Are you a holy person? Are you a saint? Most people would not hesitate to say, “No. I’m no saint.” However, the New Testament Christian should confidently confess, “Yes. God makes me holy.” A saint means a holy person. The verb “sanctify” means to make holy. All Christians are saints (Eph 1:1). No one can be saved except by the sanctification of the Holy Spirit (2 Thess 2:13–14). The Holy Spirit makes the believer holy as the Christians chooses to live a holy life.
God’s Holy Spirit serves God’s purpose of making a holy people. The work of God’s Holy Spirit includes transforming believers into the image of Christ (2 Cor 3:17–18). God wants the faithful to be holy. God declared, “You shall be holy, for I am holy” (1 Pet 1:16; cf. Lev 11:44). Christians are to be holy by being holy in all their conduct (1 Pet 1:15).
Jesus revealed in His prayer to the Father that God’s Word is the truth that sanctifies — makes holy. Jesus declared in the hearing of His disciples, “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth” (John 17:17–19). The Holy Spirit delivered all truth in words to the apostles (John 14:26; 16:12–13; 17:8). The Scriptures make evident that the Spirit operates by the Word of God that as the sword of the Spirit (Eph 6:17).
God promised to send His Spirit into His people to change their hearts and cause them to obey His commands (Ezek 36:26–27; John 14:16–17). The Holy Spirit must dwell within believers for Christians to receive salvation (Rom 8:9–11; 1 Cor 6:14). The Holy Spirit sanctifies the faithful so that they are holy before God (1 Cor 6:11). For this reason, the apostle Paul urged Christians to live holy lives apart from sexual immorality along with abandoning greed, thievery, and profaning others (1 Cor 6:9–20). Paul further explained that sexual sins are sins against the body, which is the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 6:18–20). The body is meant for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.
Furthermore, Paul expressed, “For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;” (1 Thess 4:3–5). Paul also revealed that God called His people not for impurity but for holiness, and anyone who disregards holiness disregards God who gave the Holy Spirit (1 Thess 4:7–8).
As Christians, we cannot dismiss God’s commands for holiness. The shows and movies that we listen and watch affect us (Luke 11:34). What unholy things do we consent to enjoy for our own entertainment? How permissive are we of unholiness in the world and then in our lives? Should we no longer be disgusted by the unholy behavior around us for the sake of “tolerance” or fake “love”? Too long have Christians overlooked unholy lifestyles so as not to offend anyone, and then we give ourselves leeway to sin and no reason to share the gospel. “That person would not listen anyways.” However, Jesus evangelized to the Samaritan woman who had 5 husbands (John 4:7–42). Share the gospel that those who believe must repent and be baptized (Acts 2:38).
Thank God for sending His Spirit of holiness and that we can live holy lives.