What Is Sanctification? Part 10 (Final Part)


May we embrace all that God has for us, may we embrace the perfection or completion that God has given us as we are now not only body, not only the soul that gives life to the body, but we are now spiritually alive again just as the times of Adam and Eve before the fall.

      We now have all the tools necessary to embrace a holy life, separated from the pollution of the world. In our moral imperfection and even as we have to deal with the reality of our sinful nature and our inner struggles, because of our love for God, we avoid those things that facilitate sin and embrace those things that facilitate us living sanctified lives.

      May God help us and bless us all with the grace manifested not only in salvation, but also in sanctification and in the glorious baptism of the Holy Ghost. A baptism that not only is evident by speaking in tongues, but by the visible fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25 (NKJV)

 

 

     

 

 

 

 

What Is Sanctification? Part 9


Repentance without embracing sanctification is not truly repentance. This person will find his/herself going back to the same sin over and over as the conviction of sin and commitment to follow God’s ways is shallow.

 

      The sanctify believer has an unparalleled love, respect and appreciation for God, the things of God, the ways of God and the people of God. This is a person whose life is centered in God’s presence. The Bible tell us in John 14:15,

 

If you love Me, keep My commandments. (NKJV)

The word Keep means: “A warden, guard. To keep an eye on, watch, and hence to guard,[1]” Warden means a custodian.”

      So we are not talking about a perfect person here in the sense of not making mistakes, but a person that is constantly keeping his/her eyes in the things of God, in what God has to say and in His ways.

      The doctrine of Inclusion in the Body of Christ is a slap in the face to sanctification all together. It teaches that everybody will make it to heaven. No need for repentance, no need for Jesus and hell does not exist. This doctrine is very attractive to the world because it takes away any message that points out sin or the need for change.

      So you can be and do whatever you want and because God is love He will bring you in. This is a half true; that means that it is also a half lie. God is love, but we are not call to do whatever we want, we are call to repent of our sins, receive Jesus as our Savior, but also embrace Him as our Lord. Embracing Christ as the leader of our life is what separated us from the rest of the world that want nothing to do with HIM. Sadly, these Biblical doctrines are seen as outdated and as highly offensive today.

      In Matthew 7:21-23 the Bible tells us,

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ NKJV

 

This is a word for Christians; demons do not cast out demons. These are not just imperfect Christians like the rest of us; these are Christians that are openly practicing lawlessness. These are Christians that are totally turning their backs on sanctification and a Godly lifestyle. Help us Lord!

 

 

To be continued…

 


[1] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

What Is Sanctification? Part 8


To be practical, lets talk about a couple that are engaged to marry. They both want to have sex just as much as anybody else. Holiness tells them to avoid finding themselves in situations where they could engage in sexual relationships. Holiness tells them that they must marry soon to avoid falling into that great temptation. They are struggling, but there level of commitment towards sanctification keeps them away from fornication. What a beautiful thing for a couple to remain sexually pure before marriage!

      On the other hand, if the same couple is not as committed to sanctification, they will look for opportunities to have sex, will engage in having sex and will indeed pay the consequence for allowing themselves to fall into sexual and immoral sin.

      The many times that I fell in sexual sin happen because I totally ignored the wisdom of sanctification. I regret the reality of my failures and for years I embrace a mindset of condemnation. But Repentance brought forth God’s forgiveness and restoration. I still needed to pay the consequences of disrespecting God and sinning against Him, but I can have assurance in my spirit that God has given me another chance.

      The sanctify vessel flees from situations that can tempt them to fall in sin. The un-sanctify person runs into temptation; that is what I did many times. Repentance then becomes the key, but repentance should always lead us to sanctification.

To be continued…

What Is Sanctification? Part 7


The flesh of the sanctify Christian is attractive to sex just like everybody else, he/she would like to go off on somebody that cross them just like everybody else. He/she gets frustrated like everybody else. He/she likes to be entertained just like everybody else. However because of his/her fear, love and commitment to the Lord, they find a greater pleasure in being doers and not just listeners of the Word. (James 1:22)

      In other words, the sanctify person has the same fleshy desires as everybody else. The difference is that there is an inner struggle activated in their inside according to Galatians 5:16-18,

16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. NKJV

 

      When we are led by the Spirit of God as the center of our decision-making, even as we experience the inner struggle between what the flesh wants to do versus what the Spirit wants to do, we are free from the law.

