LESSON 2 11/3/2018
GLORIOUS CHURCH AND SANCTIFIED NEW LIFE
Suggested Hymns: G.H.B. 236, 307.
Devotional Readings: Rom. 6:1-11.
Topic For Adults: Live A Sanctified Life
Topic For Youths: Consecrate Yourself
Topic For Intermediates: You Are Called And Chosen
Lesson Scriptures: 1 Cor. 1:2; 2 Cor. 5:15; 1 Jn. 3:9.
MEMORY VERSE: “And such were some of you, but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God”. (1 Cor. 6:11) NKJV
DAILY DEVOTIONAL READING
Removing The Spots And Wrinkles
Christ’s death sanctifies and cleanses the church. He cleanses us from the old ways of sin and sets us apart for His service. In the above text, we discover that Jesus will make His bride a “radiant church, without stain or wrinkle….” Stain and wrinkle in this passage means a defect in beauty, freshness of life or holiness. Paul told the Ephesian church that we will stand beautifully and faultlessly before the Lord someday. According to Matthew Henry, the church and believers will not be without spot or wrinkle till they come into glory. He went further to say that only those who are sanctified will be glorified in heaven. Jesus Christ will only be married to a glorious bride (obedient, sanctified and holy) without spot or wrinkle. As we earnestly wait for the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, let us keep our garments spotless.
Point of Emphasis: The Lord Jesus is coming for a glorious church that has no spots or wrinkles.
Prayer Point: Lord, remove out every stain in me and cause my garment to always be white in Jesus’ name.
The church is a group of people who have been called out from the world by God, to live as His people under the authority of Jesus Christ. It is the organ through which God carries out His purposes on earth. The Lord Jesus Christ promised that He is coming back to take His people to heaven. However, He is not coming for a weak and dirty church, but for a strong and a glorious church. In today’s lesson, we will see the need and relevance of sanctification in the life of a believer.
NOTES ON THE TEXT
PART 1: WHAT IT MEANS TO BE SANCTIFIED (LEV. 11:44-45; 1 COR. 1:2).
In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word for the verb “to sanctify” is “quadesh”, which means to “consecrate”, “dedicate”, “hallow”, “purify”, and “keep holy”. In the New Testament, the Greek word for the verb “sanctify” is “hagiazo”, which means to separate, or set apart. Having stated the meaning of the term, let us look at some scriptures where the word is used:
- A day can be sanctified (Gen. 2:3).
- A building and its contents can be sanctified (Exo. 29:44).
- The house in which a man lives can be sanctified (Lev. 27:14).
- A mountain can be sanctified (Exo. 19:12).
In general, to be sanctified means to be “separate”, or to be “set apart” for God’s use. Similarly, when a person is sanctified, he or she is being set apart by God for a specific divine purpose. Jesus spoke of Himself as being sanctified in John 17:19. In other words, He is holy and “set apart” from sin. As believers and followers of Christ, we are to be similarly set apart from sin. To be sanctified means that God has been at work in our lives. God is our sanctifier and He is the One who called us out of darkness into the marvelous light of His beloved Son. To be sanctified, therefore, means that God’s word has had cleansing effect on us.
PART 2: THE PROCESS OF SANCTIFICATION (2 COR. 5:15; 1 COR. 6:11-14).
The sanctification process is dependent upon the death and resurrection of Christ. The Christian life begins with regeneration, whereby the Holy Spirit implants spiritual life in the believer. Sanctification begins at that very moment we give our lives to Jesus, that is, the moment we become born-again. God separates us from sin to Himself. He transforms our whole lives towards holiness and purity.
There are three stages of sanctification. The first stage occurs at the beginning of our Christian life. This is when we accept the Lord Jesus Christ as our Lord and personal Saviour. At that moment, believers are brought out of darkness into the light. We have been “justified through faith” (Rom. 5:1), and our position before God has been changed forever. No longer dead in trespasses, we are made alive together with Christ (Eph. 2:5). This is called positional sanctification, the process whereby we are saved from the penalty of sin.
The second stage of sanctification requires a lifetime to complete. It is called progressive sanctification, the process whereby we are saved from the practice and power of sin. It refers to our daily victory over sin. It involves our availability to the Holy Spirit and growing in the likeness of Christ. Every Christian is a sanctified person, belonging to Christ, and therefore should keep away from all forms of immorality (1 Cor. 6:13-14; 2 Cor. 7:1).
The third and final stage of sanctification occurs in the future. This is called entire or perfect sanctification, a time when we will be saved from the presence of sin. Entire sanctification will take place when we get to heaven. When believers die, their spirits go to be with Christ. Since nothing unclean can enter heaven, we must be made perfect at this point. The sanctification of the whole person – body, soul and spirit; will finally be complete when the Lord Jesus returns and we receive the glorified body (Phil. 3:21; 1 Cor. 15:35-49).
PART 3: EVIDENCE OF A SANCTIFIED LIFE (1 JN. 3:9; COL. 1:9-12)
Obedience is an essential evidence of sanctification and holiness. A sanctified person will love God with all his heart, soul, strength and mind. His ultimate desire will be to please God, serve Him and obey all His commandments. Service alone is not a proof of holiness. A sanctified life will produce Christian service. However, though one can perform service without necessarily living a sanctified life. A sanctified person will keep God’s word (Jn. 14:23). A sanctified person becomes like God, takes on the character of God and manifests it to the world. In Col. 1:9-12, Paul describes the evidence of a sanctified life as follows:
- Such an individual will possess the knowledge of God’s will
- Have spiritual wisdom and understanding
- Be obedient to God’s word
- Be fruitful in good works
- Have a deep relationship with God through prayer
- Possess the ability to persevere
- Have a joyful and a thankful heart
- Have the hope of eternal life in heaven.
In both the Old and New Testaments, there were sanctified people who devoted their lives to serve God. In each case, God “set apart” these people from the world around them unto Himself. God still wants a sanctified people, separated from the world of sin and evil unto Him. He wants a spiritual nation, His own special people, who will proclaim the praises of God and who will reflect His glory, values and character.
- Mention three other words that are synonymous to the verb “Sanctify”
- What is progressive sanctification?
- Why is it impossible for us to attain perfect sanctification here on earth?
- How can you differentiate a sanctified person from a profane person?