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Only Two Religions 11 - Living in Holiness

Heritage Presbyterian Church
Adult Sunday School

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Only Two Religions 11 - Living in Holiness

  1. 1. P e t e r J o n e s Director of truthXchange A Worldview & Culture Teaching Series by Ligonier Ministries Adult Sunday School Summer 2019
  2. 2. Lesson Slide 11 2 Living in Holiness The Big Question How can we make sense of the breakneck spiritual and social changes happening right now in our culture? and How should Christians respond?
  3. 3. Lesson Slide 11 3 Living in Holiness Lessons in the Series 1. Explaining Modern Culture 2. The Rise & Fall of Secular Humanism 3. Carl Jung’s Alternative Spirituality 4. Paganism in the Shadows 5. Paganism in the Spotlight 6. Pagan Sexuality 7. From Personal Spirituality to Worldview 8. Where Is Society Headed? 9. Unbiblical Responses 10.Articulating a Biblical Worldview 11.Living in Holiness 12.Thinking with a Discerning Mind
  4. 4. Lesson Slide 11 4 Living in Holiness Lesson Introduction • When surrounded by a culture that indulges itself in much sexual perversion, how should Christians respond? • In his letter to the Romans, the Apostle Paul addresses a context similar to the one believers face today. He argued that Christians must live holy lives, which not only pleases God, but also provides an example of godliness for the wider world. • In this lecture, Peter Jones explores what it means to live in holiness, and what that looks like in our many contexts.
  5. 5. Lesson Slide 11 5 Living in Holiness Scripture Reading • I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Romans 12:1 • Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. 1 Corinthians 6:18-20
  6. 6. Lesson Slide 11 6 Living in Holiness Teaching Objectives 1. To exhort Christians to holy living 2. To show why Christians should live in holiness 3. To explore how Christians can live holy lives
  7. 7. Lesson Slide 11 7 Living in Holiness Watch Lecture 11
  8. 8. Lesson Slide 11 8 Living in Holiness Twoism Based on Holiness • Twoism isn’t just descriptive of the structure of biblical cosmology; it’s a worldview that flows out of a way of life, the way of holiness • Holiness is the profound biblical principle of separation that is the key to understanding the nature of reality • Holiness is the very essence of the present religious conflict between Oneism and Twoism
  9. 9. Lesson Slide 11 9 Living in Holiness Holiness in the Bible • The term “holy” appears in one form or another 1097 times in the Bible! • It is one of the most frequently described and most important concepts in OT & NT • The apostle Paul develops the concept of holiness more than any other NT writer, particularly in the book of Romans • Romans 1. The nature of pagan thinking. • Romans 2-11. The character of the gospel. • Romans 12-15. The application of the gospel. • Romans 12:1. “Therefore” marks a major transition in Romans. In the light of the pagan nature of the world and of God’s saving action in Jesus, “therefore” believers should respond in two ways: 1. Holy living (Rom 12:1) 2. Discerning thinking (Rom 12:2)
  10. 10. Lesson Slide 11 10 Living in Holiness The Call to Holiness • Christians are not only called to refuse conformity with the cosmology of the world, they are also called to embrace a cosmology of holiness • Romans 6:19 I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification [holiness]. • Romans 6:22 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification [holiness] and its end, eternal life. • See also 1 Thess 4:3-4, 7; 1 Cor 3:17; 2 Cor 7:1
  11. 11. Lesson Slide 11 11 Living in Holiness Contemporary Relevance of Holiness • The term holiness might seem old-fashioned and moralistic to some; but in the present situation it couldn’t be better attuned to what is required of Christians in response to the times in which we live • Just as the cosmologies of Oneism and Twoism are finally irreconcilable, so the biblical understanding of right living in relation to God and others (holiness) is the polar opposite of what today’s spirituality proposes (wholeness)
  12. 12. Lesson Slide 11 12 Living in Holiness Defining Our Terms • “Wholeness” and “holiness” sound and seem similar, but they are not, even though they are sometimes mistaken for the same idea, especially by Jungians • “Holistic” and “holy” are not etymologically related • Neither are “whole” and “holy” • The root of “holy” is hagios (Greek) and qodesh (Hebrew) • Meaning: an “object of awe” • Used of sanctuaries or of the gods (things not accessible to the public, set apart for a special purpose, divided from the common) • The root of “whole” is holos (Greek) • Meaning: universal, everything, nothing is “distinctly other” • Used of joining things unrelated, even opposite, to each other • Do you see how hagios (holiness) and holos (wholeness) are opposite in meaning? In one sense they might be said to represent two antithetical worldviews, Oneism and Twoism.
  13. 13. Lesson Slide 11 13 Living in Holiness What’s So Bad About Wholeness? • From a Jungian perspective, wholeness refers to a particular path of joining of the opposites • The pursuit of wholeness a la Jung and Nietzsche led French philosopher Michel Foucault into disorienting sadomasochism, eroticism, irrational mysticism, and radical relativism • See Peter Jones, The Other Worldview, p. 146, for a disturbing description of this pursuit of wholeness by Foucault’s sympathetic biographer • Does not such thinking lead to a shattered and broken self, which is the total opposite of integrity, health, and vitality. What kind of “wholeness” is this? • Such thinking and living is not an option for Christians!
  14. 14. Lesson Slide 11 14 Living in Holiness The Grand Plan of Twoism vs. Oneism • Romans 12:1-2 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. 2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. • As we look for a meaningful response to a pagan worldview that explains everything from a Oneist perspective—folding right and wrong, beauty and ugliness together—we have a compelling cosmology of holiness in the biblical vision of an ordered, God- created cosmos
  15. 15. Lesson Slide 11 15 Living in Holiness A Beautifully Holy God • To say “God is holy” is to praise his utter uniqueness and primacy of being--relative to everything and everyone else he is Other • Wherever God appears in this world in glory the place is frighteningly holy • Exodus 15:11 "Who is like you, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders? • Psalm 96:9 Worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness; tremble before him, all the earth! • Matthew 6:9 Pray then like this: "Our Father in heaven, hallowed [holy] be your name. • God is not only holy in relation to the world, but he is holy in himself. Father, Son, and Spirt are God the Holy Trinity.
  16. 16. Lesson Slide 11 16 Living in Holiness A Beautifully Holy Cosmos • The created order is fashioned according to the model or principle of God’s holiness • Genesis 1:27; 2:3 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them…So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation. • Psalm 8:3-6 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? 5 Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet, • Isaiah 40:25-26 To whom then will you compare me, that I should be like him? says the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes on high and see: who created these? He who brings out their host by number, calling them all by name, by the greatness of his might, and because he is strong in power not one is missing.
  17. 17. Lesson Slide 11 17 Living in Holiness A Beautifully Holy People • Both God’s holy nature and the holy, created cosmos constitute the basis of the particular holiness of God’s people, who reflect their Lord in a now-unholy world • 1 Peter 1:14-16 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy" [Lev 11:45]. • Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. • Mark 1:24-28 "What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are--the Holy One of God." 25 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, "Be silent, and come out of him!" 26 And the unclean spirit, convulsing him and crying out with a loud voice, came out of him. 27 And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, "What is this? A new teaching with authority! He commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him." 28 And at once his fame spread everywhere throughout all the surrounding region of Galilee.
  18. 18. Lesson Slide 11 18 Living in Holiness A Beautifully Holy Life • The exhortation to holiness in Romans 12:1 is immediately followed by instructions for selfless living for others • The secret to powerful, Spirit-filled living under the cosmology of holiness is biblical submission to God and his law. Holy living is everyone’s calling, which encompasses all areas of life. • Personal holiness (Rom 8:7; 1 Tim 1:8) • Sexual purity (1 Cor 6:18-20) • Marriage (Eph 5:22-33) • The family (Lk 2:51; 1 Tim 3:4; Eph 6:1-3) • The church (Eph 5:24; Heb 12:9; 1 Pet 5:5) • Civic life • Civil magistrates (Rom 13:1; 1 Pet 2:13; Tit 3:1; 1 Tim 2:3) • Employers (Tit 2:9; 1 Pet 2:18; Eph 6:5-8; 1 Tim 3:4-7)
  19. 19. Lesson Slide 11 19 Living in Holiness A Beautifully Holy Future • Such holy living also serves as a sign of the coming resanctified heavens and earth. Since hope, not destruction, is the final word, Christians must “strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord” (Heb 12:14) • A holy new creation (Rom 5:12-21) • A holy dwelling place with God (Rev 21:1-4) • A share in God’s holiness (Heb 12:10; 2 Tim 2:11) • A vision of certain future holiness (Isa 35:4-10) • An understanding now of our holy future (Prov 9:10)
  20. 20. Lesson Slide 11 20 Living in Holiness Study Question Answers 1. Christians are supposed to live holy lives in order to prove they’re better than everyone else. False 2. The primary meaning of holiness is being set apart. 3. Because a person’s soul is more important than his body, what he does with his body is of less importance. False 4. The Greek term cosmos means “the ordered universe” in English. 5. There are certain Christians today who have a unique call to holiness. False
  21. 21. Lesson Slide 11 21 Living in Holiness Discussion Questions 1. How does the Islamic view of gender distinctions demonstrate that it is not a consistently twoist religion? 2. Explain the relationship between the distinctions God has placed in the universe and the biblical view of submission. How should this lead to individual bodily holiness? 3. What are the primary reasons that Christians should strive to live holy lives? 4. How can you encourage a fellow believer to holy living when he does not feel his occupation or time has great significance in God’s plan?
  22. 22. Lesson Slide 11 22 Living in Holiness Next Lesson As a little Jewish rabbi, Paul, was taken in chains to the “eternal city,” the very center of the glorious “civilized” world of the Roman Empire, few could have understood the enormity of the event. Everyone knew that there was only one state and lord, Caesar. In league with the gods of nature, Caesar ruled over all, and all was spiritually one. But Paul had written to the Christians in Rome, calling for a complete transformation of the mind, a thorough overturning of all the classic categories of pagan thinking. The gospel turned out to be world shattering. All is not one. All is two.
  23. 23. Lesson Slide 11 23 Living in Holiness Resources by Peter Jones • Only Two Religions (study guide) • Only Two Religions (evangelism tool) • (website) • (website) • The Other Worldview (book) • The Pagan Heart of Today’s Culture (booklet)