(1 Thessalonians 5:23-24) “And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (24) Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.”
Introduction: When we talk about sanctifying one’s self, we ask the question: ‘What does sanctification mean?’ The most common answer given is ‘to set apart.’
I want to present unto you three important questions:
- Who are we set apart to?
- What are we set apart for?
- What are we set apart from?
First: Who are we set apart to?
We are set apart to God; 1 Corinthians 1:18-21. In verse 21, it is those who have believed who have been set apart. Verse 21 tells us also that “it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.” So, we see that through “the foolishness of preaching” that God sets those apart who believed.
Second: What are we set apart for?
The Will of God; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-12. In verse 1, how are we to walk and to please God:
- “Abstain from fornication” (verse 3)
- We possess these bodies “in sanctification (or holiness) and honour” (verse 4) (Romans 12:1; 1 Peter 1:15-16)
- Not lusting after strong desires or appetites of the flesh (verse 5)
- Not defrauding or using deception against our brother (verse 6)
Notice verse 7: “For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.”
Third: What are we set apart from?
Set apart from the world; 1 John 2:15-17. We are set apart from the world and the things of the world. All of the things that this world has to offer that are not of God; the child of God is set apart from it. (Colossians 3:1-3)
Conclusion: there is more to sanctification than to just be set apart. We will continue this study of sanctification and how it is a very significant part of the Christian life.