TRANSFORMED INTO HOLINESS

“To be holy is to be morally blameless. It is to be separated from sin and, therefore, consecrated to God. The word signifies ‘separation to God, and the conduct befitting those so separated’” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p16).

The LORD encourages—He does not say I will not leave you but ‘I will smelt away your dross’ (Isa 1:25).

“It is the natural tendency of divine truth, when received into the heart, to produce holiness. The design of the whole plan of redemption was to secure the highest holiness and happiness of the creature; and when the gospel comes with the power of God unto the salvation of the soul, this end is preeminently secured. The renewed man is a pardoned man; the pardoned man becomes a holy man; and the holy man is a happy man. He who receives the doctrine of electing love in his heart by the power of the Spirit bears about with him the material of a holy walk; its tendency is to humble, abase, and sanctify the man. God alone has made him to differ from another. [H]e has received the free, distinguishing grace of God” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Oct 22nd).

“[Y]ou yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Pet 2:5 ESV).

“[H]oliness is obedience to the will of God in whatever God directs. The holiness described in the Bible calls us to do more than separate ourselves from the moral pollution of the world around us. It calls us to obey God” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p138). I can pretend I’m separating myself by obeying self-selected commands but that is much different than obeying GOD.

“[T]he grace of God is a seed that, however it lies hidden, will certainly in due time spring up, put forth itself, will bud and blossom and will bring forth rich fruit” Jonathan Edwards (ref#229, p115).

“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is” (1 John 3:2 ESV).

UNDER THE DOMINION OF ANOTHER POWER

“I can say to myself that not only am I no longer under the dominion of sin, but I am under the dominion of another power that nothing can frustrate However weak I may be, it is the power of God that is working in me” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p70).

“God’s strong hand is on you; [l]ive carefree before God; he is most careful with you” (1 Pet 5:6-7 MSG).

“[L]et yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God’s life” (1 Pet 1:13-16 MSG).

“[H]e’s a good Father. But don’t forget, he’s also a responsible Father, and won’t let you get by with sloppy living” (1 Pet 1:17 MSG).

“Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God”(1 Pet 1:18-21 MSG).

“The more vile we are in our own eyes, the more precious he will be to us” John Newton (ref#322, p128).

“Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth” (1 John 3:18 ESV).

“Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death therefore what is earthy in you” (Col 3:2-5 ESV).

“’Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul’ (1 Pet 2:11). We do not receive our sanctification and are then delivered from these things. No; he tells us to abstain from them and to keep ourselves from them” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Jan 27th).

“As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ” (1 Pet 4:10-11 ESV).

“Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly” (1 Cor 13:13 MSG).

WORKING TOGETHER WITH CHRIST

“The Gospel announces that rest is only to be found in a knowledge of God, because God has made us, and He has made us in such a way that we never can know rest apart from Him” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, May 21st).

“God, who got you started in this spiritual adventure, shares with us the life of his Son and our Master Jesus. He will never give up on you. Never forget that” (1 Cor 1:7-9 MSG).

“[J]ust as it is the same life and sap that abides in the vine and in the branches, so it is the same life, which in its surpassing glory and fullness dwells in the God-Man-Mediator, that is also in the weakest believer. It is the same spirit, poured out upon the head, and received by him without measure, that in measure is given to his people. [I]t is his life-giving power that creates it at the first, that preserves it, and that causes it to grow from grace to grace, and from grace to glory” Charles Ross (ref#241, p119).

“To live by the Spirit is to live both in obedience to and dependence on the Holy Spirit. There is a balance then between our wills (expressed by obedience) and our faith (expressed by our dependence)” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p74-75).

“[Y]ou will see in the Scriptures the same operations are attributed to God and to man. God converts, and it is man that converts himself. God circumcises the heart, God gives a new heart; and it is man that should circumcise his heart and make himself a new heart” Louis Gaussen (ref#246, p9).

“We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him” (Rom 8:15-17 MSG)!

“[T]o accept [our] lot and rejoice in [our] toil—this is the gift of God. For [we] will not remember the days of [our] life because God keeps [us] occupied with joy in [our] heart” (Eccl 5:19-20 ESV).

“Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Heb 13:20-21 ESV).

WE ARE RESPONSIBLE

[W]e do not understand the proper distinction between God’s provision and our own responsibility for holiness. ‘What am I to do myself, and what am I to rely on God to do?’” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

 “God is always self-consistent and true to His way. He works only through man, but He demands things be done His way” Bob Sorge (ref#197, p14).

GOD said the following to Jeremiah and He also says this to us, His children: “[D]ress yourself for work; arise, and say to them everything that I command you. Do not be dismayed by them, lest I dismay you before them. And I, behold, I make you this day a fortified city, and iron pillar, and bronze walls. [T]hey will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you, for I am with you, declares the LORD, to deliver you” (Jer 1:17-19 ESV).

“Ours is the duty, but His is the strength” Richard Steel (ref#225, April 18th).

