I have been reading a book about D.S. Warner. For those who don’t know who he is, he is one of the “Father’s” of the Church of God, our church movement. This book consists of excerpts from his diary. I am learning quite a lot about his life and his ministry. One of the things that he struggled with early on in his walk with the Lord is the teaching on Sanctification. I struck me that we don’t do much teaching and preaching on Sanctification and I thought that maybe we might spend some time in the Grapevine looking at the doctrine of Sanctification.
To start with let’s look at some Scripture to try and get a good working definition of Sanctification. Let’s start with Psalm 4:3. “But know that the Lord hath set apart him that is godly for himself: the Lord will hear when I call unto him.” Here the writer is telling us that the Lord sets us apart. We see this over and over as God reaches out to His people. All through the Old Testament God wanted Israel to be set apart. To be separate from the rest of the world. As we know from history, they had their moments where they did just that and then there were times that they failed miserably.
Our second verse that we will look at this month is 2 Corinthians 6:17.
“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,” As we see here it is a calling for all to come out. For us to come out from the world, to leave the unclean, and walk with Him. God is reaching out to us and wanting us to come out. As a matter fact the early statement of the Church of God was that we were “come-outers.” Those who came out of the world and would lead a life of holiness to the Lord.
The initial process of Sanctification is the point when you accept Christ as your personal Savior. If you haven’t done that yet, let me encourage you to receive the grace of God and open your heart to invite Christ in. Then you will start your walk with the Lord and grow in Him. At this point you are washed white as snow. Your sins that stained your life are all taken away. The chains that held you down are broken and you are set free.
Next time we’ll talk more about the second work of grace and how we continue to grow in our relationship with the Lord.