Daily you negotiate your way through your day in the marketplace of opportunism, the seduction of wealth, and the Micavillian mind-set of Darwinian ethics. To even think of Gods holiness in such a society seems so totally other, so disconnected to the real world. Yet discounting Gods holiness is not an option for the believer: Without holiness no one will see the Lord. (Heb. 12:14b)
How then are we to think about God, the Holy One?
Gods holiness addresses His moral excellence, His ethical perfection, and His absolute purity that is unsullied by sin: Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrongGod is light; in him there is no darkness at all (Hab. 1:13a; I John 1:5b). (See Rev 15:4)
Gods holiness is celebrated before the throne of heaven: And they were calling to one another: Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory Who among the gods is like you, O Lord? Who is like you– majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders? (Isa.6:3; Ex. 15:11)
Gods holiness invites our worshipful participation: Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holinessTremble before him, all the earthExalt the Lord our God and worship at his holy mountain, for the Lord our God is holy (Psa. 29:2; 96:9; 99:9). (See Psa. 22:3; 99:5; 103:1)
Gods holiness if we grasp even a shadow it – awakens in us a sense of absolute nothingness and abasement: Woe to me! I cried. I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness; tremble before him, all the earth. (Isa. 6:5) (See Ex. 3:5)
God in His holiness hates sin: The Lord detests a perverse man but takes the upright into his confidenceThe Lord detests the thoughts of the wicked, but those of the pure are pleasing to him (Pro. 3:32; 15:26). (See Psa. 5:5; Isa. 64:6) Yet, those who have fled to Him are Accepted in the Beloved. (Eph. 1:4)
Application: We are called to emulate His holiness in how we conduct our livesyes, even in the marketplace: Don't lazily slip back into those old grooves of evil, doing just what you feel like doing. You didn't know any better then; you do now. As obedient children, let yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God's life, a life energetic and blazing with holiness. God said, I am holy; you be holy" (I Pet. 1:14-16 Msg.).
Prayer: Lord, by your grace, and with your enabling, I will reflect your holiness in how I conduct my life in the unholy environment of the marketplace. Amen.