To Meet God is a Powerful Study in Contrasts

In [Rudolph] Otto’s study of the human experience of the holy, he discovered that the clearest sensation that human beings have when they experience the holy is an overpowering and overwhelming sense of creatureliness.  That is, when we are aware of the presence of God, we become most aware of ourselves as creatures.  When we meet the Absolute, we know immediately that we are not absolute.  When we meet the Infinite, we become acutely conscious that we are finite.  When we meet the Eternal, we know that we are temporal.  To meet God is a powerful study in contrasts.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

Be Careful to Not Commit Idolatry

When we call things holy when they are not holy, we commit the sin of idolatry.  We give to common things the respect, awe, worship and adoration that belong only to God.  To worship the creature instead of the Creator is the essence of idolatry.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

What is Meant by the Word “Holy?”

When the Bible calls God holy, it means primarily that God is transcendently separate.  He is so far above and beyond us that He seems almost totally foreign to us.  To be holy is to be “other”, to be different in a special way.  The same basic meaning is used when the world holy is applied to earthly things.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

What it Really Means to be “Sent”

There is a pattern here, a pattern repeated in history.  God appears, people quake in terror, God forgives and heals, God sends.  From brokenness to mission is the human pattern. When God asked, “whom shall I send?”  Isaiah understood the force of the word (Isaiah 6).  To be “sent” meant to function as an emissary for God, to be a spokesman for the deity.  In the New Testament the word apostle meant “one who is sent.”  The Old Testament counterpart to the New Testament apostle was the prophet.  God was looking for a volunteer to enter the lonely, grueling office of prophet.  “Whom shall I send?”

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

This Only Happens Once in Scripture

Only Once in sacred Scripture is an attribute of God elevated to the third degree.  Only once is a characteristic of God mentioned three times in succession.  The Bible says that God is holy, holy, holy.  Not that He is merely holy, or even holy, holy.  He is holy, holy holy.  The Bible never says that God is love, love, love; or even mercy, mercy, mercy; or wrath, wrath, wrath; or justice, justice, justice.  It says that He is holy, holy, holy, that the whole earth is full of His glory.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

The Problem is Not With Our Eyes

Right now it is impossible for us to see God in His pure essence.  Before that can ever happen, we must be purified.  When Jesus taught his Beatitudes, He promised only a distinct group the vision of God: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” (Matthew 5:8).  None of us in this world is pure in heart.  It is our impurity that prevents us from seeing God.  The problem is not with our eyes; it is with our hearts.  Only after we are purified and totally sanctified in heaven will we have the capacity to gaze up on Him face to face.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

The Final Goal of Every Christian

Yet the final goal of every Christian is to be allowed to see what was denied to Moses.  We want to see Him face-to-face.  We want to bask in the radiant glory of His divine countenance.  It was the hope of every Jew, a hope instilled in the most famous and beloved benediction of Israel: “The LORD bless you and keep you, the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you, the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

The Name of God

When the word Lord occurs in lowercase, the translator is indicating to us that the word adonai is found in the Hebrew Bible.  Adonai means “sovereign one.”  It is not the name of GOd.  It is a title for God, indeed the supreme title given to God in the Old Testament.  When LORD appears in all capital letters, it indicates that the word Jahweh is used in the Old Testament.  Jahweh is the sacred name of God, the name by which God revealed Himself to Moses in the burning bush.  This is the unspeakable name, the ineffable name, the holy name that is guarded from profanity in the life of Israel.  Normally it occurs only with the use of its four consonants – yhwh.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition

God is Inescapable

God is inescapable   There is no place we can hide from Him.  Not only does He penetrate every aspect of our lives, but He penetrates it in his majestic holiness.  Therefore we must seek to understand what the holy is.  We dare not seek to avoid it.  There can be no worship, no spiritual growth, no true obedience without it.  It defies our goal as Christians.  God has declared, “Be holy, because I am holy.” (Leviticus 11:45).  To reach that goal, we must understand what Holiness is.

– R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God, Tyndale House Publishers, Carol Stream, Ill., Copyright 1985, Kindle Edition