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1 Peter 1:16: Since It Is Written, "You Shall Be Holy, For I Am Holy."

1 Peter 1:16

[16] Since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (ESV)

The word "holy" is shocking to our system. We are not holy people by nature. For many Christians the mentality is such that they find holiness completely foreign to their nature and just assume that God cannot possibly mean what he says when he calls us to holiness. Yet, here it is. Peter is not only telling us that we are to be holy, as God is holy. He is reminding us that this command has been issued previously.

We find this command to be holy in the Old Testament book of Leviticus. In the Mosaic law there were all kinds of restrictions that set the people of Israel apart from all of the nations around them. We often fixate on the dietary restrictions. Rightfully so. We can be glad that in the New Covenant we are under we can now eat things like bacon. Let's take a look at the passage of Scripture Peter is referring to:

Leviticus 11:44: "For I am the LORD your God. Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I am holy. You shall not defile yourselves with any swarming thing that crawls on the ground. (ESV)" This verse is talking about certain things that the Israelites were not to eat. This was not the only restriction, but rather one of many that were part of their daily lives.

Why did God have so many restrictions for the Israelites? It was to teach them that obedience was to permeate every aspect of the way that they lived. The sacrifices, the rituals, the diet that they had to adhere to was part of teaching them to be separate from the ungodly things around them. We do not have the same restrictions, yet we have the same God. We also have the same command to be holy.

As we continue to consider God's call for our holiness consider your daily decisions. How do you allow God to permeate every thing that you do? In what ways can you live out a more holy lifestyle?