"Holiness" within the Pentecostal movement, and the church in general, is a very misunderstood, misrepresented, and all too often oppressive and legalistic issue. Jubilee Fellowship firmly embraces the truths of Holiness, Righteousness, and Godliness. We believe these things manifest themselves as the natural byproducts of a healthy Christian life. Holiness is not an arbitrary, uncertain, man-made "standard" or set of rules and regulations by which God's people are expected to live. Holiness is instead the likeness of our heavenly Father manifesting itself in our lives from day to day. Human beings are incapable of holiness as "Holiness belongs to the Lord." The best that God's people can do is REFLECT the Master's Holiness, as we are incapable of generating it on our own. The traditional definition of Holiness held by many Pentecostal groups and organizations is "God's standard of living for His people." We believe this definition is erroneous and misleading. The "standards" set forth by many of these organizations are frequently not at all supported by Scripture, and in many cases are the byproduct of Scriptural abuse, as well as the imposing of ancient, Biblical cultural morays upon today's church. The inconsistencies in "standards" from church to church, are clear evidence that the standards being taught are not at all clearly Scriptural and plainly expounded in God's Word. No portion of the Old-Testament law has any place in God's New Testament church as any part of that law causes grace to be nullified and we become fully indebted to and bound by the full weight of the Hebrew law. GALATIANS 5:1-4
In Biblical times wedding rings were not exchanged as a symbol of marriage as they are today. It would be foolish for the church of the future to insist that believers wear wedding rings, if the Word of God were penned today, because it is the social and cultural tradition of our time to do so, yet there exists no specific mandate from God to do so. This has nothing at all to do with God's nature being consistent and unchanging; rather it has to do with societal and cultural traditions and practices which affected the church at the time during which they are practiced. Again, if the practice of wearing wedding bands were no longer in vogue, it would be ridiculous for the church to insist that married individuals wear wedding bands, when the current practice might involve (for instance) married individuals wearing a jeweled dot in the center of their foreheads. So it is with the secular custom of a woman's wearing her hair uncut as a sign of submission to her husband. There is no longer a practice within our society of shaving a woman's head when she is found to be unfaithful to her husband. The teaching of uncut hair is strictly a man-made legalistic bondage which is generally applied to ALL girls and women, whether they be single or married. That is not even in keeping with the practice of the early church who were encouraged to honor the custom of their day so as not to bring dishonor upon their husbands. Single women and little girls should never be required to keep this custom as they are unmarried and were therefore not even subject to the custom of that day. Men in Biblical times who were married frequently wore beards, whereas unmarried men were shaven. Are we to enforce this same practice within the church today when it is clearly a cultural tradition and not a divine mandate? The Apostle Paul made it clear that the practice of uncut hair was merely a social custom and not a divine mandate... I COR. 11:15-16 15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering. 16 But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.
God's standards of righteousness for His people includes our; 1) loving our fellow believers, as well as our neighbors outside the church, 2) abstaining from judgment and condemnation, 3) setting forth an example of Christ-like conduct, attitude, and conversation, 4) sobriety, and 5) moderation in all things. External attempts at "holiness" are futile and only serve to satisfy carnal man's desire to feel that he is somehow living up to God's expectations of Him, and are a manifestation of one's lack of faith in and understanding of the true doctrine of grace. But because the external man is so easily converted to appear holy, while the internal man may remain hateful, sinful, and rancid; many choose to embrace the legalistic standards set forth by various organizations as it provides them with a sense of self-righteous satisfaction that has no true foundation or basis in Scripture. Holiness is an internal possession which ought to clearly and brightly shine forth from us for all the world to see.
God's people do not rely upon external enhancements to impress and beautify. We rely upon the gentleness, meekness, and godliness of our inward man, shining forth as a beacon through our outward man, to beautify and enhance. Moderation in relation to adornments and modesty relative to dress are called for in Scripture, so as not to distract unbelievers from seeing that precious possession within being distracted by the outward adornments and external appearances.
God's standards and requirements for each individual believer may be different. What the Lord requires of one He may not require of another. Arbitrary standards ought never be imposed by the church which infringe upon the personal liberties of the individual believer. Each child of God is at a different place and stage in their spiritual journey. It is foolishness to attempt to influence young, tender converts to adhere to the same standards embraced by those who have long served the Lord, before these individuals have had an opportunity to be thoroughly exposed to sound doctrine and teaching relative to these matters. In short, you can't force a five year old child to drive a car. They just aren't ready for it yet.
The Bible teaches...
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
11 Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.
God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness.
Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.
And ye shall be holy unto me: for I the LORD am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.
12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. 13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. 18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. 19 I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness. 20 For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. 21 What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. 22 But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.
2 Corinthians 7:1
Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
20 But ye have not so learned Christ; 21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; 23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. 25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil. 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to F14 the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.
3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; 4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them. 8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: 9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) 10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. 12 For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. 13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. 14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. 15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.
And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
2 Peter 1:5-10
5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; 7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. 8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. 10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:
6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. 7 And there is none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.
1 Thessalonians 3:12-13
12 And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you: 13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
1 Thessalonians 4:7-8
7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. 8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
1 Timothy 2:9-15
9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; 10 But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. 11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. 12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. 15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.
1 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: 2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. 3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. 6 Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. 7 In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, 8 Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you. 9 Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again; 10 Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
1 John 1:7
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
1 Timothy 6:6-12
6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. 14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 15 But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another. 16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. 18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.
1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. 2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. 3 For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. 4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.
1 Timothy 6:1-5
1 Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed. 2 And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort. 3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; 4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, 5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
2 PETER 3:11-14
11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, 12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. 14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.