Definition of Sanctification
1) To make sacred or holy; to set apart to a sacred office or to religious use or observance; to consecrate by appropriate rites.
2) To make free from sin; to cleanse from moral corruption and population; to purify.
D.S. Warner is credited with the statement that if any doctrine needed to be overemphasized it is the doctrine of Sanctification.
Jesus prayed that his disciples might be sanctified and he died to make that experience possible.
John 17:17: “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”
Sanctification is definitely a New Testament doctrine.
II Timothy 2:21: “If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.”
Sanctification finds it is antitype in the Old Testament under Mosaic Law.
- The tabernacle consisted of two compartments surrounded by an outer court.
- The outer court contained an alter and laver of water.
- The two compartments of the tabernacle were known as the Holy Place and Holy of Holies.
- The Holy Place contained the table of shewbread, the gold candlestick, and the altar of incense.
- In the Holy of Holies was the Ark of the Covenant, containing the tables of stone along with other sacred items.
- A very costly veil separated the two sections.
- The priests ministered in the Holy Place, but into the Holy of Holies the high priest entered alone once a year. (Atonement Day)
- While the priests could not minister in the Holy of Holies, the death of Christ made it possible for the veil to be rent and man to enjoy a two-fold experience.
- Sanctification admits one into the Holy of Holies where the laws of God are written on the heart.
- Today, God does not dwell in a tabernacle, temple or sanctuary but in the hearts of his sanctified saints.
The two-fold nature of sin makes a second definite work of grace necessary.
Actual sin or the sins that need to be forgiven, the sins of commission or omission.
Psalms 51:5: “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.”
This inherent sin may be summed up by calling it the sin of selfhood.
Apostolic examples of the Holy Spirit baptism
The apostles themselves received the experience of sanctification on the day of Pentecost.
John 16:7: “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.”
Conditions for receiving the Holy Spirit
Only those who have been born-again are qualified to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
A complete unconditional surrender of self to God without any reservations followed by earnest desire and fervent prayer for the infilling of the Holy Spirit must be made.
Romans 12:1&2 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2.And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
John the Baptist said:
Matthew 3:11 “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:”
The evidence of the Holy Spirit is found in himself. It does not depend on any certain phase or emotional reaction. The evidence of the Holy Spirit in a life is as clear as the evidence of the existence of the sun.
Romans 8:16 “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.”