BE YE SEPARATE – 4
Scripture leaves us no choice in this matter. We are to be separate from the world even though we are IN the world; those in Christ can never be OF the world. Jesus gave us this example. Heb.7:26 If we do not live a life separate from the world, the time will come when the Lord will have to do the separating. Matt.25:32 The night before Jesus was crucified, He prayed for those following Him and for those that would follow Him in the future. Jhn.17:20 He did not pray that God would take them out of the world. Jhn.17:15 Jesus prayed that His followers would be kept from the evil one. The “evil one” is very real. 1 Jhn.5:19 When we took Jesus as our Savior, He took us out of the world. Jhn.15:19 Being out of the world, we no longer follow those things of the world. We are separate.
Since Jesus came and established His church (Matt.16:18), Christians are God’s people. Gal.6:15,16 However, the Jews as God’s people in the O.T. were to live lives separate from the nations around them. These were idol worshippers and as the Jews failed to heed in instructions of the Lord to be separate, they fell into many wicked practices.
One example of living a separate life that comes from the O.T. is Samson who took the Nazarite vow. The stipulations of the Nazarite vow give us an excellent example that we need to follow in living a life separate from the world.
A Jew was not compelled to take the Nazarite vow. It was voluntary. Num.6:2 The purpose was to separate himself to the Lord. Rom.12:1 We come to Jesus and present ourselves as a living sacrifice. Some religions today think they will get to life eternal by giving their life up to bomb a site. We offer ourselves to live for Him.
A sacrifice is when you give up something. 1 Pet.2:5 We make many sacrifices with joy to One who has given us so much. This Scripture speaks of spiritual sacrifices. Heb.13:15,16 Praise and sharing are other sacrifices. When we share, it is not “throw away things” but sharing of something that we might have needed or been able to use—even financial.
Rom.6:13 We give up what would have made us an instrument of unrighteousness to participate in godly endeavors. We no longer love the things of the world. 1Jhn.2:15,16 A person cannot love both the world and the Lord. Matt.6:24 If this attempt is made, we make ourselves an enemy of God. Jam.4:4
Num.6:3 Food and drink was changed when the Nazarite vow was taken. Remember Daniel, although not under the vow, would not partake of the food and drink of the Babylonians when it was put before him. We are to take care of our bodies for they are a temple of the Holy Spirit. Many would gasp at desecrating a church and yet think nothing of doing the same to their bodies. 1 Cor.6:19,20 This was so important to Paul that he was willing to give up meat altogether if it meant the saving of a soul. His eating would become an example that might not be clear to a person just converted from idol worship. 1 Cor.8:13
A Jew under the Nazarite vow would probably be noticed because of appearance. A Christian follows the culture and style only up to a point. We have to think in global terms for missionaries must make important decisions in this regard. God dressed Adam and Eve. Before sin came into the Garden, they didn’t even know they were naked. Gen.3:11,21 Later on priests were given instructions about their covering. Ex.28:42 God-given instructions involved undergarments to cover their flesh down to their thighs. Both of these times it is evident of the importance of covering the flesh. One of the differences in the world is the display of too much flesh or being modest. (modest—unpretentious, humble, simple, inconspicuous) 1 Tim.2:9 It seems to be a natural things for women to love fine clothes. Rather, God wants us to be known for our good deeds and not our clothes. 1 Tim.2:10
The one under a Nazarite vow was evident by open profession. Neither do we hide the fact that we are a Christian. Matt.10:32,33 Part of becoming a Christian is in confessing Jesus as the Son of God and wanting Him to be our Savior. 1 Jhn.4:15 The very life of one under the Nazarite vow was evident. The way we live is also to be evident that there is something different in our lives. Acts 4:13
1 Tim.4:12 Our example must show that we are separate from the world in every aspect of our lives. May we be like the Thessalonians as Paul prayed for them in his letter to them. 1 Thess.1:3 …work of faith, labor of love, and steadfastness in hope.