21 July 2021

“God uses all seasons of the year for the harvest – the ice and the cold of winter as well as the heat of summer – so He uses both good and bad, pleasing and unpleasing providences, for promoting holiness. Winter providences kill the weeds of lust and summer providences ripen the fruits of righteousness.
Even when God afflicts it is for our good, to make us partakers of His holiness..And God love purity in His children so much that He will rub as hard as He has to in order to get out the dirt ingrained in our natures; He would rather see a hole than a spot in His child’s garment.” .. William Gurnall (The Christian in complete Armour: 1616 – 1679).

William Gurnall, a brother in Christ, is one who is well known for writing on spiritual warfare and ‘The Chrisian in complete Armour’, which runs into several volumes, elaborate the Scriptural principles for believers to take note of, in order to fight a good fight.
Holiness is indispensable for believers to ‘stand’ in this warfare. William emphasises this again and again in his book, and here he reminds us that purity and holiness are so precious and valuable in the sight of God that He would not withhold afflictions in order to purify His children. So as we encounter unpleasing and unpleasant providences in our lives, do we discern the hand of love of the One who creates us behind all these experiences?

Faith and repentance must issue in love and holiness; otherwise there is no true and lasting conversion. God as Creator, has a right to prescribe how His creatures should behave. He has done this in HIs moral law, which requires us to be holy as He is holy – in our character and our conduct, in our desires, our decisions, and our delights. Total righteousness is called for, expressing total devotion and commitment. Nothing less will do in God’s plan to recreate a new humanity, one which is holy and pure enough to enter into, through the pearly gates, the new heavens and new earth. “But nothing unclean will ever enter it, not anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Rev. 21:27).

If we think of Christianity as just being given a passport to heaven – think again! It is not ultimately the ‘passport’ alone that determines our qualification to enter – it is the ‘cleanness’ and ‘righteousness’ imputed as well as ‘worked out’ in our beings (albeit with the power of God’s Spirit) which allow us to be welcomed into the eternal presence of God.