True Sanctification

 

 

Possessing The Mind of Christ

 

Christ Centered LivingPurpose: The purpose of this study is affirm that the Son of God is himself the greatest picture of God’s perfect righteousness/holiness shown to man.

Some teach the error that the Ten Commandments are the highest standard of God’s holiness. We do not agree. Jesus Christ is the highest standard of God’s holy character. Messiah gave what the Law demanded and he keeps on giving to those who look to him for salvation.

As for God’s saints they are to learn from Him.

In Matthew 11:29-30 Jesus said; “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

John Piper said it this way;

“So put on Christ. Clothe yourselves with Christ. Arm yourselves with Christ. Never be without the covering of Christ. Let your friendship with Christ be as close as the shirt you wear. That is what I said last week was the key to loving and fulfilling the law. And that is the same final answer this week: Receiving Christ daily and fully is the key to love.” (ref)

My friends, The Spirit of God in you animates His love, the love of God working in and through you is His own. Your love for God, your love for one another, love for our enemies, gives what the Law could only demand. You are His blood washed vessels upon whom He has showered his grace. We are not people of the Letter. We are born of the Spirit. Now walk in the Spirit. Love.

In Romans 7:1-6 Paul writes;

“Or do you not know, brothers —for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives? 2 For a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage. 3 Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress. 4 Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. 5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. 6 But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.”

This is extremely important to know. The apostolic writers do not send God’s New Covenant saints back to the Law for their sanctification. They would never do that. Peter tells his readers this;

Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. 15 And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, 16 as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. 17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. 18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen – 2 Peter 3:14-18

It was Matthew Henry, who said;

“Those who live at the greatest distance from the means of grace often use most diligence, and learn to know the most of Christ and his salvation. But no curious arts, or mere human learning, can direct men unto him. We must learn of Christ by attending to the word of God, as a light that shineth in a dark place, and by seeking the teaching of the Holy Spirit. And those in whose hearts the day- star is risen, to give them any thing of the knowledge of Christ, make it their business to worship him.”

Formulas Anyone?

The following is not a man made method formulated by those who would bring God’s children back to the law for their sanctification. True Apostolic sanctification is to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. The apostle Paul lays it out for us here in Ephesians 4.

11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, 18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: 19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

20 But ye have not so learned Christ; 21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; 23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27 Neither give place to the devil. 28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

Let’s learn from the following — Learn of Him and Put on Christ!

So then what does the mind and heart of Jesus Christ look like? Below I’ve taken written snapshots from the New Testament scriptures that will serve to reveal to you the mind of Christ. So let’s get started.

Snapshots of Jesus

Compassion

Mark 8:2

“I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat.

Resignation

Luke 22:42

…saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”

Devotedness

Luke 2:49

And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”

Forgiveness

Luke 23:34

And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments.

Meekness

Matthew 11:29

Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Thankfulness

Matthew 11:25

At that time Jesus declared, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children;

Unselfishness

Romans 15:3

For Christ did not please himself, but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached you fell on me.”

Submission

Matthew 4:7

Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

Prayerfulness

Luke 6:12

In these days he went out to the mountain to pray, and all night he continued in prayer to God.

Love

Ephesians 5:2

And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

Sympathy

John 11:35

Jesus wept.

Reprover

Luke 22:61

And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. And Peter remembered the saying of the Lord, how he had said to him, “Before the rooster crows today, you will deny me three times.”

Gentleness

John 21:15

When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.”

Endurance

Hebrews 12:3

Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

Pleasing

John 8:29

And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.”

Grief

Mark 3:5

And he looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored.

Humility

John 13:4-5

…rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. 5  Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

Patience

2 Peter 3:9

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

Revelation 1:9

I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos on account of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.

Subjection

John 14:31

but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.

Forgiving

1 Peter 2:23

When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.

Bearing the Cross

John 19:17

and he went out, bearing his own cross, to the place called the place of a skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha.

Zeal

John 2:17

His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.”

Benevolence

Acts 10:38

how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.

Firmness

Matthew 9:10

And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples.

Receiving sinners

Luke 15:2

And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”

Guilelessness

1 Peter 2:22

He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth.

Industrious

John 9:4

We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.

Confidingness

1 Peter 2:23

When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.

Love of Unity

John 17:21

that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

Not of the World

John 17:14

I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.

Calmness in Death

Luke 23:46

Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last.

Consider the above references. They are just the tip of the iceberg. Keep on learning of HIM! Jesus said;

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. – John 15:4-8 ESV

Objections?

Someone may object on the grounds that I have neglected to mention the use of the Old Testament scriptures. Nothing could be further from the truth. We are to learn of Christ from the Law and the Prophets provided it is He whom we seek. Jesus himself taught two of his disciples just that! See Luke 24:26-32.

And he said to them, O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory? 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.
28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, 29 but they urged him strongly, saying, Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent. So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. 32 They said to each other, Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures.

~ Moe

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About our publisher: Maurice “Moe” Bergeron

At the present time Moe serves on the pastoral team of Sovereign Grace Fellowship located in Boscawen, New Hampshire. For fourteen years he served as pastor for Sovereign Grace Fellowship in Salem, NH.  He has also enjoyed speaking engagements at numerous churches and conference venues in the North East United States and the Virgin Islands.

On the Internet front our brother did establish Piper’s Notes in 1995 which for many years had served as the foundation for the sermon library for Dr. John Piper and Desiring God. For a brief history of Moe’s relationship to John Piper and Desiring God open to this blog page at Desiring God.