Summary: God is faithfully committed to your entire sanctification!
Text: 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24
(In context of parable of the sower from Luke 8.)
Attention: What kind of seed are you? In the parable we read, we found 4 kinds of seed: (1) the seed that fell on the wayside, (2) the seed that fell on rocky ground, (3) the seed that fell among thorns and (4) the seed that fell on fertile soil that matured and produced a hundredfold crop.
Dave was excited about serving Jesus. He was saved at the revival in his church a few months prior. Dave’s attitude was changed. Now Dave was a completely new person. Everyone knew that something had happened to Dave (examples)… If anyone had ever been saved, you knew Dave had. But Dave began to sense that something was missing. He knew with certainty that he wanted to follow Jesus, but there was often a struggle inside Dave. He struggled to do what was right while also being pulled away to do what was wrong. Often, Dave failed to do the right thing and would have to repent. Also, something about his faith began to turn mechanical. Dave still wanted to serve God, but he was often distracted by his friends and relatives who couldn’t understand his new outlook on life. Sometimes that would build up and build pressure to where he wasn’t sure that he wanted people to know about the difference God made in his life. Why was this happening to Dave?
What kind of seed do you suppose Dave was? What kind of seed do you suppose you are?
Looking at you this morning, I see all four kinds of seed. I wish I didn’t see the first…am I’m glad I see the fourth…but for the seed that falls on shallow ground that falls under times of temptation and the seed that is concerned by the thorny cares, riches and pleasures of this life…there is a better answer!
Have you been firmly established in the faith? Has your heart been made pure?
Need: Is there conflict between doing what you want to and what God wants you to do? Is your life evidencing the love of God? Are you living in the fullness of the faith or is there something that you’re missing?
Bridging Sentences: In our passage, Paul is going to provide the solution to these problems. God has taken measures to make sure His children can live in peace and harmony with Him.
Textual Idea: God wants to entirely sanctify believers to preserve them blameless at the return of Christ.
Big Idea: “God is faithfully committed to your entire sanctification.”
NKJ 1 Thessalonians 5:23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.
I. It is God who wants to entirely sanctify you
II. Entire sanctification is a blessing specific to believers
III. God wants you to be sanctified entirely/completely
IV. God wants to entirely sanctify you now
V. Entire sanctification will purify and strengthen your walk with Christ.
Transition: God is faithfully committed to your entire sanctification. The first thing we see from the text and this statement is that it is God who wants to entirely sanctify you.
I. It is God who wants to entirely sanctify you (see below for Scripture)
Explanation/Argumentation: “And the (KJV: very) God of peace…Himself” Here we see this emphasized – it is (1) God…(2) God Himself (KJV: “Very God”) that wants to entirely sanctify. (3)Again in verse 24, “He who calls” – that is, God – (4) “is faithful.” When God promises something, we know that it will be done. God is faithful! God is going to keep His Word! (5) Also in verse 24, “who also will do it” – this is stated as fact. It is indicative. (6) It is God the Holy Spirit who inspired Paul to write this, word for word. There is no question as to who is going to be performing the act of entirely sanctifying believers! It is God!
God is the One who initiates and completes entire sanctification.
Illustration: You have heard the phrase, “the only way to get it done right is to do it yourself.” God is the essence of holiness. There is no one else, no other thing or person, that can make us holy – much less entirely sanctify us. It must be God – He wants you to be entirely sanctified and He wants it done and done right! Therefore, He’s going to it Himself!
Application: Why is this so important? It is very important because you cannot do it yourself! Many times people try to go through a process of struggle or agony, as if they were going to “convince God” to grant entire sanctification. The blessing of entire sanctification only requires your obedience in allowing God to do His work in your life.