It is amazing how the subject of holiness has dominated my thinking of late. More amazing still is how many times, since I began earnestly studying this biblical doctrine that I have come across comments and quotes concerning holiness. Today’s blog is a miscellaneous selection of quotes regarding this important and essential doctrine in the believer’s life.
1 Thessalonians 2:11–12 says, “11 For you know how, like a father with his children, 12 we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.”
In commenting on this text one pastor writes, “The Christian ethic is inseparable from the Christian gospel. Lose one, and the other will disappear as well. Paul indicates that living the Christian ethic is “worthy of God” (1 Thess. 2:12). Essentially, the Apostle means that believers must live in such a way that it can rightly be said of them that they belong to God. In other words, our conduct must reflect the character of God Himself. If it does not and we remain impenitent, we show ourselves unworthy of the kingdom. The sense here is not that we merit our kingdom citizenship by our holiness but that kingdom citizenship inevitably and always manifests itself by our holy living. Paul says that we are to “walk” in such a way, using the present tense (v. 12). We should be consistently pursuing righteousness, slowly but steadily increasing in godliness.
Another Bible teacher explains that, “Our love and holiness are not the basis of our salvation. Only the perfection of Christ can make us stand before God unafraid. Yet, neither will we be saved without growing in love and holiness, for sanctification—growth in grace—is the inevitable fruit of our justification—being declared righteous in Christ. Those who have been saved will certainly pursue love and holiness. Let us strive to do so today.”
Dr. Sinclair Ferguson, at the 2019-2020 Reformed Bible College Convocation, preached a message entitled Fidelity, Sanctity and Orthodoxy. Regarding the subject of sanctity, or holiness, he stated that, “God has called us to a holy calling, or a calling to be holy. One of the great forgotten words of the modern Christian church is the holiness of God and the holiness of his people. The Apostle Paul builds up all that Christ has done for us in order to create this sanctity, this holiness in us. God set His heart upon it before the dawn of time. He sent His Son to accomplish it by His death and resurrection, His ascension and His heavenly reign. What is the goal of this? The goal of this is that He might transform us and make us holy. Holiness is not an optional addition to our calling. Holiness is our calling. Holiness is the only thing that will last for all eternity in the presence of God. It is being like Jesus.”
May each of us resolve to pursue holiness at all costs. This is because holiness is not an optional addition to our calling. Holiness is our calling.
Soli deo Gloria!