“[T]he victory won by Jesus must be enforced by us. John Wesley wrote: ‘All this is indeed the work of God. It is God alone who can cast our Satan. But he is generally pleased to do this by man, as an instrument in his hand’” Doug Newton (ref#166, p91).

“[You] are responsible, although you have received all your strength from Christ to do it. [T]he sun works as an universal cause, and the tree as a particular cause. Christ works as an universal cause, and you work as a particular cause” William Bridge (ref#225, Oct 24th).

“He waits to work alongside man until man conforms to His way” Bob Sorge (ref#197, p15).

“[M]ay the LORD do what seems good to him” (2 Sam 10:12 ESV).

“[W]ork at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord” (Heb 12:14 NLT).

“’Purse holiness, for without holiness no one will see the Lord.’ The word pursue suggest two thoughts: first, that diligence and effort are required; and second, that it is a lifelong task” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

“[H]e is unchangeable, and who can turn him back? What he desires, that he does. For he will complete what he appoints for me” (Job 23:13-14 ESV).

PLACING OURSELVES IN THE WILL OF GOD

“[I]t is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil 2:13 ESV).

“[T]he Lord allows us to succeed, when we in good faith discharge our duty and shun nothing that he commands. How many times have we abandoned our duties because we thought that success could only come through disobedience” John Calvin (ref#164, Jan 10th)?

“Behold on what sure foundation his happiness is built whose soul is possessed with divine love, whose will is transformed into the will of God, and whose greatest desire is, that his Maker should be pleased! Oh! the peace, the rest, the satisfaction that attendeth such a temper of mind” Henry Scougal (ref#321, p78)!

“[W]hoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. [W]hoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked” (1 John 2:5-6 ESV).

“[L]et people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful” (Titus 3:14 ESV).

“[H]oliness is a process, something we never completely attain in this life. [A]s we begin to conform to the will of God in one area of life, He reveals to us our need in another area” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p10).

“We are not our own, therefore neither our reason nor our will should guide us in our thoughts and actions. We should not seek what is expedient to the flesh. [L]et us forget ourselves and our own interests as far as possible. [L]et his wisdom and will dominate all our actions” John Calvin (ref#313, p21).

“The Gospel of Jesus Christ does not so much take the Christian out of the world as take the world out of the Christian. [I]f the world is not in them, the world outside them will not be able to affect them” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, March 20th).

PUTTING ON THE NEW SELF

“We will take everything that happens as happening to Him, whether it be praise or blame, persecution or commendation” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, Feb 4th).

“Do we not become members of the body of the divine person of Christ? Yes, the same blood that flows in the head flows in the hand, and the same life that quickens Christ quickens His people, for ‘Ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God’ (Col 3:3). As if this were not enough, we are married to Christ. He has betrothed us unto Himself in righteousness and in faithfulness, and he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Sept 16th AM).

“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire” (2 Pet 1:3-4 ESV).

“To live a holy life is to live a life in conformity to the moral precepts of the Bible and in contrast to the sinful ways of the world. It is to live a life characterized by the ‘[putting] off of your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires and [putting] on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness’ (Ephesians 4:22, 24)” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p16).

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God” (Rom 12:1 ESV).

By calling it a living sacrifice we are to be continually sacrificed to the Lord so that our former life will be destroyed in us. [O]ur work is pleasing and acceptable to God when we devote ourselves to purity and holiness” John Calvin (ref#164, Aug 6th).

“But you, dear friends, carefully build yourselves up in this most holy faith by praying in the Holy Spirit, staying right at the center of God’s love, keeping your arms open and outstretched, ready for the mercy of our Master, Jesus Christ. This is the unending life, the real life” (Jude 1:20-21 MSG)!

“[What] pleases him is not our work for him but our need of him” John Piper (ref#220, p215-216).

“The good news of salvation is that as believers in Jesus Christ, and by God’s grace, we are no longer sinners in Adam, we are now righteous in Christ” Denny Johnson (ref#385).

SHATTERED PRIDE

“As we grow in the Christian life we face increasing danger of spiritual pride” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p72).

“To humble the pride of the flesh, God determined to take away from men any reason for confidence or boasting” John Calvin (ref#164, Jan 9th).

“It is a very common for God’s people, after they have enjoyed a great deliverance, to find a little trouble too much for them. It is as if the Lord must teach us our littleness, our nothingness, in order to keep us within bounds” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Jan 21st PM).

“Thank God if you are going through a drying-up experience! The sign that God is at work in us is that He corrupts confidence in the natural virtues. It is the saddest thing to see people in the service of God depending on what they have by the accident of heredity” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, Dec 30th).

“Weakness is not the big danger to be avoided. What you need to avoid is your delusions of strength” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Feb 17th).

“Idlers may indulge a fond conceit of their abilities, because they are untried; but the earnest worker soon learns his own weakness. If you seek humility, try hard work. If you would know your nothingness, attempt some great thing for Jesus” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Mar 2nd PM).