      God knows our hearts and he will help us through by using grace, truth, correction and discipline and then more grace, truth, correction and discipline and again and again…that is the process of sanctification or the process of moral perfection.

      We will make mistake alone the way; that is guaranty. We will fail at times! But because God knows that, He gave us Romans 8:1,

“There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” (NKJV)

      When you walk in the Spirit; in other words, when your lifestyle is a lifestyle consecrated to God, you cannot be condemn or declared guilty. God will still deal with you by giving you truth and discipline when needed, but His grace will bring forth the mercy that you need every morning to start all over again.

      In that expression of His love, even as it looks as we are getting away with murder, in reality, it is the best system to provoke change in a human’s heart. Beloved, if we end-up in hell, we can’t never blame God.

To be continued…

What Is Sanctification? Part 6


Sanctification or holiness is a separation from the ways of the world into the ways of God. Our level of commitment to be holy determines how much we look or not like the world.

      So you have Christians that were born again, but they were never disciple into this second work of grace of sanctification. They join denominations that are extremely liberal in their doctrines and that is obviously appealing to the desires of the flesh. In certain denominations you can be a Christian and still do what you like to do.

      So it is ok to drink, is ok to party in a secular way, is ok to go to clubs, is ok to watch R Rated movies, is ok to see vulgar concerts, is ok to listen to secular music, is ok to dress in a sensual way, is ok to use profanity, is ok to lie, is ok to steal, is ok to fornicate, is ok to engage in homosexual lifestyles, is ok to gossip, is ok to be bitter, is ok to be un-forgiven etc., etc.

      As you can see, this is a Christian that pretty much looks like the world that surrounds him/her; I will take it further and say that, this is a Christian that looks worst than the world. First Thessalonians 5:23 again, is key,

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” NKJV

       The word Blameless means “Without fault”. That means that you can’t be accused of being involved in these various things that the world is involved with. Again, that does not mean that you are morally perfect, but you do all you need to do to stay away from those things that activate your sinful nature.

To be continued…

What Is Sanctification? Part 5


We must point out here that Jesus Christ had victory over sin on the cross of Calvary. We can rest in that victory as if it was ours. He indeed died for our sins; He took the punishment that we deserve. So, if we believe in HIM we, as John 3:16 tells us, “…should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (KJV)

 

      The saint always has the choice, but as long as there is no commitment to live holy lives in our secret places, before the Lord and men, we have yet to experience this beautiful work of grace call sanctification. In Matthew 5:48 Jesus tells us,

“Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” NKJV

 

      The word perfect here is the Greek Word τέλειος meaning: “Finished, that which has reached its end, term, limit; hence, complete, full, wanting in nothing.[1]”. Going back to First Thessalonians 5:23, the word Sanctify is the Greek word ἁγιάζω, meaning: “To make holy, sanctify. To make clean, render pure. Particularly in Heb. 9:13. Metaphorically, to render clean in a moral sense, to purify, sanctify (Rom. 15:16, “being sanctified by the Holy Ghost,” meaning by the sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit on the heart. [2]

 

         It is amazing to me that when God the Father looks at us, He already see us morally clean through the blood of Jesus. But in the process, the Holy Ghost is working sanctification in us and through us. Hebrews 9:13-14 tells us,

 

13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (NKJV)

 

      The word Conscience means: “To be one’s own witness, one’s own conscience coming forward as witness. It denotes an abiding consciousness whose nature it is to bear inner witness to one’s own conduct in a moral sense (Titus 1:15). It is self–awareness.

