What Does Godly Character Look Like

What does God-like character look like in God’s people? One way to answer that question is to look at every command and example in the Bible. But a quicker approach is to examine the lists of vices and virtues in the New Testament. These provide a useful summary of wickedness and holiness. Here are the sort of vices that characterize the wicked and the sort of people who will not enter the kingdom: Mark 7:21–22: evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. Romans 1:24–31: impurity, homosexual relations, all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice, envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness, gossip, slander, hatred of God, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Romans 13:13: orgies, drunkenness, sexual immorality, sensuality, quarreling, jealousy. 1 Corinthians 6:9–10: sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, men who practice homosexuality, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers, swindlers. Galatians 5:19–21: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies and things like these. Colossians 3:5–9: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, covetousness (which is idolatry), anger, wrath, malice, slander, obscene talk, lying. 1 Timothy 1:9–10: unholy, profane, those who strike their fathers and mothers, murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine. Revelation 21:8: the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars.

On the flip side, here are the sorts of virtues found in God’s people: Romans 12:9–21: genuine love, hatred for evil, steadfastness in what is good, brotherly affection, excelling in showing honor, zealous, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord, joyful in hope, patient in tribulation, constant in prayer, generous, hospitable, blessing enemies, rejoicing with those who rejoice and weeping with those who weep, harmonious, humble not haughty, associating with the lowly, honorable, peaceable, does not repay evil for evil, overcomes evil with good. 1 Corinthians 13:4–7: loving, patient, kind, not envious, not boastful, nor arrogant, not rude, not selfish, not irritable, not resentful, no joy in wrongdoing, rejoices with the truth, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Galatians 5:22–23: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Colossians 3:12–15: compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, patience, bearing with one another, forgiving one another, love, peace, gratitude. 2 Peter 1:5–7: virtue, knowledge, self-control, steadfastness, godliness, brotherly affection, and love.

-Kevin DeYoung, The Hole in our Holiness