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The Holiness of God - Chapter Three-

 28.10.10




Can I tell you a little secret? I do not want to write my review on this chapter because I did not like the second half of it!

Yes, I feel terrible saying this, but I just can't help it. I read it twice and the third time I skimmed over it, and still, my thoughts were the same.

I enjoyed the first part of this chapter in which Dr. Sproul deals with the definition of holy:

"The primary meaning of holy is "separate". It comes from an ancient word that means "to cut" or "to separate...
"God's holiness is more than just separateness. His holiness is also transcendent. The word transcendence means literally "to climb across'... God is above and beyond us. Transcendence describes His; supreme and absolute greatness..."

This definition is just great, to think that He is higher than me, than the rest of us, helps my ego fall down and remember that I am clay made alive.

The author continues explaining how in the Word of God we find the word holy; used to express "something other than a moral or ethical quality"; In order for something to be holy, it first needs to be consecrated or sanctified by God.

"Only God can sanctify something else. God alone is holy Himself"

I learned in this chapter that when we speak of God as holy, "it doesn't signify one single attribute. On the contrary, God is called holy in a general sense. The word is used a synonym for his deity. That is the word holy calls our attention to all that God is."

If holy means transcendent, then worshiping idols made of wood, silver, gold, worshiping the moon, the sun, or anything else is nonsense because all these are not transcendent, "they; do not go above and beyond the creaturely. They are not holy", says the author.

And now comes the part I did not like of this chapter. Dr. Sproul talks about a German scholar, Rudolf Otto, and how he tried to study the holy in a scientific way. This man "coined a special term for the holy. He called it mysterium tremendum...'awful mystery'"  (My first doubt, question, objection is this, can one really study the holy in a scientific way? how? I just could not follow along.)

The author goes on to explain that we have mixed feelings about the holy,

"There is a sense in which we are at the same time attracted to it and repulsed by it. Something draws us toward it, while at the same time we want to run away from it. We can't seem to decide which way we want it. Part of us yearns for the holy, while part of us despises it. We can't live without it, and we can't live without it"

This is so true, this is why we need so desperately Jesus, a mediator.

But why does the author chooses to explain us such truth comparing it with his wife's feeling when watching horror movies; why using the images of  scary radio programs? This I did not like. I just couldn't understand it. How can we compare our relationship and feelings towards the Holy with our feeling towards scary radio  programs or horror movies. I felt lost.   

What are your thoughts about this?


Praising Augustus*




*"Augustus"; Sproul says that "only God could properly be called the augustus one. To be august is to be awe- inspiring, or awe-ful. In the ultimate sense only God is awe-ful" (p.44)

I am grateful to Tim Challies for inviting us to read along this book; it has proved a blessing for me to join a group of great people and thinkers.

The Holiness of God -Chapter One-
The Holiness of God- Chapter Two-
Holy, Holy, Holy 
The Holiness of God- Chapter Four- The Trauma of Holiness-

Living a Simple Life


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Becky
If I am happy it is because of God! God, in His sovereign grace, has called me out of darkness into His Admirable light. He has opened my eyes and has shown me the way to Eternal Life. He has set my feet on a journey, and now I am walking Daily on My Way to Heaven. I did not find Jesus, He found me. I did not seek Him, yet He called me. I did not love Him, yet He loved me. I deserved death and He gave me Life. This is the place where I keep a journal of my life under His sun and by His grace!
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Borrowed Words

"It becomes us to spend this life only as a journey toward heaven... to which we should subordinate all other concerns of life. Why should we labor for or set our hearts on anything else, but that which is our proper end and true happiness?"

Jonathan Edwards

"I am still pondering God's greatness in His creation. I have so many questions that I would like to ask the Lord about the universe, creation, the fall of man... But when I'm in heaven, I wonder if I will even remember them. At that time, being in the presence of God will be enough. I'm thankful that I can look forward to that day."

-Persis

“Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next. God is forever luring us up and away from this one, wooing us to Himself and His still invisible Kingdom, where we will certainly find what we so keenly long for.”

- Elisabeth Elliot, Keep a Quiet Heart



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