A criminal investigation will match DNA samples with samples found at the crime scene. DNA samples have to match to identify the criminal. If the DNA samples don’t match up, the suspect is home free, and the criminal investigators still have work to do. If the DNA samples match, then the case is closed.
Case in point: God’s way of identifying His children is that they carry His identifying feature: holiness. God is holy, so His children must be holy; in other words, there is no such thing as an unholy child of God. This is as mutually exclusive as matching up DNA samples.
Now I don’t know about you, but to me that’s kind of scary. It’s like demanding perfection when you know that perfection is just not the way humans work. When we say: we’re human – that’s what we’re implying: we’re imperfect human beings! So what ends up happening: people become actors and they act “holier than thou”, which to me is like watching a bad movie – not very convincing! Then there are people who throw their hands up in the air, mock those attempts and make a parody out of it. Ever seen those skits where priests and nuns are involved?
Here is the deal though: just like DNA samples aren’t produced and can’t be faked since they are authentic body tissues, holiness can’t be faked either. Holiness has to be issued by God Himself. In other words, God puts His stamp of holiness onto His people, and thereby they become identifiable as His children.
That’s quite a mouthful, isn’t it? That’s why Jesus uses the analogy of being born into a family. Your offspring carries your DNA information. Why? It’s your son or daughter. Parents, whether you like it or not, your children carry your DNA information.
And it’s no surprise that a person born into God’s family carries God’s DNA: holiness.
Now for the skeptics among you who want to put everything under a microscope, here is where the analogy ends. Being born again is just an attempt to describe a miracle. And by the way, a newborn is a miracle in itself – or wouldn’t we stop to think that this newborn we rock gently in our arms is anything less than a miracle?
I guess what I am trying to say is that holiness is part of the deal of being born into God’s family. It comes with His DNA. We cannot fake it, we cannot make it; it is issued by our Creator.
Regarding perfectionism, that’s not what God’s holiness is all about. Anybody having babies can attest to the fact that learning how to walk involves many trials and errors. Similarly, God’s babies go through trial and errors. They aren’t any less His children if they fail. Stumbling and falling simply comes with the territory of growing up. And as babies grow up and learn many other things besides walking, God’s babies grow up and get to know God as they learn to walk in His ways. It’s a beautiful thing!