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Series Introduction| Knowing God | The Revelatory God | Goodness of God | Holiness of God | Power of God | Omnipresent God | Exalted God | Faithfuness of God | Wisdom of God | Mercy of God |Wrath of God | Love of God | Sovereignty of God | Providence of God
Purpose: Grasping God’s untouchable holiness (His righteousness).
“Who among the gods is like you, O Lord? Who is like you – majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?” (Exodus 15:11)
“Moreover, the doctrine of the unity of God should caution us against attempting to single out any one attribute of God as more important than all the others.
At various times, people have attempted to see God’s holiness, or his love, or his self-existence, or his righteousness, or some other attribute as the most important attribute of his being.
But all such attempts seem to misconceive of God as a combination of various parts, with some parts being somehow larger or more influential than others.” (Wayne Grudem)
Some theologians have referred to God’s holiness as the ‘attribute of attributes’
The ‘Name’ of God, which represents His character (Ps 103:1)
Scripture is replete with references to God as being HOLY.
(1 John 1:5)
(Isa. 6:3) God’s holiness is the only attribute given this three-fold proclamation
“His wisdom, goodness, and power, are declared in creation; his sovereign authority in his law; his grace and mercy in the gospel, and his righteousness in all.”— Holy as Creator and Benefactor; Holy as Lawgiver and Judge; ‘ Holy as Restorer and Redeemer.” (Stephen Charnock)
In negative terms, and we define it as meaning that God is entirely separate from and apart from sin. Holiness primarily means separation — separation from any and all evil.
But, of course, holiness is also something positive. It is essential, absolute purity.
The Bible teaches everywhere that God is holy, and part of this holiness is His hatred of sin and His separation from sin, from the sinner and from all that is evil. (Wayne Grudem)
1. Holy indicates the ‘apartness’ or ‘otherness’ of God, His transcendent majesty. This is why His people reverence, adore, worship, and honor Him. As taught in Scripture, Holy things were set apart for God – said to be ‘consecrated’.
2. At the same time, Holiness refers to God’s pure and righteous actions, His imminent presence or manifestation. It is essential and absolute purity. That is why God hates sin and must be totally separate from evil.
HOLY: God’s otherness has to do with His majesty & His purity has to do with His righteousness.
1. Positive Examples:
2. Negative Examples:
The Bible depicts the ‘Holy One’ as “independently, infinitely, and immutably Holy” (Stephen Charnock).
He is the sum of all moral excellence, absolute purity, manifest perfection and that is why at times, God is revealed as One who swears by His name – His ‘HOLY character’.
By His works, (Ps. 145:17),
In His law, (Rom. 7:12) (Ps. 19:8,9)
In His chosen people, (Lev 11:44-45 ; 20:7) (1 Cor 7:1) (1 Thes 3:13) (1 Pet 1:15-16)
At the cross, (Heb. 10:10-14)
Because of the honor of His Name, (Ezek. 36:20-23)
“Power is God’s hand or arm, omniscience His eye, mercy His bowels, eternity His duration, but holiness is his beauty.” (Stephen Charnock)
Discuss briefly your understanding of the HOLINESS of GOD.
Why, or why not, regard the holiness of God as the attribute of attributes?
Do you have a wholesome fear of God’s holiness? Explain.
How should the holiness of God affect the way we live and worship?
Scriptures typically quoted from the New American Standard Bible unless noted:
(C) Copyright The Lockman Foundation 1988