Called to be Holy

Oct. 27, 2020

Scripture Readings

As I am working on this devotional, I am listening to the song, “The Lord is in His Holy Temple.” Although this was my favourite call to worship in the church of my early childhood, I did not understand what these words meant.  However, the words and music seemed to draw my heart to a good place, and I somehow felt close to him.

Today’s readings are about holiness; the holiness of God and, in the book of Titus, the charge for followers of Jesus to be holy. In the OT reading, there are the complaints of the prophet Habakkuk about the wickedness of the people who are carrying out the Lord’s judgment upon his people. After the Lord’s responses (and likely some reflection on Habakkuk’s part), he responds in faith (3:17-19).  Finally, our selection from Proverbs speaks about the fool in very graphic terms: “As a dog returns to its vomit…” (26:11). It would be safe to say that the fool is not living a holy life – and those who want to live circumspectly are advised to be careful in their dealings with these “rebels” (the Living Bible term for “fool”). 

What’s the big deal about holiness? We need the broader Scriptural context to understand this more fully. First, God is holy. When we understand his holiness and desire for relationship with us (what the Cross and Resurrection are all about), we are fools/rebels to persist in our unholiness. The Apostle Paul instructs us that we are the Lord’s temple (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Finally, we are to live exemplary lives – using our self-control and relying upon his power to create holiness in us from the inside out – so that we don’t give others just reason to criticize us or the Savior.

We know that it won’t be easy.  As we are called to holiness, so we are called to faith (Habakkuk 2:4).  It takes my breath away, in the circumstances that Habakkuk faced, that he (eventually) responded: “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines… yet will I rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior” (3: 17-19).  Could I demonstrate that kind of holiness and faith in desperate times?  Would I?

“Exalt the LORD our God and worship at his footstool; he is holy.” (Psalm 99:5)


Marlette Reed

Brian and Marlette are brand new members of church, and Marlette loves writing (especially with her twin sister!)