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Why this is important: Mary, who carried Jesus in her womb and gave birth to Him, breaks out into an amazing song as she visits Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist. It is what is known as the Magnificat.

My soul exalts the Master, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. For He has had regard for the humble state of His slave; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me more than happy. For the Mighty One has done great things for me; and holy is His name.

Luke 1:46-49

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The holiness of God is the most difficult of all God’s attributes to explain, partly because it is one of His essential attributes that is not shared, inherently, by any of us.

    • I know we are created in God’s image, and can share many of His attributes, to a much lesser extent, of course — love, mercy, faithfulness, etc. These are the gift of God to me and grow in me as fruit of His Holy Spirit.
    • But some of God’s attributes, such as omnipresence, omniscience, and omnipotence, will never be shared by created beings. They are a mystery to me.
    • Holiness is not something that I possess as an inherent part of my nature; I only become holy in relationship to the Messiah. It is an imputed holiness because of His great work.
    • Only in the Messiah do I “become the righteousness of God”
      • “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
    • God’s holiness is what separates Him from all other beings, what makes Him separate and distinct from everything else.
    • God’s holiness is more than just His perfection or sinless purity; it is the essence of His “other-ness,” His transcendence.
      • It is amazing. It is stunning. I stand in awe.
    • God’s holiness embodies the mystery of His awesomeness and causes me to gaze in wonder at Him as I begin to comprehend just a little of His majesty.

And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, “Holyholyholy is the Master God, the Almighty, who was and who is and who is to come.”

Revelation 4:8

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  • You must be holy in the way God asks you to be holy. God does not ask you to be a Trappist monk or a hermit. He wills that you sanctify the world and your everyday life. St Vincent Pallotti
  • Holiness is a state of soul in which all the powers of the body and mind are consciously given up to God. Phoebe Palmer
  • Holiness is the visible side of salvation. Charles Haddon Spurgeon
  • I would … suggest that some form of suffering is virtually indispensable to holiness. John R. W. Stott
  • Holiness consists of doing the will of God with a smile. Mother Teresa
  • Holiness is not the laborious acquisition of virtue from without, but the expression of the Christ-life from within. John William Charles (J.W.C.) Wand[1]

[1] Manser, M. (Ed.). (2016). Christian Quotations. Martin Manser.