The Lord our Sanctifier
The Lord says: “Consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am the Lord your God. Keep my decrees and follow them. I am the Lord, who makes you holy.” (Leviticus 20:7-8)
How is it possible to be holy? The weight of trying can feel like a millstone hung around your neck. It was the sense of the impossibility of this mandate that caused me to mistakenly reject Christianity in my early twenties. I grew up hearing the scriptures read every Sunday in church but a time came when it wasn’t just a bunch of words anymore. I finally actually understood what anyone following Christ was called to be and do and I flat out realized I wasn’t capable of it.
I read such things as “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.” (Matthew 5:21-22) Or, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” (Matthew 5:38-39) And the list goes on. “Don’t worry”, “don’t judge”, “don’t store up treasures for yourselves on earth”…I looked on the list in despair.
I struggled with the impossibility of putting all of these commands into practice and secretly decided within myself that I couldn’t do it. So I turned away and walked a different path. I wish someone would have told me about Jehovah-M’Kaddesh. The impossibility of holiness for us as human beings is exactly the thing that should drive us into the arms of the only one who is holy. In Revelation 15:4 it says; “Who will not fear you, O lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy.”
How do we reconcile this? Only God is holy. He calls us to be holy like him. How is it he calls us to be something we can’t be? The first thing to remember is that nothing is impossible with God. God uses his very own holiness to make us holy like him. He transforms us. Think about the butterfly. Starting off as a caterpillar, what chance is there that it will ever fly? Yet while wrapped in its cocoon a metamorphosis occurs; it becomes a whole new creature totally transformed.
God wraps us in the cloak of his own holiness until we are totally transformed into something we could not be except for him and his great grace. He shares his own character and nature with us through Jesus Christ. The scripture tells us that through God’s divine power and our knowledge of him, “he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” (2 Peter 1:4) That’s being sanctified; that’s being holy. That is the transformation that Jehovah-M’Kaddesh provides.
How does all this play out in the real world? Honesty with God is our starting point. Admit the truth. I am not holy and neither are you. I got that part right back in my early years. But back then I came to a wrong conclusion. Since I couldn’t do it I thought it couldn’t be done. I was dead wrong. Don’t make the same mistake I did. If you have never done so before, call upon Jehovah-M’Kaddesh to be your holiness; to transform you into a whole new creature.