January 15, 2023
- By Ed Powell
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"Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God." 2 Corinthians 7:1
Many believers do not have a dedicated commitment to the Lord, which finds expression in a walk and life that is lived circumspectly before others. Many have never been taught from the Word that God has given His decree, "Sanctify yourselves therefore and be ye holy, for I am the Lord your God."
Others have been challenged to live such a life, but have shunned it, unwilling to surrender and make a commitment to the Lord. Paul had this problem in Corinth. He saw in the walk and worship of many new converts the sentiments and habits from an old lifestyle. He says, "What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
Average Christians have no concept of the reality of being indwelled by the Holy Spirit. Their spiritual life depends largely upon their efforts to maintain their walk and worship. They live on the perimeter of all God wants to do in and through them. Christ died for us, that He might manifest His life through us.
Paul is pleading with these believers, "that they receive not the grace of God in vain." He cries out, "O ye Corinthians, our mouth is open to you, our heart is enlarged, be ye also enlarged." In other words, enter into all God has for you and all He wants to do in you. You are the temple in which dwells the Spirit of God. So yield yourselves to Christ so that He can live His life through you. Not only separate yourselves from all that's unclean, but also sanctify yourselves unto Him.
And what will He do? "For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord." This is the exalted position of every believer. Who can comprehend this? God not only has redeemed us, but he "indwells" us with His Spirit! This is infinite condescending love!
Paul challenges them, as he does us: "Having therefore these promises, let us cleanse ourselves, perfecting holiness in the fear of God." The promises in His Word become effective only when they dwell in our hearts. As we appropriate them with a committed faith, they become "real and operational" in our walk and worship. How can we perfect "holiness in the fear of God?" In awe and profound reverence, "work out your own salvation in fear and trembling." Delight yourselves in His presence. Depend on His care and provision. Have a zeal for His glory. Be sensitive to the working of the Holy Spirit as He probes, cleanses, leads, and reveals God's Word to us.
May God give us a hunger and thirst for an intimate relationship with Christ and the commitment to be diligent in studying His Word and applying it to our lives...desiring above all things that the whole of our being be filled with the fullness of His presence, so He will perfect holiness in us! May He be magnified in you!
© 2007 by Ed Powell. Used by permission.
This page was reprinted by permission from: http://www.litmin.org/dare.php?date=2023-01-15
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