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BIBLICAL SEPARATION


8 Spiritual Blessings of

SEPARATION

Every biblical doctrine is a blessing to those who believe and apply it fully in their lives and ministries. Our Lord Jesus said, “Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it” (Luke 11:28). God’s truth profits everyone who believes and obeys. Isaiah the prophet said, “Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit… O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea” (Isaiah 48:17-18). God’s truth, regardless of differing opinions, if adhered to passionately, will provide great blessings to the soul. They who believe and obey the truth of God’s Word can be expectant of glorious eternal blessings – “Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory” (Psalm 73:24).

Every doctrine of the Scriptures is to be received and practised. So, the doctrine of separation, being a clear teaching of God’s Word, must be upheld. Nonetheless, many reject it as an unpleasant, burdensome, useless doctrine. Some refer to it as a “minor doctrine” or “non-essential doctrine”. However, this doctrine is the very channel of divine blessings. Furthermore, it also acts as a shield against errors. To practise the doctrine of separation is to secure the pure and glorious divine blessings for our souls and for our churches.

The Bible records very vividly the blessings that God promised to those who separate themselves from sin, worldliness, false doctrines, false teachers and disobedient Christians.

  1. Separation keeps our souls and congregations from the filthiness of sin. When we practise biblical separation against the sinful pleasures of the world, we will be able to purify and protect ourselves from all the sins of the world. In Ezra 6:21, we have a great example of this – “And the children of Israel, which were come again out of captivity, and all such as had separated themselves unto them from the filthiness of the heathen of the land, to seek the LORD God of Israel.” The same truth is found in Revelation 18:4, where a call to separate is given – “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins.”
  2. Separation helps us to be like Christ. In Hebrews 7:26, we are told that Jesus Christ is “such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners”. All Christians are to be like Christ; and to be like Christ, they should separate themselves from sin and sinners, just as Jesus did. Of course, this does not mean we should avoid befriending sinners to share the Gospel. Rather, the practice of biblical separation is calling us not to partake in their sinful activities. To be like Christ in this world, separation is necessary.
  3. Separation from ungodly people and their activities helps us to delight in God’s Word. This is the message that we read in Psalm 1:1-3, “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” Ungodly friends can often be a distraction and hindrance to a Christian’s obedient life. So separation from close affiliation with ungodly people will rid us of distractions from God’s Word.
  4. Separation helps us to be worthy servants of God. To be a faithful and good minister of God’s Word, we must refuse tolerating erroneous doctrines and philosophies. The apostle Paul’s words to Timothy prove this truth – “If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness” (1 Timothy 4:6-7).
  5. Separation helps us to be delivered from God’s wrath against unrepentant sinners. Revelation 18:4 affirms that separation will deliver us from sin and also its aftermath – “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”
  6. Separation assures us that God will receive us. “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you” (2 Corinthians 6:17). Though the world and compromising Christians may reject us, the Lord will receive us. Romans 15:7 teaches us that whomsoever Christ receives, He receives them to the glory of God. What a blessing it is for those who are separated from sin and false doctrines to know that they are vessels of God’s glory!
  7. Separation guarantees the presence and fellowship of God. To those who will not be unequally yoked with unbelief and sin, the Lord promises that “I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people” (2 Corinthians 6:16).
  8. Separation guarantees the abiding love and care of God. To the separated Christians, the Word of God promises in 2 Corinthians 6:17b-18 that “I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty”. Those who will separate themselves for the glory of God are promised His unceasing fatherly love and care.

“That Ye Bear Much Fruit” (John 15:8)

ye bear fruit - grapes  1 jpgIt is almost impossible for anyone who reads John 15:1-8 to miss Jesus’ expectation of spiritual fruit from every true Christian.

John 15:2  Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

John 15:4  Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

John 15:5  I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

John 15:8  Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.

In view of all the above statements of Christ, is there any possibility for any one to think that He is a Christian without bearing spiritual fruit. Even if it means a horrible chill coming upon your heart, let me tell you that if you are without spiritual fruit, you are not at all a Christian. Because, according to Christ, spiritual fruit is the natural outcome of one being joined to Christ, and, hence, the proof of one’s true relationship with Christ.

You may be a member of a sound, biblical church, perhaps an elder, perhaps a deacon, possibly a full-time worker in one of the ministries of the church, and so you appear to be in the vine (Christ); but are you bringing forth the fruits of holiness?

What is the use of my going up to the pulpit to preach if I am without Christ?

Is it a mere association with the church, or is it a living, supernatural union with Christ?

Unless we are joined to the Lord Jesus ourselves, we cannot take His spiritual blessings to others. Unless within us, we have the living water springing up unto eternal life, there is no possibility of rivers of living water flowing out of our hearts.

Christ intents a grand outcome through the lives of all who are joined to Him; and it is that they will be a fruitful people – yea, “that ye bear much fruit” (John 15:8).

(Excerpts from the last Lord’s Day sermon. You can listen to the sermon at http://gethsemanebpc.com/index.php/resources/english-sermons/sermons-2010.html)

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