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Holiness Should Not Be a Dull or Repulsive Concept! PDF Print E-mail


I have noticed over time that as we study the Bible, especially if we have done so often, we occasionally make the mistake of letting certain words fall into a category of "words we are too 'familiar' with for our own good". And by "familiar" here I mean it in a purely ironic sense in instances where we think that we know a word's meaning rather well when infact we really may not. Most of these are "big words" that are used so broadly and so often in Christianity that they may seem to mean everything and nothing at the same time, and can include words like holiness, righteousness, goodness, purity, etc. It's almost like the somewhat humorous adage which states that "Saying that everyone is 'special' is the same as saying that no one is!". In that case we are in danger of having the word "special" lose its meaning to us and when we encounter the word we are either skeptical of it, don't see how something actually can be special (particular, peculiar, and to be appreciated), or simply don't understand what is meant.

In this case I want to deal with the words "holy" and "holiness". Later in a following article I will apply it very specifically in the context of a particular passage of scripture (as all the Bible's words ought to be) to show a very meaningful intent and usage of the word, which has (more often than we may think) a very specific and literal meaning, according even to the etymology and actual use of the word (which has a basic meaning of being set-apart; Hebrew: Qadosh, Greek: Hagios).

The words holy or holiness, first of all, are indeed in some passages applied very broadly as a description for a manner or way in which we should life, and since it is meant to apply to all areas of our life it is necessarily broad in its application in some passages. Yet if we let it, the words "holy" and "holiness" can become droning words that very seldom hit home with any meaning for us, especially if we hear the word misappropriated by someone we spoke with, by a pastor in a sermon we heard, or in our own misunderstandings of the Word of God. This can even happen if we have ever felt like a victim of legalism in which we have been accused on not being "holy" enough. In that case however if we actually allow offense from such occasions to be pervasive in our life we may harden our hearts to holiness which is a very, very, very bad thing! The scripture clearly says, "Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord" (Hebrews 12:14; NKJV)

Pastor and preacher John Bevere in his video sermon series, that was recorded as a supplemental teaching for his book A Heart Ablaze, discusses the very important role of holiness in our lives. I heartily recommend his teaching on A Heart Ablaze by the way! The teaching literally changed my life and my understanding of holiness and sanctification forever. In connection to Hebrews 12:14 and our problem of encountering offenses when holiness has been presented to us as something bland or some unattainable demand, and occasionally harshly used against us by means of legalists, John Bevere in one of his sermons for A Heart Ablaze quotes a relevent proverb which says, "A dog that has been scalded by boiling water will fear even the cool water". Water is essential to life but if you have been burned once you may be hesitant to go back to it. However we must see that there is cool water to be found, and know that it is essential to our life! Likewise we cannot be afraid of seeking after holiness because without it we will never see God!

There are so many aspects of holiness that I will have to cover different portions and subtopics as it comes up but I assure you that holiness means some very real, relevant, specific, and powerful things for your life!

I have already created two teachings in what I called "The Holiness Series" which you can read at the links below if you would like to dive into this topic more:

1.  Being a People of One Thing
2.  Sanctification Unto God

I will over time bring up more specific topics and post them. Those two papers above are of practical and broad application. My next article will be on a specific and interesting use of the word "holy" in connection to Aaron as the High Priest who God appointed in the book of Exodus which I think will actually inform us greater of the broader applications of the word. Here in this article though I just wanted to open this topic up again to say that holiness should be very alive and full of meaning in our thoughts, heart, and mind and should never be a dull or repulsive concept to us! I hope that in these studies you may come to understand holiness better and allow the holiness of God to sanctify you and set you apart for the purpose He that has ordained for you in Jesus Christ His Son!

 
 
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