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What is…
holiness

also known as: spiritual perfection, absolute purity, sinlessness

Holy God

Holiness, in the highest sense, belongs to God, and to Christians as consecrated to God’s service, and in so far as they are conformed in all things to the will of God ( Romans 6:19; Rom. 6:22; Ephesians 1:4; Titus 1:8; 1 Peter 1:15).

Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.” —Isaiah 6:3 NASB

“Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify Your name?
For You alone are holy;
For all the nations will come and worship before You,
For Your righteous acts have been revealed.” —Rev. 15:4 NASB

“Holy and awesome is His name.” —Psalm 111:9

“Holiness is to be regarded not as a distinct attribute, but as the result of all God’s moral perfection together.” —R.L. Dabney

“Holiness is the most sparkling jewel of God’s crown, it is the name by which He is known.” —Thomas Watson

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Personal holiness

“…we actually are, at present, creatures whose character must be, in some respects, a horror to God, as it is, when we really see it, a horror to ourselves. This I believe to be a fact: and I notice that the holier a man is, the more fully he is aware of that fact.” —C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain

See: Humility

Personal holiness is a work of gradual development. It is carried on under many hindrances, hence the frequent admonitions to watchfulness, prayer, and perseverance (1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Ephesians 4:23-24).

Christians are often uncomfortable thinking of each other as “holy ones.” Yet the call to God’s people is…

“You shall be holy; for I am holy” (Lev. 11:44; 1 Peter 1:16)

“Holiness does not consist in mystic speculations, enthusiastic fervours, or uncommanded austerities; it consists in thinking as God thinks, and willing as God wills. God’s mind and will are to be known from his word; and, so far as I really understand and believe God’s word, God’s mind becomes my mind, God’s will becomes my will, and according to the measure of my faith, I become holy.” —John Brown, Expository Discourses on the First Epistle of Peter (Edinburgh: William Oliphant, 1866), 1:117

It is through faith in Christ that we are set apart as holy ones, yet we still struggle with sin. Sanctification is the process by which we are being made holy. How do we seek God’s grace in living holy lives?

Videos on personal holiness

A Call to Holiness
Dr. John F. MacArthur, Litt.D., D.D., The Master’s Seminary
length: 34 minutes
Spiritual Power for Holy Living
Dr. John F. MacArthur, Litt.D., D.D., The Master’s Seminary
length: 53 minutes
Simultaneously Righteous and a Sinner
Dr. John F. MacArthur, Litt.D., D.D., The Master’s Seminary
length: 60 minutes

Holy days / holidays

Holy objects and places

Unholy fire on a holy altar

Two of Aaron’s sons were struck dead ( Leviticus 10:1-2) for the daring sacrilige of offering unholy fire on the holy altar of incense, contrary to God’s command.

Holy beings or people

Objects, ordinances, or beings that are or can be holy

(partial list)

Also see

Article Version: June 6, 2019