“Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:” (Heb. 12:14)
“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.” (Eph. 5:27)
Another area of our life in which God has given us talents to trade with or to be occupied with is the area of our lifestyle.
“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 marvelous light:” (1Peter 2:9)
The Bible tells us that we are a chosen generation. As the prophets of old prophesied of the coming of Christ and the Church age, they longed for the time yet to come which they prophesied of.
“Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:” (1Peter 1:10)
“Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” (1Peter 1:11)
The Holy Ghost would come upon them and fill the Old Testament prophets with the power to prophesy and do great works for God. They knew the Holy Ghost as the Spirit of Prophecy but not as the Comforter whom Jesus said the Father would send.
The Bible teaches that they were men no different than us, with similar emotions and passions.
“Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.” (James 5:17)
Moses was a man prone to anger, and because of it he struck the rock in the wilderness after God had told him to speak to it for water. He was denied entrance into the Promised Land because of his disobedience.
Elijah became depressed and hid in a cave.
David lusted after another man’s wife and plotted her husband’s death.
Elisha’s pride was hurt and he caused the death of taunting children.
They knew the power of God for miracles but not the power of the indwelling Spirit who changes men’s hearts and desires.
We long for their time and the glory that God received because of the power and miracles they performed. However, they longed for our time and the glory that God receives in a changed life.
We are a chosen generation. We have been given the indwelling Spirit of God who shall never leave us nor forsake us. We have been given the power to change our lives and be a holy people different than the rest of the world.
We have been given the power to resist temptation and put away sin.
“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.” (Rom. 6:12)
We have been given power over addictions and habits.
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Gal. 5:1)
We have been given power over our carnal lusts.
“For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” (Rom. 8:13)
We have been given power over our emotions.
“Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:” (Eph. 4:26)
You are the chosen generation that knows the salvation of God and has His indwelling Spirit. He has chosen you to be kings and priests with Him. He has also called you to be a holy nation.
We know a nation’s location because of its geographical borders. The borders may be rivers, or mountain ranges, or lines marked by signposts. Whatever they may be, they separate that particular nation from all others.
The border that separates our nation from all others is the godly and holy lifestyle which the Holy Spirit empowers us to live.
When the rest of the world sees us have peace and faith in the midst of perilous times, when filthy language and cursings fill their daily conversation but they hear us refrain from sinning with our tongue and speaking evil, when they feel the need to escape by yielding to every carnal desire, yet they see us hold fast to our faith and refuse to partake of things contrary to our beliefs;
Then God is glorified among them and they have hope that there is a better way.
They see not a hypocritical Church that says one thing on Sunday but lives in the same manner as they do on Monday. They see a “glorious church” not having “spot or wrinkle”.
This is the Church that Jesus is coming back for to be His Bride.
The Bible tells us clearly what God considers to be sin. The Holy Spirit convicts us as to what is right or wrong.
It is time for us to make a decision and a commitment to obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit, to choose the right over the wrong, and the godly over the worldly in everything we do.
“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” (1Peter 4:17)
(TO BE CONTINUED)