“Do I believe I need to be holy? Do I believe that God can come into me and make me holy? If, through your preaching, you convince me that I am unholy, I then resent your preaching. The preaching of the gospel awakens an intense resentment because it is designed to reveal my unholiness, but it also awakens an intense yearning and desire within me. God has only one intended destiny for mankind – holiness. Oswald Chambers
Holiness – does the idea that we are created for this awaken resentment in us or does it encourage us to press in even harder to Jesus? What makes some resentful while some hopeful?
The reality of who WE are – sinful, struggling, imperfect – forces us to accept we will never be very good, much less HOLY. It’s an impossible goal. The heart resents what it can’t achieve. The law is impossible to fulfill. People stop here in resignation.
The reality of who CHRIST is – relational, forgiving, perfect in love – allows us to run to Him (in spite of our shortcomings) and enjoy the freedom of our salvation. He fulfilled the law, and we are free to be holy, not because of anything we do or don’t do, but because of the fact that we are saved through our faith.
I think the reason people become resentful and give up is because we’ve equated “holiness” with “sainthood”. Doing good deeds. Never feeling tempted. Never failing or struggling. For those on the outside looking in, this kind of Christianity doesn’t seem possible or attractive.
“Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also…” Matthew 23:26
Jesus went straight to the heart. He wants us to understand that what goes on inside will naturally be made known on the outside.
What if we just exuded “holiness” as a natural result of abiding with Christ? We aren’t saved because we’re holy. We are holy because we are saved. It’s a by-product of our relationship with Him. We are saved based on our faith in Jesus.
What a gift! Just to embrace the ‘new man’ that God created us to be and the gifts we receive when we put our faith in Him. How I wish people could see this in us more. It isn’t about performing or doing. It’s about receiving!
The world needs to see the joy in true holiness. It’s a fruit of our salvation, not some unattainable, dull state of being that only a few are able to reach. If we are saved through faith in Jesus, we are destined to be holy. We are made to be holy. Not perfect, but holy. Set apart.
If we are authentic, this will flow out of us like water in a fountain.
“We are saved and sanctified for God, not to be specimens in His showroom, but for God to do with us even as He did with Jesus, make us broken bread and poured-out wine as He chooses. That is the test – not spiritual fireworks or hysterics, not fanaticism, but a blazingly holy life that confronts the horror of the world with a fierce purity…” Oswald Chambers
Confront the world with a blazingly holy life. Even as broken bread and poured out wine. It isn’t unattainable or set aside for perfect saints. Confront the world with a fierce purity and natural holiness – that’s how we will make a difference in a dark world.