(I) Particularly, a knowing of oneself, consciousness; and hence conscience, that faculty of the soul which distinguishes between right and wrong and prompts one to choose the former and avoid the latter[3]

 

In its simplest form, Sanctification is a deep conviction and desire to do right, even as we struggle with doing wrong. Doing right is our pleasure and when we do wrong there is deeper conviction and regret.

 

      It is a life that truly wants to please the Father, even in the mix of struggles with the flesh and attacks from the enemy through temptations.

 

To be continued…


[1] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[2] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[3] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

Your Voluntary Slave


Hand to the sky

Forty-five years of life and sixteen years of walking with the Master. I have seen my ugliness; I have seen my heart and the capability of evil in me. I see a stain in the pages of my testimony. I turned my back on God; I went after spiritual and physical fornications.

I failed God, I failed my children and I failed all of those that look up to me. No matter how many sermons, no matter how many songs, no matter how many souls come to the King provoked for something I said or wrote…I can’t never forget that in the times of trouble, in the times of distress and great pain I insisted in my own will over the will of my Father.

 Shame continues to knock at the door of my thoughts. How could I mess up so bad before such loving God? I surely knew better! The chains of condemnations hold my hands and feet to the ground of mediocrity.

 I am Adam and Eve going after the fruit that was not mine. I went after that one thing, the only one thing that God told me not to eat from. He gave me an Eden and the freedom of walking with HIM in the cool of the day and I gave Him blame for my faults. I hid from His sweet presence and covered what He created me to be. To this day I covered my shame every day with the clothing of who I am not.

 I am Moses striking the rock. I am David doing a census on God’s people as if they were mine, as if those were numbers that I could take credit for. I am the murderer, I am the thief, I am the prophet who lost his faith, I am the one who end-up in the belly of a fish. I am the Israel that God forgave over and over again, but went after the idolatry of the world anyway.

 I am Judas selling the Lord, I am Paul before Damascus and I am Peter denying the very one who strengthen me to walk on water.

 Why did I take that turn? Why did I enter that room? Why did I make that phone call? Why did I visited that website? Why did I articulate such hurtful words? Why did I betray him with my lack of loyalty? Why did I give her such bad example? Why? Why? Why? For I can’t fool myself, I know my story and the things that I have done. My sins are before me like giant statutes of my failure, for my arrogant eyes to see.

 Oh God, but in my pitiful condition you did not allow me to take my life on that terrible night on that Jacksonville bridge. You said: “Angel, I am not done with you!” On that night when in the dark hour of my soul I was convinced that I was to do my children a favor by taking my own life…you spoke to me… You… spoke to me!

 When I was unfaithful, when I wanted nothing to do with you; you did not give up on me. You gave me the grace to repent and you are teaching me to learn humility through the fire of your Spirit.

Don’t let me go back to eat with pigs, don’t let me look back and be turned to a purposeless statue of salt. Don’t remove from me your Spirit. Have your way in me, even if it cost me to die; I rather die than to live one second away from your presence. Let them look at me and see me pointing at the mountains from where my salvation came from. Oh God, may the glory forever be yours!

 I am hungry, like one that has not eaten in days, I am thirsty like one walking on a desert without water. Here I am Lord, have all of me…I surrender!

 

 

I don’t understand your mercies Lord, but I receive them as mine, for me to take. Not to continue to embrace sin, but to turn from my wicked ways.

 

For your mercy saved my life, for your mercy has given me a new song to sing, a new sermon to preach and a new book to write.

Open my mouth to declared your truth around the world, open my mouth to sing the song of the Lord, use my pen to testify of you…I am yours Holy Father, I m free and I belong to you. Let me be your voluntary slave. Put an earring in the ears of my soul and let the world know that I am your slave; your voluntary slave. 

What Is Sanctification? Part 4


In the Pentecostal world specially, some see sanctification as an experiences that makes us morally perfect; others see it as a process. I see it as a process also; however, the Bible does use the word Perfect. What I am interpreting at this point is that the word perfect is use as a synonymous for complete. Let me explain!

      That means that as Born-Again believers we are now body, soul and spirit, not only body and soul. In the garden Adam and Eve were perfect in the sense that they were indeed body, soul and spirit. Their fall proved that they were not morally perfect as they disobey God. After their fall they died spiritually.

