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Holiness = Happiness

By Robert R. Kopp | Pastor, Bethany Presbyterian Church, Loves Park, Illinois
Once you've experienced it,

You spread His love to everyone;

You want to pass it on.

What a wondrous time is spring, when all the trees are budding;

The birds begin to sing, the flowers start their blooming.

That's how it is with God's love;

Once you've experienced it, You want to sing

"It's fresh like spring":

You want to pass it on.

I wish for you my friend, this happiness that I've found.

You can depend on Him,

It matters not where you're bound.

I'll shout it from the mountain top,

I want the world to know;

The Lord of love has come to me,

I want to pass it on.

The good news is being written all over the faces and actions of the faithful.

GRIPP is a powerful witness to this truth: "Holiness = Happiness (i.e., the holier we are, the happier we are!)."

Holiness is a state of heart, mind, and soul. Holiness or sanctification or consecration is a process beginning at conversion to Christ and continuing until we meet Him face to face after the last breath; praying and laboring to be different from the world as increasingly transformed by the Word in Jesus and the Bible.

Embracing and emulating holiness does not provide an escape from the world, but it does provoke a passionate determination to be in but not of the world:

  • Necessity prevails over materialism.
  • Food provides physical fuel and personal pleasure but does not feed gluttony.
  • Sleep restores the body but is not an excuse for laziness.
  • Sex is celebrated in but not apart from marriage.
  • Money is a tool to serve God not selfishness.
  • Position, prestige, and power are instruments for advancing the Kingdom rather than personal desire.
  • Work and play balance but don't dominate each other.

Holiness is separating ourselves from the ways of the world by devotion to God's will as exemplified in Jesus and explained in the Bible.

Particularly, holiness is nurtured through spiritual disciplines: worship, prayer, Bible study, fasting, sacrament, silence, stewardship, and fellowship with believers.

The payoff of holiness is happiness. Or as Jesus promised in detailing some of the character traits of believers (Matthew 5:1-12),

Happy are the poor in spirit, for their's is the kingdom of heaven.

Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

Happy are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Happy are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

Happy are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

Happy are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Happy are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

Happy are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Happy are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds ofevil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

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