Share His Holiness – 2

Holiness

A few posts back, I spent some time in Hebrews 12:10. considering the benefits of patience.

I’ve been a believer for well nigh onto 4 decades and the phrase “share his holiness” in Hebrew 12:10 somewhat caught me off guard. I must have read it dozens of times, and yet it jumped off the page this time.

Hebrews 12:9-11

9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live?

10 For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.

11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

What is tarnation is this holiness.  That “thing” we considered in our previous post that we are to receive, take, and have a right to?
I kinda understand the Bible to teach two truths about holiness.

Absolute Holiness – A State of Being for the Believer

1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

We are a holy nation, having been set apart for service to the Master. This is what I am calling Absolute Holiness. Check out the cool graph below – and yes I think graphs are cool – I s’pose my geekiness is starting to ooze out in this post.

This Absolute Holiness is expressed by the yellow flat line residing at 100, and is the condition we, as believers find ourselves in. Peter describes it as being a citizen of a country – it is not a commentary of behavior (since there can be bad citizens and good citizens), so much as a privilege to accept and live up to. It is a condition that has been provided to us and is not dependent on our actions or obedience. His death and resurrection supplied this blessing to all who believe.

In a sense, it is the goal for which we strive, knowing that it is not only attainable (some day) but it is also the life to which we are called to.

Experiential Holiness – A Goal to Chase for the Believer

1 Peter 1:15-16

but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

Experiential holiness is a different animal. It is a command to the believer, not a statement of fact.
As a believer walks with the Lord, confessing his sin, and obeying the Master, his experiential holiness increases daily. The jagged solid blue line on my fancy graph below typifies 50 yrs of a believer’s sanctification. All through his journey with Jesus, he has had some victories and some defeats.
Some years, like his 27 and 28th year, this believer was experientially walking like the world, being dominated by the flesh and the devil. He was in rebellion, and some folk that knew him at that time felt he may have fallen away.
Repentance and renewal came for him in the 28th year, and he again began to seek the Lord, confess his sin and obey what he knew would please the Lord.

Progressive Holiness

I think this graph, if it portrays the Bible’s teaching on holiness correctly, shows the importance of keeping short accounts with the Lord. Continuously responding to the Lords urging and recognizing sin in our lives will produce the type of growth in holiness seen in the first 20 yrs of the believer typified on the graph.

The graph identifies points of repentance in the believers life. Each valley in the graph above is a point of decision, a decision to repent of an action or attitude. Each peak is a point of rebellion in the believers life.

Strive For Peace

Each day in a believers life is to be a life of repentance from dead works. While on this earth, we cannot attain to a sinlessly pure and absolutely clean lifestyle, thought life and emotional existence. Our hearts desire it, but we are in a struggle. A struggle/striving to receive the holiness of God in our lives through staying under the discipline of God.

Don’t give up in your struggle.  Strive for peace and holiness.  They are both goals to be sought for in our travelling with the Lord.

Hebrews 12:14

Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.


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