      When we are born again, we are born again spiritually. Being born again does not make us perfect in terms of having no faults, but perfect in terms of having our own trinity activated. We are now perfect in terms of having all of our part together. When we are not born again, we have a body and we have a soul that gives life to the body, but our spirit is dead. The Bible tells us in First Thessalonians 5:23,

 

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” NKJV

 

      Sanctification, as I interpreted in Scripture, is an experience where the saints made up his/her mind to preserve his/her body, soul and spirit blameless before the Lord. We may not be perfect in actuality, because we still have to deal with the desires of the flesh or our sinful nature, but we have all the tools necessary to live victorious holy lives. We are now ready to be separated for God’s glory.

To be continued…

On the Fifty Year Anniversary of MLK I Have a Dream Speech


MLK

This morning, as I took my daughters to the Track and Field practice I was teaching them the importance of being on time and give the extra mile. We will defeat the racism that is left with hard work, not with the “I am a Victim”, “Is All The White Men’s Fault” nagging and pitiful songs that our new water down, money-making, civil right agitators are singing! With God all things are possible; no white man can stop me from making my destiny a reality…only I can do that! I celebrate 50 years of the I Have Dream speech by Dr. Martin Luther King…we have come a long way…thank God for HIM and may the Lord deal with the false prophets and false teachers of our day!

What Is Sanctification? Part 3


 

Titus 2 and 3 gives us not only a window, but also an open door to the understanding of what sound doctrine really is. Verse one gives us the introduction,

But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: (NKJV)

Definitions:

  • Sound: To be healthy, sound, physically well.

  • Doctrine: Teaching or instruction

From this verse on we see a detailed list of what sound doctrine is:

A. To The Older Men:

  1. Verse 2 that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience;

Definitions:

  • Temperate: To be sober. Sober, temperate, self–controlled, especially in respect to wine.[1]

  • Dignified: Venerable, reverend, reputable, dignified. Semnós represents not only earthly dignity (kósmios [2887]), but that which is derived from a higher citizenship, a heavenly one, which is the possession of all believers. There lies something of majestic and awe–inspiring qualities in semnós which does not repel but rather invites and attracts [2]

  • Sensible: understanding. Discreet, sober, temperate, of a sound mind (1 Tim. 3:2; Titus 1:8; 2:2, 5); self–disciplined in one’s freedom, self–restrained in all passions and desires.[3]

  • Sound in faith: Healthy belief in the truth,[4]

  • In love: Agape; unconditional love.

  • In Perseverance: To persevere, remain under. A bearing up under, patience, endurance as to things or circumstances. [5]

 B. To The Older Women:

2. Verse 3 the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.

C. To The Young Men:

3. Verse 6 Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded, in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you.

Definitions:

 C. To the Employees:

4. Verse 9 Exhort bondservants to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, 10 not pilfering, but showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.

D. To Everyone:

5. Verse 11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, (This is the first work of grace: SALVATION)

6. Verse 12 teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

E. To The Preacher and Teacher of God’s Word

7. Verse 15 Speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no one despise you.

Definitions:

  • Despise: To think above or beyond a thing, to ignore, despise, with the gen[7]

      From Titus 2:2 to Titus 2:15 we have a list of things concerning the way we should live that tells us what sound doctrine is all about. Sound Doctrine is about how to live a sanctified life. I must add that Titus Chapter 3 is also directed to the ministers in terms of what to specifically teach.

      We can spend weeks, months or perhaps years breaking down the meaning of every word in these verses, and, I believe that we all should in order to gain a deeper understanding. However, the heart of my point is that when we talk about sound doctrine we are not talking about something complicated, we are talking about the simplicity of the explanation of how to reflect God in all we do.

To be continued…


[1] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[2] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[3] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[4] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

[5] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

intrans (intransitive)

[6] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.

gen (genitive)

[7] Zodhiates, S. (2000). The complete word study dictionary: New Testament (electronic ed.). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.