1997-08-07 - The Holiness of God

God IS Love. God loves us as His children. (1 John 3:1) And the name we are to use when we pray, "Abba" translates literally as "Daddy." He wants an intimate, personal relationship with us. He wants to hear our feelings and thoughts as they are -- He knows them anyway! We are to pour out our hearts to Him. (Psalms 62:8) Having said all that, however, I think it's important we don't lose sight of the fact that He is Holy. "Holy" means "set apart." And He is set apart from us, from anyone who lives now, ever has or ever will. He is, in character, in perfection, in purity, in ability, in knowledge -- set apart from everyone and everything. There are adjectives that pertain only to Him: Omniscient, Omnipotent, Omnipresent.

Isa 6:1-3 (NIV) 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. 2 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. 3 And they were calling to one another: "Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory."

He is so Holy that in our sinful state, we could not enter into God's presence.

Isa 6:3-7 (NRSV) And one called to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory." 4 The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called, and the house filled with smoke. 5 And I said: "Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!" 6 Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7 The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: "Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out."

Only through our perfect High Priest, Jesus, can we approach our Holy God in confidence.

Heb 4:14-16 (NIV) Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

We do need to remember that God is a God who loves us with a tender love.

Mat 23:37 (NIV) "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.

Yet there is a balance we must achieve -- we must never forget Who we are praying to, serving, obeying, loving -- the One, True, Living God.

Dear Father, help us to always remember Who you are, to acknowledge ALL your qualities. Help us to give you more of the worship and service that You deserve. In Jesus' name, amen.