You and I are God’s people in the devil’s world. There is so much evil in all around us that we can’t avoid unless we crawl into a cave and never come out. As tempting as that is , but it’s not the way to fulfill our purpose to be “salt and light in the world” (Matt. 5:13-16). We have to be “in the world, but not of the world” (paraphrased from John 17:14-16). It’s not a “balance” as I’ve heard some say. It comes down to an all-in choice for holiness and a determination to never compromise.
Holiness means to be “set apart” for a special purpose. The Bible tells us that God sets us His people apart for His divine purposes. It’s powerfully displayed in Isaiah’s commissioning as a prophet of God in Isaiah 6. God gave Isaiah a vision of Himself – and a call to repentance. Isaiah knew that he was not worthy – he said, “Woe to me! I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty” (6:5). Isaiah lived in the unclean world, and even before the Lord’s call he had preached the judgment of God to Judah. But the filth of the world still clung to him. You cannot walk down a dirt road without collecting some of its dust. God cleansed his unclean lips – then set him apart to declare His Word. All through the Bible God convicts, cleanses, and sets people apart when He is going to do something big.
I believe God is getting ready to do a great work in the world. But it will require people who are consecrated to Him, willing to set everything aside to join Him. That means whole-hearted devotion to Christ and an unwillingness to compromise with the world – even as we live in it. I also believe a great battle is coming in this nation; the lines have already been drawn in our culture and our courts. Unfortunately, it has also been drawn through the Church, and some have chosen to side with the world. Only a people with pure, consecrated hearts will be able to stand firm in the face of it.
The Lord posed a question in Jeremiah’s day that rings loud and clear in our own: “’Who is he who will devote himself to be close to me?’ declares the Lord” (Jer. 30:21). My hand is up.
How will you answer, Beloved?