1 Corinthians 1:30
“But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption”.
Sanctification is a sovereign act of God which is carried out by Him through Christ Jesus. He has separated and set apart His people in Christ for His own purpose; that is what the above Scripture means when it tells me that Christ is my sanctification. All of God’s works are perfect thereby sanctification is a perfect and finished work and that is why the Scripture tells us that we are complete in Christ (Col 2:10). There have been millions and millions of words written on this subject so my few words won’t have any impact but in my own heart as I study and grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus.
Many teach that sanctification is a progressive work in the believer whereby the believer through his works becomes more righteous and holy while getting closer to God. Some teach that their progressive sanctification is the basis of their assurance and others make it nothing more that an outward legal morality, i.e. “touch not, taste not, handle not”, (men’s commandments). I disagree wholeheartedly with the above mindset and I don’t find any of them taught in Scripture. We don’t read in the Word of God of those men who trusted in Christ claiming to grow in holiness, purity or sanctification before God.
Hear the godly prophet Isaiah in Chapter 6:5 who when he saw the Lord tells us what he truly thought of himself –“Woe is me for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips”. There is the great tried saint Job when after the Lord had severely tried him, when he would have progressively been more righteous and holy said “Behold, I am vile” Job 40:4
The great Apostle Paul knew and taught that ‘there is none righteous, no not one’ (Romans 3:10) and that in his ‘flesh there dwell no good thing’ (Romans 7:18). He tells us in 1 Cor 15:10 that NOW, by the grace of God only, could he say “I am what I am”. It wasn’t by works or faith or any progressive holiness of his but by grace alone. The same grace (God’s unmerited favor) that was dispensed to the elect before the world began, (2 Ti 1:9) our first separation unto Him. It is the same for us; we are all that we are by the grace of God alone in Christ Jesus.
Hebrews 10:10 “By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all”
Hebrews 10:14 “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified”
Hebrews 2:11 “For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren”
1 Cor 6:11 “And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”
Jude 1:1 “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James; to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ and called.”
You see from the Scriptures that we are sanctified completely in Christ Jesus and not by works that we do. What a blessed truth this is to our regenerated hearts. 2 Peter 3:18 instructs us to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and we do by His working in us. God’s work of grace is maintained in our souls and our love, our commitment and our faith all grow, increase and mature. Thankfully by His working within us to will and to do our outward acts of sin are more controlled and restricted but the flesh, the evil within does not lessen, we drag this flesh where nothing good dwelleth the remainder of our days and learn by experience that “I am carnal, sold under sin”…..
Christ alone is my wisdom, Christ alone is my righteousness. Christ alone is my acceptance with God and Christ alone is my sanctification.
Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord!
Grace and Peace!