God says, "Be Holy". 1 Peter 1:13-16, Romans 12:2, Ephesians 5:26, Phillipians 4:8,
The word holiness means to be "separate" or "distinctive." In other words, our lifestyle should be different from those around us who have not trusted Christ as their Savior.
So, how do we achieve that? Let's see what God's Word says.
Receive"Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, 'Be holy, for I am holy'" (1 Peter 1:13-16).
- According to verse 13, where does holiness begin?
- As holy people, what are we to look forward to?
- What should we avoid?
- What is our motivation for holiness?
ReflectWe often think of holiness in terms of what we do, but it begins before we take any sort of action. Peter says it starts with our minds. Verse 13 says we are to "gird up the loins" of our mind. This expression refers to the clothing worn in biblical times. Both men and women wore tunics (the men's tunic usually reached to their knees, the women's to their ankles). A girdle was also worn around the waist to hold the tunic against the body. When working in the fields or needing to move quickly, a man would tuck the hem of his tunic into his girdle to give more freedom of movement. This was called "girding up" the loins.
Peter says we must be prepared in our minds for the work of being holy. The apostle Paul describes it as a "renewing of your mind" (Romans 12:2). This comes about as we allow our minds to be "washed by the Word" (Ephesians 5:26). Spending time in God's Word creates a renewed mind that is ready for the challenge of holy living.
This week, take special note of what you are allowing your mind to dwell on. Memorize Philippians 4:8: "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things." Let holiness begin in your mind and work its way out through your actions.
Back to the Bible Study
My Comments: Often when one hears the word Holy they think of some angelic being or person. That is not what God is referring to. Our Lord wants us to be His people set apart to do His works thereby showing the world His face, behaviors and love.
We accomplish this by reflecting on Him, His life and death, His word, all things good and "Holy". When we read His word we understand what it is He wants us to look like or become in our thoughts, words and deeds.
If we met someone and did not talk with them or ask them questions or listen to their ideas then we would never be able to say we really knew them. We could say maybe that we met them yet not that we knew them or understood them. The same is true when we come to know the Lord. We do not really know Him or understand Him or even know what He wants of us if we do not study His word.
In studying His word we become one with Him in knowledge and understanding. He grows in us as we grow in His word in us. We become washed in His word, filled with the understanding of His knowledge, wisdom and love.
Let me put it another way. If one were to fall in love and never talk to or learn about the one they were in love with then we know they are just "in love with an idea." Once we fall in love with someone we study them. We want to please them. We find out everything we can about them, their likes and dislikes, their heart for things and then we do what we can to show them how much we love them. The same is true when we accept Jesus as our Savior. We read and study His word the whole word of God, the Bible, to find out the mind of God. To know the one we come to love more and more as we study His word and how much He loves and always has loved us and always will love us. It is all contained in His word.
When we study His word we grow and the more we grow and become more like Him the more we become "set apart". Set apart from the things of the world that pull us away from Him. No matter where we live on planet earth there are things, ideas, ways of life that try to pull us away from the truth and love of the Lord. Yet the more we stay strong in His word, take it to heart, ponder it and let it become one with us, the more we are "set apart". Set apart to do good works in His name. Set apart to show the world His face. Set apart to be His hands and feet. Set apart to be one with Him, to be Holy as He is Holy.
Abba Father may we all read Your word and ponder the meaning and understanding of Your word so we will become Holy and set apart to do Your good words in Jesus Name, Amen