Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Becoming Holy

Holiness, I think I have established, is about the uniqueness of God's being, and by extension, about that which is not God being made holy by being consecrated to him. It is the consequence of anything, and eventually everything belonging entirely to the holy God. Ultimately, even the reprobate sinner and the principalities, powers and rulers of this present darkness will be his in the fullest sense of the word (that's what the Lake of Fire is all about). In this bubble of time we call history, there is an option available to us. We may render ourselves "not God's" which is but an illusion that can only last for a lifetime, or we may surrender ourselves to God believing him to be Lord which can translate into eternity.

In relinquishing ourselves to God by grace through faith, we become holy, the actual efficacy thereof coming through two impositions. First, sacrificial blood must be imposed upon that which was not intrinsically holy in order to consecrate it; and second, the divine breath (the Spirit of God) which is intrinsically holy, must be imposed upon that which was sprinkled with sacrificial blood to make holy in substance. This is the pattern of things to come revealed in the OT, and this is the fulfillment of things that are in the NT. I would call these two aspects of holiness 1) positional holiness, and 2) substantial holiness.

For humans, positional holiness can only be achieved through the application of the blood of the Lamb of God through faith. When one comes to the conviction that Jesus Christ died for his or her sin and that he or she is trusting that blood alone to make them acceptable to God, that one has become positionally holy. His or her tabernacle of flesh has been sprinkled with blood. As the Holy Spirit inhabits that sprinkled tabernacle, that one has now become one with God and is thereby made substantially holy. Since our tabernacles are made of transitory stuff, God has appointed a day when all that is passing will be transformed into that which is not. Our substantial holiness will then be perfect.

Notice, I have made no reference to efforts or toil in explaining the biblical concept and process of holiness. Had I done so, I would have been in error. Holiness is not something developed from that which is not holy of itself. Holiness is a derivative property for all but him who alone is holy. For us who are not him, holiness comes imputed and imported. To walk in holiness, then, what is required is not a supernatural effort from that which is only natural, but an abandoned cooperation of the natural with the supernatural who has come in.

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