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Five Minutes a Day with Luther
Thursday, November 7, 2019

Bible Passage:John 17:17a

Sanctify them in the truth.

*     *     *

Jesus here presses still one thing more; yet all that He asks pertains to the Word only.  He does not say: If it is Thy will to defend them from afflictions, then cause them to run away into some desert, or to hide themselves in some monastery; but: Defend them that they may remain sanctified, and that through Thy truth, which is true and pure sanctification.  What the devil aims at with his might is to introduce by the leaders of his sects any doctrine which carries with it the greatest show and the most plausible appearance of truth and holiness.  He does not attack us head-on with temptations to gross and fleshly sins, knowing that all such endeavors would be in vain, and that he would gain no victory at all by doing that.  But, seeing that all our efforts and endeavors are directed toward the attainment of holiness, he sets only that holiness before us, that he might supply us with help in the acquiring of it; and, then, with such splendor does he adorn and set off this holiness that no human power can resist its appeal, but we are deceived and captured by its appearance, imagining it to be real.  Therefore we must without intermission strive against false holiness.  Jesus prays: O dearest Father, defend them from all outward show of holiness, and sanctify them in the truth.  And to be sanctified in the truth is what Paul in his Epistle to the Ephesians, chapter 4, calls "being created in righteousness and holiness of the truth".  Hence Christ, and Paul likewise, say that there are many who are praised and honored for their holiness, but their holiness is all an outward show.

Fictions they teach with cunning art,
And lies of man's invention;
Not grounded on God's Word, their heart
Breeds naught but strange dissension;
One chooses this, another that,
Untold division they create
Though saintlike in appearance.

aka Pastor Robin Fish
It isn't whether we win or lose, it is "Do we stand faithfully?"

Information Copyright © 2007-2009 Robin Fish. All rights reserved.

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