Living A Righteous And Holy Life

God wants every believer to live according to His seed which is put in him when he is born again. A believer who lives according to this seed does not sin because the nature of this seed is righteous. The apostle John wrote, “Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and him cannot sin, because he has been born of God.” (1 John 3:9)

The normal life of a believer is the righteous life. He does not sin because God’s seed remains in him. However, the experience of a believer shows that he still sins. Why? God’s seed resides deeply in him. To always live according to this seed he must constantly abide in Christ. He must be conscious of Christ’s presence in his life all the time, seeing Him and knowing Him. The apostle John wrote, “Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him.” (1 John 3:6)

A believer must learn to abide in Christ so that he can always live according to God’s seed in Him. What does abiding in Christ mean? The Lord Jesus said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.” (John 15:4) The picture of abiding in Christ is a branch abiding in the vine. To bear fruit a branch must stay connected to the vine. Likewise, to live a righteous life a believer must stay connected to Christ.

When someone believes in Christ, he is in Him. As long as he continues to believe in Christ, he stays connected to Him. So, to abide in Christ a believer does not need to do anything, except keep on believing. The apostle John wrote, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” (1 John 5:13)

The problem with many believers is not they do not believe, but they do not continue to believe. They believe for a while, but in time of temptation they fall away (Luk 8:13). As long as they believe, they will live according to God’s seed in them. They will live a righteous live. But, the moment they do not believe, they will immediately fall into sin.

What makes a believer do not believe anymore? His own understanding. When a believer leans on his own understanding, he will fall into unbelief, then into sin. Adam and Eve fell into sin, not because they had an evil heart, but because they used their own understanding to reason about God’s commandment. In his great wisdom King Solomon wrote, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.” (Prv 3:5)

When a believer trusts or believes in Christ with all his heart, he will abide in Christ, but when he leans on his own understanding he will not abide in Christ. So, the key to abide in Christ is not to think with the mind, but to trust with the heart. Drawing away his attention from his mind and putting his trust in Christ alone with all his heart will make a believer live a righteous life.

A simple but very effective way to draw away the attention from the mind is to ignore the thoughts in it. Instead the attention should be placed in the heart where Christ is. When the attention is focused more on the heart than on the mind, the presence of Christ within will be felt more than the thoughts in the mind, which is the sign of abiding in Christ.

Many believers think that living a righteous life is all God wants from them. However, God wants every believer to live a holy life. What is the difference between a righteous life and a holy life? Being righteous is being obedient to God’s commandment whereas being holy is being set apart for God’s plan and purpose.

The difference between living a righteous life and living a holy life is like the difference between living as a law-abiding citizen and living as a soldier. A law-abiding citizen is a person who lives for himself, but does not break the law of his country. A soldier is a person who does not live for himself, but for his country. He is more than just a law abiding citizen because he serves his country. A believer can still live for himself in the kingdom of God and be righteous, but only a believer who lives for God and serves His kingdom purpose is holy.

The difference between living a righteous life and living a holy life is like the difference between living as a law-abiding citizen and living as a soldier. A law-abiding citizen is a person who lives for himself, but does not break the law of his country. A soldier is a person who does not live for himself, but for his country. He is more than just a law abiding citizen because he serves his country. A believer can still live for himself in the kingdom of God and be righteous, but only a believer who lives for God and serves His kingdom purpose is holy.

The story of a rich young ruler who came to Jesus is a perfect illustration of someone who lives a righteous life, but is not willing to live a holy life. From his youth he had already kept God’s commandments, but when Jesus told him to sell all that he had and follow him, he was not willing. The young man said to Him (Jesus), “All these things (God’s commandments) I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?” Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. (Mat 19:20-22)

The apostle Paul wrote, “I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.” (Rom 6:19) Righteousness is actually the foundation of holiness. A believer who does not live in righteousness will not be able to live in holiness. Nevertheless, the life of a believer should not stop in righteousness, but from righteousness he should progress into the life of holiness.

