What We Miss About Holiness: Faith Hacking #5

It’s not about us.

Do you know anyone with that “holier than thou” vibe?
Isn’t it annoying?

They always have it all put together. They always have the right answer or the right way to do things. And maybe they’re a little smug while doing it.

When it comes to holiness we often think of this “holier than thou” mentality. And we find it repulsive.

Or we think of some unattainable level of perfection accessible only to the saints or other really hard religious workers.

But what if we got holiness all wrong?

Separate From?

We often think of holiness as “separated from” _______(fill in the blank): from the world, culture, sin, corruption, death, or “those bad people.”

This is a negative definition of holiness. And it does negative work in our lives.

If holiness is “separated from” then

  • We are constantly on guard against everything that is not holy so that we don’t become corrupted.
  • We are constantly distancing ourselves “those” people.
  • We are constantly judging ourselves and others by the “holiness” standard.

None of these things build heathy community or vulnerable relationships. And that’s a big problem!

So, here are two things the “separated from” mentality misses.

1) Devoted to God

Holiness—in a positive sense—really means “devoted to.”  And who are we devoted to? Yes. God.

Being devoted to God is the positive movement of holiness. As God is holy so we are to be holy. And we become holy through our devotion to God.

In other words, when we love God with our entire heart, soul, mind and strength then our lives are devoted to God. And if we are devoted to God then we are being made holy.

Therefore, love God = being made holy.

2) For the Sake of Others

But why be devoted to God? Is it because God is greedy, jealous, or needy? No. Are we devoted to God because needs servant and people to do stuff for him? No.

We are devoted to God “for the sake of others.”

  • Israel was holy—devoted to God—from among the nations for the sake of witnessing to God’s goodness to all people.
  • The priests were holy—devoted to God—from all of Israel so they could minister God’s presence to all of Israel.
  • The temple, the altar, and all the utensils were holy—devoted to God—from all the other areas and objects for the sake of ministering God’s presence.

Faith Hack

Can we rethink the call to be holy as the opportunity to minister God’s presence to others? And to do that, can we think less of separating from the world and more of being devoted to God?

How would your relationship with God change?

How would your pursuit of God change?

And how would the purpose and mission of your life change know that being devoted to God was so that you could minister God’s presence to others?

See all the #FaithHacking series here
(God, the gospel, salvation, faith).

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