Monday, October 31, 2005

Being Holy

By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:10)
Many people think that holiness is about what we do: If we do enough good deeds, we are holy. But the truth is, you can no more become holy by your good works than you can become a banana by painting yourself yellow and hanging from a tree. It just doesn’t work that way.

The Bible says that we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ. It is not our doing but His doing that matters. He offered His body as a sacrifice so that we could be sanctified — made holy — before God. The Greek word for “holy” means to be set apart. To be holy means to be set apart for God’s special purposes.

Being holy does not flow forth from doing holy deeds. Holy deeds flow forth from being holy.

Consider the banana again. It is a banana, not because of what it does, but because it flows forth from the life of the tree. It begins as a bud, then flowers, then begins to come forth as fruit. It does not strive, it does not strain. It does not try to create itself. It simply receives the life of the tree, and that life does the work within it. It does not try to color itself yellow. Being yellow does not make it a banana, but the banana is yellow because that is its nature.

Holiness is the same way. We do not strain to become holy. We simply enter into the work of Jesus, and He makes us holy. As we allow His life to flow through us, we begin to live and act in ways that reveal God’s special purpose, the destiny He has prepared for us.

Holiness is all about Him, not about us. Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).

The Bible says that Jesus has offered His body “once for all.” That means that there is nothing else anybody can add to it. He has already done all that is necessary for us to be holy.

Stop trying to be holy — you’ll never make it. Instead, by faith enter into the holiness of King Jesus the Messiah. Then let His life work in you to bring forth the fruit of a powerful, world-changing destiny. For without Him, you can do nothing.