2 CORINTHIANS 6:14-7:1
THE BEHAVIOUR – THE MANIFESTATION OF HOLINESS
1 TIMOTHY 3:15
The church of the living God is the covenant relationship that baptized believers have with one another to carry out the work of Christ.
The building of God and the church of the living God is a context in which we live our lives.
Once in that context there is a proper way to behave. I think there are two things worthy of note in this connection.
1. We learn how to behave ourselves.
2. The behaviour is an “ought” to behaviour.
There is a way we ought to behave. Which of necessity means there is a way in which we ought not to behave. Unfortunately we live in a day when people do not want to be instructed in the way they ought to behave. Oh, general principles are not normally objected to but when one attempts to put the general principles into practice then the crying and the mockery starts.
The point is behaviour matters. It is a carnal, worldly believer who would argue that our behaviour does not matter or if it does it matters little, especially when compared with the inside. This is an insidious doctrine with terrible consequences.
Behaviour involves the way we talk, dress, entertain ourselves, attitudes we embrace, and the whole realm of what the scripture calls our “walk”.
Holiness that does not transform the behaviour is a cheap counterfeit of the real thing. Holiness that does not practice non-conformity to the world and hunger and thirst after righteousness is no holiness at all.
The fact is there is an appalling lack of discernment in this day. Believers have become adept at defending behavioral patterns that are clearly patterned after the world. This in spite of the scriptural admonitions to not love the world neither the things that are in the world, and be not conformed to this world.
Separation is ultimately about behaviour. Yes, it starts in the heart but it ultimately effect the behaviour. A separated life is the result of a separated heart. An unseparated life is the result of an unseparated heart.
Eze 14:6 - Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Repent, and turn yourselves from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations.
Eze 18:30 - Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin.
Ac 8:22 - Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.
Ac 26:20 - But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.
Ac 26:18 - To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.
Ac 3:19 - Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
2 Cor. 5:17 – Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Joh 3:7 - Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
Titus 3:5 – Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
1Pe 1:23 - Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
Sanctification is God’s purpose
1 Thess. 4:3 – For this is the will of God, even your sanctification.
Eph. 5:25-27 – Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
1 Thess. 5:23 – Sanctify you wholly; body, soul, and spirit.
Eph. 2:8-10 – For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
Heb. 13:20,21 – Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Sanctification is the believer’s desire
2 Tim. 2:19-21 – Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.
Col. 1:9,10 – For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;
Titus 2:6-8 – Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.
Tit 2:14 - Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
Heb 10:24 - And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
Sanctification is the Spirit’s work
2 Thess. 2:13 – But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
1 Pet. 1:2 – Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
Rom. 15:16 – That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.
Phil. 4:6 – Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
1 Pet. 1:13-16 – Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
Eph. 2:2-6 – Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
1 Pet. 4:2-4 – That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God. For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries: Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
Ro 6:4 - Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Ro 12:2 - And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Eph. 4:22–24 - That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
1 Pet. 2:9 – But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: . . . .
1 Thess. 4:7- For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
Titus 2:11,12 – 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; . . . .
2 Pet. 1:4 – Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
2 Pet. 3:11 – Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, . . . .
Perfecting holiness in the fear of God is recognizing that some behaviour is worldly and carnal and addressing the root of the problem in our hearts so that our behaviour might be conformed to standards of holiness and righteousness.