I think we make the mistake of emphasizing salvation and the power of the Gospel to save over and above the power of the Holy Spirit to sanctify His people. I say that because I hear so many salvation messages preached to saved people who need to hear sanctification messages about growing spiritually in Christ in a practical way.

A great passage to illustrate both salvation and the blessing of sanctification is found in Titus 2:11-15:

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds. These things speak and exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you.

Look at just one aspect of this passage through the lens of spiritual growth: God is purifying for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds! As believers in Christ, we are being purified and as a result of learning to deny ungodliness and worldly desires, it should make us zealous to do good works for His glory. Learn how God changes us and how we grow by studying the Scriptures to see what God requires. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 is one example of how the Bible is a tool to teach us doctrine, reprove us, correct us, and then to discipline us in righteousness! The Bible is a robust resource for us to saturate our minds with truth for the purpose of sanctification.

God did not give us 66 books in the Bible ONLY for salvation but ALSO for sanctification that we might be zealous disciple-makers (Matt. 28:18-20).

I pray that you will take hold of the truth that after you are saved, God wants to clean you up through the process of sanctification and spiritual growth that you might yield fruit and glorify His Name alone. I believe that as we grow in our walk with Christ that we will be transformed by the power of His might and more emboldened to serve the King of Kings in His kingdom to reach all nations for the glory of Christ!

So allow God to sanctify you by opening your eyes to the things that you are doing wrong and teaching you what to replace those thoughts, words, and actions with that better reflect the character of Christ. Read and study His Word so that it will dwell inside of you in abundance (Col. 3:16) and dominate you by the power of the Holy Spirit (Eph. 5:18-21) so that you live in a zealous, bold way!

-Mark (rejoicing in the power of the Gospel to save and the power of the Holy Spirit utilizing God’s Word to sanctify)