Be Ye Holy
1 Pet 1:15-16 says, “Be ye holy; for I am holy.” That’s what is written in Lev 11:44, “ye shall be holy: for I am holy.” To be holy is to be perfect in goodness and righteousness.
Holy in The Old Testament
Following this command, holy things were separated from unclean things. In Lev 10:10, the priests were to put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean. In 1 Thes 4:7, Paul wrote, he hath not called us to uncleanness but to holiness. So, holiness is being clean, rather than unclean.
We find many “things” that were holy. In Ex 3:5 the Lord told Moses to put off his shoes because he was standing on holy ground. That’s because the Lord was there. God placed a vail between the holy place in the tabernacle, where the priests ministered, and the most holy place, where God showed up.
Israel had the holy sabbath, holy garments, holy priests, holy prophets, holy convocations, holy gifts, holy offerings, a holy altar, holy ointment, holy anointing oil, and a holy city, and they were a holy nation.
Be Ye Holy in the New Testament
In New Testament, we are now the holy nation, 1 Pet 2:9. Furthermore, the meats are no longer unclean, we don’t have holy days, there’s not a holy place, though some call Israel the Holy Land, and we don’t have holy garments. Instead, in New Testament, we have the Holy Ghost, holy angels, Jesus, the holy one, the holy thing, the holy child, and the Holy Father. We have the holy scriptures, we greet each other with a holy kiss, we are the holy temple of God, and you can present your body a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, Rom 12:1.
Holy in the New Testament is not so much about things as is it about us. We are holy brethren, 1 Thes 5:27, we lift up holy hands, 1 Tim 2:8, we have a holy calling, 2 Tim 1:9, we are a holy priesthood, 1 Pet 2:5, and a holy nation, 1 Pet 2:9, we maintain holy conversation, 2 Pet 3:11, and ours is a holy faith, Jude 20.
So, the Lord says, Be ye holy, 1 Pet 1:15-16.
How Do We fulfill the Command to Be Ye Holy
Get The Holy In
When you get saved, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Father are in you. You can’t be holy without them. That’s why God said, “Be ye holy, for I am holy.” The holy ground, the holy city, and the most holy place were holy because of who was there. And we can be holy because of who is in us. If you are not saved, receive Jesus Christ now, so that he can reside in you and make you holy.
Get The Unholy Out
Once the holy is in you, it’s a whole lot easier to get the unholy out. The Lord gave Israel instructions on how to identify the clean and the unclean. Ofttimes, the clean was defined as that which was not unclean. If it didn’t look like a certain unclean thing, like leprosy, then it was clean.
Like the Old Testament saints, the Holy Spirit shows us what is unclean. Yet, unlike the saints in the Old Testament, we now have the help of the Holy Spirit to get the unclean out. We have his strength and power at our disposal. And we have his keen awareness of those unholy things that must come out of our lives.
Keep The Holy In
When we talk about keeping the holy in, we’re not talking about staying saved. You are eternally secure. We’re talking about staying in the holy scriptures, fellowshipping with holy brethren, maintaining your holy priesthood, greeting others with a holy kiss, and presenting your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God. You can’t keep clean without keeping these holy things in you. Keeping the the Holy Bible in you is key to keeping you holy.
William Wilberforce grew very close to God when he lived with his aunt and uncle. He was constantly exposed to the holy scriptures and holy brethren. When he moved back home, his parents wanted him to become more worldly. At first, he wasn’t comfortable with the social clubs and worldly living. Yet, in time, he began to relish in society’s pleasures and the theater. And he ended up very far from the Lord. You will, too, if you don’t keep the holy in.
Keep The Unholy Out
In Heb 7:26 we see that Jesus is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, higher than the heavens. You keep the unholy out by separating from it. In the Old Testament, when a man touched an unclean thing he was unclean. When an unclean thing touched a vessel or water in vessel, they had to break it down, and throw it out. If a man was declared a leper, he had to separate. When a house or garment was leprous, they had to rend the garment or remove the stones. If the leprosy couldn’t be removed, they had to burn the garment or break down the house.
So, we keep the unholy and unclean out of our lives by separating from unclean things. And when unclean things get in our lives, the Lord reveals them to us. Don’t refuse to deal with the things God wants out of your life. You’ll get hung right there until you get that unholiness out of your life.
If something unclean is in us, then we must cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God, 2 Cor 7:1. Thank God for the blood of Jesus which cleanseth us from all unrighteousness, 1 Jn 1:7-9. Being cleansed by the blood of Jesus is like running clean water over a dirty vessel or your dirty body. There’s no trace of the uncleanness when the Lord gets through with you. Praise God.