SPECIAL TOPIC: THE HOLY ONE

I. "The Holy One of Israel" is a favorite title for Deity in Isaiah (cf. Isa. 1:4; 5:19; 10:17,20; 12:6; 17:7; 29:19,23; 30:11,12,15; 31:1; 37:23; 40:25; 41:14,16,20; 43:3,14,15; 45:11; 47:4; 48:17; 49:7; 54:5; 55:5; 60:9,14).  Because He is "holy," His people should be holy (cf. Lev. 19:2; Matt. 5:48; 1 Pet. 1:16).

This title, in a sense, expresses the impossible tension of a sinful, fallen people conforming to a holy standard.  The Mosaic Covenant was impossible to keep (cf. Jos. 24:19; Acts 15; Galatians 3; book of Hebrews).  The old covenant was a way to show the impossibility of humans to conform to God's standard (Galatians 3), yet He was with them, for them, preparing them for His answer to their fallen condition (i.e., "the New Covenant in Jesus").  He does not lower His standard, but provides it through His Messiah.  The new covenant (cf. Jer. 31:31-34; Ezek. 36:22-38) is a covenant of faith and repentance, not human performance, though it issues in Christlikeness (cf. James 2:14-26).  God wants a people who reflect His character to the nations (cf. Matt. 5:48).

 

II. "The Holy One" can refer to

1. God the Father (cf. numerous OT passages on "the Holy One of Israel")

2. God the Son (cf. Mark 1:24; Luke 4:34; John 6:69; Acts 3:14; 1 John 2:20)

3. God the Spirit (His title, "Holy Spirit" cf. John 1:33; 14:26; 20:22).

Acts 10:38 is a verse where all three persons of the Godhead are involved in anointing.  Jesus was anointed (cf. Luke 4:18; Acts 4:27; 10:38).  The concept is widened to include all believers (cf. 1 John 2:27).  The Anointed One has become the anointed ones!  This may be parallel to Antichrist and antichrists (cf. 1 John 2:18). The OT symbolic act of physical anointing with oil (cf. Exod. 29:7; 30:25; 37:29) relates to those who were called and equipped by God for a special task (i.e., prophets, priests, and kings). The word "Christ" is a translation of the Hebrew term "the anointed one" or Messiah.

 

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