The Holiness of God

Turn on the television, read a newspaper, listen to the radio and it soon becomes clear that we live in an unholy world.  Even the great “heroes” eventually fail.  Only God is holy.  The holiness of God is both terrifying and comforting.   A.W. Tozer wrote a short chapter on the holiness of God in his book The Knowledge of the Holy which reveals both the terror and comfort that we unholy people encounter when we even catch a glimpse of His holiness.

God is holy and He has made holiness the moral condition necessary tot he health of His universe.  Sin’s temporary presence in the world only accents this.  Whatever is holy is healthy; evil is a moral sickness that must end ultimately in death…

The holiness of God, the wrath of God, and the health of the creation are inseparably united.  God’s wrath is His utter intolerance of whatever degrades and destroys…

This holiness God can and does impart to His children.  He shares it with them by imputation and by impartation, and because He has made it available to them through the blood of the Lamb, he requires it of them…

We must hid our unholiness in the wounds of Christ as Moses hid himself in the cleft of the rock while the glory of God passed by.  We must take refuge from God in God.  Above all we must believe that God sees us perfect in His Son while he disciplines and chastens and purges us that we may be partakers of His holiness (pp. 166-167).

“We must take refuge from God in God”.  God cannot tolerate any unholiness and the only perfectly holy place is in the perfectly holy person of God.  By accepting the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we have not only been washed clean by His blood, but we have also been placed “in Christ” (e.g. Romans 8:1; 1 Corinthians 1:30; Ephesians 1:20; Philippians 3:9).  We are now in God.  We are surround by and imparted with the holiness of God.  On the one hand, now perfect in His Son, on the other hand still becoming that perfectness through His sanctifying work (Hebrews 10:14).

The realization of the raw power and wrath of God’s holiness towards whatever is unholy is terrifying.  Being in Christ is knowing that our standing within Him is secure is comforting.  Knowing that He is working His holiness through us is terrifying.  Knowing that the sanctification process is changing us more and more into His likeness is comforting.

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