Pastor Dr. John K. Mathew
In the year that King Uzziah died,
I saw the Lord, high and exalted,
seated on a throne, and the train
of his robe filled the temple. Above him
were seraphim, each with six wings:
With two wings they covered their faces,
with two they covered their feet,
and with two they were flying. And
they were calling to one another:
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
the whole earth is full of his glory.(Isaiah 6:1-3).
R. C. Sproul makes the following insightful observation about this passage:
“The Bible says that God is Holy, holy, holy. Not that he is merely holy, holy. He is Holy, holy, holy. The Bible never says that God is love, love, love or mercy, mercy, mercy or Wrath, wrath, wrath, or justice, justice, justice. It does say that He is Holy, holy, holy, the whole earth is full of his glory.”
What does God’s holiness really mean?
The primary meaning of holy is ‘separate’. When the Bible calls God holy it means primarily that God is transcendentally separate. He is so far above and beyond us that he seems almost totally foreign to us.To be holy is to be ‘other’, to be different in a special way.
In fact, there is no question about God’s holiness. We know that He is holy inside out. The central question is how human beings can associate with a holy God?
The only answer is Jesus Christ. The Bible says, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his son, purifies us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)
In the Old Testament, the term holiness is applied to God in two senses. First, God is separate, set above all which is created. Yet, it is God who calls us to an ethical purity.
Secondly, things are regarded holy because of their connection with God, such as holy ground, holy sabbath. God’s holiness permeates anything touched by him, especially man.
As applied to men or things, the primary meaning of holiness is dedication and consecration, the quality of being separated unto God. Things are holy that are dedicated exclusively to God or his worship and service.
In the words of Gay P. Duffield, “Anything is holy which wholly belongs to God, as his temple with its utensils and furnishings. People were holy who were God’s people.
Israel is called a holy nation. In the New Testament, the Lord’s people are called saints meaning “holy ones”.
May I conclude with words of Leonard Ravenhill, “The greatest miracle that God can do today is to take an unholy man out of an unholy world, and make that man holy and put him back into that unholy world and keep him holy in it”.