1 Thessalonians 5:23
“And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Something happened before the word “and” in the verse above. In other words, what happens after the “and” is a result of what happened before the “and.” The effect is what happened after the “and,” but the cause of the effect happened before the “and.”
What is the effect that happened after the “and?” The effect is that God sanctifies you wholly. In other words, God sets you apart so that He can use you after you do what is before the “and.” You will notice that sanctification is not something that you can do, but it is something that God has to do. Sanctification is the result of action and not a possession. The only way the believer can live a sanctified life is if they do what it takes for God to sanctify them. However, when God sanctifies you, He “wholly” sanctifies you. God never does a half-way job, but He sanctifies every part of you. So what is it that you must do for God to sanctify you wholly?
First, be a comfort to the feebleminded and weak. In other words, don’t attack people who do wrong, but help them correct what they have done wrong. God is more interested in restoring the fallen and growing the weak than He is in condemning and tearing them down. God can’t use you when you render evil for evil. God uses people who are patient with others while they grow in grace.
Second, rejoice evermore. In other words, God sanctifies people for His use when they have the character to find a way to rejoice in every circumstance. It is impossible to be used by God when you are complaining about how bad God is treating you. Rejoicing takes character to see the good that God has done for you while you trust that He knows what He is doing while you go through adversity.
Third, be a person of prayer. A daily prayer life does more to set you apart for God’s use than a daily prayer time where you leave your time of prayer until the next day. A prayer life is when the believer is always ready to pray for everything. Certainly, you should have your season of prayer every day, but God can use you more when prayer is the common response to everything that you face.
Fourth, be thankful for every thing. The believer who finds a way to be thankful for every thing that happens in life is the believer who God sets apart for His use to be a testimony to those who wonder if the Christian life is real. You validate the Christian walk by how thankful you are towards God for every thing that happens in your life. However, you can’t be thankful for every thing without being a person of prayer.
Fifth, yield yourself to the Holy Spirit. You stop God’s sanctification process when you start quenching His Holy Spirit’s leading and guidance. A sanctified believer is a person who is sensitive to the voice and leading of the Holy Spirit.
Sixth, the sanctified believer is one who makes sure that everything they do is right. My friend, avoiding the appearance of evil will only be done by proving all things with God’s Word. If you want God to use you, you must be sure that what you do doesn’t go against His Word. God can use the believer in a great way if they have a heart to be sure that they don’t do something that would contradict His will or His Word.