“Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.”
One of the things that God has always demanded from His people is to be holy. The purpose of holiness was not to show how great they are; rather, it was to reveal to the nations around them the greatness of God. Holiness was never meant to point to the individual living a holy life, but it was to cause them to live in such a manner that the world could see God through them.
The Believer is no different from the children of Israel in their command to live a holy life. 1 Peter 1:16 repeats this command when it says, “Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” When you got saved, one of the main goals you are to achieve is to live a holy life. The best way to describe holiness is to have a testimony uninjured from sin. In other words, your life should be lived in such a manner that it doesn’t carry the marks of sin. If you are going to live a holy life, there are several keys that Leviticus shows us that must happen for a holy life to be achieved.
First, you must live a sanctified life to be holy. The verse above says, “Sanctify yourselves…” Sanctification is the consistent laying aside of sin. The Believer will never live a holy life when they continue to live in sin. The word “sanctify” means to cleanse. In other words, until you come to the point that you lay aside sin, you will never live a holy life. My friend, you cannot live in sin and show the holiness of God through your life. If you are ever going to be the example to the world that God wants you to be, you are going to have to start overcoming sin.
Second, you must practice separation if you are going to be holy. It is hard to lay aside sin when you are living in the atmosphere of sin and to associate with those who commit sin. As much as people gripe about living a separated life, it is a must if you want to be holy. You can lay aside sin all day, but you will go back to it if you keep going back to the places where you commit it. You can decide to stop doing sin, but you will never stick to that decision if you don’t change the friends with whom you commit sin. You will always go back to the same mud hole of sin if you don’t separate from the wrong atmosphere and people.
What is the purpose of being holy? The purpose of being holy is because God is holy. We are His representatives to the world. The nations around Israel noticed that they lived differently from every nation, and that difference caused other nations to realize they served a different God. When you live like the world, the world will never see that you serve a different God. Many in the world proclaim their religious behavior, but what separates the Believer from the world is that the Believer doesn’t live like the world. When the Believer lives a holy life, it reveals to the world that our God is a holy God.
My friend, you are not living a holy life if people are looking at you and proclaiming your goodness. True holiness always points people to see Christ through you. True holiness never causes the Believer to think of themselves as some great one, but it will always cause them to keep their eyes on their holy God. Holiness is not a choice, but a command. If you are going to please the LORD, you are going to have to live a holy life.