The Present Truth :: January 26, 1893
CONSECRATION is simply the constant recognition of the fact that we are the Lord’s and not our own. He who learns that this is a fact and lives in the constant living presence and recognition of it as the great fact, —he is consecrated, and this is consecration.
Nor is this a hard thing to do in itself. People make it hard for themselves, by thinking it to be something that it is not, and trying to accomplish it in a way that is not the Lord’s way, and even then they miss it. And, in truth, going about it in another than the Lord’s way, they cannot possibly do anything else than miss it.
Is it a fact, then, that we are the Lord’s? —Of course it is; for it is written: “Ye are bought with a price” (1 Cor. 6:20). And the price is, “the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:19). For He “gave Himself for us” (Titus 2:14).
This “price” was paid for every soul that is on earth, and for every one who ever was or ever shall be on earth; for “He died for all.” Having died for all; having paid the wondrous price for all; having given Himself for all, it is certainly a fact that all are his. Therefore it is written: “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Cor. 6:19, 20).
He not only gave Himself for us, but for all there is of us—yes, even for our sins. For again it is written that He “gave Himself for our sins” (Gal. 1:4). And He did it “that He might deliver us from this present evil world;” that He might “purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works;” that He might present us “faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy” (Jude 24); —in one word, “that He might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18).
He so loved us that He wants to save us. But He cannot save us in our sins. He will save us from our sins. And as our whole self is sin and sin only, in order to get us, in order to buy us, He had to buy our sins also. So in giving Himself for us, He gave Himself for our sins too. And as we are His, because He bought us with that great price, so also our sins are His, for He bought them with the same great price.
Then will you let Him have the sins which He has bought? or will you hold on to these yourself? Will you let Him have what is His own? Will you let Him do what He will with His own? And what will He do with these sins? O, He will forgive them! (1 John 1:9). He will make them as white as snow. (Isa. 1:18). He will put them away. (Heb. 9:26). He will cast them into the depths of the sea. (Micah 7:19). He will remove them from us as far as the east is from the west. (Ps. 103:12). He will cast them all behind His back. (Isa. 38:17). And when they are all cast behind His back, He and His own throne will stand between us and them, as the pledge that we are free from them; and the rainbow round about the throne will be the sign—the token—of the everlasting covenant that our sins and iniquities will be remembered no more. (Heb. 8:12).
Thus in giving Himself for our sins, He gave Himself to us. In giving Himself for us, He gave Himself to us. So when we let Him have our sins, we get Him instead. When we let Him have ourselves, we get Himself instead. Would you rather have Him than your sins? Then let Him have them. Make the blessed exchange to-day. Would you rather have His way than your way? Would you rather have His life than your life? Would you rather have His disposition than your disposition? Would you rather have His character than your character? Would you rather have Him than yourself? “To be sure I would,” you say. Then, O! let Him have you now; make the blessed surrender, and exchange now and forevermore.
This is consecration. And thus it is a daily, an hourly, a constant recognition, in gratitude and thankfulness, that we are His own. So each day, “consecrate yourself to God in the morning. Make this your very first work. Let your prayer be, ‘Take me, O Lord, as wholly Thine. I lay all my plans at Thy feet. Use me to-day in Thy service. Abide with me, and let all my work be wrought in thee.’ This is a daily matter. Each morning consecrate yourself to God for that day. Surrender all your plans to Him, to be carried out or given up as His providence shall indicate.” Say, “I am the purchased possession of Jesus Christ, and every hour I must consecrate myself to His service.” “Thus day by day you may be giving your life into the hands of God, and thus your life will be moulded more and more after the life of Christ.” This is consecration. And it is not a burden, but a living, everlasting joy.
Therefore, “reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. . . . Yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you.” “Sin shall not have dominion over you,”—is that promise worth anything to you? It is worth all that God is worth to the one who reckons himself to be dead indeed unto sin, and alive unto God through Jesus Christ; and who yields himself unto God, and his members unto God as instruments for God to use. To this one God has declared, “Sin shall not have dominion over you.” Thank the Lord for this blessed promise of freedom from sin and all the power of sin. And this promise he will make a fact in the life and experience of every one who reckons thus and yields to God. You furnish the reckoning, He will furnish the fact. You yield to Him, and He will use you. You yield to Him your members, and He will use them only as instruments of righteousness. And so, “sin shall not have dominion over you,” for God is stronger than sin.