FROM THE DESK OF THE ARCHBISHOP AND APOSTOLIC HEAD
Sir Dr. Godfrey Gregg
A Cry For Holiness
Another day of praise and thanks to Almighty God the head of our lives and the foundation of our Church. To Peter He said that He will build the church on the rock and the gates of hell will never prevail against it. This morning I thank God for the breath of life and for allowing me to see another day. My Lord Patriarch, Cardinal and Queen Abbess, ministers, friends, well wishers, brothers, sisters and our Affiliate churches greetings. As we begin another work week let us take stock of our lives and make our calling and elections sure. Today I want to speak a little more on the subject “HOLINESS”. Yesterday I touched a little on the subject but I want to speak for a longer time today.
A cry for holiness is what I am writing to you: a cry to be set apart unto God. Out of the belly of the word of God you can hear it. Nothing can fix what ails the church but holiness unto the Lord. All that’s wrong morally and spiritually will be corrected if we will unite ourselves to the Lord and line up to what tears at his heart. “Thou though-test that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee” Psalms 50:21. If we will begin at the place of reproof, we can then go to studying what is that lures us out of oneness with him.
The requirements of holiness are very demanding but there is not a “to do list”. Instead, we’re united to the person of God. He will command heavily upon our entire being and he will draw out of us everything that takes us away from that set apart place with him. It follows like the scripture in James 4:9 “Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep”. Pleasures and money cannot rule the one who answers the call to holiness. Rather, there will be much alone time with God.
“A glorious high throne from the beginning is the place of our sanctuary” Jeremiah 17:12. We seek to his highness, his perfection and his holiness; there we can find sanctuary. Job said: “thy visitation hath preserved my spirit” Job 10:12-b. We visit at his high throne where the angels cry holy: while the twenty-four elders fall on their faces (Revelation 5:8-10 & 7:11). The angels and the twenty-four elders are already in their perfect state but yet they are compelled to humble at God’s holiness. They recognize that reconciling the world unto himself by the blood of his son Jesus Christ.
Prayer is a likely place to go if we will find the way of holiness. “Surely there is a vein for the silver, and a place for the gold where they fine it.” “There is a path which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture’s eye hath no seen: The lion’s whelps have not trodden it, nor the fierce lion passed by it” Job 28:1; 7-8. We are not seeking an experience: we have run out of options and the only habitable place for us is wherever God is dwelling. Of course, he does live within the born again believer by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit but we must also abide in him if we will approach the place of holiness.
Jesus Christ “is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made lighter than the heavens” Hebrews 7:26. He offered up himself once (v.27) at the cross where God renders meninnocent “through faith in his blood” Romans 3:25. The work of God is accomplished in the cross. Now, God says commandingly: “Be ye holy; for I am holy” I Peter 1:16. The church must come the way of holiness and reside there with God. Having entered this holy field we cannot venture our interests elsewhere.
The holy saint is relieved to know that there is nothing else to attend to but the “good way” Jeremiah 6:16. We will accept, that judgment must prevail upon the house of God, of which we are a part (I Peter 4:17), in order that the thoughts and intents of our hearts may be discerned by the sword of God’s word (Hebrews 4:12; 5:14).
There has been enough talk about “practical Christian living”, with so much buzz about “destiny”, “purpose”, “real life answers and solutions”. We are and were created for God’s pleasure that we might bring glory and honor unto him (Revelation 4:11). He is glorified in the one who seeks his person. He is not looking for a lot of activity. Today’s modern message has led the masses to self-improvement resulting in self-absorption. The real life of the church is destroyed if we do not gather together to the glory of His person. When we dare recognize the sinfulness and spiritual shallowness in our lives, we will be quick to seek out a preacher and camaraderie of people who share an interest in sanctifying unto God. To sanctify means to set apart unto holy use.
Church, seek God. We have taught men too well how to enjoy life, how to find pleasure and purpose in family, job, career, education and entertainment. There are few that will love the message to “forsake all” (Luke 14:33). We have told the masses that their calling is not in the four walls of the church and we will probably never see them again, who become so persuaded. Gathering together is for the purpose of exhorting on another: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching (Hebrews 10:25). Jesus loves the church and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of the water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:25-27). He also, chose us in him before the foundations of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love (Ephesians 1:4).
Yielding to his sanctifying work in us is a full time occupation. The service of the church upon Jesus Christ is a continual thing and cannot be compromised with other preoccupations. The riches of Christ are unsearchable (Ephesians 3:8). Do we value Christ the person? Jesus is not interesting enough for most Christians. We lose interest because he must be sought out in prayer and consecrations. There are no short cuts. Easy-living Christians will not pass this way. They want a well-defined list of principles. They want to know what they’re in for right out of the gate. Neither will they stand for having their lives invaded or put on tilt. They want everything prepackaged and fed for easy consumption. That’s what you call feeding on the milk. They that partake of meat will have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil (Hebrews 5:14).
Holiness is essential to righteousness (moral rightness). Jesus was made unto us righteousness (I Corinthians 1:30) in order that we might without condemnation but with holy conviction seek the righteousness that is part and parcel of his nature. Jesus Christ as the perfectly righteous one love righteousness and hated iniquity (Hebrews 1:9). He holds a sceptre of righteousness and will order his kingdom and establish it with judgment and justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this (Hebrews 1:8; Psalms 45:6; Isaiah 9:7). “Righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reigns” Isaiah 11:5.
Lord Jesus Christ another day in the life of this church, The Mystical Order of Spiritual Baptist and the members I invoke your presence and your Holiness today, for which no man will see Thy face. Wash us thoroughly and purge us and make us Thine own. Lift us to that higher place where you want us to reach. O, God we have to engage ourselves and many really do not know how. I pray that you will convict them in their hearts and make them know that You are God. Bless us in all that we say and do and grant us Thy peace in Jesus Name.