|Signpost 5: A Lack of Holiness|
When Moses met God on the mountain he was told, "Do not come near here; remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which are standing is holy ground" (Exodus 3:5). Isaiah had a vision of God in which the angels cried out, "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory" (Is. 6:3). David asked the question, "Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? And who may stand in His holy place?" and he answered it, as well: "He who has clean hands and a pure heart" (Psalm 24:3-4)
When we come into the presence of God, we're coming into the presence of perfect purity. God is holy. When we come before Him, we must come with a commitment in our hearts to holiness of life. Worship of God comes from a heart that is in the process of becoming like Christ.
Bishop Ryle defined holiness when he wrote, "True holiness, we surely, we surely ought to remember, does not consist merely of inward sensations and impressions. It's much more than tears, and sighs, and bodily excitement, and a quickened pulse, and a passionate feeling of attachment to our own favorite preachers and our own religious party, and a readiness to quarrel with every one who does not agree with us. It's something of the image of Christ, which can be seen and observed by others in our private life, and habits, and character, and doings."
Thus, our worship must be wrapped in a life that is becoming like Christ. A growing Christian will be a worshipping Christian, and a worshipping Christian will be a growing Christian. The heart is what counts in worship. The heart that has beheld Jesus and is surrendered to Him is the heart that is able to worship.
There is much talk of renewal of worship in this generation. If we are truly to obtain that renewal, we must fix our hearts on the Lord Jesus. He alone must be the object of our worship. We desperately need the wind of revival to blow across the hearts, restoring us to our original purpose of loving Him and becoming like Him.