Reasons I Adore the KJV #6: The highest standard of holiness

Here’s one more reason I adore the KJV — it puts forth the highest standard of holiness. I mean, if God is holy, shouldn’t we expect his word to be holy too?

God even calls his name holy.

“For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name.”

—Psalm 33:21

And yet, God says he magnifies his word even above his name!

“I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all they name:”

—Psalm 138:2

The highest standard of holiness

According to Webster’s 1828, holy means “whole or entirely perfect in a moral sense.” Applied to God, holy signifies his “perfectly pure, immaculate, and completion moral character.”

God’s word always calls us to holiness. It calls us to sanctification — that is, to draw closer to God and, by his Spirit, be conformed to the image of Christ.

In order to do this, God’s true word draws a stronger line of distinction between good and evil.

It always makes things more clear.

And it calls us to the highest standard of holiness.

“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”

—1 Peter 1:15-16

Jesus Christ is holy — high above all else — so we should expect nothing less from his word! In John 1, we read that Jesus is the Word made flesh. And if the Word incarnate was perfect, would we not expect the same of the written Word?

And because we are his children, we should reflect his character as we grow up in him.

By the way, the word conversation in the Bible means the way we act, our behavior. So in the verse above, when God says to be holy in all manner of conversation, he means in all of our actions.

1 Thessalonians 5:22, the highest standard of holiness

Since it’s difficult to explain, let me give you an example from the Bible. Here’s a verse that exemplifies the highest standard of holiness:

“Abstain from all appearance of evil.”

—1 Thessalonians 5:22

That seems very clear. I am supposed to abstain from even the appearance of evil.

However, if I pick up a watered down version of the Bible, I may read that I am supposed to avoid every form of evil. 

Evil and the appearance of evil are two different things.

So which is it?

Am I supposed to do what even unbelievers know to do, avoid every form of evil?

Or, as a child of God, doesn’t he call me to a higher standard of holiness? The higher standard is obvious. I am to abstain from even the appearance of evil.

If we are avoiding even the appearance of evil, we are doing something much different than just avoiding evil alone.

And when we avoid even the appearance of evil, we, by our holy conversation, become living testimonies of who our Father is.

We are a peculiar people. Our behavior, our conversation, stands out from others who are simply trying in their own strength to avoid evil. But because of his power working in us, we can do more. By his grace, we can choose to avoid not just evil, but even the appearance of it.

And I can tell you from experience, God gave us this gift, this higher standard, for the protection of his children — for our protection. It is only in reading the KJV that I have learned what a gift God has given us in his word.

Which Bible should we choose?

Given the choice, shouldn’t we always choose the Bible that calls us to the highest standard of holiness, because that is the nature of God himself?

If you’re grappling with this concept, take heart. It took me several times of going back to these verses in prayer and humility to understand what I’ve just shared with you here. I promise, if you are faithful and truly seeking God’s heart about the matter, you will find it!

Don’t be discouraged — ask God for wisdom and trust him with your study.

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Are you interested in studying the Bible but you aren’t sure which version to choose?

Have you ever wanted to read the King James Bible, but someone told you it was too difficult?

My name is Michele, and I’ve had those same questions too. 

In my 23 years as a Christian, I’ve read many of the modern Bible versions. But once I started reading the King James version, I discovered it was unlike anything I had ever read before, and I want to share that joy with you.

I’m here to dispel the myth that the KJV is hard to read. To give you tools and tips to get started. And to encourage you as you begin reading the greatest book that’s ever been written!

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