Too casual concerning God’s Holiness

Sitting at my desk, I can look up and see several things that I have taped up or put within view as a reminder… a remembrance of what God has done and what He has taught me from his Word.

One such remembrance is a verse from Ezekiel 37:3 …and he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.”   I remember He is God…He is omniscient.

Another such reminder is a letter from November 2007, written with the heading ‘Remember Why You Sold Everything – Keeping the Treasure in View During the Long Wait”, that reflects on the scripture in Matthew 13:44 “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”   I remember who He is and who I am and that I’ve been set free to enjoy the Treasure for eternity; nothing else compares.

Then, on my computer screensaver are two verses… But this is the one to whom I will look:  he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.”  (Is 66:2b) and “Teach me your way, O LORD, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name.”  (Ps 86:11).  In light of who God is, who I am is revealed and I remember I am poor and needy and He leads me into Truth.

These reminders are invaluable in slowing me down or redirecting my gaze when I get caught up in my flesh or start running ahead trying to deal with life on my own.  These are lessons He has taught me in some degree and His grace to me in these things is to lead me by His word.  And so I am finding that my time meditating on the books of Moses are becoming a sober reminder of things I often rush past in my hurried self-confidence. 

As I read this morning in the fourth book of Moses, Numbers (translated ‘in the wilderness’), I was impressed again by the extent and degree of law and sacrifice that was required for cleansing and atonement for sin.  Anything that came in contact with death(sin) was unclean and had to be ‘made clean’ by the Word of God.  God gave his people the law through Moses.  He instructed…commanded the way of atonement and cleansing from sin.  Reading through these books of the Old Testament has really impressed the intensity and awesomeness of God’s holiness upon my heart as I consider what the Lord required from his people in regard to being made clean.

What this does for me is bring to life the Word in the New Testament.  Scriptures like Ephesians 2:1-10 come alive with intense, glorious Reality.  “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins..”  Stop.  When I read this indictment, I can no longer rush past the reality that I was unclean and living in uncleanness… I was impure and needed purification.  I was unholy and needed to be made holy.  I was dead…and needed to be made alive!

I consider what God said through John, in 1 John 1:7 – “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.”   No longer can I rush past the ‘blood’.  I can’t simply read past the significance of the sacrifice for sin and the shedding of blood for cleansing.

The grace of God demonstrated in the atoning death of Jesus Christ is so much more intensified to me when I consider that Jesus Christ, the Righteous…the Holy One of Israel, came and was slaughtered on my behalf, absorbing the wrath of God for my sins and washing me clean by His blood.  When I read the Old Testament and slow down and consider the extent of the means of atoning for sin…the extent of the requirements for being made pure and recognize that ‘all of that’ was still nothing without the Incarnation, the coming of the Lamb of God to die for the sins of the world.  Wow!

May I always tremble at His word…may I never be too casual… flippant… irreverent concerning the grace of my Savior and my Great High Priest – He is Holy and He is LORD!

So…while I walked in death, sin, rebelliousness, filth, unrighteousness…following the prince of the power of the air – GOD…being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— .

Hallelujah!  What a Savior!

Man of Sorrows! what a name
For the Son of God, who came
Ruined sinners to reclaim.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
In my place condemned He stood;
Sealed my pardon with His blood.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Guilty, vile, and helpless we;
Spotless Lamb of God was He;
“Full atonement!” can it be?
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Lifted up was He to die;
“It is finished!” was His cry;
Now in Heav’n exalted high.
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
When He comes, our glorious King,
All His ransomed home to bring,
Then anew His song we’ll sing:
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

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