The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges is a highly recommended book for all Christians. This book will help you get excited about pursuing holiness and nurture a passion for living life to the glory of God.
Bridges lived from 1929-2016. He was a prominent figure in The Navigators, wrote theology books, and traveled around the country to teach. His books are filled with practical applications that accompany his theology.
Holiness takes work. Christianity is not life on autopilot. Holiness takes pursuit – an intentional act and commitment to head towards Christlikeness. Works do not save us, but we are called to pursue the fruit of righteousness given by the Holy Spirit.
For the Christian, holiness is not optional. We cannot receive half of God’s grace—grace for justification only, but reject the grace for sanctification.
All believers are called to holiness. In Romans 8:29, the end goal of salvation is holiness. 1 Thessalonians 4:3, we see that God’s will for our lives is sanctification, and 1 Peter 1:15-16 admonishes us to be holy because God is holy.
How to Fight
It is important to understand that until Christ returns, we will battle sin. It is inevitable. This daily battle with sin does not mean something is “wrong,” but that something is “right” because you know and acknowledge sin and its effect on your heart and mind.
When we start fighting sin, there will be a battle against the world, our flesh, and the devil. The things of this world are opposed to the things of God, so we should expect to battle against sin in all forms.
An important aspect of fighting sin is knowledge and awareness of indwelling sin. Bible memorization is another huge asset in resisting temptation.
Planning for Holiness
Bridges describes the idea of “planning” when overcoming certain sins. Plan out time to read Scripture, pray, and memorize Scripture. This means setting goals and objectives and being held accountable. Holiness does not happen on its own.
Another less-thought-of aspect of pursuing holiness is discipline in daily life – having a routine and disciplining one’s body gives the physical and spiritual fortitude to learn to deny oneself desires that are sinful.
For the Christian, the joy of holiness is much greater than living in sin. In fact, sin will feel, smell, and taste bad compared to the joy of knowing Christ. Once you have tasted the joy of God, everything else pales in comparison.
Brittany Proffitt lives in Dallas and is a writer and content manager for So We Speak.