A Wesleyan Moment | What is Sanctifying Grace?

The third movement of God’s grace in our lives is called Sanctifying Grace. God has been at work in our lives with Prevenient Grace. When we heard the Gospel and believed we were born again as God applied Justifying Grace. Now the question becomes what will God do next? God has an amazing plan and desire for our lives.

Peter answers a question that many of us have asked: What is God’s will for my life? Now, the response that we make to the answer Peter gives should not be, “Is that all?” That would not be correct. The fact that God, in his wisdom and purpose, has decided to tell us what He will do should create in us joy and peace; patience and passion. So what is God’s will? Listen to what Peter says is 1 Peter 4:3:

For this is the will of God, your sanctification (ESV)

The New International Version says it this way: “It is God’s will that you should be sanctified.” Do you see that. The implication here is not that this is an option we can opt into or out of. God’s will, what he has determined will happen is that you become like Jesus. That is what it means to be sanctified. To look so much like Jesus that the world sees Jesus and not us.

Could that be why we don’t want to be sanctified? We don’t want to have our identity replaced with Christ’s? I cannot think of anything I want more than to have my weaknesses replaced by his strengths; my sorrows by his joy; my pain by his healing; my sin by his grace. That is what God has offered. That is what Jesus has purchased through his death and resurrection. That is what the Holy Spirit has applied to our lives. Be sanctified. God desires that for you.

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