“In whom also we obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.” “By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” “For by one offering He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified.” [Eph.1:11; Heb.10:10,14]
According to the Word of God, each person of the Trinity is directly involved in eternally assuring the success of the true believing sinner’s sanctification. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit each have their own personal and unique involvement in the sanctification of all the eternally loved, chosen, placed in Christ and blessed: In short, all the saved.
First, they have been sanctified (or set apart) by the eternal purpose and will of God the Father. The Word of God says from Is.14:24: “The Lord of hosts hath sworn saying, Surely as I have thought so shall it come to pass, and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” Hence, everything about the saved sinner is divinely determined and even predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the Triune Counsel of His own will.
Second, the saved one has been sanctified (or set apart) by the eternal Son of God. It is He that was covenanted from eternity to enter by incarnation into our fallen world where we were lost – in order to become the eternal Lamb of God and give His own life and to shed His own blood — to save us. Therefore, the Word of God describes that we are sanctified in the willingness of the eternal Son of God through the offering that He made of His body as being the Lord Jesus Christ, the only sovereign/Savior substitute that there ever was, is or ever will be. All this was accomplished: “according to the eternal purpose which He (God the Father) purposed in Christ Jesus (His beloved Son) our Lord.” [Eph.3:11]
Third, all the saved have been sanctified (or set apart) by the Holy Spirit of God. He it is that reveals to our hearts and minds the secret purposes of God’s great grace. He it is that also applies the eternally accomplished atonement of Christ very powerfully to our souls, and even to our conscience. He it is that seals to us the intimate and personal and eternal relationship to the Lord Jesus Christ as being our Lord and Savior – our substitute – that, in turn, regenerates us. He it is that continues to progressively unfold the riches of God’s Word to us. He it is that satisfies our hunger and thirst after righteousness – renewing our minds – and centering all our thinking and longing on Christ our Savior.
The Holy Spirit’s entrance into the equation of the saved sinner’s life and being brings forth the quickening — that, in essence, brings forth the life and walk of the faith of the Son of God who loved us and gave Himself for us. It is His dwelling in us that causes us to fill the Biblical description of 2Thess.2:13: “…brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.”
Therefore, all three persons of the Godhead – the Great Triumvirate – have fulfilled the prayer of the Lord Jesus Christ (the incarnated eternal Son of God) when He prayed in the garden the night before He went to the cross: “Sanctify them (lit.) in thy truth – thy Word is truth.” The very tense of the word, sanctify, in Christ’s statement to the Father suggests an already completed action by God upon all those for whom He prays. Praise His Wonderful Name!
For Christ’s Glory Only!
– John Carpenter