The Lord Who Sanctifies (23-11-22)
Psalm of Praise: Psalms 89:1-2
I will sing of the Lord's great love forever;
with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations.
I will declare that your love stands firm forever,
that you have established your faithfulness in heaven itself.
In the Old Testament God is referred to as Yahweh, also pronounced Jehovah, and translated in English as ‘Lord’. There are seven occasions where Jehovah is used with a suffix which describes a different aspect of the nature of God.
Today we are going to look at Jehovah M’Keddesh: The Lord who Sanctifies.
Bible Reading: Leviticus 20:7-8, Ezekiel 37:27-28
Consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am the Lord your God.
Keep my decrees and follow them. I am the Lord, who makes you holy.
My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people.
Then the nations will know that I the Lord make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.
In 1968 the SS Torrey Canyon hit rocks between Cornwall and the Scilly Isles, spilling more than 100,000 tonnes of crude oil into the English Channel. This, along with the solvents used to disperse the oil, polluted 120 miles of the Cornish coast and 50 miles of the French coast. It is estimated that 15,000 seabirds and a huge amount of marine life was killed by the disaster.
The oily black sea birds could do nothing to remove the pollution themselves, but the work of many volunteers and rescue centres managed to clean up and save some of those that made it to the shore alive, returning to them their beautiful white plumage.
In many ways the devastation caused by the thick black oil from the Torrey Canyon gives us a dramatic image of the sin that pollutes us, hampering our lives, gradually dragging us further and further down and choking out the life that God has given us.
There is nothing we can do ourselves that will deal with the pollution of sin in our lives. But what we could never do, God has done for us by sending Jesus to die for us on the cross. He is The Lord who Sanctifies.
Like the volunteers who cleaned up the sea birds, saved their lives and restored them to their former beauty, so Jesus volunteered to clean us up, restore us to our former beauty and give us new life.
To ‘sanctify’ is to ‘make holy’ and can also be translated as ‘set apart’. Just as beautiful holy objects were set apart for God in the temple in the Old Testament, so we too, having been cleansed and sanctified by God, are set apart for him, available for his service, to live our lives to his praise and glory.
Father God, thank you that in Jesus you reached out to me sanctified me. Help me to live my life, today and always, as ‘set apart’ for you. Amen
His mercy is more