The Will of God… Sanctification – Part 5

1Thessalonians 4:1-7 Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as you have received of us how you ought to walk and to please God, so you would abound more and more. For you know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that you should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God had not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. 

Seven personal agents are used in sanctifying: God (Gen. 2:3; Lev. 21:15, 23; 22:9; John 10:36; 1Thess. 5:23; Jude 1:1). Jesus Christ (1Cor. 1:30; Eph. 5:26; Heb. 2:11; 10:10, 14; 13:12). Holy Spirit (Rom. 15:16; 1Cor. 6:11; 2Thess. 2:13; 1Pet. 1:2). Moses (Ex. 19:10, 14; 40:13; Lev. 8:10-15, 30; 21:8; Num. 7:1). Joshua (Jos. 7:13). Priests (1Chron. 15:14; 2Chron. 30:24; Ex. 19:22). Laymen (Lev. 11:44; 20:7).

Man is the agent in sanctification 85 times; God 23 times; Christ 10 times; and the Holy Spirit 4 times. Man has as much to do with sanctification as God, for he is the one who decides to sanctify himself to God. Man and God work together in the setting apart process. Men are spoken of as being sanctified 75 times; material things are said to be sanctified 40 times; and God is referred to as being sanctified 14 times (Lev. 10:3; Num. 20:12-13; 27:14; Isa. 5:16; 8:13; 29:23; Ezek. 20:41; 28:22, 25; 36:23; 38:16; 39:27).

Fifteen commands to sanctify: Let priests sanctify themselves (Ex. 19:22; 1Chron. 15:14; 2Chron. 29:15, 34; 30:3, 5, 15, 24; 31:18). Sanctify them (Ex. 19:10; 28:41; 29:33; 30:29; Lev. 8:11; 21:23). Sanctify him (Lev. 8:12; 21:8, 15). Sanctify yourselves (Lev. 11:44; 20:7; Num. 11:18; Jos. 3:5; 1Sam. 16:5; 1Chron. 15:12; 2Chron. 29:5). Sanctify the people (Ex. 19:14; Jos. 7:13). Sanctify Aaron and his garments (Lev. 8:30). Sanctify unto Me all the firstborn (Ex. 13:2). Sanctify it (mountain, Ex. 19:23). Sanctify the breast (of the wave offering, Ex. 29:27). Sanctify the altar (Ex. 29:36-37; 40:10). Sanctify the Lord of Hosts (Isa. 8:13). Sanctify the Holy One of Jacob (Isa. 29:23). Sanctify a fast (Joel 1:14; 2:15). Sanctify the congregation (Joel 2:18). Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts (1Pet. 3:15). Not only are there commands for people to sanctify God, but complaints because they did not do so (Deut. 32:51; Num. 27:14).

To be continued…

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