Saturday, August 31, 2013
“But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:” (1 Corinthians 1:30 KJV).
Behold, the identity that we Christians have in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Through faith in Jesus Christ’s finished crosswork alone as sufficient payment for our sins, we are dead to our old Adamic nature (sin’s dominion): “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin” (Romans 6:6). We have been raised again with Christ to “walk in newness of life” (verse 4). Just as our Adamic nature produces sins, that new nature/life we have in Christ generates good works (Galatians 5:22-26; Ephesians 4:20-32; Philippians 1:11; Colossians 3:1-17). God has made us “saints” for this purpose!
Paul explained practical sanctification in 2 Timothy 2:19-21: “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work” (cf. 1 Thessalonians 4:1-7). The Christian is to take God’s Word, study and believe it rightly divided, and will thus be “perfect [mature], throughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:16,17).
Remember, one is not a saint based on his or her performance, but because of his or her identity in Christ. Still, our positional sanctification (in Jesus Christ) should be reflected on a daily basis (practical sanctification by Jesus Christ). A sinner is a sinner not because he sins—he sins because he is a sinner in Adam (his very nature causes those sins). Likewise, a saint, although leading an imperfect life, is still a “saint” (“sanctified;” today’s Scripture) in God’s eyes because of that person’s identity in Jesus Christ.
This earthly Christian life is a preview of that which is to come….