Holy among the unholy

“for in six days Yahweh made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore Yahweh blessed the Sabbath day, and made it holy.”

Exodus 20:11

To be blessed by God is to be holy, or set apart. Just as the Sabbath day is unique among the “unholy” days of the week, so is the one whom God calls to himself.

The characteristics of holiness are exhibited by those who are blessed. In the passage in Matthew 5:3-12 known as the Beatitudes, we see the qualities of those who are called and set apart by God.

Humble
Grieving over unrighteousness
Gentle
Desperate for righteousness
Merciful
Pure in heart
Peacemakers
Unjustly persecuted for Messiah

These are not qualities for the faint of heart, or for those who is faith is shallow and temporary. These are qualities that are forged in the fires of affliction and struggle. They are only apparent amidst their counterparts.

Pride
Flaunting sin
Harshness
Rebelliousness
Cruelty
Corruption
Agitation
Persecution

It is only within the conditions of these negative and hostile qualities that holiness shines, just as the Sabbath is only apparent as set apart from the mundane days of the week. If it seems that we can’t escape these oppressive environments, it’s because this is the very reason we are put here: as counter-balances to, and overcomers of, the darkness of this world.

This is why it’s necessary for God’s people to maintain their qualities of holiness at all costs, so that God’s kingdom becomes manifest.  When we exhibit the qualities which God blesses, we are then set apart for the very purpose that God designed us for, and he is honored and magnified.

Matthew 5:16: “Even so, let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”


If you enjoy these daily blog posts, be sure to visit the growing archive of the Core of the Bible podcast. Each week we take a more in-depth look at one of the various topics presented in the daily blog. You can view the podcast archive here. Questions or comments? Feel free to email me directly at coreofthebible@gmail.com.

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