Holiness Emphasis Week has been a pillar in the spiritual life of Asbury since its founding. On one cornerstone of Hughes Auditorium you will find the words of Hebrews 12.14, “Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.” This week-long emphasis every spring semester brings teaching and preaching of this biblical reality – and equips students to “make every effort… to be holy.” Our three chapel services are complemented with evening worship Monday-Thursday night.
The longstanding presence of Holiness Emphasis Week expresses a key biblical concept promoted by John Wesley. This is one of five biblical concepts which guide the mission of Asbury University. This fourth concept is – the Importance of Purity. It states our belief that “the Christian’s deepest need is for a purity of heart and a freedom from the power of sin, which we describe as entire sanctification, in order to live pleasing to God.” The messages throughout the week aim to unpack this biblical reality for our students and challenge them to walk deeper in their relationship with the Lord.
Another way to understand the integral role of holiness in the spiritual formation of students at Asbury is hearing its importance from the beginning. The founder of our institution stated the school motto in this way, “Free salvation for all men and full salvation from all sin.”
While holiness is inseparably connected to Asbury’s history, we have recently highlighted its importance in the Cornerstone Project. Holiness is named as one of the four cornerstones because we view it as a distinctive mark of Christian faith and maturity. Spiritual vitality is visible in the life of a disciple whenever a person has acted on the words of Hebrews 12.14. In our integration of these cornerstones across campus, Holiness Emphasis Week remains the most visible during these five days of special worship each spring semester.
The prayerful outcomes of Holiness Emphasis Week are this simple: make every effort to be holy, seek purity of heart, and freedom from the power of sin.