Transformation Into The Image of Christ Can Only Happen to Those Who Know They Are Already Sanctified
We often hear preachers tell us we are being sanctified. That justification is a one-time event and sanctification is an ongoing process.
But the Bible teaches we are already sanctified, made holy. Sanctification is to be made holy and to be set apart.
And by that will, we have been made holy/sanctified through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Heb 10:10 NIV
Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified/made holy, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. 1 Cor 6:11 NASB
For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified/holy are all from one [Father]; for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren Heb 2:11 NASB
And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build [you] up and to give [you] the inheritance among all those who are sanctified/holy. Acts 20:32 NASB
that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified/made holy by faith in Me.' Acts 26:18b NAS
For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified/holy. Heb 10:14 NASB (In error, some translations add “being" in front of sanctified in Heb 10:14. But when the Greek is read, the word "being" is not there.)
The Bible also tells us that we cannot be called unholy, in other words, unsanctified.
Again a voice came to him a second time, "What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy." Acts 10:15 NASB
And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a man who is a Jew to associate with a foreigner or to visit him; and yet God has shown me that I should not call any man unholy or unclean. Acts 10:28 NASB
Our Spirit has been born again, sanctified, made holy, righteous, complete and perfected in Christ.
This was all done by the hand of God. Before being born again, our flesh is crucified and dies on the cross from God’s true perspective. Our flesh will never be sanctified, made holy, righteous, complete or perfect. Sin has been condemned in the flesh and this is why our flesh dies, one time on the cross as God sees it, not over and over again as some teach. We are called to believe God and see our flesh as crucified and dead with Christ on the cross and ourselves alive in the Spirit, perfected and complete in Christ.
"I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. Gal 2:20 NAS
When we are born again, our dead unredeemable flesh is circumcised by God from our born again and perfect Spirit. When something is circumcised, it is set apart just like the circumcision we see in the Old Testament which is a picture, shadow of the true circumcision done by God. The true circumcision is when our perfected Spirit is set apart from our crucified and dead flesh.
and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; Col 2:11 NAS
The same Greek word is used for sanctified and holy in the New Testament. They mean the same thing and are defined in the Greek as to be set apart. This circumcision is the process of sanctification of our Spirit. This is when the work of sanctification is complete. Our born-again perfected Spirit is of Christ and is sealed by the Holy Spirit - Eph 1:13, protected from the evil one - John 17:5. The truth of this completed work is to be believed by faith. It cannot be seen by sight in the flesh. It has nothing to do with the flesh other than the circumcision of the flesh, where our Spirit is set apart from our dead flesh.
for we walk by faith, not by sight -- 2 Cor 5:7.
More Evidence We Are Already Sanctified - God Calls All Believers Saints – Defined as The Set Apart, Holy, Sacred Ones.
The Greek word used for saint in the New Testament means set apart by (or for) God, holy, sacred – Strong’s 40. hagios.
To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, saints by calling, with all who in every place call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their [Lord] and ours: 1 Cor 1:2 NAS
giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light. Col 1:12 NAS
When people state we are still being sanctified, they do so because they have heard others say this and see things they do not like in themselves and the church, wanting change. I understand this desire but this is to confuse sanctification with transformation, two very different things.
Christians want to look more like Christ for the world to see. But the process they seek is not the sanctification that has already been done as we have reviewed. We need transformation and not sanctification. Our transformation, like the sanctification process, is not performed by the flesh through policing our flesh with our flesh with the law as many try and do and as Satan wants us to think. The process of transformation is defined as metamorphosis in the Greek. With transformation, our outside appearance is supernaturally transformed to look like what we already have been given on the inside, in the Spirit. Transformation comes when we focus on who we are in Christ, the new creation God tells us we are right now in the Spirit. This focus and renewal of our thinking allow our born again Spirit to rise to the surface in this life. For this process to take place, God needs our cooperation. We need to renew our minds to the truth of who we are in Christ.
