In this Bible study we are going to take a look at what the scriptures teach us pertaining to Holiness. This I believe is very necessary because of all the confusion concerning Holiness.
The goal of this lesson is to open your understanding to a topic that is Most Precious in the eyes of God. By the end of this lesson, you will fully understand Holiness and how to pursue after Holiness in your own life.
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Let’s first answer the question, must you be Holy?
1 Peter 1:15-16
15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
Here we are told that not only must we be Holy, but God is Holy and our conversation should also be Holy.
So what does it mean to be Holy?? According to the Compact Bible Dictionary by Nelson’s Compact Series, the word holy means: Moral and ethical wholeness or perfection; freedom from moral evil. The Hebrew word for Holy denotes that which is “sanctified” or “set apart” for divine service. The main use is to describe God’s righteous nature or the ethical righteousness demanded of His followers.
Holiness is so important to God, that He not only let’s us know that we must also be Holy, but we are told in…..
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
Therefore Holiness is Essential to Salvation.
As we have learned from the definition of Holy we must be sanctified or set apart; with moral wholeness or perfection; free from moral evil.
This is also a good time to explain that Righteousness and Holiness are not the same thing. We are told in…..
17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
Righteousness is a free Gift of God imputed to us after we have shown obedient faith to what God has commanded of us. This obedient faith is shown by putting forth the action necessary to achieve what we have claimed to have believed of God.
So we do not earn righteousness or obtain it as if it were a debt earned by us from our works. Instead it is freely given as a Gift for our obedience to God’s Word. Holiness on the other hand, is something we perfect over time as we make our journey to the Lord.
Before you begin to work on perfecting Holiness, you must first partake of being born again, as Jesus commanded His followers to do, so that they would be able to enter the Kingdom of God.
Please refer to the plan of salvation for further instructions on this topic. From this point forward, we will be speaking as if you have been born again, with the evidence of speaking in another tongue as the Spirit has given the utterance.
2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1
14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
This is where our Journey takes us after we have been Born Again of the water and of the Spirit. A Life of separation, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. A life of moral excellence now dead or separated from the World and the lusts thereof. No longer fulfilling the lusts of the flesh, but now walking after the Spirit of Christ which now resides inside of us.
Even though God has chosen to save us by His Grace, many people have turned the Grace of God into lasciviousness. Let’s quickly get an understanding of what the grace of God teaches us since many false teachers have distorted the meaning.
11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
Sounds a whole lot like what we have already been discussing. That is after being Born again, we are to live a separated life from the world perfecting Holiness in the fear of God. These are the instructions for how to pursue a Holy Life. Deny ungodliness and worldly lusts. Then live soberly, righteously, and godly.
If you are confused as to what is considered worldly lusts, The answer can be found in ……………
1 John 2:15-17
15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Let me take a brief moment here to reinforce to you what we have learned this far. After we have been born again, we are to perfect holiness in the fear of God, by applying what the Grace of God teaches us, since it is by His grace that we have been able to partake of His death, burial, and resurrection.
This Grace of God teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldy lusts, because all that is in the world is the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, and not of the Father but the world. And now that we have separated ourselves from the lust of the world, we now are told to live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.
2 Peter 1:2-3
2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
The word virtue means: moral excellence; goodness; upright; righteousness.
Now that you understand what it means to be Holy and how you go about perfecting Holiness, let’s take some time to address a few common topics many people want to do, and have argued that these things have nothing to do with Holiness.
Make-up. Many people have said they should be able to wear make-up, and have even tried to address this issue with questions like, “what is to much make-up and who decides on these things?”
The answer is not hard. We just read what John told us. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
Wearing make-up has nothing to do with the Spiritual, but everything to do with the carnal. Does not the wearing of make-up fall under the Lust of the Flesh, the Lust of the eyes, and the pride of life? It falls under all three categories.
Romans 8:6-8 says
6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
Another topic many times fought against is the wearing of shorts or dresses that are above the knee.
How can one consider this to be Holy and virtuous since we learned that these two words mean to be sanctified; Moral wholeness and perfection, moral excellence, and upright.
By the definition of these two words wearing clothing that reveals your body for all to see, could not be considered Holy and Virtuous. These definitions speak of moral excellence, perfection, and uprightness. The exposing of your body has everything to do with the world and the lusts thereof.
This may be morally acceptable by our generation but is immoral and carnal in the eyes of God.
