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April 15, 2021

Being Preserved

1 Thes 5:23 And the God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly, and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

In [1 Thessalonians 5] verse 23 Paul expresses his wish, his desire, that the God of peace would sanctify us wholly. In the first part of the verse, concerning God's sanctifying us, it is God who takes the initiative. But in the second part of the verse, concerning our spirit, soul, and body being preserved, we are the ones who should somehow take the initiative. The command "be preserved" may be regarded as an active- passive verb. This means that we take the initiative to be preserved. However, God is the One who preserves our spirit, soul, and body. Therefore, we should pray, "Lord, I long to have my spirit, soul, and body preserved. However, I cannot do this work. I take the initiative, Lord, to ask You to do this." Do you have the desire, the aspiration, that your entire being would be preserved complete? If we do not have this desire, we should ask the Lord to have mercy on us and grant us such an aspiration. But if we already have this longing, we then need to take the initiative to pray that the Lord would preserve us. The sanctifying work is God's operation, but the aspiration to be preserved is our cooperation. When we have both God's desire and our aspiration, we then have our cooperation with God's operation to sanctify us wholly and to preserve our entire being.

Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from Witness Lee, Life-study of Thessalonians, pp.166-167. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA. Please visit us at www.emanna.com. Send comments to: comment@emanna.com.

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Life-study of 1 & 2 Thessalonians