God doesn’t command obedience “just cuz.” He gives us dozens of specific reasons to be holy. God can prescribe many different medicines for motivation. If you’re struggling with pornography, he might call to mind your identity in Christ or admonish you that the sexually immoral will not inherit the kingdom of God. If you are fighting pride, God might assure you that he gives grace to the humble or remind you that you follow a crucified Messiah. He can highlight your adoption, justification, reconciliation, or union with Christ. God can stir you up to love and good deeds with warnings and promises, with love and fear, with positive or negative examples. He can remind you of who you are, or who you were, or who you are becoming. God can appeal to your good, the good of others, or his own glory. You could probably find a hundred biblical reasons to be holy. And the sooner we explore and apply those reasons, the more equipped we’ll be to fight sin, the more eager to make every effort to be more like Christ, and the more ready to say with the apostle John, “his commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3).
Friday, September 14, 2012
Reasons to be Holy
I’ve been listening to Kevin DeYoung’s new book, The Hole in our Holiness. On my way into work I heard this, and I had to Google it to get the exact wording. This is definitely a money quote: