It’s Important to Know What it Means to be Holy

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What does it mean to be holy? Join us as we take a closer look at what it means that God is holy, why He tells His children that they should be holy too, and how that's even possible.

What does it mean to be holy? What does it mean that God is holy?

Psalm 93 ends with these words…

Your reign, O Lord, is holy forever and ever.

Psalm 93:5b

I spent most of my life believing that the word holy means to be perfect and without sin. And it does. But the Biblical definition of holiness is “to be set apart.”

God alone is truly holy.

The Holman Bible Dictionary puts it like this..

God is holy. Fire is the symbol of holy power. Jealousy, wrath, remoteness, cleanliness, glory, and majesty are related to it. He is unsearchable, incomprehensible, incomparable, great, wonderful, and exalted. His name is Holy.

Triune God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – set apart in every way.

Isaiah wrote…

This is what the Lord says—
    your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
“I am the Lord your God,
    who teaches you what is good for you
    and leads you along the paths you should follow.

Isaiah 48:17

What is good for us? What are the paths we should follow?

You must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then. But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy. For the Scriptures say, “You must be holy because I am holy.”

1 Peter 1:14–16

It is good for God’s children to be set apart from all that is evil in the world. It is His will for them to be holy.

The enemy of our souls wants us to walk right up to the edge of evil. He wants us to flirt with temptation. He entices us to excuse and rate sins . . . some are labeled as horrific but others, the ones that “everyone” does are permitted as “not so bad.”

Now, I’m not saying we should stay away from “sinful” people because that’s everyone . . . that’s you and me. But we are called to stay away from sin and evil. We are called to love sinful people without participating in what God calls sin. We are called to show them God’s better way.

Paul wrote…

God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was His plan from before the beginning of time—to show us His grace through Christ Jesus.

2 Timothy 1:9

So, pause throughout the day to remember…

  • God loves you.
  • God chose you.
  • God saved you through Jesus.
  • And He did this to set you apart for His Kingdom . . . eternally.
What does it mean to be holy? Join us as we take a closer look at what it means that God is holy, why He tells His children that they should be holy too, and how that's even possible.

Let’s pray…

A Prayer for God’s Help to Be Holy

Father, I praise You for Your holiness. You are set apart from fallen creation by Your perfection, love, power, and might. You are beyond our comprehension or understanding. You are righteous and glorious, unchanging, all-knowing, ever-present, and all-powerful. You are holy in all You do and perfect in every way.

I am not! Your Word tells me that You want me to be holy but on my own, I am foolish and selfish. You sent Jesus to suffer my punishment, to set me free, and make me holy in Your sight. It’s a truth from Your Word that is hard for me to comprehend. Your grace, mercy, and love are blessings I don’t deserve nor could I ever earn them and yet, through Jesus, You pour them over me with generosity.

I ask for Your forgiveness and presence in my life. I ask that by Your grace, You will give me the faith and strength I need to remain set apart from all that is evil in this world. Please prompt my heart and mind to remain filled with the truth of Your Spirit. Please grant me the blessing of wisdom that I might remain in Your will and live for Your glory. Please set me apart to be used by You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

What does it mean to be holy? Join us as we take a closer look at what it means that God is holy, why He tells His children that they should be holy too, and how that's even possible.

Paul closed his first letter to the Thessalonians with these words…

“Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again. God will make this happen, for He who calls you is faithful.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23–24

You and I cannot make ourselves holy but by God’s grace through Jesus, we can be made holy in every way.

Finally, several quotes that will remind us to surrender ourselves to God through Jesus so that we might be made holy through His grace…

“Holiness is the unselfing of ourselves.” ~ Frederick W. Faber

 “Do not strive in your own strength; cast yourself at the feet of the Lord Jesus, and wait upon Him in the sure confidence that He is with you, and works in you. Strive in prayer; let faith fill your heart-so will you be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.” ~ Andrew Murray

 “In order to live a life of holiness, we must first receive new life from God – we must be born from above.” ~ J. Vernon McGee

May the Lord be the center of every part of our lives. May we be set apart to be used by Him for His glory.

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    1. What a beautiful prayer, Martha! Have a wonderful weekend! Hugs!

  1. Brenda Ruck says:

    Please pray for my granddaughter. She came from a small Christian school and is now a freshman at a large public school and is struggling. She says she doesn’t fit in. Please pray for strength and courage and for her to find friends who are like mined. Thanks and God bless.

    1. Hi, Brenda. Thank you for inviting us to pray for your granddaughter. Our daughter had the same experience and I did too. I went from a class of 35 to a class of 1100. It is quite an adjustment but I know the Lord is with her. I’m praying that the Lord will bring her several good friends who will encourage her in her faith and bless her in countless ways. I can tell you love her very much. May the Lord be with you and bless you abundantly.

  2. Kathy Francescon says:

    Oh Deb, this post has given me reason to contemplate the true unmitigated picture of my being and of all I strive to be for God! I have to shamefully admit that “holy” is not a word I could use. Tears brim and burn my eyes, the lump in the back of my throat cannot be choked backed…I AM NOT HOLY. It is a gut punch that shakes me. It is a light bulb moment that awakens me!
    I sit here and think of the beautiful tapestry that I so want to weave for God. From a distance it looks presentable, but upon closer inspection, threads are knotted, stitches are crooked, the ends are frayed, the color is fading. From holiness with God, to hating the world. And the only things these two words have in common is the letter they start with. Oh Deb, God must have known I needed this deep reflection and this post has had a profound affect on me. A chastisement of sorts, that God knew my soul sorely needed. Thank you for laying this word “holy” on my heart. This warrior message will stay with me for a long time to come. I will pray to not let the enemy into the fractured crevices of my heart and perhaps I can at least find my way back to the outer realm of “holy.”
    “Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me.”
    I know I am commenting a day late, but this laid heavy within me and it has been difficult to pen. I would so appreciate your prayers and hope all the dear souls who gather here, will keep me in their prayers also. I keep all of you in my prayers, and I will so be praying for Brenda’s grand daughter from the post above. May she be the holy light that someone at her new school needs. I pray God will bless her richly with many new and wonderfully kind and loving friends. I am so thankful that God let me find you and your beautifully inspiring ministry that always touches and teaches my heart and soul and spirit. You are a special and necessary friend that God knew I needed. Love you always!

    1. Kathy, your comments always bless me . . . this one really touched my heart. Rev and I listened to a wonderful message from Pastor Kyle Idleman recently. He talked about God’s transforming power and that we are in the metamorphosis process, one that won’t be complete until we see Him face to face. I love where you heart is and believe it’s where we all should be. I know it’s where I want to be. Lord, please continue to work on me and in me that You might transform me and make me more like Jesus.

      Friend, your encouragement always blesses me abundantly. Thank you, dear friend. Love you!

      1. Kathy Francescon says:

        Thank you so very much for your encouragement Deb. And I am going to try and find the message from Pastor Kyle Idleman to listen to! I am trying not to worry and get so angry at all that is going on, as I know that God is in control. But sometimes, I do wonder what has even happened to common sense? Somedays, I can handle things better than others…but it is painful to me. And not so much for myself, but for others. It is one of those times that I need time on my knees in prayer!
        Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your teaching and encouragement to all of us. You are so needed and so appreciated! Thank you for listening and for the comfort you extend to me. I know that you are going through your own challenges and my heart hurts for you. I keep you and Rev always in my prayers. Blessings and thank you for all you do! You are a wonderful light to all us! Hugs and love, and a few tears too!