Skip to content ↓

The Power of True Holiness

The Power of True Holiness

This week I found myself pondering some powerful words from the pen of J.C. Ryle: “Satan knows well the power of true holiness and the immense injury which increased attention to it will do to his kingdom.”

We are called to God so we can become holy like God. He means for us to be as devoted to his purposes as he is and for that reason begins to transform us from the inside out—from the mind and heart to the hands and mouth.

Yet every Christian can attest that it is difficult to put sin to death and to come alive to righteousness. Every Christian can attest that we meet resistance on every side. Every Christian can attest that, when it comes to sanctification, this life is a long and difficult slog.

And little wonder, for Satan is the great enemy of God and, therefore, the great enemy of holiness. “We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12). Therefore, we must stand firm in the power God provides, always resisting the enemy of our souls. Satan knows that Christians living holy lives—living out God’s own holiness—would do damage to his cause in the world. Hence he battles hard to tempt us, to draw us away from God’s purposes and toward his own. And hence we, in turn, must resist him. For we, like him, know the power of true holiness.


  • Protecting the Family Name

    Protecting the Family Name

    It is a conversation I had with my son-in-law while he was pursuing my daughter and expressing his interest in marrying her. It is a conversation I will need to have with a second son-in-law if the day comes when he expresses his interest in marrying my other daughter. It is a conversation about the…

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (July 17)

    A La Carte: Every place is a place to talk about Jehovah / A precious mystery / How marriage shows the beauty and poetry of the gospel / What should we learn from the immensity of the heavens? / Should we call church a family? / Commentary sale / and more.

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (July 16)

    A La Carte: All we have left undone / What does the Bible teach about divorce and remarriage? / How America’s premier theologian interpreted God’s providence after Lincoln’s assassination / Will God judge people for being born Muslim? / Theological discernment is for moms too / Prime Days / and more.

  • My Most Common Pastoral Counsel

    My Most Common Pastoral Counsel

    Among my responsibilities as an elder/pastor within a local church is meeting with people to offer counsel and guidance. I have never lost the wonder of being given so sobering a privilege—to listen to people as they share their deep sorrows or ask their big questions and to then attempt to bring the Word of…

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (July 15)

    A La Carte: The desires of your heart / Contentment isn’t only for hard times / On the hosting of mission teams / Be careful of your strengths / Yes, we’re almost there / Kindle deals / and more.

  • Every Road and Every Sea

    Sunday Devotional: Every Road and Every Sea

    The Bible has proven its value as weaponry in the battle against spiritual foes, as a laboratory researching cures for spiritual maladies, and as a rich source of treasure in the accumulating of wisdom. It has proven itself a guide to the pathways of life and a chart to navigate the stormy seas of trial…