It’s nothing new. You know, the idea that everyone should be accepted for what they do. Individualism has always been prominent among people full of carnality. Cain was the clear winner when it came to self-justification. He thought that a grain sacrifice was just as good as a blood sacrifice. Even though God had clearly established the way, Cain was enamored with his own offering. And why not? Shouldn’t we all just be accepted? What difference does a sacrifice make? Isn’t it all just about intent? Truth is, offerings to God are useless unless He receives them.
How is it that Christians post half-naked pictures on social media sites and then complain if others are disgusted by them? Or what about comments, thumbs up, and a host of ‘likes’ supporting sinful activities and ideas? How far have we gone when the godly are criticized for not accepting what people do when those actions are against the very Word of God?
To be sure, personalized salvation is not a biblical thought. No one gets to decide what is good or evil. The Bible alone is the sole provider of Truth. In this era of self and the selfie, we are led to believe that God accepts people just as they are. While this idea is the beginning step, Jesus calls us to be a new creature in Him. In other words, He never leaves us the way He finds us. We are commanded to be Born Again. Old things must pass away.
The reason for our transformation is simple: Our God is a holy God.
Leviticus 20:7 “Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.”
1 Peter 1:15 “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;”
1 Peter 1:16 “Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
Holiness is a command not an option. Holiness is not a man-made venture. It is a God-initiative and not subjective or open for debate. No unclean thing can enter the realm of a holy and righteous God. Hebrews 12:14 “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:” Paul wrote; 2 Corinthians 6:17 “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.”
I’m seeking to make a sacrifice that He will accept. I’m seeking to lead a church that is more concerned about pleasing God that justifying individual intent. 1 Thessalonians 4:7 “For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.”
Pastor Jeffrey Harpole