WHAT IS HOLINESS?
Holiness is when all these sins are out of your life and all unclean and evil thoughts are wiped out. Holiness is when you are wholly dedicated to your God. You are completely yield to His will and filled with His love.
There is a great secret, of being younger than your age; that is, having your youth renewed life the eagle’s, is holiness. If you are going to be living in sin, sin will make you older than your age [the age here is vulture]. When you are holy, there is an inward peace in you and because of it, frustration, doubts, and worry will not be in your heart.
God’s love will fill your heart and you will be free from all that internal strife that destroys the soul and mind and body. Once there is peace internally, all your faculties will feel the benefit. Your nerves, your blood pressure and your skin will all share in your internal spiritual blessing.
If you see someone who is confused internally, there is no way the person will be right outside, if you are going to be holy outside, it will also show outside. The bible is a text book of holiness. It is called the HOLY BIBLE written by a holy God through holy men, to make us a holy people. When you are holy, that thing called the old man, which is the flesh, will be put off and you will put on the new man.
HOLINESS IS MORE THAN DOCTRINE
Holiness is not a theory, but an experience. It is Jesus Himself and not just doctrines. These days, we now fine a lot of people just turning holiness upside down. It is essential, therefore, for me to tell you what holiness is not.
HOLINESS IS NOT FREEDOM FROM TEMPTATION
Jesus was sinless, yet He was tempted in all points. The Bible says, “for we do not have a high priest that cannot be touched with our infirmities, because He cane in the form of man and was tempted at all points, yet He was without sin.” [Hebrew 4:15] The devil will always attack those who are most dangerous to him. If the devil look at someone and considers the person a spiritual nonentity, he would leave such person alone to enjoy himself, ride his expensive cars and do all sorts of things. He would be treating this person like a Christmas goat, making him fat so that he could eat him later.
Do no envy men who are living in sin, because when trouble comes, there will be no one to deliver them. They may be laughing at those who are living a holy life now. When ever a committed Christian goes to church, they would want to know what benefits he gets from going there. The time would come when we shall know who is benefiting. It will be clear to many people that as far as the kingdom of God is concerned, money is valueless.
The devil is more active against Christian. What I am trying to emphasize is that temptation is not sin except you yield to it. You cannot stop birds from flying across your head, but you can stop them from by building nests on your house.
It is not a sin to be tempted. In fact, we face temptations every day. It is a good thing when you get to the level where you are broken so that the temptation does not affect you.
HOLINESS IS NOT AN EXPERIENCE THAT CANNOT BE LOST
Just as a Christian can loose the experience of salvation, and his sanctification, a man can loose his blessing of holiness. That is to say someone that was holy yesterday may not be holy today. Thus, holiness is a daily affair and not a weekly thing. The one you did yesterday is not sufficient for today because the devil too, has not relaxed.
HOLINESS IS NOT FREEDOM FROM MISTAKES
A holy person may make mistakes but, he must be quick to correct himself and not retain one sin in his heart. Paul was arraign before the high privet and said, Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day. Acts 23: 1. And high priest thought Paul his magnify himself fleshly and commanded him to be slapped, but someone tells Paul it is high priest, Then said Paul unto him, God shall smite thee, thou whited wall: for sittest thou to judge me after the law, and commandest me to be smitten contrary to the law? Acts 23:3. The people present, promptly tell him that he was talking to the high priest. Paul apologized immediately. Some people will continue to talks and argue ‘he can be high anything, does that give him the license to slap me?” holy men do make mistakes and they correct them. There is no freedom from mistakes, but the holiness within will always ensures immediate restitution.
A pastor, who had never conducted a funeral service before, dropped his Bible inside the casket, the first time he conducted one. He was embarrassed and so was everybody present at the burial ceremony. He has to retrieve his bible from the coffin. He made a mistake but moved immediately to correctly himself.
HOLINESS IS NOT FREEDOM FROM NATURAL DESIRES
For example, anger is carnal and sinful, but righteous anger directed against sin and the devil is not a sin. You can get angry but where do you direct the anger? There some people who are always complaining about everything in the whole world. They wake up, they complain about the weather, the bus, and the people. They are always complaining. It will be so nice if such people can direct their complaints to the enemy. Worldliness is sin, but someone who is tired and wants to take a rest is not committing sin. Gluttony is sin but someone who is enjoying a good normal size food is not sinning. Because you are holy and saved, does not mean you will no longer get angry or dear to sleep or rest. In essence, holiness is not freedom from natural desires.
HOLINESS IS NOT FREEDOM FROM TROUBLE
Because you are holy does not mean. Problem will not come, a Christian can have a problem, but the problem must non have the Christian. God test us in these waters you trouble to see how we will come out of it.
HOLINESS IS NOT SUPERIORITY COMPLEX
It is having a holier than thou attitude. Have you seen your name in the book of life before you start claiming that you are the holiest person? A holy man becomes even more humble. A holy man is conscious of his own weaknesses. Let that be very clear. God demands that his children be holy. Holiness is not optional; it is essential for all Christians.
HOLINESS IS NECESSARY TO KEEP US FROM BACKSLIDING
There is great army of backsliders every where now and the chief reason for backsliding is failure to seek after holiness. The Christian life is like a man rowing a boat up a river, if he stop rowing, his speed will reduce and he will begin to go backward or downstream. The boat therefore, cannot stand still. It will either go up or down the river. So it is with the Christian life. You can still be doing your religious duties and yet be backsliding. Backsliding is always gradual, probably unnoticed at first. Look at Samson. After being a good leader of Israel at be like other times; he did not know, that he had failed to press forward after holiness and did not deal with the lust in his eyes.
