Pastor Mike Schumann
My exhortation to us all, for the year 2020, is to be holy. Regardless if you’re a student, at home, in the workplace, or retired, in the year 2020, strive to be holy.
Why am I exhorting us this way? For one, God exhorts us this way in His word. In the Old Testament, Leviticus 19:2, God says to his people, “Be holy, for I the Lord am holy.” And Peter echoes this in the New Testament, “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.”
But why not exhort us to know God more, Love God more, Worship God more in 2020? Think about it, sin fuddles our knowledge of God. Sin slackens our love for God. Sin weakens our worship of God. So, If we were to pursue knowledge, love, and worship of God, and not holiness, we would not get far. Sin holds us back from our God.
As Hebrews 12:14 puts it this way, “Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.”
So, do you want to see the Lord in 2020? Do you want to know Him, love Him, worship Him in 2020? Them welcome Him in by being holy. Holiness is not an end in and of itself. Holiness is a means, one of the primary means, by which we grow closer to God. So be holy.
Now, here is where things get difficult - your growth, my growth, in personal holiness must be all-consuming. In other words, we cannot aim to grow in holiness in what we allow our eyes to see, but not what we allow our minds to dwell upon. We cannot aim to grow in holiness in our actions, but not our affections. we cannot aim to grow in holiness while we’re around one another, but not while we’re around our co-workers, or neighbors.
We must aim to have a drive for holiness which is all-consuming. We must be we willing to lay our entire souls on God’s operating table and ask him to do work. No bit of us can stay behind, no portion of us can remain our own, it’s all or nothing — when God calls us to holiness, his call is all-consuming.
One way to do that this week is by finding a godly person, someone you look up to, who knows you fairly well, and asking them, “What is one way I need to grow in holiness in my life?”
Be holy, that you might enjoy your God.