The Grace to Live a Holy Life
The idea of living a life that completely agrees with the Bible is far-fetched to people in the world. In fact, many Christians don’t really believe that they can live holy lives. Unfortunately the norms and values of society have crept into the church and have begun to shape the way Believers think and live their lives. This should not be. God has called us to a higher standard of living because He has equipped us to live this type of life. His grace is the supernatural empowerment to carry out what He has required of us. We must renew our minds to this truth, particularly as it relates to sexual purity. Many Christians are living sexually immoral lives and fail to realize that they possess the power to overcome sexual sin; however, it takes renewing the mind and developing faith in His grace to overcome these things.
Sexual sin is one of those areas where many Believers continue to struggle. There are some who knowingly and willingly engage in sexual sins such as fornication, adultery, pornography, and homosexuality, knowing that these things are forbidden by God. Others genuinely desire deliverance from these behaviors and are trying to overcome them through will power. It is important to understand that will power is not enough to defeat sexual sin. It is only through the grace of God, the blood of Jesus, and the renewing of the mind that a Christian can begin to see the fruit of holiness in his or her life.
Ephesians 5:27 paints a picture of the image God expects the body of Christ to reflect, “That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” This may seem like a tall order, especially when it says “without blemish,” but God has given us the ability to live sin-free lives.
Sexual immorality is a “fruit” of our old, unregenerated nature—the nature we possessed before we got saved. When we become born again, however, we receive a new nature—the nature of God Himself. This new nature doesn’t produce the fruit of sexual immorality because God doesn’t produce sexual immorality. If we have the nature of God in us, our spirits are not manufacturing sin in any form. If Christians are engaging in sexual sin, it is because they have not allowed the Word of God to change the way they think. They are still allowing their lives to be governed and dictated by the behavior they participated in before they got saved.
We have to understand that we don’t just cruise into Christ-likeness. It takes effort and a decision on our part to align our souls (the mind, will, and emotions) with the Word of God and to cooperate with what our recreated spirit wants to do, rather than our flesh. This is a daily choice that must be accompanied with decisions that line up with the Bible. To be holy means to imitate the Father in thought, word, and deed. When we focus on imitating the Father on a daily basis, we will begin to automatically separate from our old behaviors. By focusing on what we should be doing, we will find ourselves abandoning those things that are judged by God as wrong.
First Thessalonians 4:3 says, “For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication.” Sexual sin violates our bodies, the part of us that has been bought by God for a price, and should be used to glorify Him. Jesus lives in every born-again person, and when we sin sexually, we violate His dwelling place. When we walk in the fear of the Lord, however, we cannot commit sexual sin.
There is a grace available to us to be victorious in this area of sexual purity, but we must release our faith in it so that it can work for us. We no longer have to be in bondage to sexual sin because of the power God has given us to overcome it. Meditate on the Word concerning sexual purity so that your mind can be renewed. God’s standard of living is attainable because we have everything we need to achieve it through our relationship with Jesus Christ and the power of His grace operating in our lives.