God’s word says we are sanctified, holy, righteous, perfected and complete. We must agree with God on all of these points by faith to walk in the Spirit. If we do not agree, we will spend time in the flesh trying to perfect ourselves in these areas when God says we are already perfected in these areas, in the Spirit. This has nothing to do with the flesh that is crucified and dead in God's eyes and should be in ours too if we want to agree with God. You must stop trying to perfect the flesh by the flesh by trying to force it to obey if you want to walk in the Spirit.
These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence. Col 2:23 NAS
Transformation is about walking in the Spirit by faith and not in the flesh. Walking in the Spirit happens when by faith we renew our minds to the truth of who we are in Christ agreeing with what God says is already done, but we cannot yet see.
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Rom 12:2 NAS
Therefore, One of the First Requirements for our Transformation to Take Place is to Believe and Agree with God’s Truth, by the hand of God, we Have Already Been Sanctified, Set Apart and Made Holy.
If we do not believe we are already sanctified and keep trying to be sanctified by policing ourselves with the law or waiting for it to happen without renewing our mind to the truth in God’s word, the transformation we seek will never happen. The transformation, metamorphosis we seek can only happen supernaturally by the hand of God as we believe fully in the truth of who we are in Christ. We renew our minds to the truth and we look at Christ as though we are looking in a mirror, seeing His holiness, sanctification, righteousness and perfection as ours.
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. 2 Cor 3:18 NAS
In Christ, we have His holiness, sanctification, righteousness and perfection and this is why we can have confidence in the day of judgment.
By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. 1 John 4:17.
The same Greek word is used to describe the transformation of believers and to describe the transfiguration of Jesus before the disciples. The word is 3339 - Metamorphoó and is defined: I transform, transfigure. This is where we get our word metamorphosis, a supernatural change like we see when a caterpillar becomes a butterfly. When Jesus was transformed, transfigured, the process of metamorphosis took place as His exterior appearance changed for all to see. The glory that was in Him rose to the surface to be seen. This is similar to what can happen in us, as we grasp that we are fully right with God the Father, gradually and in a more limited way, as all the attributes that already reside in our born again Spirit rise to the surface for the world to see like a light on a hill.
Six days later, Jesus took with Him Peter and James and John, and brought them up on a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured before them; and His garments became radiant and exceedingly white, as no launderer on earth can whiten them. Elijah appeared to them along with Moses; and they were talking with Jesus. Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three tabernacles, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” For he did not know what to answer; for they became terrified. Then a cloud formed, overshadowing them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is My beloved Son, listen to Him!” All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone. Mark 9:2-8 NAS
When we believe all that God states is true about our born-again Spirit in Christ, we begin walking in the Spirit by faith and the fruits of the Spirit are produced. This is the transformation we seek as our Spirit and the fruits of the Spirit take precedence (acts of love, peace, joy, self-control, patience, etc.) and our flesh and the works of the flesh (acts of sin, anger, bitterness, worry, fear, etc.) fade off into obscurity.
Do you want to be transformed into His image? Study the New Covenant exclusively for one year, reading the book of Hebrews several times. Only do New Covenant Bible studies and listen to New Covenant sermons during the 12 months and renew your mind to the truth of who you are in Christ. I have written many studies that will help you.
More New Covenant Studies that Apply:
Sanctified or Not?
I Am a New Creation IN CHRIST
Why Don't I look Like a New Creation in Christ in the Mirror?
I Am Holy, I Am Sanctified, I Am Perfected
God Said a Believer Can Never be Considered Unholy
Christians are on The Highway of Holiness, Be Holy, Because I Am Holy is a Prophecy
Believers are Never Called Sinners in the New Testament
Jesus Never Called a Believer a Hypocrite
Many more New Covenant Bible Studies HERE. Jesus poured out His blood for the New Covenant of grace and truth, replacing the Old Covenant law of Moses. Believers are exclusively under the New Covenant, the last will and testament of Jesus that began after the cross.
And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, "This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood. Luke 22:20