As I was preparing to read my Bible this morning, I realized that I would be reading John 17. This is an amazing look into the heart of the reason Jesus came to this earth. Other than the first few words of the chapter, the entire chapter is a prayer from Jesus to God. It reveals so much about the reason Jesus came to the earth to begin with, but it also speaks to what Jesus wanted to happen after He ascended into Heaven. While I was reading, I saw a verse that I had not noticed before. There are so many good verses in this chapter that I had not noticed verse 19 before. “And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth” (John 17:19).
I know this verse at a quick glance may not strike you as unusual, or even as important, but there is an extremely important truth taught here that I want you to see today. Jesus said that for your sake (and mine), He “sanctified” Himself. This word, sanctify, means to separate from wicked things and dedicate yourself to God. It means to be pure; externally from sins of the flesh; internally by renewing the soul. Jesus, as a human being, kept Himself pure from external sin. He never sinned one time … even though it was a part of His character to be perfect; He acted in a perfect manner while here on the earth. He did for us, and for our sin to be forgiven. He also pleased God with how He constantly renewed His inner man.
Getting past all the theological things we could draw from this verse today, let’s focus on what it means to us today. The second phrase in that verse says that as Jesus sanctified Himself, we who are His children ought to sanctify ourselves as well. Jesus set the standard that we ought to follow. He blazed the trail that would be impossible for us to walk without Him. He let us know by His very own life that we can live in a godly fashion in an ungodly world! It is possible for us to show this world a testimony of purity. This world we are living in today is searching for a hero. They are looking for someone who can climb tall buildings and rescue people who are in trouble. The problem is they are looking in the wrong places. Jesus provided for us the only Hero we will ever need. He is depending on you and I to live a holy lifestyle while here on this earth to show those that are seeking the answer. Ask God to help you walk worthy of His calling today. He has set the standard, and His desire is that we follow Him in living a holy and pure life in this world today.