40 Ways The Bible Motivates Us To Pursue Holiness

August 28, 2012 — 4 Comments

9781433533341Recently, I’ve been reading my way through Kevin DeYoung’s The Hole In Our Holiness. I think it will prove to be an important book, and it’s already helping me work through some issues. It’s a fairly short book and I think pretty much everybody who cares of the Christian life ought to read it.

In his fourth chapter, The Impetus For The Imperatives, DeYoung concludes by offering 40 “ways in which the Bible motivates us to pursue holiness” (57-60). I thought the list was pretty impressive and worth thinking through, and I bet you’ll find it the same. Rather than write out the reference in full, I’ll just give DeYoung’s list and the verse he draws it from and you can hover your mouse pointer over them and the full reference will pop up thanks to Logos RefTagger plugin.

So, if you’re ever forgetting reasons to pursue holiness, here’s DeYoung’s biblical Top 40 in no particular order:

  1. Duty (Ecclesiastes 12:13)
  2. God knows all and sees all (Ecclesiastes 12:14)
  3. It’s right (Ephesians 6:1)
  4. It’s for our good (Deuteronomy 12:28)
  5. God’s example (Ephesians 4:32)
  6. Christ’s example (Ephesians 5:2)
  7. Assurance (2 Peter 1:10)
  8. Being effective as a Christian (2 Peter 1:8)
  9. Jesus’ return (2 Peter 3:11-12)
  10. The world is not our home (1 Peter 2:11)
  11. To win over our neighbors (1 Peter 2:12)
  12. To lift up a nation (Proverbs 14:34)
  13. For the public good (Matthew 5:13a)
  14. For the sake of our prayers (1 Peter 3:7)
  15. The futility of sin (Matthew 6:27)
  16. The folly of sin (Matthew 7:26-27)
  17. The promise of future grace (Matthew 6:33)
  18. The promise of future judgment (Romans 12:19)
  19. The fear of future judgment (Hebrews 10:26-27)
  20. The surety of our inheritance (Hebrews 10:34)
  21. The communion of the saints (Hebrews 12:1)
  22. The good example of others (Hebrews 13:7)
  23. The bad example of others (1 Corinthians 10:6)
  24. We were created for good works (Ephesians 2:10)
  25. God is the master and we are his servants (Luke 17:10)
  26. The fear of the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:11a)
  27. The love of the Lord (1 John 4:11)
  28. To make God manifest (1 John 4:12)
  29. In gratitude for grace (Romans 12:1)
  30. For the glory of God (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
  31. The character of God (Leviticus 11:44a)
  32. The work of God (Exodus 20:2-3)
  33. To please God (Hebrews 13:16)
  34. To avoid the devil’s snares (Ephesians 4:26-27)
  35. For an eternal reward (1 Timothy 6:18-19)
  36. Because Christ has all authority (Matthew 28:18b-20a)
  37. Love for Christ (John 14:15)
  38. Fullness of joy (John 15:10-11)
  39. To experience God’s favor (Proverbs 12:2)
  40. Our union with Christ (Romans 6:5-6)

Which ones are most surprising to you?

Which ones do you need to be reminded of most?


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I'm an avid reader, musician, and high school Bible teacher living in central Florida. I have many paperback books and our house smells of rich glade air freshners. If you want to know more, then let's connect!

4 responses to 40 Ways The Bible Motivates Us To Pursue Holiness

  1. Regardless of the point being made here, to tell any Christian that they should fear judgement from God is just wrong. If you’re pursuing holiness to avoid punishment or to gain reward aren’t you pursuing holiness out of selfish protection or selfish gain?

    • I guess you’ll have to take that up with the author of Hebrews. Also, if the authors of Scripture hold out the promise of reward or threat of punishment as motivations, why is there a problem?

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