Many Christians are now found committing open sins because of the seed of sins already in their hearts. There are some people called secret backsliders that committing secret sins in tithes, offering because no one is monitoring them, the secret backsliders is the most vocal person around. He is the one at the forefront, carrying the bible around and preaching from house to house. The devil has finished him and he is only moving around like a corpse.
HOLINESS GIVES US THE POWER TO WITNESS FOR CHRIST
People are more interested in reading us now, even than the Bible. An impatient or bad temper woman who is a Christian will find it difficult to deal with her unsaved husband. If she says, “darling, follow me to church.” He will not go. Rather, he will say, “you are the most unqualified person to talk to me about salvation. I do not see the evidence in your own life.”
WHY DO WE HAVE TO BE HOLY?
Holiness is necessary because the Lord’s return is drawing near, at any time from now, the trumpet may sound. Holiness is necessary before we can enter Heaven.
No sin can enter Heaven. No pride, jealousy, envy, impurity, hatred and bitterness can be tolerated in Heaven. It is holy place for holy set of people. Satan was once a prince of God and suddenly, he was cast away from Heaven, when pride enters into his heart. It was only one sin he committed and got thrown down. God rain mercy when ever they ask for forgiveness. When some people are told to live a holy life, they would simply reply, leave me alone. I want to live my life my own way, I don’t want any pastor or anything to teleguide me.” A man who is yearning for such freedom is like a train saying. “I am tired of passing between theses two rails, year after year; the train wants liberty and what will happen? It will crash. We should thus be holy so that God can use us.
Great men of God have been holy men, men with clean heart who are on fire for God are the one who move the mountains and are great in the eyes of God. As long as there is any root of sin in our heart, the Holy Ghost cannot have His way in us and our usefulness is hindered. A young man was praying one day, and said, “oh Lord, give me power!” then, he change his prayer to, “oh Lord, I will give up every sin.” The reason he changed the prayer was that God said that power was available, but the sin in his life was hindering the power. If your vessel is not clean, clean it, and miraculous things will begin to happen.
It is possible for each and every one of us to be holy and useful. It is indescribably better than winning and battle or holding any worldly post. Jesus died to make us holy. So we have to be holy. He submitted Himself to stripes, insults, mocking and death on the cross. We cannot afford to disappoint Jesus. Let not His blood be spent in vain upon our lives. He was pushed on the streets with a heavy cross on His shoulder. He did not sleep for days and was pushed from Pilate to Herod, to Caiaphas and all over the places like a common criminal. His disciple who had boasted to die with Him ran away when trouble came. Peter who was seemingly very bold denied Him when some people cornered him and challenged him that he was one of the disciples of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. People on the rooftops were watching Him when He was carrying the cross and He full because He was very weak and tried because of many days He was not given food and blood as gosh out form Him. I praise God that the person who carried the cross for Him was a black man from Africa. Any time God was going to make a dramatic change, a black man turn up. This man who carried the cross of Jesus was a black man called Simon. When you read the book of the Acts, you will see that the first time gospel left Jerusalem was through a black man, the Ethiopian eunuch. At the church in Antioch there was at legist a black prophet among them.
WHY SHOULD WE BE HOLY?
Sin in the heart is more dangerous than gun powder. Holiness is the safeguard against all demonic builders. For lack of holiness, peter and David fell from grace to grass. With holiness Joseph and Daniel resisted temptation and Stephen gladly faced death, rather than deny the Lord. Without holiness, no man shall see the Lord.
Now that we have seen that holiness is the foundation of brokenness, what are the steps into holiness? I am not talking about theoretical holiness. In fact, w have so many people today, who can sit down and talk about holiness from morning till night, but when you offend then a little bit, they will fight you like a wounded lion. I am not talking about intellectual holiness or those who only know how to analyze holiness, but do not have the proof in their lives. It is like some people who hold prayer seminars and speak big and bigger grammar about prayer. They analyze it, but when you get there and say, “Open your mouth and pray”, half of them will open their eyes and will not pray at all. Theoretical and intellectual holiness are very terrible things. People with such orientation will not only deceive themselves, but would hinder others. The way God operates is this, if you ant to plant maize or yam, God has to help you if it is to grow. You have to prepare the grown, plant the seed, keep the weeds away, and latter gather the harvests. It is God who will supply the sunshine and the rain and give life to the seed. God will never save a person from sin if the person is not ready to cooperate. There must be cooperation.
The first step to holiness is conversion. You must be converted. There is nothing as miserable someone trying to live a holy life without being born-again. This was the mistakes of Nicodemus. Unless the first step about the new birth experience is clear all that follows will be confusion and disappointment. Before you can build a house or a good character, you must have a good foundation. It is a sad thing to build on sand. Before you can Abadan your building to build another one, you have to be sure that the foundation is well laid. Before you can have abundant life as a Christian you must have life first, because dead things must be a root before we can have the fruit.
People, who want to live a holy life without being born-again, are liken to someone who wants to swim without entering the water. Get clear, no one becomes a Christian because he was born into a Christian home or because hen has Christian parents. Because a goat is born in a house, does not make you say it is a human being. All those experiences that people are talking about are not valuable if within your heart, you know you are not converted. The day you enter the kingdom of Heaven is your most important birthday. All other birthday are wise useless on earth.
If you are not sure whether you are born-again or not, it means you are not born-again. If you are born-again, you will know. You will get to a stage in your life, that you know you cannot save yourself, then you will cry to the Lord for help.
The Bible says, “if the foundation is destroyed, what can the righteous do? [Psalm 11:3] “A lot of us are trying to build on faulty foundations.
God wants brokenness people that He can truly and commits His treasure to. When God commit His treasure into your hands, woe betides that enemy who rises up against you. Woe to the wizard who sends arrows to you or the witch who harass you, because as they attack you, they instantly become’s God enemies.