Sanctification Process (part 1)
“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” (2 Corinthians 4:4)
“I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.” (Acts 26:17,18)
Most Christians are familiar with what theologians call the sanctification process. When a person commits their life to Jesus Christ they enter a process of spiritual growth that includes a progressive cleansing of their inner being. Born sinners, living in a corrupt world, a world under demonic influence makes this a necessary process. No one is born perfect and lives in a perfectly moral world.
God may love us just as we are but he also loves us enough not to leave us just as we are. God loved us while we were sinners, in rebellion against him, but his plan for us includes a process of sanctification.
He loves us, draws us to himself, and when we respond in faith to the Gospel we enter his kingdom family. Then the Holy Spirit leads us into a process of growing spiritually and becoming more Christlike, more holy if you will.
But how does this happen? How does this process work out in our lives? Recently at a prayer meeting the pastor shared a devotional on keeping close to the Lord daily, not letting sin get its foot in the door. But it seems, he shared, no matter how close we walk with Jesus, sin rears its ugly head and wants to creep into our hearts and minds, tempting us to do things forbidden.
Sometimes the fallen world we live in puts thoughts into our minds. At other times demonic powers seek to influence our thinking. But there is also a sort of natural spiritual process at work that permits darkness to be revealed as we move toward the light, as we participate in the sanctification process. It is this experience that I want to explore in this series of articles on sanctification.
(to be continued)