Sermons

Summary: Part 7 exploring the ability of a future focus to motivate present behavior.

Future Focus Present Faithfulness Series Pt 7

“Finding Grace or Falling Short”

Review

What is my purpose? What should I be doing with my life? What should direct the decisions I choose and the activities I schedule? If you want a truly Biblically directed life; a purpose directed life, you might want to seriously consider these three directives in Hebrews 12

Hebrews 12 addresses three specific life goals to consider as individuals and as a church family.

It is my hope that they will guide the direction of our church family throughout the year.

a) Promote Healing among the body

b) Pursue peace with ALL men

c) Pursue purity (sanctification)

How is your life directed by these purposes? Do they dictate the course of your everyday activity verified by your calendar and your checkbook? Do you intentionally and passionately “pursue” them? Are you willing to sacrifice your present comfort, your resources, your time and energy to obey God’s directive? How will you let these purposes restructure you thinking about life? How will these purposes actually restructure your life? This is where true meaning in life is found.

Note: I have included some review and further discussion of sanctification in your notes which will not be covered in today’s message.

The writer of Hebrews insists every follower of Christ passionately pursue that which will enable us to fully see or perceive the Lord.

Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord. Heb 12:14

Sanctification is the God-directed, believer-embraced process which transforms sinful sons of Adam into Christlike sons of God at every level of their being (body, soul and spirit) for all time so that true relationship with God can exist and flourish.

Sanctification describes the means by which our salvation is worked out. New birth brings a dead soul to life with the very life of Christ. He establishes a divine beachhead (an initial success that lays the groundwork for achieving an objective) in the core of our being. He turns us into children bearing His likeness. Sanctification then branches out into every other aspect of our being; purifying and transforming us into Christ’s image.

Scripture presents this all-encompassing purifying process in three stages.

A finished work -- A formational work -- A final work

All three members of the Trinity participate in this most crucial process to make us fit and prepared to join their holy community and live forever in perfect relationship with Them.

Only sanctified people will be admitted to this most holy place. Without sanctification NO ONE will see the Lord or have fellowship with Him.

The Finished work

By His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, "LET HIM WHO BOASTS, BOAST IN THE LORD." 1 Corinthians 1:30-31 By His will we have been sanctified (perfect passive) through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Hebrews 10:10

God purified us and we are still purified through the once-for-all sacrifice of Christ. That is why the Bible never calls true followers of Christ “sinners”. God calls us “saints” holy ones, purified ones. We are saints who still sin not sinners who occasionally do right. It is our God-granted birth right as those who have become partakers of the divine nature and escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Pet 1:4)

In spite of a long laundry list of ungodly actions identified in the early church, Paul referred to them as “saints.” We are not just forgiven sinners. We are no longer bankrupt beggars telling other beggars where to find daily bread. We are SAINTS. We are the dead brought to life.

We are image-bearing sons of the Living God. We are blessed with every spiritual blessing. (Eph 1) We are enriched in everything in Him not lacking anything. (1 Cor 1) This is because, at the moment of salvation, God did a purifying work in us that enables us to fully relate to Him and reflect His very character. Because we have been purified we have confidence to enter the holy place of God’s presence.

The formational work

Scripture also indicates that sanctification is a work in progress that calls for our continual cooperation. This verse highlights both aspects.

But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy (perfect). Heb 10:14

God has perfected us and yet coordinates a continual daily purification and perfecting of every aspect of our being. Holiness is the ultimate destiny of every follower of Christ.

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