The Holiness of God - Part 1
God is not a man. The greatest difficulty in understanding the nature of God is thinking that we are similar to Him. We understand what God is like mostly because of what we are not, not what we are. We display the imperfect, He displays the perfect. God is holy.
Christianity demonstrates a pathway to having a relationship with God. Not just any type of a relationship, but a relationship that is similar to that of between a husband and wife. However, there is one requirement to being in a relationship with God, and that is you must be perfect (i.e. without sin). That does not mean that you only have to avoid doing major things wrong, that means that you can't do anything wrong. There is a well known story in the Bible where a man named Uzzah reaches out to stabilize the ark of God as it was being transported to Jerusalem, and was killed by God (2 Sam. 6). Many Biblical commentators suggest that Uzzah should have known better about how God wanted the ark to be carried, but the Bible does not expand on the reason that God killed Uzzah. It may just have been a demonstration of the perfection that God requires for those people who are in a relationship with Him. King David, who had commanded the ark to be transported, seemed to understand this because after this he was afraid to move the ark, and said, "How can the ark of the LORD come to me (2 Sam. 6:9)?"
Why does God require perfection? God requires perfection because it is intrinsic to His being. Lying once is enough to be thrown into Hell. God hates imperfection so much that He can't stand having it in His presence. I have to admit that I don't comprehend this aspect of God. Why can't He just understand that we are trying the best we can? Most people give up following God at this point. They think it is too much and it does not make sense. What kind of God would throw people into Hell for simply telling one lie? They don't want to follow a God like that.
Instead of trying to reason why God requires perfection, it is probably better to understand the impact of our own imperfections. The world is full of injustice and hate because of us but we know that God will make all things right because of His perfect character. Instead of our imperfections making us think that we need perfection, it somehow finds imperfection in perfection. Yet another example of our imperfection. Having faith in God is admitting that His way is better than ours and willingly putting ourselves in His perfect hands. Will not the Creator of all the world do right?
The name Uzzah means strength, and his death demonstrated that trying to have a relationship with a holy God on your own strength means death. The name Uzziah means "my strength is Jehovah," and in the year Uzziah died God showed us that it is by His strength that He is going to provide a way to have a relationship with Him.
"And he touched my mouth and said: "Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for (Is. 6:7)."