Not Many Wise -

Faith and spirituality in a modern world


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[6] The Holy Spirit and living a godly life

Snow on branches representing a pure life.
Snow on branches representing a pure life

The older, more technical term for living a godly life is sanctification.

The baptism of the Holy Spirit does help to promote a godly life, but it is not ‘sanctification’ itself.

The church at Corinth was overflowing with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, but as Paul points out in 1 Corinthians, this was not a church that overflowed with holy and pure lives!

Paul described them as worldly, because there were disputes.
Believers were taking other believers to court, there was jealousy and quarrelling.
Some had become arrogant, sexual immorality was going on, whilst others were getting drunk and stuffing themselves with food during the Lord’s Supper!

This is an illustration that shows that the baptism of the Spirit and sanctification are two separate things.

Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones said that sanctification is a present tense filling of the Holy Spirit, AND obedience to the Lord.

Instead be filled * with the Holy Spirit.”
Ephesians 5:18

* is continuous tense, so it means: ‘keep being filled’.

Brothers choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom.”
Acts 6:3
“He was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and faith”
Acts 11:24

It is our responsibility to be filled with the Holy Spirit and to be obedient to God’s Word.

For reference, the word ‘sanctification’ is not used in the New International Version of the Bible preferring to use the word holiness (in the King James version it is used 7 times), although the word ‘sanctified’ is used 9 times in the New International Version.

Peter Reason

January 2012

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