Have you ever played the game/activity where a name or word is thrown out and you are to quickly say the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear that name or word? For example, maybe a friend or co-worker’s name is mentioned and you say “funny” or “kind” or “serious.” The idea is to see what trait about someone or something stands out the most.
Imagine if you will if I were to mention the name of God and have you say the first thing that comes to your mind. Would it be “love” or “all-knowing” or “perfect”? Actually there is any number of words we could say that would be 100% true as God truly does hold many wonderful traits. But I think the word we see in our reading today is probably one that stands out the most to me.
Read down through Psalm 99 and see if this word jumps out to you like it did to me. We see it in verses 3, 5 and 9. It’s the word “holy”. God is holy. It seems so simple and easy to say, so routine. I mean everyone knows that God is holy, don’t they? Well let’s think about what that means. Often time we think of God’s holiness in the sense of him being pure and free from sin. We are sinful and God his holy. And there certainly is a lot of truth to that idea.
However, I think we often miss the fuller meaning of what that word means. One could define holiness as being set apart, unique or rare. It essentially means that there is no one like God. He is unique, rare and priceless. None can compare or even come close. And because He is holy, He is 100% pure, sinless, just, perfect, etc, etc. One could rightly look at the other attributes about God as being true because He is holy.
It brings to mind the glimpse we see in heaven when Isaiah sees God on his throne in chapter 6. And what did the one seraphim say to the other? “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts.” Our God is like no other; He is holy. And as we celebrate this Easter season, it is only because the death and resurrection of his son Jesus that we are able to have any access to this holy God. May we reflect on his holiness today.