A – BE YE HOLY – 1
The word, “holy,” is used 649 times in the Bible. It must be a very important word. Maybe we should know the meaning of holy. Holiness involves a separation from things that are common. Ex. 3:5 Moses was standing on holy ground. This ground was different than all of the other ground around him. Ex. 20:11 The Sabbath was set apart or separated from the other days of the week. A person had different laws for that day and different things they did. Ex. 19:6 The Hebrew nation was set apart from the heathen nations around them. They didn’t partake in the same things. Their worship was completely different. Ex. 26:33 The synagogue and later the temple had a Holy place set apart from the court. Even more separated was the Holy of Holies which had a greater separation from everything else. In fact the High Priest could only enter one time a year. Ex. 29:29 The priestly garments were holy or set apart from the daily garb of the common Hebrews. Holiness was important.
The most perfect example of holiness is God. Everything about Him is holy—His attributes and His actions. The Holman Bible Dictionary not only uses “set apart,” but adds “perfect, transcendent, spiritually pure.” We could use sacred, separated or set apart, and pure in our terms. Webster adds “devoted exclusively to a single use, purpose, or person.”
1 Sam. 2:2 No one compares to our Holy God. Isa. 6:3; Rev. 4:8 Concerning God, holy also refers to divine. Lev. 19:2 We are not divine not can we ever be divine. The way we can take on the holiness of God is ethical. Let’s look at our perfect High Priest, Jesus Christ. Heb. 7:26 When we are set apart, we cannot be defiled. This is impure, corrupt. Our lives are separate from sinners in example. We find another definition of “exalted or worthy of complete devotion as one perfect in goodness and righteousness.” Sin is far removed from holiness.
Ps.77:13 There is no one like our Holy God. Why should we not follow Him? Yet our “following” is so shallow and this is where we want to grow. Ps. 63:8 God has put within us an innate desire to follow—to become—to know. Jhn. 6:44 It is up to us to pursue that inner desire. Ps. 42:1,2; Matt. 5:6 Pursuing God is part of our work to be holy—separated—set apart. Jhn. 17:3 To know about God and His Son is different than truly knowing them. This is our pursuit.
We must never forget that we are made in the image of God. Gen. 1:26 This does not make us God but we have the capacity to know Him. In our sins, however, we lack the power. This can only come from God but we must seek and pursue. Ex. 33:13,18 Moses cried out to God for this power to know Him. Paul also had a burning desire to know Christ. Phil. 3:10 In fact this was so important to Paul that he was willing to forego everything. Phil. 3:8
Our trust in God is greatly expanded as we realize His holiness. We may own a lot of “stuff” but we possess nothing until we pursue a purpose to know Him. Abraham had sheep, camels, herds and goods of every sort. He had a lovely wife and finally a beloved son. When he was willing to give that beloved son to God, it was then he had great possession. He was willing to give up the most precious thing in his life for his Holy God. Gen. 22:16-18 He was the first Hebrew and consequently the Father of that nation. In a sense, Abraham is our father, too, for we have been grafted in.
Abraham’s son was saved though Abraham was willing to sacrifice him. Job lost his as well as all his possessions. Yet he would not renounce his God. In fact, Job worshipped God immediately. Job 1:20-22; Job 13:15 These men didn’t just know about God. They experienced God. They knew God. Their full trust was in His holiness.
Realizing the perfect holiness of our great God and that He made us in His image, we want to remember that we were not made to go about doing our own thing. God did not make us to be entertained. He did not form us to strive for outward beauty to show ourselves to the world. He did not intend for us to keep us with the Joneses. Rev. 4:11 We were created for our God and His pleasure—not ours. We forget that. We plan each day as if it were our own. No. “This is the day that the Lord hath made.” 1 Cor. 4:7 He has endued us with gifts for His purpose.
God is eternal. 2 Pet. 3:8 He has no beginning and no end. He always was and always will be.
15:26; Rev. 1:8 God does not change. (immutable) Mal. 3:6; Heb. 7:21; Heb.1:12 Rom.
God is omniscient. He knows everything. He can see right into our thoughts. There is no hiding from God.
11:33-36 No invention has ever been made or great discovery found that God did not know and allow man to make or find. Rom.
God is all-powerful. Only He can limit His own power. Gen. 18:14; Lk. 1:37; Lk.18:27 Without Him, we can do nothing. Jhn. 15:5
God is everywhere. Ps. 139:7
Many of the attributes of God are summed up in Isa. 40:28-31.
All of these attributes help us understand our God, the I AM. We can never be the above. We certainly do not know everything, cannot be everywhere. We have only the power God graciously supplies us. The only way we can be eternal is through His Son. But we are told to be holy. 1 Pet. 1:15 God does not give us commands that are impossible. It may take a lifetime of pursuing to attain the goal. God knows our hearts. He is well aware of the desire in our hearts and the effort that we put forth. Ps. 57:5 Let’s exalt Him. He will direct our paths. 2 Thess. 3:5