Through the centuries the Church of Jesus Christ has found the subject of sanctification grounds for much discussion, whether it be past, present or future – but sanctification is all of these. Historically the death of Jesus Christ at Calvary was in the past, but Christ’s death and resurrection give me my present standing in Christ, and God sees the end from the beginning which is the future.
Hebrews 10:10 “….we are sanctified through the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”
Hebrews 10:14 “For by one offering He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified.”
1 John 2:27 makes reference to the Holy Spirit ABIDING in us. To say the Spirit comes and goes in our lives is an insult to God. He does not give us something and then take it away – but when we resist the workings of God in our lives through our pride and being stubborn, what we lose is the consciousness of His Presence through our rebellion.
The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth if we do not resist Him – thus sanctification in our lives is past, present and future. It is ongoing in our lives by the work of the Holy Spirit.
Some Believers deem adversity as the devil’s work, but God permits it to do His work in me! Only God sees and knows exactly where I am, I do not! He sees the strengths He has wrought in me by His grace and mercy, for His glory, but He also sees the weaknesses that He desires to replace with His character – so He permits what we call adversity to test us. It is the trial of our faith, 1 Peter 1: 6-7.
We look at a situation through the eyes of flesh and recoil with distaste, but God views the trial as gold. His test is to prove us.
God is forming His character in us. We are made in His image through the new birth of His incorruptible seed. He has an unwavering consistency that never alters. There is no double-mindedness or instability in God. He is seeking to work in us to bring a dependability on Him in order that He may trust us to handle more, to His glory. If I view the trial of my faith as the devil’s work, I fail the test.
A word of caution here: There is a vast difference between the “trial of my faith” which is adversity permitted of God for His divine purposes to prove me, differing from unwelcome circumstances I find myself in as consequences of my wrong choices. Grace, mercy and forgiveness for my failure is a pathway God makes available to me here through my humble repentance, where I embrace my failure before Him in truth. Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ – they are married together, the “heavenly twins.” Only as I embrace the truth of my failure to the Lord will He forgive me and release the flow from His tap of grace. I will not access His grace if I refuse the truth He reveals to me. I MUST take my own blame before God and stop blaming others!
Exodus 29: 42 – 46
“This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the Lord: where I will meet you to speak there unto you.
And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.
……..and I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God.
And they shall know that I am the Lord their God……that I may dwell among them…..”
From the very beginning it has always been the desire of God’s heart to DWELL with man. The tabernacle mentioned in the Old Testament is a type of our bodies. We are God’s tabernacle that He seeks to dwell in. Verse 42 speaks of a “continual burnt offering throughout your generations” where God desires to commune with us….this is now the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, His continual sanctification, where He desires to separate us from the things we value more than His Presence in our lives.
If we are honest we will admit that we do not value His Presence enough in our lives. Periodically God brings as much as we can bear in the issues that test us, to the goal that He is seeking to fulfill His purposes in my life to bring me to a consciousness of His Presence.
A man cannot steal the Presence of God. There is a counterfeit peace that I may pretend to have outwardly to others, but I cannot fool God. It is counterfeit birthed from pride and delusion, and inwardly I feel a loss of consciousness of His Presence. It will bear no fruit and eventually it will break me if I do not repent. May the Lord grant me sensitivity to recognize the loss of consciousness of His Presence.
God grants His Presence to a man whose heart is right with God, He looks on a man’s “inward parts,”….He delights in truth, transparency, humility and meekness. He is comfortable to dwell there.
As His work of sanctification continues in my life, my constant prayer is, Lord, keep me true to you….that my heart may be Your dwelling place, for Your glory!
Thank you. Arthur greatly influenced my life during his regular ministry times to Charlottesville, VA.