Holiness: God’s Intended Wisdom And Purpose For Our Relationships

As Christians, we are called to live lives of holiness. As Paul tells us at the beginning of Chapter 4, it is the will of God that we be holy. In this passage, Paul is referring specifically to the way we conduct our married lives. This is not easy for us, as we know only too well, we are surrounded by the siren calls of immorality. What is true about immorality is that it disregards the infinite dignity of the human person. Such behavior is a denial of God who created each human being in his own image and likeness.

To live in holiness in our marriages is to live in accord with the wisdom and the will of God. The wisdom of God is love. To love another is to honor the other in mind, body and soul. It is only when we are able to see the infinite dignity that God made our beloved in, that we are able to honor him or her with our thoughts, our words and our actions. We are moved to treat him or her with the infinite respect that he or she deserves. In other words, we cannot help but love him or her as a true gift from God. When we love our beloved in this manner, we are beginning to live lives of holiness.

Despite all of modernity’s claims to “wisdom,” our sex-saturated culture is really nothing more than a reiteration of the ancient, pagan, materialistic past. In other words, it is no advancement at all. It has, once again, made a god out of sex and sensuality, and it is a mean and indifferent god at that. This has resulted in unspeakable and immeasurable injury and harm. This is so because immorality, in its utter selfishness, is an unrelenting denial and diminishment of the value of individual lives, and life in general. This passive acceptance of immorality has also devalued the sacredness of marriage today. And the result is that our culture is a demonstrably unhappy one, indeed. Paul was addressing this same reality in Thessalonica.

As Christians, it is our desire to respond to the will of God with all of our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. When we understand that the will of God is, love, we realize that we are called to live lives of holiness out of this same love. It is when we begin to live lives of holiness, rather than impurity, that we begin to find the real happiness our hearts and souls have truly desired all along. Why? Because when we live this way we have welcomed God into our relationships. By living in holiness, our marriages, and all of our relationships become stronger, healthier, and more life giving.

Lord, help us to see the wisdom of living lives of holiness in our marriages. With your grace, increase our love for our spouses and make it grow more pure and sincere each day. Make us faithful to you and to our spouses so that our children may learn how to love, and how to live lives of holiness in accord with your wisdom. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen!

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Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site blog.