Summary: WE should pursue righteousness and holiness in our everyday living. Living a life worthy of the Lord

The Pursuit of Holiness

COL 1:9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. 10 And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

We talked last week about Holiness, and we saw that is not an option but a command. We saw that it is a choice we make everyday to live holy and Godly lives. Today I wish to discuss the matter a bit further. Why we who are not under sin but under grace, find it so difficult to live Holy and Godly lives.

Let me tell you about a man named Norman. He is a devout Christian, godly in all sense of the word. Yet he has this struggle. He starts everyday with prayer and “quiet time” devotion. Let me tell about his day. It was early in the morning; he had just finished his devotional time and prayer. He was getting ready to go to work when the phone rang. On the other end was one of those characters that God puts in our lives to test the grace and patience of His children. This man on the other end would drive Job insane, and he was in top form this morning. He was arrogant, impatient, demanding, unreasonable, and coarse in his language. When Norman hung up, the peace he had experienced just a few moments ago was shattered. Rage and resentment, even hatred filled his heart. The peace he had known during his quiet time had been ripped to shreds, he had become a steaming emotional volcano. What happened? Norman let this man get to him. Norman let this man steal the joy he had in his walk with God. Norman decided not to let it continue throughout the day, but let peace reign in his heart. To dwell on it would lead to sin, even though it may be justifiable, it would be sin none the less.

As we saw last week, holiness is not the absence of temptation, it is a separation to God. Jerry Bridges in his book “The pursuit of Holiness” says “to be holy is to be morally blameless.” Not without sin, but when we sin we deal with it. The problem we have is this

1. We do not take sin seriously

a. We justify

i. Norman case we would say he had a right to be angry, maybe his venting his anger is a good psychological exercise.

ii. We do not see sin as an offense against God.

1. Judas, Pharaoh, Balaam, and Saul each have said “I have sinned.

2. The returning Prodigal said “I have sinned against Heaven and before you.”

3. David said “Against you and you only I have sinned.”

iii. We characterize sin as greater or lesser {We have wrong attitudes}

1. As long as we do not commit the dirty dozen we are ok

2. We see some as a little sin

3. We become Self-righteous

4. We see sin more self-centered than God-centered.

We must call it Sin: an offense against a Holy God. We must live Holy and Godly lives because God Commands It, not to achieve a righteousness state, but in obedience. But we say we can’t. The passage this morning gives us clues to how we can

1. Reproduce: Bear Fruit (W.I.D.E.)

a. Witness

b. Invite

c. Disciple

d. Evangelize

The Story of the doctor and the pauper.

2. Grow in the Knowledge of God.

a. Read

b. Study

c. Go Deep

d. Memorize

3. Tap into the Holy Spirit

a. He was given to us at our baptism

b. He will help us grow and be strengthened

c. He will help us recall what we have read and studied so that at the time of temptation we will recall the scriptures and receive strength from the Word

d. PRAY, ask for help. God is all to willing to give us everything we need to be Holy.

Today will we settle these issues in your heart, will we be willing to look at sin as an offense against God instead of a personal defeat. Will we take personal responsibility for our sin, realizing that we depend on the Grace of God Will we decide to obey God in ALL areas of life no matter how insignificant the issue may be? Then and only then can we pursue Holiness.

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