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Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye HOLY: for I am the Lord your God. And ye shall keep my statutes, and do them: I am the Lord which sanctify you.
Lev. 20:7-8
The Hebrew words translated "I am the Lord" in verse 8 are "Jehovah M'Kaddesh," which means the One who sanctifies.

Personally, I am from two denominational backgrounds. I'm an ex-Baptist and an ex-Church of God in Christ-Pentecostal. There are some people who think that you can be sanctified only if you are a Pentecostal. Sanctification is not a denomination. You can belong to a denomination and not be sanctified.

To be "sanctified" means to be set apart or separate. Jehovah is apart from and above all that there is in the universe. And He is a God who is separate from all that is evil. Therefore, He requires that His people choose also to be separate from all evil, and separated to the purpose to which He calls them.

In other words, God said, "Decide which way you are going to go. If you are going to serve Me, then serve Me. If not, then serve something else."

Make Your Choice
In the Book of Revelations, God tells the church of the Laodiceans, "I'd rather that you be hot or cold. I can't stand this lukewarm stuff. If you're lukewarm, I'll spew you out of my mouth" (Rev. 3:14-16). You see, God wants His children to be one way or the other. He wants us to either get in or get out.

In reality, we're the same way. We don't want someone saying "I love you" to us one minute and off cuddling with someone else the next minute. If that happened to you, you would say, "Hey, you are going to make a choice today. You're either going to stay here with me, or you're going there with them, but you are going to make a choice today!"

God requires the same thing of us—we must make a choice. He requires us to be sanctified. We've already been separated. When we were born again, we were separated from the world. We are not of the world. Of course, we live in the world, but if we are born again, then we are not of the world. And God expects us to live like we're not.

Keep Your Body Pure
For one thing, God expects us to keep our bodies pure. Christians can't be involved in premarital sex. The Bible says in Second Corinthians chapter 6, that our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost. We are told to keep it holy.

To keep your body holy means you are to save yourself until the one who is right for you, has already put the ring on your finger and said, "I do." You are not to have sex before you say "I do" and are married. Not even when he says to you, "Well, now you've got the ring. Why don't we just practice before?"

I've seen men walk away and leave their fiancee after they had given them the ring. I've even seen people leave at the altar. That's cold! But no, the ring alone doesn't count. God expects us to be holy where our body is concerned. Being holy will save us a whole lot of trouble. Remember, we need to learn someone before we learn their body.

If you are a Christian, your best friends should be other Christians—people who are saved and filled with the Holy Ghost like you are. And don't be fooled into thinking that the non-Christians are having so much fun. They aren't doing nothing but shamming! In other words, they're just pretending. All the time, they're really watching you to see if you have something better. And you do have something better. His name is Jesus.

To be separate means your speech should be separate. In other words, believers ought to have clean mouths. And that doesn't just mean they don't cuss. Now we understand that we have no business saying the "words of the street," to put it nicely. We already know we have no business talking like that. But there's another way God expects our talk to be clean, and that way is found in Proverbs chapter 6.

Gossip Is Unholy
This passage lists seven things that God hates. And one of them is a tongue that will speak falsely against other brethren. Did you know God hates for people to talk about other people? When God hears, "Well, So-and-so and So-and-so did such-and-such and such-and-such," He says, "Clean up your mouth, and be holy."

A good motto to remember is "If you don't have anything good to say, keep your mouth shut. We don't know all the facts anyway! Now we may think we know all there is to know about someone, but, really, we don't know squat-dooly!

We aren't with him twenty four hours a day! And we wouldn't want anyone spreading half-truths about us! So we need to just be quiet!

Now the Bible considers keeping a guard over our tongue as being holy! Unfortunately, many times, people don't equate controlling their tongue with holiness and being separate.

God's people are expected to talk as though they are separated from the world! Christians are to keep their mouth. They are also to keep their body and their mind. And Christians need to keep their actions consistent with the Word of God.

Remember, God is Jehovah M'Kaddesh, the One who sanctifies. He sets apart. He who comes to God must know that He is sanctified and that He does set apart. He who comes to God must also talk like He is set apart, and he must live like He is set apart.

If he's living like God is set apart, then he will come to God being set apart himself. And he must deal with the world like he is saved and set apart. He must live holy, talk holy, and think holy. Holiness is required.

Source: Faith Pleases by Keith Butler
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

Author Biography

Keith Butler
Web site: Word of Faith International Christian Center
 
Bishop Keith A. Butler is the senior pastor of Word of Faith International Christian Center. Keith Butler is the founder and president of Keith Butler Ministries (KBM), an international organization established to take the life-changing message of the Gospel to "the uttermost parts of the earth." Through Live Your Faith Seminars and the establishment of our PISTIS School of Ministry in various locations, Keith Butler provides teaching of the Word of God on a variety of subjects such as how to live the life of faith, how to fulfill the call of God for your life, how to receive your healing, the importance of walking in love and many more topics. PISTIS is specifically designed to train ministers so that they are equipped to go out into their world and teach and preach Jesus effectively.
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