On Being Holy
1 Peter 1:13-16
Why gird up the loins of your mind, be sober…

Hence this command to be holy requires that we bring ourselves into a moral adjustment to God and our entire moral duty.



1. We cannot but require it of ourselves. Our own nature irresistibly demands it of us — his own individual conscience of every moral agent. He knows he ought to, and therefore, by a necessity as strong as his own nature, he must become holy, or fail of peace and conscious self-approval. No moral agent can respect himself unless he is holy. Need I urge that self-respect is a thing of very great importance? Few are fully aware how very important self-respect is to themselves and to others, This form of self-respect pertains to our relations to this world and to society. But suppose a moral agent in like manner to lose his self-respect towards God. How fearful must be the influence of this loss on his heart! How reckless of moral rectitude he becomes in all that pertains to his Maker!

2. Another reason why we should be holy is, that God requires it of us. He has made us in His own image; and therefore, for the same reasons that make Him require holiness of Himself, He must require it of us. He requires us to be holy because He cannot make us happy unless we will become holy.Remarks:

1. Sinners know they are not holy.

2. The hope that unconverted people often have that they shall be saved, is utterly without foundation.

3. Many who know they must become holy, are yet very ignorant of the way in which they are to become so. Having begun in the Spirit, they try to become perfect in the flesh.

4. Pardon without holiness is impossible, in this sense: that the heart must turn from its sins to God before it can be forgiven.

5. The command to be holy implies the practicability of becoming so.

6. Christ's promises and relations to His people imply a pledge of all the help we need. The entire gospel scheme is adapted to men — not in the sense of conniving at their weakness, but of really helping them out of it.

7. God sympathises with every honest effort we make to become holy.

8. If we become partakers of His holiness, we are made sure of the river of His pleasures!

9. All men will sometimes feel the necessity of this holiness. In some cases it is felt most deeply.

10. There is no rest short of being holy. Many try to find rest in something less, but they are sure to fail.

11. Many insanely suppose that when they come to die, they shall be sanctified and prepared for heaven.

12. No man has any right to hope unless he is really committed to holiness, and in all honesty and earnestness intends to live so.

(C. G. Finney.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

WEB: Therefore, prepare your minds for action, be sober and set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ—

Of Imitating the Holiness of God
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