“To be truly in Christ is to stand accepted in His righteousness, to be justified by Him freely from all things; it is to be brought to the knowledge of our own vileness, insufficiency, and guilt; to be made to cast aside all self-dependence and works of human merit, and to come as the thief on the cross came, without any confidence in anything of self, but as a poor, helpless, ruined, condemned sinner, whose hope of pardon and acceptance is only through the free mercy of God in Christ Jesus” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, July 1st).

“[W]e must die if we are ever going to live. So grace is out to kill us. But in presiding over our deaths, grace gives us life” Paul David Tripp (ref#190, Oct 19th).

“[T]rust the Lord, surrender, and go habitually trusting through all the changes, knowing that his love, purpose, and promise are unchangeable” John Newton (ref#322, p191).

THE SPIRIT, OUR PROVISION

“Jesus cannot come as long as there is anything in the way either of goodness or badness. When He comes am I prepared for Him to drag into the light every wrong thing I have done? It is just here that He comes. Repentance does not bring a sense of sin, but a sense of unutterable unworthiness. ‘He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire.’ John does not speak of the baptism of the Holy Ghost as an experience, but as a work performed by Jesus Christ. ‘He shall baptize you.’ The only conscious experience those who are baptized with the Holy Ghost ever have is a sense of absolute unworthiness” Oswald Chambers (ref#7, Aug 22nd).

“God has made provision for our holiness and He has also given us a responsibility for it. God’s provision for us consists in delivering us from the reign of sin, uniting us with Christ, and giving us the indwelling Holy Spirit to reveal sin, to create a desire for holiness, and to strengthen us in our pursuit of holiness. Through the power of the Holy Spirit and according to the new nature He gives, we are to put to death the misdeeds of the body” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p78).

“The saving work of the Spirit in the heart of God’s elect is a gradual and progressive one” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p78).

“It is not the work of the Spirit to tell you the meaning of Scripture, and give you the knowledge of divinity, without your own study and labour. To reject study on the pretense of the sufficiency of the Spirit, is to reject the Scripture itself” Richard Baxter (ref#225, July 22nd).

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him” (Rom 8:16 ESV).

“Weakness is a reproach when such a might is at our service. Defeat is dishonor when the partnership of God is rejected” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p73).

GOAL OF SANCTIFICATION

“It is God’s work, wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit who makes Christ our sanctification. Generally there is an awakening of heart and mind in which there comes vision and persuasion. There is a conviction of need and a revelation of grace, a hunger and a search, a process and a crisis, an act of faith and an assurance of cleansing. It is as distinctly a second work of grace as regeneration is a new birth” Smauel Chadwick (ref#195, p115-116).

“[T]his is the will of God, your sanctification” (1 Thes 4:3 ESV).

“[A Christian] is in a partnership with God, and he will reap its benefits only when he has fulfilled his own responsibilities. He cannot do what God must do, and God will not do what [He] should do. No one can attain any degree of holiness without God working in his life, but just as surely no one will attain it without effort on his own part. God has made it possible for us to walk in holiness. But He has given to us the responsibility of doing the walking” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p9).

“[God] first ‘counsels and directs’ as to what is to be done, and then He ‘excites and effectually inclines’ to the doing thereof” Thomas Jacombe (ref#225, July 20th).

“The aim is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith” (1 Tim 1:5 ESV).

“Weak, unskillful, and unfaithful, as I am in practice, the Lord has been pleased to give me some idea of what a Christian ought to be, and of what is actually attainable in the present life, by those whom he enables earnestly to aspire towards the prize of their high calling” John Newton (ref#322, p135).

“[W]hoever does what is true his works have been carried out by God” (John 3:21 ESV).

 DYING TO SIN

“[B]aptism. Going under the water was a burial of your old life; coming up out of it was a resurrection, God raising you from the dead as he did Christ. When you were stuck in your old sin-dead life, you were incapable of responding to God. God brought you alive—right along with Christ! All sins forgiven, the slate wiped clean, that old arrest warrant canceled and nailed to Christ’s cross” (Col 2:11-15 MSG).

“[O]ur dying to sin is the result of our union with Christ. Because He died to sin, we died to sin. Therefore, it is apparent that our dying to sin is not something we do, but something Christ has done” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p52).

“The life of the renewed soul, springing from the indwelling of Christ by the Spirit, includes the crucifixion of self (Gal 2:20). We do not plead for its utter annihilation in this life; that would be looking for something the Word of God never warrants. But we do insist upon its mortification: we plead for its subjection to Christ” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Mar 16th).

“We are to consider—ourselves dead to sin, but our reckoning does not make it true. Because we are dead to sin through our union with Christ, we are not to let sin reign in our mortal bodies. Our daily experience with regard to sin is determined—not by our reckoning, but by our will—by whether we allow sin to reign in our bodies” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p53).

“The more we say no to sin, the more we are inclined to say no. Therefore, in dependence on the Holy Spirit, we must systematically work at acquiring the habit of saying no to the sins that so easily entangle us” Jerry Bridges (ref#244, p133).

“[T]he sweep of New Testament teaching is that it is the sun of Christ’s heart, not the clouds of my sins, that now defines me” Dane Ortland (ref#382, p187).