Greetings from saint John. No, I’m not referring to the apostle, just your friend who writes these devotional articles. ” A saint?!” you say. Yes, that’s correct. Now you may be thinking that I’ve gotten a big head and is claiming sinless perfection or something. No, I’m still “forgetting those things which are behind, and pressing on to the things which are above” in my pilgrimage with the Lord. “Then, what’s with this claim to sainthood?” you ask. I confess I’m not a “saint” by virtue of being an NFL football player in New Orleans, and Rome has certainly no intention to canonize me. The readers who have studied the doctrine of sanctification know whereof I speak. I’m a saint in the same way every true believer in Christ is. Remember how Paul addressed the Corinthians?
” … to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be SAINTS, with all who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours.” (1 Cor 1:2 NKJV; c.f. Eph 3:8; Jude 3).
So let us look into the wonderful teaching of Christ as our sanctification. This is another facet of 1 Corinthians 1:30: “But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God–and righteousness and sanctification and redemption”.
Jesus is our sanctification.
To sanctify means “to set apart” for a special purpose (Gk -“hagiazo”). Although we can’t fully explore this profound topic now, consider the ways in which believers in Christ are set apart in Him.
First, God “set you apart” when you were placed into Christ at conversion–positional sanctification. This is based upon the finished work of Christ on Calvary. As the writer of Hebrews put it,
“By that will [God’s will] we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all ” (Heb. 10:10).
Compare the status of the Old Testament tabernacle. It was not just any portable building; it was “set apart” as the place where God dwelt among His people. As a believer in Messiah Jesus, you are the dwelling place of God through His Holy Spirit! (1 Cor. 6:19). This position (standing) is assured through God’s grace and relates to your identity. This is why Paul could call the struggling believers in the immoral city of Corinth “saints.” Not all of their behavior was saintly, but their identity and destiny was based upon their spiritual union with Christ. The same is true for you as a believer!
Now what about that problem of “unsaintly behavior”? As Galatians 5:17 and James 3:2 confirm, the “flesh” continues as a menace in the Christian’s life.
This brings us to the second aspect of being set apart–progressive sanctification. The true believer (who has been sanctified positionally) is in the process of being sanctified in character and conduct. This dimension is taught in Hebrews as well:
“For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified” (Heb. 10:14).
God, who set you apart for Himself at conversion, is working in you to conform you to the moral likeness of His Son! (Rom. 8:29).
Oswald Chambers wrote of this process:
“The one marvelous secret of a holy life lies not in imitating Jesus, but in letting the perfections of Jesus manifest themselves in my mortal flesh. Sanctification is ‘Christ in you’. It is His wonderful life that is imparted to me in sanctification, and imparted by faith as a sovereign gift of God’s grace… It is His patience, His love, His holiness, His faith, His purity, His godliness that is manifested in and through every sanctified soul. Sanctification is not drawing from Jesus the power to be holy; it is drawing from Jesus the holiness that was manifested in Him, and He manifests in me… All the perfections of Jesus are at my disposal, and slowly and surely I begin to live a life of ineffable order and sanctity and holiness: ‘kept by the power of God’. ” 
Thirdly, there is particular sanctification. The human spirit of the believer is the aspect of a person that has been regenerated (John 3:3), united with Christ (1 Cor. 6:17), made a partaker of the divine nature (2 Pet. 1:4), and recreated in righteousness and holiness as the “new man” (Eph. 4:24). Faith in this inner miracle motivates the disciple to live consistently with his/her essential nature. Love for God and others is the new normal (Eph. 2:10) !
Give thanks, fellow believer, that in Christ you are set apart for God! Trust Him and surrender to His perfect will. Your Sanctifier will continue His gracious work of developing the new you, “who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him” (Col. 3:10).
Our Father, we confess that You have set us apart for Your holy purposes when You placed us in Christ. We yield to Your indwelling life, that Christ’s holiness may be expressed in our character, our conduct, and our conversation. For Your sake we pray, amen.
Part 3 of 4 in this series
 Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, 7/23.
 See Man as Spirit, Soul, and Body, ch. 4. The first edition is online: https://gracenotebook.com/man-as-spirit-soul-and-body-chapter-4/
Copyright 1999, 2012 by John Woodward. Permission is granted to reprint this publication for noncommercial use when credit to the author and Grace Notes is given.