Free To Be Holy, Even As He Is Holy

By Kathi Pelton

During our worship service this past Sunday, we were singing the words, “You are holy…” to the Lord. As we sang and declared these words to Him, I began to hear the Spirit of the Lord echo the words back over our congregation. As we sang, “Lord, You are holy.” He’d reply, “And you are holy.” It was a beautiful exchange.

“You must be holy because I, the Lord, am holy. I have set you apart from all other people to be my very own.” Leviticus‬ ‭20‬:‭26‬

How can we be seen by God as holy? We have been clothed in the righteous‭ness of Christ therefore we are not seen as unclean or unrighteous— but as His royal priesthood— His holy ones. But what does holy mean? The literal definition of holy is to be dedicated or consecrated to God; sacred. The word for holy in Hebrew is “qadash,” which means to be sanctified, consecrated, and dedicated or to be separated from the world and worldliness.

God is the absolute representation of holiness because he has no trace (whatsoever) of evil within who he is! None! He is perfect in all his ways; in his character, his very nature and in all of his righteous deeds. His holiness brings awe to all who have been brought into the wisdom, understanding and revelation of who he is.

“Who among the gods is like you, O LORD? Who is like you – majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?” Exodus 15:11

Yet, amid his perfect holiness— he calls us to be holy, even as he is holy. How? Holiness speaks of separation from sin and evil— for God is fully separate from sin and the blood of Jesus separates us from and purifies us from sin (the sin that once separated us from God) and His blood makes us holy.

“But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7

A precious friend and spiritual son was ministering with me this past Sunday. While he was speaking he asked our congregation this question,

“When was the last time you approached God as if you had no sin?”

Such a good question! We are not to come before the Lord believing that we are wearing the filthy garments of sin but rather we are to come before him, knowing confidently that we are washed and purified in the blood of Jesus. We do not come with shame but with praise and gratitude for the grace that paid the price for every sin committed and for every evil deed that we have ever participated in. His shed blood separated us from sin (even the penalty of sin) and has joined us to God in oneness. We cannot continue to identify our lives by sin and shame while we confess that the blood of Jesus has purified and saved us.

“I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name – the name you gave me – so that they may be one as we are one.” John 17:11

We have been set apart through the receiving (confession and appropriation) of the blood of Christ as the payment for our sin and separation from God. We are now joined with him as one— just as the Father, Son and Spirit are one. One in holiness and one in purity. So, we can and should approach him as those who have been washed from all shame and clothed in Christ’s righteousness and authority. If we have been made one with God then there is no stain upon us in his sight. For he is perfect in holiness.

I often wonder if the biggest stronghold binding believers to cycles of sinful behaviors is merely not identifying with and approaching each day as those who have been purified and separated from sin by the power of his blood. We sing about the blood of Jesus, we preach the power of the blood and we confess that his blood has set us free but then approach God and approach life as those who are still bound by strongholds of sin. In many believer’s minds and hearts, the power of sin has become more powerful than the power of the blood of Jesus! Therefore, thoughts of shame (leading to despair) are more identified with then the righteousness of Christ. Many Christians daily grovel before the Lord in despair, approaching him as if they are covered in filth and shame, rather than appropriating the power of blood of Jesus and standing before him in the awe and wonder of his saving grace. If the awe of his saving grace would become our focus and our identity— behaviors would fall in line with the call of holiness and the understanding that we are one with Christ. One with his holiness, one with his righteousness, one in his separation from sin and evil. We have been joined to perfect purity. The freedom that comes with this knowledge causes old habits, behaviors and beliefs to fall away.

“But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7

This is such good news! Who the Son sets free, is FREE INDEED. Begin to join yourself and identify yourself as free. Free because of the blood that has set you free from sin and death. Remember, that happened at the moment of your salvation— before any refinement or purification had even started to occur in your life. You were fully washed clean in that moment because of the blood not because of righteous behaviors. So, how can you claim to be dirty now? Has the blood been washed away by your struggle or have you believed the lie that your sin has more power than his blood?

Go back to the truth that originally set you free— the moment of salvation. Go back to the power of the blood and to the finished work of the cross. Return to the stronghold of salvation and grace. Now go before God as one who has been separated from all sin and made holy as he is holy. He is waiting for you.


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