I want to personally thank Bro Mike & Sis Julie McGhghy for the anointed article on Holiness they have presented to all of us over the last several months. Their insight has been a blessing for many and I for one appreciate all they do for this ministry. God Bless the both of you and we pray for your mission field of Costa Rica
HOLINESS – PRACTICAL HELP
By Mike and Julie McGhghy
In this final article regarding holiness, we will provide some practical tips for living holy. These tips come from Dr. David K. Bernard’s book, Practical Holiness: A Second Look. But let’s first review the effort we must make to walk in holiness as we shared last month.
Remember that we need not be overwhelmed by our responsibility to reverently and watchfully implement holiness in our lives. God works in us, giving us the desire and the power to live righteously. Philippians 2:12-13. Below is the three-fold approach to overcoming sin that is revealed in Romans 6 and shared by Dr. Bernard in his book:
- Know who we are and what has happened to us. Know that when we were born again, we died to sin. Know, therefore that sin has no power over us.
- Reckon this to be so. Think on that knowledge and act as if we died to sin and sin has no power over us.
- Yield to God. Replace sinful habits with an active performance of God’s will as revealed by His Word and His Spirit.
Are you still wondering how we can know, reckon, and yield? Here are some practical tips.
- We must pray! Prayer draws us closer to God and we progressively absorb more of His mind and attitude. It is important to pray in the Spirit, meaning reaching a dimension of prayer in which the mind concentrates totally on God and the human spirit unites with the Holy Spirit.
- We must hide the Word of God in our hearts so that we will obey His Word as a matter of course. We must absorb the Word until it becomes a very part of us. “God’s Word must be so strongly fixed in our minds that it becomes the dominant influence in our thoughts, our attitudes, and our actions.” This also enables us to recall the Word and speak it in our hearts when we face temptation.
- We must personalize the truth of God’s Word. We must realize both our personal ability and responsibility to obey God and resist sin. We must recognize that we died to sin. In the time of temptation, we must recall the principles of Romans 6: know, reckon and yield.
- We must not give the sinful nature any opportunities. Instead, we must consciously avoid tempting or dangerous situations. We must not feed our fleshly desires by thinking, reading, watching, or indulging in things that would inflame those lusts. Cut off sinful thoughts and desires as they begin to develop. We must learn to think on the good things (Philippians 4:8) and to make every thought obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). Fasting is a good way to impose discipline on the physical body, not to punish it but to control it.
- We must train ourselves to develop proper habits of Christian living instead of sinful habits. When we recognize and experience a scriptural prompting to do God’s will, we must visualize and meditate upon the action desired, decide to do it, and then yield our bodily members to perform it.
God’s moral law for us can be summed up in these words: Love God with all your being and love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:36-40; Mark 12:28-31; Romans 13:8-10). In essence, holiness means to imitate Christ, to do what He would do. It means to be Christ-like.
The power to live a holy life is a gift from God, but it is our responsibility to implement holiness on a daily basis. We seek holiness out of love for God, not out of fear or an effort to earn salvation.
Holiness is an integral part of the salvation of the whole person and frees us from the power and effects of sin. It is a joyful privilege, a part of abundant life, a blessing from the grace of God, and a glorious life of freedom and power. For someone who is filled with the Holy Spirit and truly loves God, holiness becomes the normal – indeed the only – way to live. The life of holiness fulfills God’s original intention and design for humanity.
It has been a privilege for us to share with you the biblical principles of holiness and a plan for living a holy life. We miss you all as we serve the Lord in Costa Rica and we look forward to seeing how God will work in and through the AzusaStreetriders this year as the members endeavor to grow in holiness and prepare for the riding season through prayer and fasting and Bind the Strong Man. God bless and keep you!