by Sherelyn Mayberry
Synopsis: Being set apart and sanctified to God is a spiritual state that believers should pursue, practice, and perfect.
In the song, "More Holiness Give Me" (Psalms Hymns and Spiritual Songs, #599), we ask God to help us have total devotion to Him and emulate His holiness. In becoming more holy, we are purified through the influence of His word to become more like Him. Thus, we become consecrated to His service, and our hearts are conformed to His image. Being set apart to a sacred task, we are a "living sacrifice" committed to a higher purpose (Rom. 12:1). Consecrating ourselves to be holy, we are directed by the Lord to keep His statutes and practice the same. We are then sanctified by the Lord (Lev. 20:7-8). Our life is regulated by His divine precepts to be holy like He is holy (1 Pet. 1:15-16). This devotion of seeking to be holy like God leads to true integrity of moral character. Believers become partakers of the divine nature of God by adding the Christian graces (2 Pet.1:4-8). Their holiness is evidenced by their perseverance, gratitude, and purity.
Perseverance is necessary in the pursuit of holiness. The heart of holiness looks for and strives for a home in heaven (2 Pet. 3:10-13). Through trials and suffering, the consecrated heart is disciplined to grow in strength and overcome adversity, bringing forth the peaceful fruits of righteousness (Heb. 12:10-11). Meekness in testing causes believers to lean on the Lord and press on toward the mark (Phil. 4:13). Having a zeal for the Lord, this godly sister hopes for eternal rest for herself and others. With patience, she seeks to lead others to Christ.
More gratitude is evidenced in one who is striving for holiness. Our thankfulness acknowledges the Lord's pain in His grief for our sins, so we shed tears for His sorrows. The sense of His care leads us to more faith and trust in our Savior. Thus, praise to Him for the realization of our suffering is forthcoming (Heb. 4:15). Living holy and blameless in Him emanates from a heart receiving a holy calling from the Lord that was purposed from eternity (2 Tim. 1:9; Eph. 1:4). Those who accept this calling show their holiness through cultivating the right heart and corresponding actions. Compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience are manifested. Bearing with one another is exemplified. More joy in His service is enjoyed. Having purpose in prayer, we thank the Lord for abundant blessings leading to more holiness (Eph. 1:3).
Purity is an essential characteristic of a life of holiness. Godly sorrow for sin leads to repentance; in turn, repentance leads to cleansing. The Corinthians were encouraged along with Paul to cleanse themselves from defilements of the world, perfecting holiness in fear of God (2 Cor. 7:1). This results in a realization that this world is not our home—we long for a heavenly home.
The Ephesians were told to lay aside the old self and put on the new self in the likeness of God, created in righteousness and holiness of the truth (Eph. 4:24). Purity in sanctification makes one fit for the kingdom and beneficial for service to the Lord. As our love increases and abounds for all people, our hearts are established without blame through Jesus' direction (1 Thess. 3:11-13). We, like Paul, can have confidence in our purity of holiness and godly sincerity. Our conduct, guided by the grace of God and not man's wisdom, will be useful in shining the light of holiness (2 Cor. 1:12). Not being conformed to our former lusts, we can live up to demands of our calling: "You shall be holy, for I am holy" (1 Pet. 1:15-16).
Author Bio: Sherelyn is the wife of Mark Mayberry who labors with the Adoue Street congregation in Alvin, TX as an evangelist and elder. She can be reached at email@example.com.