The life of the Lord Jesus is the perfect example of the life of righteousness progressing into the life of holiness. In the first thirty years of His life, the Lord Jesus always lived to fulfill all righteousness, that is, to keep all God’s commandments. When He was twelve years old, He was subject to His parents (Luk 2:51). When He was thirty years old, He was subject to John the Baptist to be baptized by him (Mat 3:15). In the last three and a half years of His life, the Lord Jesus always lived a holy life, fulfilling God’s plan and purpose. He said, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work.” (John 4:34)

The Lord Jesus entered the life of holiness from the life of righteousness after He was baptized with water and the Holy Spirit. The apostle John wrote, “When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.” (Mat 3:16) Water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism is necessary for a believer to enter the life of holiness. Water baptism is the burial of the world and the things of the world whereas Holy Spirit baptism is the enduement of power from heaven.

A believer who has been baptized with water and the Holy Spirit baptism should live a holy life. He should not live for this world nor for the things of this world because the world is dead to him and he to the world. Instead, he should live for God and for His kingdom purpose because he is alive to God and the heavenly things. Nevertheless, why do many believers who have received both water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism still live for this world and the things of this world? Because there was no consecration in their hearts when they received water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism. Their water baptism is just ceremonial and their Holy Spirit baptism is just about receiving the ability to speak in tongues.

A believer who has been baptized with water and the Holy Spirit baptism should live a holy life. He should not live for this world nor for the things of this world because the world is dead to him and he to the world. Instead, he should live for God and for His kingdom purpose because he is alive to God and the heavenly things. Nevertheless, why do many believers who have received both water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism still live for this world and the things of this world? Because there was no consecration in their hearts when they received water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism. Their water baptism is just ceremonial and their Holy Spirit baptism is just about receiving the ability to speak in tongues.

To live a holy life a believer must always be full of the Holy Spirit. To be full of the Holy Spirit he must be empty of himself and the things of this world. To be empty, he must constantly surrender everything to God, including himself. He must be completely consecrated to God. In the words of the Lord Jesus, he must always deny himself and take up his cross daily.

To live a righteous life a believer must die to sin. However, to live a holy life a believer must not only die to sin, but to self as well. He must not only die to sinful things of this world, but also to the natural things of this world. For example, it is possible for a believer to live a righteous life and be rich in this world at the same time, but it is impossible for a believer to live a holy life and become rich in this world at the same time. The story of the rich young ruler who came to Jesus illustrates it (Mat 19:16-22).

The apostle Paul wrote, “Do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit.” (Eph 5:18) A believer must always be filled with the Holy Spirit so that he can live a holy life. The Holy Spirit that he receives will enable him to die to himself daily (1 Cor 15:31). The more he dies to himself, the more Christ lives in him and through him (Gal 2:20). He will not live for himself any longer, but for God and His purpose. His life will become holy.

The apostle Paul wrote, “Do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit.” (Eph 5:18) A believer must always be filled with the Holy Spirit so that he can live a holy life. The Holy Spirit that he receives will enable him to die to himself daily (1 Cor 15:31). The more he dies to himself, the more Christ lives in him and through him (Gal 2:20). He will not live for himself any longer, but for God and His purpose. His life will become holy.

When a believer enters the life of holiness he will begin to be led by the Holy Spirit. What does it mean to be led by the Holy Spirit? It means God Himself who works in him both to will and to do according to His good pleasure (Phi 2:13). He does not have to seek God’s will all the time before he makes a decision because often God’s will has become his will. He does not have to think about how to do a certain thing all the time before he does it because often God’s ability has become his ability.

An unbeliever is someone who does not live according to the will of God. He lives according to his own will. A believer who lives a righteous life is someone who always choose the will of God over his own will. A believer who lives a holy life is someone who has surrendered his own will to God to the extent that he almost does not have any will of his own anymore. The will of God has become his will.

An unbeliever is someone who does not live according to the will of God. He lives according to his own will. A believer who lives a righteous life is someone who always choose the will of God over his own will. A believer who lives a holy life is someone who has surrendered his own will to God to the extent that he almost does not have any will of his own anymore. The will of God has become his will.

An unbeliever is someone who does not have God’s ability in him. So, he must rely on his own ability to do anything. A believer has God’s ability in him. So, he can live by this divine ability. A believer who lives a righteous life often needs to pray first before does something so that he will not rely on his own ability, but God’s ability. A believer who lives a holy life does not always need to do that because God’s ability has become his ability. He can just do anything and God’s ability will work in him.

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