The world’s diminished moral structure has readily embraced ungodliness as a treasure to be strived for. Unfortunately there are also those within the church who despite their vocal affiliation with The Lord, have pushed holiness aside like an antiquated relic. And yet, the Bible is replete with numerous references to holiness and how God expects us to live. In 1 Thessalonians 4:7, we are told “For God did not call us to impurity but in holiness.” We are further instructed in 1 Peter 1:15-16 “Instead, as He who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct for it is written “You shall be holy for I am holy.”
The emphasis on holiness has been largely relegated to a casual mention in our churches and other places of worship. We condone that which The Lord has called unclean as we do not wish to offend or to be ostracized. We speak against certain sins yet we continually vote politicians into office who blatantly put laws into effect that contradict the Word of God.
In 1 Corinthians 6:9, St. Paul warned the church “Do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived…” Our tendency towards deception is again addressed in Galatians 6:7 “Do not be deceived. God is not mocked for you reap whatever you sow. If you sow to your own flesh you will reap corruption from the flesh; but if you sow to the Spirit, you will reap eternal life from the Spirit.”
In response to those passages, though a few will agree, I’ve heard many say “Well, God knows my heart…” “I’m a work in progress.” “God is a God of love. He won’t condemn me.” “I’m a good person which is all God really wants.” “There is no hell and even if it did exist, God is too good to send people there.” There is no conviction but rather a perpetuation of excuses. Yet Jesus Himself said in Matthew 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name and do many deeds of power in your name?’ Then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; go away from me you evil doers.’
God is calling us into a life which glorifies Him. When we choose to adapt ourselves to holiness, He will direct us every step of the way.