13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
This is also a good time to possibly clear up the air if need be. I am not speaking of anything extraordinary. I am speaking of dressing in a manner that is not conducive of drawing unnecessary attention from the opposite sex to some part of your body. And wearing tight clothing or not having enough clothing on, is certainly conducive of drawing unnecessary attention to certain parts of your body, and therefore sin.
1 Peter 5:4-5
4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
Clothe yourself in Humility and be subject one to another!!
That applies to everyone.
1 Timothy 2:8-10
8 I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.
9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;
10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.
Here we have been told by Apostle Paul how women should adorn themselves. Let’s discuss each of these starting with…..
Modest apparel, as I stated above, will not be conducive of drawing unnecessary attention from the opposite sex to some part of your body. Whether it is because of you wearing to tight of clothing or the lack thereof, both are wrong, both are immodest, and both are sin.
The word aidos is the word that was translated from the Greek for shamefacedness, and means, a sense of shame or honour, modesty, bashfulness, reverence, regard for others, respect.
The word sobriety means: a manner that is serious and solemn. Graveness.
This is what Apostle Paul has told us concerning women which profess godliness.
1 Peter 3:3-6 (We see again that Apostle Peter also speaks concerning how women should adorn themselves.)
3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;
4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
Wow!!! To be looked at in the sight of God as of a great price!, Invaluable!!! What saint of God wouldn’t strive to be looked at in the eyes of God as of a great price?????
5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:
6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.
Hear what Apostle Peter has just told us, whose daughters you are as long as you do well. That means, if you are not doing what is right, you are not the daughters of Sara. He has identified that the daughters of Sara are the Holy women who 1) trusted in God, 2) were adorned with a meek and a quiet spirit, and 3) were under subjection unto their husbands. To be under subjection means you must be obedient too.
This is very important!! This should not be offensive. This is the perfect plan of God in accordance with His Righteous Judgments.
16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
If this offends you, you need to go into prayer until God delivers you from the spirit of rebelliousness.
Hear the Words of the Lord!!
6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.
We do not want to be offended at the Word of God. Listen to the interpretation of the parable of the sower.
18 Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.
19 When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.
Listen to what Jesus tells us concerning the next set of people.
20 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;
21 Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.
What a dangerous and scary place to be. The Lord has just said the seed that fell on the stony ground, was those who have no root, and when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, they are offended.
An example of this is what we have been discussing in which the woman hears that she is to be in subjection to her husband and becomes offended. We are told the problem lies in not having deep roots. The answer to getting out of the stony ground is acknowledging the problem, submitting yourself unto God, seeking the Lord in prayer, and developing a stronger root system, which would be accomplished through applying what the Lord says concerning them of the good seed. Let’s hear it.
15 But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.
These people, we are told, have an honest and a good heart, and they not only hear the word, they keep it. Let this be who you are. One who hears and obeys.
This walk is about pleasing God and fulfilling His will. Obedience is the only way to Heaven. If you study the Word of God, and subject yourself to them that have the rule over you, including the ministry, you would understand that there is no reason to be offended at the Word of God, which is the Truth and is our Life, for your roots would grow deep and you would then produce much fruit with patience over time.
1 Corinthians 11:1-3
1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.
2 Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.
3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Even though women are to be in subjection to their husbands, husbands must love their wives, as Christ loved the Church and died for it. This is the hierarchy of obedience that God has given to us to follow after.
24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
We are all under authority in this life. Therefore let each of us keep our roles.
13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.
14 But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.
15 This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.
4 For the LORD taketh pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation.
1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Here Apostle Paul has told us that presenting ourselves a living sacrifice is our reasonable service. That means it’s only fair that we should offer ourselves a sacrifice to God since Jesus Christ also offered himself a sacrifice for us all that we may be reconciled again unto God. Again in the previous verse we are told to not be conformed to this world but rather transformed from the world. The word transform means: to change in condition, nature, or character; convert.
1 Corinthians 6:19
19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
1 Peter 2:5, 9
5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
We are no longer our own. We have been bought with the price of blood. Our bodies now are a temple wherein the Holy Ghost dwells. We now have become a royal priesthood, that offers up spiritual sacrifices, unto the Lord. A people now called unto the showing forth of praises to Him that has called us out of darkness into His Glorious light.
19 I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness.
22 But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.
8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Here we have been given a filter by Apostle Paul for our thoughts. If our thoughts do not line up with whatsoever is true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and of a good report, then we need to get our thoughts back under subjection to the obedience of Christ.
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