June 5, 2020

Brothers and Sisters, In Jesus’ final prayer to His Heavenly Father that night He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane before He went to the cross, He said this.  (John 17:17)  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.  This was on the Lord’s heart as He prepared to suffer death, hell and the grave for you and me.  As He was agonizing in prayer, He prayed that our Heavenly Father would sanctify each of us through His truth.  This truth can only be found in His Word. The verses in Leviticus that we looked at yesterday in our devotional said, “I am the Lord which sanctify you”.  So, as we complete our week thinking on the Biblical doctrine “SANCTIFICATION”, let’s remember that this process in a Christian’s life all begins with the Lord.  Our sanctification starts the moment God saves our souls.  The new life we now have in Christ brings with it a changed heart and a transformation of our minds.  Old things pass away and behold all things become new.  The Apostle Paul gives us a good description of what this new life should look like as we go through the sanctification process.  Let’s look at what he wrote under the leadership of the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 4:17-32, “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.  But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.  Now notice this list of things that are involved in the sanctification process:(v.25) Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. (v.26) Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:(v.27) Neither give place to the devil. (v.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. (v.29) Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. (v.30) And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (v.31) Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:(v.32) And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you”. WOW, that’s a full-time job.  Like I’ve always said, being a Christian is not for wimps.  Living a separated life goes against our basic instincts and human nature.  Since it goes against our nature to live the Christian life, we need the Lord’s help and guidance each and every day.  God’s Word promises us if we draw nigh to God that He will draw nigh to us.  (James 4:8)  Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. In closing, I am also reminded of one other instruction that Jesus gave his followers in in Luke 9:23, “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me”.  This is a decision that we need to make each day if we want to follow Jesus.  May the Lord help you and me as we go through this “SANCTIFICATION” process in our daily lives.

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