What does it mean to be holy? In its simplest form, the word holy means to be set apart. Holy things are sacred, special, and outside of the norm of the secular world. God is holy. Worship is holy. Prayer is holy. Sacraments are holy. You are holy.
Think of it this way: being made in the image of God and redeemed by his blood, we have inherited a holiness that we are called to live up to on a daily basis. Being holy humans means we are called to reflect God’s holiness in everything we say, do, and think. Justice, righteousness, equity, unconditional love, forgiveness, honesty, mercy, and especially grace should be the attributes of holiness that we endeavor to live out every day.
That is what a holy human looks like. Unfortunately, those who are wholly human often succumb to anger, name-calling, deceit, bias, pettiness, prejudice, and vengeance.
Leviticus 19 (Common English Bible)
The Lord said to Moses, 2 Say to the whole community of the Israelites: You must be holy, because I, the Lord your God, am holy.
In our pursuit of daily holiness, God is our measure and standard. Here are his rules for holiness:
15 You must not act unjustly in a legal case. Do not show favoritism to the poor or deference to the great; you must judge your fellow Israelites fairly. 16 Do not go around slandering your people. Do not stand by while your neighbor’s blood is shed; I am the Lord.
17 You must not hate your fellow Israelite in your heart. Rebuke your fellow Israelite strongly, so you don’t become responsible for his sin. 18 You must not take revenge nor hold a grudge against any of your people; instead, you must love your neighbor as yourself; I am the Lord.
This instruction to the Israelites on how to live together is an important reminder to us as we move forward as a nation. Where is your citizenship? Is it with your political party or is it in heaven?
In a few weeks America will declare a winner. Regardless of the outcome, we are to remain holy and not hold grudges. We are to love our neighbors who vote differently. It is against God’s word to slander each other. We absolutely must NOT hate our fellow citizens in our hearts. It may be in our human nature to do these things, but as God-followers, these things cannot be our response to the election. You are commanded to love your neighbor as yourself.
Wholly human or holy human? The choice is yours.