Set apart to accomplish Christ’s good pleasure
What does it mean to be holy? The question is full of presupposed ideas. Do I really want to be holy? Who wants to be considered as holier than thou?
While following Christ’s leadership believers are set apart to accomplish His good pleasure through submitted devotion. What exhilarating truth when I am reminded that we have been chosen by God! Not only am I His beloved, chosen child, but we are holy heirs of His kingdom and His kingdom work.
I am set apart as holy unto God
Ephesians 1:4 reminds us that long before we were ever born God “. . . chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him” (ESV).
. . . Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word.Ephesians 5:25–26 NASB
I am set in a special place for God
The process of sanctification possesses the intended purpose of making me holy, set apart for God’s good pleasure. The Greek root word translated holy and sanctify carries the idea of being set in a special place reserved for God. I have been chosen to be set in a special place reserved for God.
Paul admonished Titus with the truth of Christ “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people” (Titus 2:14 KJV). The Christian has been designated as a person distinct from and uncharacteristic of all others not belonging to God.
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.1 Peter 2:9 ESV
But know that the Lord has set apart the godly for himself;Psalm 4:3 ESV
the Lord hears when I call to him.
Set apart to be like Jesus
Because of who I am in Christ, the attraction of association calls those who have been set apart for Him to strive to be like Him.
John proclaims, “. . . we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.”1 John 3:2–3 NIV
The word purify carries the meaning “to become like the One whom I am set in reserve for.”
Submitting to be like Jesus
As a chosen one who is set apart for Christ and declared holy, I am to relinquish all rights to direct my own life. Instead I am to willingly submit to His sanctifying process that would make me like Him. John recounts Christ’s prayer to the Father indicating His continuing desire that believers be set apart for Himself.
Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.John 17:17–19 ESV
- Because I am set apart for Christ and declared holy, I . . .
Excerpts from Marriages that Minister by J. Kirk & Melanie D. Lewis. Available from your favorite book retailers including Amazon and Redemption Press. (As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.)
Read more from Marriages that Minister: A Portrait of Christ and His Bride.
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