Amy at In Pursuit of Proverbs 31 is hosting IOW this week. Please visit her blog and read what others are saying about this week's quote:.. This week, I sat pondering Dave Ramsey's wisdom. I have attended "Financial Peace University," listened to Mr. Ramsey on the Radio and I have been blessed by his experience, his wisdom and his advice on more occasions than I can reasonably recall. However, as I read this week's quote one thing kept rolling through the kiosk of my mind: "Be set apart to the Lord."
This got me to thinking about consecration and sanctification. Weighty subjects no doubt. The lifeline of our lives is how sanctification and consecration occur and who is responsible for the process. First, we must recognize our need of Christ - the overall, encompassing and transforming power that is given through the Holy Spirit and provided by Christ Jesus for us.
Our part of consecration is to recognize and submit ourselves to the Salvation offered to us through Jesus Christ. When we do, the work of His resurrection power sets about changing us from the inside out. But, what about Sanctification? What does that mean and how does it work? Who is responsible for sanctification.
In Joshua 3:5 (NIV) we see Joshua tell the people to "consecrate yourselves for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you." The word translated "consecrate" in the NIV is also translated "sanctify" in the KJV, NKJV and the Amplified. It is the Hebrew Strong's Reference 6942
Hebrew Word: קָדַשׁ
Strong's defines the word in this way: "a primitive root; to be (causat. make, pronounce or observe as) clean (ceremonial or moral) :- appoint, bid, consecrate, dedicate, defile, hallow, (be, keep) holy (-er, place), keep, prepare, proclaim, purify, sanctify (-ied one, self), × wholly." (From the WORDsearch Bible Explorer 4 Software Deluxe Ed.).
Think about this: consecration involves an appointment, to dedicate yourselves - to be or to keep yourself holy. It means to be ceremonially or morally clean - to proclaim... HMMM! Let's think of how that applies. It means to be purified and sanctified wholly - not in part!
At Webster's Online Dictionary you will find this definition of sanctify:
1. Render holy by means of religious rites.
2. Declare holy or pure or free from sin; "he left the monastery purified".
Source: WordNet 1.7.1 Copyright © 2001 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
Synonyms: SanctifySynonyms: bless (v), consecrate (v), hallow (v), purify (v).
Antonym: desecrate (v).
Sanctification - it is the process by which supernatural change is manifested in our lives. We often don't see the effects of sanctification right away, because sanctification has to work in our lives and have its way with us. Who sanctifies us?
Jesus. When He gave His life on the cross and rose from the dead He gave us three things: 1.) Redemption's opportunity - the opportunity to live free from the consequences of sin and to receive eternal life's restoration; 2.) Forgiveness and Truth - the opportunity to be forgiven once and for all of every sin we will ever commit: past, present or future. When we confess and apply the forgiveness that God has already provided for us through His Son, Jesus Christ, something inside of us - in our hearts and our mind changes. Not only that the truth sets us free, but it sets us up to be more aware of that sin and its presence in our lives. Truth begins to replace every aspect of our thinking - an absolute Truth without the muddling human emotions and will that seem to confound and confuse us in every way. It sets us up to recognize the lies of the enemy and our own human nature and replace them with truth. 3.) And from truth comes VICTORY. Not just the victory of heaven in the afterlife... but, a real and present victory evidenced by the fruit of the Spirit everyday of our lives. We don't have to wait for heaven to live in victory - we can have it right here... where the Kingdom of heave is at hand as Jesus said.
So how much of that is our part? Surrender. First to the will of God in Salvation - accepting the sacrifice of Christ as the only means of atonement for our sins and receiving God's forgiveness and truth in sin's place. Second, we must surrender to the Word of God. Setting it as our standard of truth and the Mind of Christ. We must come to know God according to His Word and embrace the change the Spirit brings when we study and apply it to our lives. Finally, we must choose "life." God gives us a choice everyday. He sets before us the choice to walk in grace and forgiveness, in mercy and truth... we must be merciful to others and seek justice for our own shortcomings. The righteous live by faith and we must surrender to that truth everyday of our lives to see the manifest presence and glory of God at work and the transformation come to life in us! God's glory revealed in our lives is the ultimate work of sanctification. A work that brings us to maturity in both our faith and our spirit, brings us to a place where love abounds and where truth prevails even when the circumstances decry the truth and the reality of God in our lives.
I will leave you with a few verses that speak to this change:
Hebrews 10:11-13 (NIV) "11 Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. 13 Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, 14 because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy."
Hebrews 10:20-23 (NIV) "19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful."
Colossians 3:1-17 (NIV) "1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11 Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. 12 Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."
Ephesians 2:19-22 (NIV) "19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit."
Remember our question??? Interestingly enough... When I wrote out the word "remember" I recalled a definition I heard recently - "To member again" or to "remake whole.
What is our part and what is God's part? Sanctification and Consecration as words do not occur in any of these verses, however, the process of Sanctification is beautifully brought forth as we learn how it works itself out in us through Christ Jesus Himself. We are sanctified that His glory may be fully revealed in our lives. Live on in His Glory and You will live like no one else!