What does it mean to be holy? This is a concept that’s hard for us as English speakers to understand because we do not use this term in our day to day conversations. When we do we know it relates to things of God and church. But what does it mean?
Here’s a little help from the Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary: “Those who have been set aside, who are separate from the world, and who are devoted to the service of God. Holiness is the manifestation of a life in perfect agreement with God” (SDA Bible Commentary, Vol. 7, “Colossians 3:12”). This gives us a dictionary-like definition. Now, notice what the book Acts of the Apostles says, “As God is holy in His sphere, so fallen man, through faith in Christ, is to be holy in his sphere” (p. 559).
With both of these definitions we notice that to be holy means to be separate from the world. In other words, we are not supposed to be like the world. We are supposed to be different. On top of this we are also supposed to be in God’s service. Then, we also note in the detail that we are supposed to be holy here on earth as God is holy in heaven.
In this week’s sermon we will be looking at this concept. As we unpack Colossians 3:1-17 we will notice that there are some things that need to change in our lives. There are some behavioral changes that will help us become holy. However, we must also know without a shadow of a doubt that this is only possible because of and through Christ. You and I will never be holy because of the things we do. We can only be holy because of what Christ is doing in us.
Paul, ends this section of Colossians with the following words:
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17, NIV).
May we always keep Jesus in the forefront of our minds in order to be holy just like Him.
Grace and Peace,