Thursday, March 24, 2011


C – BE YE HOLY – 3

When we are converted, we change.  This is one of the definitions of converting—changed, transformed.  Our purpose changes; our behavior changes.  We are new in Christ.  There is a change of will and attitude.  One of the great explanations of conversion was given by Jesus to Paul on the road to Damascus after Paul realized who the voice was.  Acts 26:18 

We are brought out of the darkness of sin into the light of God’s Word.  Light was very important to the Jews.  They had the tradition that there was always to be a light on in every house at night.  Those in the wilderness today might have a better understanding for even in the country, we have lights on.  In town we have streetlights.  They would have had nothing.  Sin as darkness was a very clear picture as was light dispelling the darkness or sin.  We know the light could only be Christ.

This light was prophesied by Isaiah in Matt. 4:16.  Life was associated with Light in Jhn.1:4,5.  Light is put into perspective as opposed to darkness in Jhn. 3:20,21.  We are to walk in the Light.  In fact we reflect the Light of Christ as we become a light to the world—not of ourselves but as we reflect the Light of Christ and His Truth.  Matt. 5:16
Everything we say and do is to be to the glory of God.  1 Thess. 4:1

Jesus told Nicodemus that he would have to be born again.  Jhn. 3:3  He explained it in Jhn. 3:5.  A new birth requires that a person start over.  We know this is spiritual rebirth as Jesus explained.  What happened to Christ when He was crucified?  He was killed!  Rom.6:6  This is the picture of us in our old life which now is crucified or dead to self and sin.

We now have a new calling in Christ Jesus.  1 Thess. 4:7  The Amplified Version says, “For God has not called us to impurity, but to consecration (to dedicate ourselves to the most thorough purity).”  First, we were called by the gospel to be converted or changed.  Now we are called to holiness.  As we died to self and sin, we put on Christ.  Rom. 13:14 

Matt. 12:43-45  We cannot expect to take out sin from our lives and not fill our lives with holiness.  Heb. 10:26;  2 Pet. 2:20  This does not indicate that he can never return to the Lord.  It is just very difficult, if not almost impossible.  We know of instances where a person had stooped to the depths of sin and then returned to become a profitable servant of the Lord; however, we can think of those that were once faithful and then left the Lord and so far have not returned.  Even Paul was concerned for his soul.  1 Cor. 9:27  As Paul wrote to the Galatians, he expressed his surprise that they had been thoroughly taught and yet were deserting the truth.  Gal. 1:6

As we strive for holiness,  we put on a new man.  Col. 3:9,10  The old has been “laid off.”  We are now being renewed according to the image of God in which we were created.  Can our families, our friends, and our neighbors really see a difference in us; or do we continue with the same old attitude problems and grudges that we have always had?  Titus 2:14  Perhaps it is a bit strange that we don’t go to the same places to hang around.

1 Pet. 4:4  Maybe we spend our time in a different way.  Our language has changed and our conversation is about something different now.  The old has passed away.  2 Cor. 5:17   Our focus has changed.  In the past there may have been things that you would never miss—watching, going, doing.  Paul uses exercise as an example.  1 Tim. 4:8  Some of these things of the past may be wrong, but some may not be wrong.  The importance changes.  Would we be willing to completely give up if wrong?  If not wrong, would we be willing to give up to do something for the Lord or to improve our spiritual welfare.  This involves focus—my will or the will of my Savior.

Rom. 6:19  We can become slaves to worldly things.  “I just have to have.”  “I just have to see.”  “I just have to go.”  “I just have to do.”  I—I—I.  We allow My desires to over-shadow everything else.  We loose our self-control.  Christ wants us to be slaves—slaves of righteousness.  A slave doesn’t question—he does what he is told to do.  With worldly focus we loose our reason.  With spiritual focus Christ becomes our reason.  Rom.6:21-23  We always have consequences for what we do.  Wouldn’t it be better to forego some of our desires on earth which has as a consequence eternal death and instead be enslaved to God and reap eternal life?

Instruments are very important to professions and trades.  Think of the instruments of doctors, carpenters, dentists, teachers, musicians, etc.  They all need something with which to be profitable in their business.  Jesus was concerned with His Father’s business.  Lk. 2:49  If we are concerned about our Father’s business of holiness then we must be that kind of instrument.  Rom. 6:13  Think of the instruments of a doctor or dentist.  They cannot be contaminated.  A carpenter’s tools must be in good shape and sharp.  The tools of a musician must be in tune.  We cannot be contaminated with the world.  We must be in good shape spiritually. Our lives must be in tune with the Truth.

Our lives are to be worthy of the gospel.  Phil. 1:27  Holiness will require that we walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.  Col. 1:10  This does not confine worthiness to just an outward showing but it is to be worthy in all aspects of our lives.  Bearing fruit as well as increasing in knowledge will help keep us on the right path of holiness.

As long as we live in the flesh, we live to the will of God and not for our own desires.  Peter reminds us of this in 1 Pet. 4:2.  This requires us to ever be asking the question of all we do and say, “Would this please God?  Do we think this is right just because that is what I want?”  1 Jhn. 2:5  reassures us that we are in Him if we keep His Word and then we are perfected.  We sometimes say that we hope we will go to heaven.  We can know.  1 Jhn. 5:13  We must be sure that we have kept His Word regarding our conversion and then our continued thirsting for God and His holiness.  As we think of holiness, perfection, worthiness, let us not forget God’s help.  2 Pet. 1:3,4  We don’t do it alone.

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