Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: “Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy.” (Lev. 19:2)
Expanded Passage: Leviticus 19:2
My high school football coach’s biggest unbreakable rule for his players was: “No underage drinking.” My junior year, one of our star defensive players was busted at a party that involved drinking. It didn’t matter that he was all-conference, or our best defensive player. What mattered was that he had violated his coach’s trust, and for that, he paid a steep price. He was relegated to the bench for the remainder of the season.
Picture yourself as one of the gathered Israelites, who were called to hear the message come down through Moses. “Be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy.” This command was for all of Israel, not just some—and it mattered that every single person answered God’s call of holiness. In a similar way, holiness is not only for some Christians (or Christian leaders, like pastors); it’s for everybody who is part of Jesus Christ’s church.
The good news is that our star defensive player learned from his mistakes and came back to play an incredible senior season. Likewise, there is always space for redemption in God’s economy. Holiness is about pursuing God’s righteousness with a community of brothers and sisters to hold us accountable. When we recognize the power of the church to encourage one another towards holiness, we can expect to see true transformation.
Commit to a community that will help you grow in holiness.
Chris McFadden is pastor of Cherry Street Wesleyan in Ottawa, Kansas. He is married to his beautiful wife, Suzanne, and has two wonderful daughters, Madelynn and Eleanor.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.