The holiness of God does not stand on it's own.
The holiness of God has a direct bearing on our lives.
1Pe 2:1 Putting away therefore all wickedness, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,
1Pe 2:2 as newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation;
1Pe 2:3 if ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious:
1Pe 2:4 unto whom coming, a living stone, rejected indeed of men, but with God elect, precious,
1Pe 2:5 ye also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
The text tells us a number of things.
The Bible has much to say about putting away the old man.
“Putting away”G659 apotithēmi
From G575 and G5087; to put away (literally or figuratively): - cast off, lay apart (aside, down), put away (off).
The old man has died in baptism. That is when the old man is buried. (Rom. 6, Coll. 2: 11, 12)
Whatever is buried is death and should not come to life again. We do not expect men to come from the grave either. So we should not see the old man returning.
However we do know that these things can happen to Christians. (Compare Matth. 13: 18- 23)
The Bible warns us that we need to persevere and to make complete.
And some do not do this and fall from the faith.
We are to lay aside. Hebr 12: 1- 2 gives us insight into this concept.
Laying aside means that we throw things off.
Like in the Greek games. When the sport-athletes were having practice they would wear extra weight on their body. On the day of the game all would be thrown off, actually at times they were completely naked.
So, what are we to lay off?
Collosians 3: 1- 10 gives us those things that are things off the flesh that we are to lay off.
In order that we may be:
Col 3:10 and have put on the new man, that is being renewed unto knowledge after the image of him that created him:
So, we are in a renewal process. A process of restoration.
There is a call to holiness in our lives.
It is illustrated by houses that are renovated. Houses that are renovated go back to their original state, cars that are renovated go back to their first state.
So we are to go back to our first state.
We need to be longing to grow and longing to look like Jesus.
The word longing: G1971 epipotheō
From G1909 and potheō (to yearn); to dote upon, that is, intensely crave possession (lawfully or wrongfully): - (earnestly) desire (greatly), (greatly) long (after), lust.
There needs to be a craving for God in our lives.
This word is a strong word (See above)
In Matthew Jesus talks about the hunger and the thirst for righteousness that needs to be a part of our lives, when these things are our desire we will be filled to the brim.
Growth is the key in our life with God.
Perfection is not the key, but growth towards the image of Christ is our goal.
Someone has written, God is not looking for perfection among his children, but He is profoundly concerned about their direction in life. (Robert Shank)
Rom 8:29 For whom he foreknew, he also foreordained to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren:
Restoration and transformation are the goals in our lives.
Rom 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service.
Rom 12:2 And be not fashioned according to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, and ye may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
The word transformed:
From G3326 and G3445; to transform (literally or figuratively “metamorphose”): - change, transfigure, transform.
As a catterpillar changes into a butterfly, so our lives are changed from day to day.
By our lives we live we prove what is the perfect and acceptable will of God.
So, in this process of transformation and restoration we become a living being that changes as we allow our thinking to be influenced ( Rom. 12: 1- 2) with the new-learned will of God.
By it we cast down arguments, that even, we ourselves bring up. (2 Cor. 10: 3- 6)
All needs to become under the control of perfect love.
Perfect love for God and perfect love for our neighbour.
Living stones are used in building the house of God. The house where He dwells.
Eph 2:19 So then ye are no more strangers and sojourners, but ye are fellow-citizens with the saints, and of the household of God,
Eph 2:20 being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the chief corner stone;
Eph 2:21 in whom each several building, fitly framed together, groweth into a holy temple in the Lord;
Eph 2:22 in whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God in the Spirit.
As Christians we are like living stones.
Stones are used for building a house. Christians are used to build a house unto God.
Everyday of our lives we should allow the bricklayer, God, to use us as He sees fit in His great purpose.
We read in 2 Tim. 2: 19- 20
2Ti 2:20 Now in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some unto honor, and some unto dishonor.
2Ti 2:21 If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, meet for the master's use, prepared unto every good work.
When Christians cleanse themselves of dishonour, we can be a vessel used unto God in His building, His building where holiness and purity are central.
When we talk about Christians being priest we think of the priest of the old testament.
Their primary task was to offer sacrifices. So our lives are all about sacrifices. At an earlier point we discussed Rom. 12: 1, 2, these verses discuss the nature of our priesthood.
2Co 7:1 Having therefore these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
We are to perfect holiness in the fear of the Lord.
The word “perfecting”.
From G1909 and G5055; to fulfill further (or completely), that is, execute; by implication to terminate, undergo: - accomplish, do, finish, (make) (perfect), perform (X -ance).
As Christians we are undergoing constant surgery. The works of the flesh need to be removed and the works of the spirit need to come into their place.
We belong to Him, we have been bought with a price.
We are to offer up in the spiritual realm.
That is where we live, we have been planted with Christ in the heavenly realms. (Eph. 2: 6)
We are in a fight against:
For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. (Eph. 6: 12)
We are to be awake, we are to be sober, we are to be looking at Christ.
1Pe 1:13 Wherefore girding up the loins of your mind, be sober and set your hope perfectly on the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
1Pe 1:14 as children of obedience, not fashioning yourselves according to your former lusts in the time of your ignorance:
1Pe 1:15 but like as he who called you is holy, be ye yourselves also holy in all manner of living;
1Pe 1:16 because it is written, Ye shall be holy; for I am holy.
We are to gird up our loins.
The word “gird”.
From G1909 and G2372; to set the heart upon, that is, long for (rightfully or otherwise): - covet, desire, would fain, lust (after).
We are to be holy as He is holy. We are to pursue the things of God in our lives.
In all the offers that we bring to God we need to realize that God has already chosen the good works and that has been layed out for us. So we need to find them out and let them find us out.
Eph 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God afore prepared that we should walk in them.
God prepared beforehand the works that we should walk in.
We cannot start finding them ourselves.
We cannot just offer up anything that we would like.
Mal 1:8 And when ye offer the blind for sacrifice, it is no evil! and when ye offer the lame and sick, it is no evil! Present it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee? or will he accept thy person? saith Jehovah of hosts.