Today's Foundations Devotional: Applying the promises of God’s Word in faith
In Colossians 2, Paul dismisses the negative type of holiness as quite inadequate.
Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations – “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” which all concern things which perish with the using? (Col. 2:20-22).
True sanctification goes far beyond this barren, legalistic, negative attitude. It is a positive conforming to the image of Christ Himself; a positive partaking of God’s own holiness.
This positive aspect of sanctification, and the part played in it by God’s Word, is beautifully summed up by Peter.
His [God’s] divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2 Pet. 1:3-4).
There are three main points to notice here.
1. God’s power has already provided us with all that we need for life and godliness. The provision is already made. We do not need to ask God to give us more than He has already given. We merely need to avail ourselves to the full of that which God has already provided.
2. This complete provision of God is given to us through the exceedingly great and precious promises of His own Word. The promises of God already contain within them all that we shall ever need for life and godliness. All that remains for us now to do is to appropriate and to apply these promises by active, personal faith.
3. The result of appropriating and applying God’s promises is twofold, both negative and positive. Negatively, we escape the corruption that is in the world through lust; positively, we are made partakers of the divine nature. Here is the complete process of sanctification that we have described: both the negative escape from the world’s corruption, and the positive partaking of God’s own nature, of God’s own holiness.
At the end of this week we can retain that all this – both the negative and the positive – is made available to us through the promises of God’s Word. It is in measure as we appropriate and apply the promises of God’s Word that we experience true, scriptural sanctification.
Jacob once dreamed of a ladder reaching from earth to heaven. For the Christian, the counterpart to that ladder is found in God’s Word. Its foot is set on earth, but its head reaches heaven – the plane of God’s being. Each rung in that ladder is a promise. As we lay hold by the hands and feet of faith upon the promises of God’s Word, we lift ourselves up by them out of the earthly realm and closer to the heavenly realm. Each promise of God’s Word, as we claim it, lifts us higher above earth’s corruption and imparts to us a further measure of God’s nature.
Sanctification is by faith. But that faith is not merely negative or passive. The faith that truly sanctifies consists in a continual, active appropriating and applying of the promises of God’s Word. It was for this reason that Jesus prayed to the Father:
Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth (John 17:17).
Heavenly Father, help me to realize that You have already given me everything that pertains to life and godliness ... Thank You for allowing this awareness to constantly reign in my mind. Thank You that I always can share with you all my problems and challenges and leave them with You. I praise You for Jesus’ all-encompassing sacrifice! Amen.
Click on the link below for the Derek Prince book that these daily devotionals are based on: