1 Thessalonians 5:
23 Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.
This is a key verse and, if read both in its context and simply, implies that God may “sanctify” a Christian “completely”, keeping the whole soul and body blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. It continues to say that God is faithful and “he will surely do it.”
Can we see what it says? It says we may be “completely” or “entirely” sanctified. For any person who has come to life in Christ Jesus (AKA, a Christian) this is a pretty stunning promise.
5 The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
6 The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
7 I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
8 I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.
11 You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures [delights] for evermore.
It’s with these two verses that I relaunch my faith blog under the name Life-Ecstatic. The word “ecstatic” is used as a noun for mystics and as an adjective for experiencing joy and excitement. I’ll be using it in both these respects, pointing toward a ‘valid’ mysticism that belongs to the Christian life, a mysticism that’s about ‘devotion’ (that alone should give you a clue where that’s going to go) and speak about the single goal of every Christian’s life, which is joy in God. My blogs will go around qualifying why I see it that way and encouraging Christians to bring all of their life onto one single focus, one single goal.
I’m of the firm belief that many Christians feel pulled this way and that way with the mass of information, books, blogs and teachings out there. Yes, my one is another one. But, I’ve found that when you’re able to pull your focus toward one thing, there is fruit and direction in your life. Pursuing “joy in God” is another way of saying that our central goal is to “worship God”, but I don’t use that language because the word “worship” has become quite vague for many of us.
To come back to the beginning, it’s this ‘joy in God’ that leads us to sanctification, the outcome of that inward desire of the Christian to live a holy life before God and man. “Holy” means a life of perfect love, the kind of love Jesus had. It doesn’t mean we dress in strange clothes and hang out on a mountain in solitude, but solitude is certainly a way of getting to the goal! So how all of these sorts of things interconnect will be the main themes of these blogs.
My blogs on business, current affairs and so on will be housed at my www.ryanpeterwrites.com website.
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