“Happy the heart that can see itself at its worst, without, on the one hand attempting to excuse its failure, or on the other, giving up in despair. For such a soul the Holy Spirit waits to bring the next stage of His blessed work of sanctification namely: The revelation of Jesus Christ Himself as our sanctification.
It is the purpose of God that the person of Jesus shall be to us the embodiment of all that there is in God and salvation. Therefore, sanctification is not a mere human experience or state, but is the reception of the person of Christ as the very substance of our spiritual life. For He “is made unto us of God, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, redemption.”
It is not a wealthy friend advancing us the money to pay our debts, but it is the friend coming into our business and assuming it Himself, with all its burdens and liabilities, while we simply become subordinate and receive all our needs henceforth from Him.
This was the glad cry which Paul sent back the moment he had reached the depths of self-despair: “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” It is the Holy Spirit’s function to reveal Him. “He shall take of the things of Christ and show them to us.”
And so in the light of His revealing we behold Christ, the perfect One, who walked in sinless perfection through the world in His incarnation, waiting to come and enter our hearts, and dwell in us, and walk in us, as the very substance of our new life, while we simply abide in Him, and walk in His very steppings.
It is not merely imitating an example, but it is living in the very life of another.
It is to have the very person of Christ possessing our being:
the thoughts of Christ, the desires of Christ, the will of Christ, the faith of Christ, the purity of Christ, the love of Christ, the unselfishness of Christ, the single aim of Christ, the obedience of Christ, the humility of Christ, the submission of Christ, the meekness of Christ, the patience of Christ, the gentleness of Christ, the zeal of Christ, the works of Christ, manifest in our mortal flesh, so that we shall say, “I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me.” When the Holy Spirit thus reveals Him to the heart we can surely say, as a saint once said after such a vision, “I have had such a sight of Christ that I never can be discouraged again.”
But the Spirit not only reveals Christ, but He actually brings him to occupy and abide in the heart. It is not enough to see, we must receive Him and become personally united to Him through the Holy Ghost…Through His gracious influence we present our bodies a living sacrifice, yield ourselves unto God in unreserved consecration, hand over to Him the old life of self and sin to be slain and buried forever, and offer ourselves to His absolute ownership, possession, and disposition, unconditionally and irrevocably.
The more definite and thorough this act of surrender, then the more complete and permanent will be the result.
It is true that, at the best, it will be an imperfect consecration, and will need His merits to make it acceptable, but He will accept a sincere and single desire, and will add His own perfect consecration to our imperfect act, thus making it acceptable to the Father through His grace.
It is most blessed to know that in the very first act of a consecrated life we are not alone, but He Himself becomes our consecration, as He will afterwards become our obedience, and our strength step by step to the end.”
— A.B. Simpson