When we accepted Christ as our Savior, God sanctified us. That means He set us apart for Himself.
A good example of sanctification is the priests in the OT. They were from the tribe of Levi. God set them apart or dedicated them to the service of the tabernacle. They did not work a job outside the priesthood. The priesthood was their job. They were financially supported by the tithes of the people.
Because God has sanctified us, we are no longer our own to do as we please.
It may seem ironic, but after God sanctifies us, we must sanctify ourselves.
Why? Because living our life as someone who has been set apart by God and for God is not incidental to being a Christian. Rather, sanctification is the process by which we grow to become more like Christ and more dedicated to serving and living for God.
Four Means to Help Us Sanctify Ourselves
1. The Word of God. “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth,” Jesus prayed (John 17:17, NIV). These words are part of a prayer He prayed for His disciples after the Last Supper and before He was crucified.
The Word of God has the power to sanctify us. The more we study the Word and the more we live by it, the more dedicated to God we will become. You can tell a lot about the impact the Word of God is having on a believer’s life by the things he says and does. The more you live by the Word, the more Christlike you will become.
2. The Holy Spirit. Jesus says, “When He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth” (John 16:13). In addition to speaking to us through His Word, God also speaks to us and guides us through the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit speaks to us accordingly.
Remember what sanctification is; it denotes our being set apart for God. And there are some things about His plan for our life that we can’t get through the Word alone. We need the Holy Spirit to reveal to us what God is saying to us and to guide us into those things.
3. God Himself. Every one of us who is in Christ is a good work in progress. God is perfecting the good work He has begun in you (Philippians 1:6). He will continue to perfect that work until you die or until Christ returns, whichever is first. This confirms that sanctification is an on-going process. God did not simply save you and leave you alone. He is still working on you. Amen for that.
4. The local church. As members of a community, “Let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24, NASB). “Not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another….” (verse 25).
We know we are not saved by works or the things we do. But after we have been saved by grace through faith, we belong to God. And His desire for us is to do good works for the Kingdom. The problem is that too many believers in church fail to get involved. The quotation above is telling us that this is an area where the local church can help out. It says we should motivate each other to do good works. Also, we should edify one another.
We have touched on four means to help us sanctify ourselves: the Word of God, the Holy Spirit, God and the local church.
And all of us can improve in the area of sanctification. It is through this process of sanctification that we learn how to live a life that is dedicated to serving and living for God. That is what He has sanctified us to do.
Copyright © 2019 by Frank King. All rights reserved.