Pursuit of holiness

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Readings: 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:7; Psalm 47:1-9

READ (Verses chosen for reflection)
2 Corinthians 7:1 “Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.”

Many believers understand that the key to living a Godly life is the pursuit of holiness. The Apostle Paul exhorted that such a pursuit is to be done with God’s promises in mind as well as with a heart that fears God.

What are these promises? 2 Corinthians 6:14-15 says that as we commit ourselves to God, He will make His dwelling place in us and we shall be His very sons and daughters. In practical ways, this means that in the pursuit of holiness, we can do well to remember that God will help us as He will help His very sons and daughters. Hence, we can readily in His strength seek to be holy especially when temptations come knocking at our doors.

This also means that in times when we fail, God will not just frown at us and all ready to kick us into eternal damnation; but like a good Father, He awaits our repentance with divine patience and offers His hand to us if we are willing to change.   Our pursuit for holiness therefore not arises because we have something to prove, or a Christian badge to achieve; but because we know that God loves us so and we want to learn to love Him more.

My own experience of the pursuit of holiness can only testify to the great mercies and goodness of God. If not for His grace, I would have given up long time ago. If not for the community He has given to me, I would have drowned in my own self-pity. Let us therefore be of good hope. Christ is not resurrected so that we perish; but He did so that we can truly live. Let us therefore grow to hate sin, love God and be the persons that He has created us to be.

“In using all means, seek God alone. In and through every outward thing, look only to the power of His Spirit, and the merits of His Son. Beware you do not get stuck in the work itself; if you do, it is all lost labour. Nothing short of God can satisfy your soul. Therefore, fix on Him in all, through all, and above all…Remember also to use all means as means-as ordained, not for their own sake…” (John Wesley in “How to pray”). Amen.