I can’t think of anyone or anything more holy than you. No, I mean you. If you belong to Jesus, I mean you.
For some reason we got the idea that holiness is doing and thinking and saying the right things all the time. The preachers tell us that we become more holy as we move closer to perfection in our Christian behavior. Or they suggest that holiness is reserved for saints, the people who do something special for God.
But holiness was never meant to be about behavior. Holiness was about being set apart by and for God. Mount Sinai was holy because God associated it with Himself. The Temple was holy, as were the things in the Temple. The people of Israel were holy, because He chose them as His own. Holiness is, in a sense, the reflection of the person of God.
So you are holy. You are set apart for God through Jesus. Forever. Permanently. By His choice and because of Him.
Think about it. Were the people of Israel holy because of their behavior? No, they were holy because God chose them for Himself. They certainly didn’t act holy. In fact, they did a lot of things that God hated and He even disciplined them. But they were still holy because they were His.
The people of Israel, the furniture of the Temple, the rocks of the mountain—they were holy because God is holy. When He chose to associate Himself with them, they were holy because of Him.
So, here are some questions. If holiness comes from association with God, being identified as His, then how could someone become holy by his or her own initiative? How could someone become more holy? Or lose his holiness? What kind of work would it take to earn holiness? How much work would it take? Where would you start?
You see, you and I are holy because of Jesus. Jesus is in us and we are in Him. He is our life. All that is holy in us is Him. That means that we are as holy as He is. It must be that way because our holiness is derived from Him. He didn’t give us a little of His holiness. He brought us into Him and He entered into us and He is one with us. Just as we share in His righteousness, we also share in His holiness.
So the preacher points out that you and I should be holy because God is holy. That is correct. But it doesn’t say that we should become holy. It says that we are holy. We are holy because God is holy.
When you were saved, when you came to Jesus and found the forgiveness and new life He offered, you became holy. In that gift box you received, with all the things Jesus gave you, is holiness. You have been set apart by God for His glory. He loves you.
So be holy. ‘Cause that’s what you are. Be what you are.
Truthfully, I don’t know anyone more holy than you.