A Study in Sanctification

 Chapter 2

We Can Walk as Jesus Walked

Many will say, “You believe in human perfection.” The Bible teaches Christian Perfection, not human perfection. Adam was perfect and sinless — yet he exercised his free will and fell into sin. Man possesses the same free will today. Every day is made up of choices whereby we may choose the will of God or our own will. Even after Sanctification, we choose to obey or disobey. Perfect, sinless Adam exercised his will and sinned. The sinless, sanctified one is still free to choose. He remains sinless through obedience.

Christ came in the flesh and proved to all that we can walk on this earth as He walked. “. . . as He is, so are we in this world” — I John 4:17.

Let us look deeper into the Word, so that we may reconcile the coming of Christ “in the flesh” with the command that we must have a perfect walk here in this world. “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us…” — John 1:14.

“For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world . . .”–Titus 2:11, 12.

Sinful man could never redeem himself, for he had a corrupt nature — a stained sacrifice. But Christ was the perfect sacrifice, without spot or blemish. Because He overcame (in the flesh just as we are), we can overcome through perfect obedience.

Sanctification is not a choice, but a command of God. “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” — Matthew 5:48. This is a portion of the sermon on the mount. God does not give commandments that cannot be kept! He commanded Adam and Eve not to take of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He could have put a wall around it with flaming swords to guard it. He did this later, after the transgression, to keep the way of the tree of life. But God had made them in His own image and given them a free choice. They were not to take of the fruit (a mandate), and they were to keep this commandment if they were to remain in the divine image of righteousness and holiness, as God had intended His creation to be. God wanted obedience then and He has not changed. God still wants obedience. “. . . Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” — Matthew 22:37. It is a choice of the will which we express through obedience.

God is calling His people to holiness. There is a need to be anchored to Christ stronger than ever before. We are not only responsible for ourselves, but for others, also. In these times, more than ever before, Christians need to be at war against the enemy. Satan is going about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. The child of God must prepare himself for battle; put on the whole armour of God, taking the sword of the Spirit which is the Word. The only ones who will be able to endure are those with clean lives.

“The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger.” — Job 17:9.

It is a straight path. John the Baptist, the forerunner of Christ, came as a voice crying in the wilderness: “. . . Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight” — Matthew 3:3.

Sanctification — the way of holiness and perfection — is a straight path and hardly any want to attain unto it. Many will try to perfect their attainments by reaching the top in business. They will spend their life and strength to excel in material gain. honor or fame. But how many are willing to spend their all to attain Christian Perfection? The Christian does not strive to get ahead of others. Rather, he strives to walk in that straight path that leads more and more unto the perfect day. It may seem they are doing all; and if you should ask, they might answer, “Yes, I believe in holiness and Christian Perfection.” They may quote all of the verses pertaining to the question. They are, however, too “busy” to get to the depth of the study of the Word. Yet, if you should ask them pointedly if they have the experience, they would be a little too annoyed with you to answer. They believe it, but have never diligently sought for the possession, nor sold all to buy the Pearl of greatest price. Oh! that God would inspire us to live perfect!

The parable of the ten virgins warns us of the awesome fate of those who are guilty of the sin of neglect. There were ten who awaited the coming of the Bridegroom. The word “virgin” means “an unmarried woman.” Five were wise, for they had kept their integrity and their lamps were burning. Their robes were without spot or blemish. The other five were foolish, for their lamps had gone out. They were backslidden. The five wise virgins who had kept their garments went into the marriage, but the five foolish ones were left behind. Here is proof that they were not sanctified: “For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren” — Hebrews 2:11.

This parable is a picture of the professing church which, in outward form, is serving God, but is not watching for His coming. The members sleep the sleep of death, for their lamps are gone out and they are lost. They are transgressors, and except they arise and prepare their garments, they will be cast into outer darkness forever.