Summary: Holy living as the Bible says
What does God Require of us?
A man asked, “How much religion can a man have and still get into heaven?” In saying this, he was actually scheming to cheat both God and the devil. He wanted God’s full salvation but did not want to have to serve him with all his heart. He wanted enough religion to make sure he did not end up with the devil in hell. He was told just enough that you would feel comfortable in the presence of Jesus.
I would propose a question for us: What is the level of grace, which God has provided for us and what He will require of us who have received the light and opportunity when we stand before Him?
I want us to look into Gods’ Word for the answer and speak of three necessities for living as God demands:
1. To be Holy is required. Heb 12:14 “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” If we are not holy, we will not see the Lord. Rom. 6:19 “even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness.” This speaks plainly that we are to give our bodies to being holy. 2 Cor. We are “Perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord.” This is something we keep working at. We are to keep ourselves separated from all ungodliness. 1 TH. 4:8 One despises not man but God if they chose not to be holy. 1 TH. 3:13, 5:23 “So that you may be blameless and holy in the presence of our God, when Our Lord Jesus come.” Our whole spirit, soul and body blameless at the coming of our lord Jesus. 2 PT. speaks that our conversation is to be holy. John in the final book writes 22:11. God requires holiness as a condition for eternal fellowship with himself. Holiness means to live right without any dodging of what we understand what God wills for our life. Holiness is godliness in our inner nature. This means a happy submission with the will of God and an outward conformity to it in our lifestyle. What God requires He also makes available for us to do. A pastor once asked a young man if he had given any thought about the day he would die and what he would be doing. He leaned back in his chair with folded arms and said, “Just lying with a smile on my face thinking about God.” We read in the Bible of holy men trembling at the thought of meeting God. This young man felt he could bust into eternity with no thought of what may be required of him when he meets his Creator. From surveys that have been made we find that nearly everyone believes in God. Most of them who believe say they are going to go to heaven. One study found that 70% believe that it is very important to do what God’s word says when making a choice between right and wrong and yet 66% of the same group say there are no absolute standards. So would you say with me that we have come to a time in our history when we have made God a god of good feelings and high ideals? He is politically correct and a god who loves the sinner but does not agree with the moral person. He is one who can tolerate abortion but does not like child abuse. He loves to see us take communion but hardly takes notice if once out in our cars we take his name in vain. It says it in both testaments of your Bible, “Be you holy for I the lord your God am holy.” Why would it say that if God did not mean it? We cannot escape To be Holy is required.
2. To be holy means we love God With all OUR BEING. This means that we live in obedience to what we know God wants of us. 1 JN 2:4 The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” Obedience is not optional. Lk 10:27 He answered: " `Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with your entire mind’; and, `Love your neighbor as yourself.’" Therefore, love to God means total participation. This verse says we are to do something with God and the answer is to Love Him. Love is an action verb. We are to love with all that we have. With an unbroken loyalty of our will. With a steady faithfulness of our affection. A complete soundness with our thinking power. With a complete promptness of all our strength. We can only be this way when God is the center of our life. God will not take second place. We must have God as the supreme good in our life. Sinful things will not look attractive to a holy person. Jesus said I am the truth. Therefore, in living a holy life we need to ask: “What does God say about this?” “What does God want me to do?” One cannot serve God with half hearted in devotion. We love Him without counting the cost. To love God with all our being includes three things: 1. Absolute surrender to God. We cannot live in rebellion, with bitterness, unbelief, doubt or in defiance of who God is and love Him perfectly. 2. We need inward agreement with God. This means having a deep joy in God’s Word, his work, his will and his ways even though we may not understand it at all times. Are you compatible with God? 3. We need to be active in our stewardship for God. Our talents, voices, ambitions and money are to be given to Him and what he directs us to do. How many of take time to ask Him what he wants us to do with what He gives us? We have money to spend for many things that will soon pass away but when the offering plate is passed on Sunday morning, we still are giving the $10 we said we would give when we first gave our life to Him. When was the last time you gave a hearty laugh because you gave so much in the offering? It is in the Bible. What talent are you letting God use through you?