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Discussion Forum : Articles and Sermons : Tozer and Holiness

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crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Tozer and Holiness

[b]Holiness Is Not an Option![/b]

[i]as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”[/i] (1 Peter 1:15–16)

YOU CANNOT STUDY THE BIBLE diligently and earnestly without being struck by an obvious fact—the whole matter of personal holiness is highly important to God!

Neither do you have to give long study to the attitudes of modern Christian believers to discern that by and large we consider the expression of true Christian holiness to be just a matter of personal option: “I have looked it over and considered it, but I don’t buy it!”

I have always liked the word exhort better than command so I remind you that Peter has given every Christian a forceful extortation to holiness of life and conversation. He clearly bases this exhortation on two great facts—first, the character of God, and second, the command of God.

His argument comes out so simply that we sophisticates stumble over it—God’s children ought to be holy because God Himself is holy! We so easily overlook the fact that Peter was an apostle and he is here confronting us with the force of an apostolic injunction, completely in line with the Old Testament truth concerning the person and character of God and also in line with what the Lord Jesus had taught and revealed to His disciples and followers.

Personally, I am of the opinion that we who claim to be apostolic Christians do not have the privilege of ignoring such apostolic injunctions. I do not mean that a pastor can forbid or that a church can compel. I only mean that morally we dare not ignore this commandment, “Be holy.”

AWT [i]I Call it Heresy[/i]


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Mike Balog

 2005/10/2 11:50Profile
crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: Tozer and Holiness

[b]We cannot ignore it[/b]

Because it is an apostolic word, we must face up to the fact that we will have to deal with it in some way, and not ignore it—as some Christians do.

Certainly no one has provided us with an opinion in this matter. Who has ever given us the right or the privilege to look into the Bible and say, “I am willing to consider this matter and if I like it, I will buy it”—using the language of the day.

There is something basically wrong with our Christianity and our spirituality if we can carelessly presume that if we do not like a Biblical doctrine and choose not to “buy” it, there is no harm done.

Commandments which we have received from our Lord or from the apostles cannot be overlooked or ignored by earnest and committed Christians. God has never instructed us that we should weigh His desires for us and His commandments to us in the balances of our own judgment and then decide what we want to do about them.

A professing Christian may say, “I have found a place of real Christian freedom; these things just don’t apply to me.”

Of course you can walk out on it! God has given every one of us the power to make our own choices. I am not saying that we are forced to bow our necks to this yoke and we do not have to apply it to ourselves. It is true that if we do not like it, we can turn our backs on it.

The record in the New Testament is plain on this point—many people followed Jesus for a while and then walked away from Him.

Once Jesus said to His disciples: “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you” (John 6:53). Many looked at one another and then walked away from Him.

Jesus turned to those remaining and said, “You do not want to leave too, do you?” (6:67).

Peter gave the answer which is still my answer today: ”Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life” (6:68).

Those were wise words, indeed, words born of love and devotion.

AWT


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Mike Balog

 2005/10/2 11:51Profile
crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: Tozer and Holiness

[b]Forced to make a choice[/b]

So, we are not forced to obey in the Christian life, but we are forced to make a choice at many points in our spiritual maturity.

We have that power within us to reject God’s instruction—but where else shall we go? If we refuse His words, which way will we turn? If we turn away from the authority of God’s Word, to whose authority do we yield? Our mistake is that we generally turn to some other human—a man with breath in his nostrils.

I am old-fashioned about the Word of God and its authority. I am committed to believe that if we ignore it or consider this commandment optional, we jeopardize our souls and earn for ourselves severe judgment to come.

Now, brethren, I have said that the matter of holiness is highly important to God. I have personally counted in an exhaustive concordance and found that the word holiness occurs 650 times in the Bible. I have not counted words with a similar meaning in English, such as sanctify and sanctified, so the count would jump nearer to a thousand if we counted these other words with the same meaning.

This word holy is used to describe the character of angels, the nature of heaven and the character of God. It is written that angels are holy and those angels who gaze down upon the scenes of mankind are called the watchers and holy ones.

It is said that heaven is a holy place where no unclean thing can enter in. God Himself is described by the adjective holy—Holy Ghost, Holy Lord and Holy Lord God Almighty. These words are used of God throughout the Bible, showing that the highest adjective that can be ascribed to God, the highest attribute that can be ascribed to God is that of holiness, and, in a relative sense, even the angels in heaven partake of the holiness of God.

We note in the Bible, too, that the absence of holiness is given as a reason for not seeing God. I am aware of some of the grotesque interpretations which have been given to the text, “Without holiness no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14b). My position is this: I will not throw out this Bible text just because some people have misused it to support their own patented theory about holiness. This text does have a meaning and it ought to disturb us until we have discovered what it means and how we may meet its conditions.

AWT


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Mike Balog

 2005/10/2 11:53Profile
hmmhmm
Member



Joined: 2006/1/31
Posts: 4991
Sweden

 Re:

Quote:

crsschk wrote:
[b]I will not throw out this Bible text just because some people have misused it to support their own patented theory about holiness. This text does have a meaning and it ought to disturb us until we have discovered what it means and how we may meet its conditions.
[/b]



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CHRISTIAN

 2007/12/6 6:05Profile





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