- set apart as or declare holy; consecrate.
- free from sin; purify.
But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:11
Everyone loves to quote that “elevation requires separation”, but how many of us are really willing to set ourselves apart? It is not all about having to be separated from our friends or family but also being separated from the world and the things of the world. You have to be separated from the false pleasures, lust and sins that so easily entangle us. And if we are being completely honest, we even have to separate our new self from our old self as well. Can’t be elevated when you’re allowing your old self, habits and friends to weigh you down. Allow yourself to be separated.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Pioneer and Perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider Him Who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:1-3
We NEED to, HAVE to, MUST eliminate all distractions, obliterate all negative influences and avoid all environments that encourage us to return to our old selves. Why consciously surround yourself with temptations to return to your old self? Why make it harder to stay on the straight and narrow path? REFUSE TO BE WEIGHED DOWN AND DISTRACTED BY THOSE PEOPLE AND THINGS THAT TEMPT YOU!
You can “change” all you want but if you continue to do what your old self used to do and hang with the same old crowd, you’ll eventually pick those habits right back up again. I know people try to play it down and say that just because their friends do this or do that doesn’t mean they’ll do it because they are their own person and make their own decisions but influence is very real and very powerful. You can’t fight off your demons while tiptoeing with your friends’ demons too- it’s just not gonna happen. Choose your friends wisely, and when you do change your circle, be sure that you didn’t just replace your old friends with people just like them because otherwise you’ve just redrawn the same circle.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17
43 “When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. 44 Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order. 45 Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first. That is how it will be with this wicked generation.” Matthew 12:43-45
When we become a new creature and are delivered from our old state, we must completely kill our old man and replace him with Christ. We can’t just send him on vacation or force him to live in the back room because eventually he will return, see that his old position is not filled and he will decide that he would much rather watch T.V. with you in the living room as opposed to watching it in the back room alone. He will find a way in and he will slow walk his way and then he will have his way with you. Be very careful about how much time you spend listening to and hanging with your old self- YOU ARE THE MOST DANGEROUS ENEMY YOU HAVE.
DON’T GET CAUGHT UP!
Many of us feel that satan is our greatest enemy, but he isn’t. Hear me out now before you oppose. Yes, satan is very real and totally against God Who lives in us, but satan is also totally powerless towards us. He is only able to defeat us when we give into his lies and fall for his tricks. He is very patient with us and is highly clever. The devil knows what gets us and 9 times out of 10, he uses the same tactics to manipulate us and trip us up.
The devil normally gets us the same way every time and he is smart and knows that we’ll probably notice that, so he is patient and comes at our weakest moments. The devil preys on us when we’re vulnerable, when we feel alone and isolated, when we feel hurt, betrayed, insecure, when we feel stressed. Don’t get caught off guard- the best way to do that is to be on guard at all times. Our enemy catches us slipping when we ourselves are slacking on what we need to be doing. We must stay in the Word and stay in the Presence of God for that is where satan can’t touch us. Don’t get captured doing what you have no business doing and don’t get caught up flirting with the enemy when Christ is remaining faithful to you.
Make it so there isn’t enough room for sin..
There’s a difference between falling into sin and making room for it. We are all human so naturally we fall short, none of us are perfect and God knows that, that’s why He sent His Son. (John 3:16) But the real problem comes in when we set up the environment for sin. For example, if you have a problem with lust, don’t set up the environment for you to sin by inviting that special someone over to your apartment at 1am with the lights off and Trey Songz playing. Or if you’re trying to quit drinking, stop going to the bar with your boys. Don’t set up the situation for the sin to happen or surround yourself with the spirits that you’re trying to fight off. Stay away from anyone or anything that doesn’t bring you spiritual growth, life or bring you closer to God.
- Fill your environment with things of Christ.
- Fill your circle of influence with those who have a heart after Christ.
- Spend time in the Word.
- Avoid music that taints your spirit or puts you in the mood to sin.
- Don’t watch things that stir up temptation within you.
Fill all your empty places with that of the Lord so that you have no room for sin.
We must also allow ourselves to be cleansed by God so He can rid us of anything that isn’t of Him or like Him.
We are tempted by our own fleshly desires.
Now, I understand that sometimes it is hard to decide what is okay and what isn’t, especially because we tend to categorize and compare sin so we feel that as long as I’m not drinking at the party or twerkin’ like the girl in the corner, I’m okay. But my mom told me something this year that has really stuck with me, she said that although you’re not doing those things, you’re still in that environment and it’s feeding your spirit. She told me to always ask myself this question when I am having a hard time deciding if I should go somewhere or do something:
“When I leave here will I be closer to God or closer to my old self?”
So ask yourself that anytime you’re struggling with a decision. Another great question she told me to ask myself, which I feel will be a great meditation for you reading is:
What lies within you that gives satan a pull on you?
Yes, satan tempts us but we also play a role in it as well for the Word says, “…but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.” James 1:14
It isn’t all satan. We often cause our own temptation and bring our own demise, that’s why we must make an effort to remain sanctified.
QUIT TRYING TO FIT IN WHEN GOD HAS ALREADY CALLED YOU AND SET YOU APART. REMAIN SANCTIFIED.