< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: Holiness is in you

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Holiness is in you

Continuing in the lesson from the book The Pursuit of Holiness:

Romans 6:14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.

To be holy is to be morally blameless. It means to be separate from sin and therefore consecrated to God. In 1st Thessalonians Paul used the term in contrast to a life of immorality and impurity.

To live a holy life is to live a life in conformity to the moral precepts of the Bible and in contrast to the sinful ways of the world.

According to Ephesians 4:22-24 you are to: throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.

So, if holiness is so basic to Christian life, why don’t we experience it more in daily living? Why do so many Christians feel constantly defeated in their struggle with sin? Why is it still hard to tell the church from the world? The author says there are 3 problem areas:

1. Our attitude toward sin is more self-centered than God-centered.

We are more concerned with our own “victory” over sin than we are about the fact that our sins grieve the heart of God. All sin is against God. When we sin, we are despising His authority.

The prodigal son got it right when he said, “I have sinned against heaven and before thee.” So did David when he said, “Against Thee and Thee only have I sinned.”

2. We misunderstand “living by faith” to mean that no effort at holiness is required on our part. But we have to take responsibility for our sins.

3. We don’t take some sin seriously. In Song of Solomon 2:15 it says it is “the little foxes that ruin the vineyards.” It’s compromise on the little issues that lead to greater downfalls. If God calls something a sin, whether it’s big or tiny, we call it a sin too.

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