Holiness

Surprisingly, there is beauty in holiness. 
Many tend to tense up at the sound of the word, gearing up for expectations they know they can never fulfill, demands they can never meet, and stern judgment at the end of the road.  Those concerns come with the contemplation of our attempts at holiness.  The good thing about the Good News is that Jesus fulfilled the expectations, met the demands, and took the judgment for our shortfalls.

Our subject today is not our holiness, but the Holiness of God.  This is the day the Lord has made. It is another appointed time to “give unto the Lord the glory due His name” and to worship Him “in the beauty of holiness,” His holiness.

We are so broken by Adam’s fall and our complicity in it, that we cannot imagine true holiness.

  • To be without flaw, to be completely complete,
  • to be true from the core to the surface,

is a state of being we cannot begin to understand.

However, we can pay tribute to it. 
We can confess with our lips and believe in our hearts the absolute holiness of the Lord Jesus, pristine in pre-incarnate life and unsoiled and unspoiled by more than thirty years of incarnation here on earth.  With no sins of His own to subtract from His goodness, our sins alone left their mark on His hands and feet, on His brow, side, and His back.  Yet these scars are not flaws; they in no way mar the beauty of His holiness.  Indeed, they add to the wonder of the Father’s mercy and the Spirit’s power to bring the dead back to life.

Each Lord’s Day the Holiness of God is the subject of the liturgy we present to the Him.

  • It will be heard in all three points in the pastor’s message and even in his poem.
  • This will be the appeal in every invitation and the prayer at every altar.
  • The Holiness of God will flow in the cup when we drink it and nourish us the when the bread is broken and blessed and the truth believed.

The Glory Due His Name
Oh, there is beauty in Holiness, the beauty of the One who is the originator of all beauty, the designer of all designs, the master of all mastery and the creator of creativity.  We stand in awe of Him.  We lift our hands, our lives, our voices, and our hearts to Him in adoration, gratitude, and homage.

Most amazing of all, He responds to our praise and worship.

  • He inhabits our liturgy and reigns upon our sacred actions.
  • This Almighty One gently holds us in His loving embrace.
  • His wholeness then transmits to us and we are healed.

Oh, there is beauty in His Holiness!

Scriptures

Psalm 29:1-2 NKJV
Give unto the LORD, O you mighty ones, Give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
Isaiah 6:1-4
In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
Revelation 4:6-8
In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.”
Hebrews 10:19-22
Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water
Psalm 22:3 KJV (NKJ)
But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel….(Enthroned in the praises of Israel.)

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, I join the song of angels today, singing with all of my might of Your holiness. Let me see you high and lifted up. Let the train of Your robe cover me as I stand before Your throne in worship. Let your strength brace my knees, Your mercy bath my heart, Your peace calm my soul and Your truth bind up my mind. Your holiness is indeed beautiful, shimmering in the air of glory, not distant, but close, close enough to touch me. Thank You, Lord. Amen.

Song:
I See the Lord
Words and Music: Chris Falson

I see the Lord seated on the throne exalted
And the train of His robe fills the temple with glory
And the whole earth is filled And the whole earth is filled
And the whole earth is filled with His glory

Holy, Holy, Holy, Holy
Holy is the Lord
Holy, Holy, Holy, Holy
Holy is the Lord

Semper Reformanda!
Stephen Phifer

© 2017 Stephen R. Phifer All Rights Reserved

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