Be Holy for I am Holy — Puhleese!!!

The LORD said to Moses, “Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them, ‘Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.'”
– Leviticus 19:1

“Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.”

  • Verses like this frustrate and discourage me.
  • It’s not like I don’t want to be holy. It’s not like I’m not trying.
  • It’s not like I want to keep sinning with the same ol’ sin day in and day out.

“Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.”

  • Easy for God to say. Of course you are holy. You are GOD!!!
  • I struggle with holiness because holiness is not in me.

What are we supposed to do with this?

Whether we like verses like this or not, I’m pretty sure holiness matters to God and God fully expects us to comply.

Why would God command such a ridiculous thing? How can we do something that is impossible for us? Seems so unfair.

Check this out!!! This is huge!!!

God who commands us to be holy provides a way for us to keep this command. His name is Jesus.

God already knows we are not capable of holiness because holiness is not in us. So God made a way to cover us with his holiness through Jesus Christ. When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, Christ’s righteousness and holiness covers us. We become holy – not by our holiness – because Christ is holy and Christ covers us.

God tells us in Leviticus 20:7, “I am the LORD, who makes you holy.”

God is the one who makes holiness possible for us.

It is because of all that God has done for us in Jesus, we respond to God’s amazing love with gratitude. We strive to live holy lives, not because that’s how we become holy, but because God’s love compels us to.

Spend a moment to thank God for his love and faithfulness. Take the time to express to God your gratitude and appreciation for all that God has done for us in Jesus Christ.

Psalm 117 – Reason for Praise

“Praise the LORD, all you nations; extol him, all you peoples. For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD.”
– Psalm 117

Psalm 117 is the shortest chapter in the Bile. It is only two verses long. But don’t let its shortness fool you into thinking it is not significant.

The psalm begins with a call to praise and ends with the same call to praise – Hallelujah!

  • Hallelujah is the Hebrew word we translate as “Praise the LORD.”
  • This word was used as a call to praise. It was an invitation for Jews to praise God.

In between the Hallelujahs is the reason why we are to give praise to God:

  • For great is his love toward us
  • the Faithfulness of the LORD endures forever

It is easy to go through the days without recalling or remembering all the ways God is loving and faithful to us. Too often, the only time we turn to God is when we have a concern, problem, or when we’re in need of something from God.

It’s not that we ought not pray and talk with God about these things. It’s just that it gets really exhausting when that’s all we talk with God about. It’s not that God is not working in our lives. God is. It’s just that we are too forgetful. Concerns or problems, we don’t even have to think about remembering. They’re all over our thoughts. But the good things take intentional recollection. That in and of itself tells us much about our nature. But we can correct that.

Start your prayers with praise and thanksgiving. Start by remembering and recalling all the ways God loves you and is faithful to you.

That’s your homework today. In fact, that’s your homework from now on. Before you utter a request, you will spend time recalling and remembering the ways God shows his love and faithfulness to you.

Start this day by recalling and remembering at least three ways God shows his love to you, and three ways God demonstrates his faithfulness to you. Write it down and thank God for the ways he loves you.

When you do, praise will come naturally.

Hallelujah! Praise the LORD!

That’s a Game Changer!

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: the old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).

We hear often people saying:

  • That changes everything
  • It would mean the world to me

But, it rarely does. Even when someone wins the lottery, when someone gets four “yeses” on America’s Got Talent, when someone gets a yes from the person they’ve been wanting to date…even though people say that this would change everything or that it would mean the world, it almost never does.

Even after winning the lottery, or getting the four “yeses,” or getting a date with that special someone, we’re still the same. If we were insecure before, these things don’t change our insecurity. If we were dealing with depression, these things don’t change our depression. Because we are the same, nothing is changed.

There is, however, one thing in the created universe that can change everything: Jesus.

As a young man, I learned the verse for today as, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation…” The implication was that when we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior we are new creations. We are born again. But this was a poor translation and it failed to describe the astounding change that takes place when a person receives Jesus as Lord and Savior.

As you can see, modern translations of this verse correctly read, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come…” The most wooden translation of the Greek would read, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation…”

That’s the right translation. That describes the astounding transformation of salvation.

When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior it is not just a personal transformation. When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, the entire created universe is changed before us.

When Jesus is Lord, Jesus is Lord over all of his creation.

  • That’s not just a pretty woman, she is God’s daughter. And that changes everything about how I am to interact with her.
  • That annoying coworker is God’s child. And that changes everything in how I am to love that individual.
  • Whereas, we used to live as if everything in the universe was for our personal consumption, when we receive Jesus as Lord we recognize that everything in the created universe is to be stewarded and managed for God’s glory.

Get it? Jesus changes everything.

When we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior, there is a new creation. The entire universe changes right before our eyes. All of it – all of time, all of creation, all of God’s children – are for God’s glory.

That right there, that’s a game changer. That changes everything. This reality means the world to us.