Bible Studies & Devotionals
From Olive Branch Ministries
By Mark and Tinsley Baker
Get all the Soul Foods online @:http://www.olivebranchministries.us
Titus 2:11-14. For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.
When we are born again, we have been reconciled to Christ; Jesus gave Himself for us, so that we could be redeemed from sin. We are to be a special people to Him, living soberly, righteously and godly in todayís world. We were made righteous by Christís death and resurrection. Our inner man is born again but our outward man, our fleshly man is not reborn. Therefore it is our responsibility to sanctify ourselves daily, in order to walk closer with Our Lord.
Joshua 3:5. And Joshua said to the people, "Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.'
Joshua told the people of Israel before the Battle of Jericho, to sanctify themselves, to cleanse themselves of unrighteousness, because God was going to be in their midst and do great things in their life. He could not do it, if they did not separate themselves as holy. If we want God to do great things in our life, then we must cleanse ourselves of unrighteousness and strive every day to be more like Jesus.
1 Peter1:13-16.Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,
because it is written, "Be holy, for I am holy.''
We are to "gird up the loins of our mind", that means we are to prepare ourselves both spiritually and mentally to live daily for Jesus. To walk in His way, to do His will in our life, not the will of the enemy as seen in the world. Everything we do should bring glory to God. You need to "gird up the loins of your mind", and identify anything in your life that would not be pleasing to the Father or not glorify Him.
What is not pleasing to God? Look at what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Galatians
Galatians 5:19-21. Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God."
Paul also tells us in Romans, How we put down the works of the flesh and walk in righteousness.
Romans 12:1-2. I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God."
We renew our mind with the things of God, by studying His Word, learning it, thinking about what it said and then putting it into practice. This is how we learn what is acceptable to God and what isnít.
It is the Goodness of God that leads us to salvation and righteousness, through His Grace and Goodness, He shows us daily what is acceptable and not acceptable and it is up to us to put on the righteousness of God.
Romans 2:4. Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?"
Romans 6:12-13. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God."
We present our bodies to be used for righteousness, to Glorify God in everything we do, not to show unrighteousness. That means we look at even the simple things we do everyday, to see if it is pleasing to God. The easiest way to judge is to ask yourself, "Would I do this in front of Jesus?" Everything we do, we already do in front of Jesus, but sometimes we forget that He is with us always and sees everything we do. When we do something that is not pleasing to God, then we need to cleanse ourselves of it by asking for forgiveness.
1 John 1:9. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
Once we confess our sin, knowing that if we do it sincerely, God forgives us and cleanses us, and remembers it no more. We, however, must resolve in our hearts never to do it again. Sometimes we will fail, but because of His Goodness and Mercy, He will forgive us, and we continue to strive to please Him daily. It could be something simple like loosing our temper at work or in traffic, or something more complex like willfully looking at pornography on the internet. It could be gossiping about your boss or sister-in-law, or thinking impure thoughts about someone we know or works with us. Whatever it is, God will let you know by the leading of the Holy Spirit that it is not pleasing to Him and we have to get rid of it and sanctify ourselves daily, so that He can move in our lives.
1 Thessalonians 4:3-5,7. For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God;ÖFor God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness."
Romans 8:12-13. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God."
When we walk daily with Our Lord and Savior, He will lead us to righteousness and acts that please and glorify Him. When we spend time with Jesus, we become familiar with His ways and His thoughts and eventually they become our ways and our thoughts, because we want them to. Our goal should be to be more like Jesus every day.
Look at the words of a well know song:
"I want to be more like you, Jesus,
I want to be more like you,
I want to be a vessel you move through,
I want to be more like You."
Pray this Prayer
Father God, I confess with my mouth that Jesus is your son, that He lived and died , that you raised Him from the dead and that He sits at Your Right Hand interceding for me now.
Father, I ask you now, to show me areas in my life that are not pleasing to you, Show me what I need to change, Lord, show me the thoughts and imaginations that are not pleasing to you, Father.
Father, forgive me of ___________________. Your Word says, If I confess my sin, You are faithful and just to forgive me. I am asking you now Father to forgive me. Show me daily how to sanctify myself, Lord, so that I can see you do mighty things in my life. So that everything I do will glorify You.
In Jesus name. Amen.