiness.
The Holiness of God
How does a person preach on a topic such as the Holiness of God? I have been asking that question myself since I accepted this assignment. On several occasions as I have been reading and praying about this I have asked the question “the Holiness of God” I can’t preach on that, however in my study I have realized truthfully there is really no one able to preach on such a topic and do it justice. I know that I will fall so very short as I attempt this today.
Let me read you what other bible teachers and scholars have said about this topic.
Elmer Towns has said, “holiness may be one of the most difficult of the attributes to completely understand and define.” (Studies in Theology)
Tozer writes, “We cannot grasp the true meaning of divine holiness. It stands apart, unique, unapproachable, incomprehensible, and unattainable. The nature of man is blind to it. He may fear God’s power and admire His wisdom, but His holiness, he can never even imagine.” (Knowledge)
With these two men saying that Holiness is undefinable other have tried to define the holiness of God
Tony Evans in his book Our God is Awesome attempts to define the holiness of God. He writes “The holiness of God is His intrinsic and transcendent purity, the standard of righteousness to which the whole universe must conform.” He goes on to say “God does not conform to any standard created by others .He is the standard. Therefore, He demands that His creation conform to His standard
Thiessen in his introductory Lectures says this “The holiness of God means that he is absolutely separate from and exalted above all His creation and that He is equally separate from moral evil and sin.”
So with all that said we cannot completely understand God’s holiness however we must understand some about it. It is easy to understand His love; It is easy to understand that he is truth. However, nowhere is scripture is God called Love, Love, Love. Nowhere in scriptures is He called Eternal, Eternal, Eternal or Truth, Truth, Truth. But here are several places where His is called Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of Host.
There are those who say that God is not love but I have never heard any one say God is not Holy. Roger Shinn writes in The Hand book of Christian Theology in an article titled The Holy, these words “To declare that God is love is to announce something revealed or discovered, something that has often been questioned or denied. But to deny God’s holiness is to deny the sacred nature that constitutes deity.”
With all that said lets look at some things that scriptures tells us about the Holiness of God.
I. His Holiness is incomparable.
We have not other standard because He is the standard.
Exodus 15:11 Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
1 Samuel 2:2 There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.
II. His Holiness can be seen in different areas of who He is.
A. His holiness can be seen in His Name.
Isaiah 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Luke 1:49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.
B. His Words or Holy
Jeremiah 23:9 Mine heart within me is broken because of the prophets; all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine hath overcome, because of the LORD, and because of the words of his holiness.
C. His Works are Holy
Psalms 145:17 The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.
III. As believers we are to imitate His Holiness.
1 Peter 1:15-16 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
Leviticus 11:44-45 For I am the LORD your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.
IV. What is mortal man’s response to encountering the Holiness of God?