Joshua and Judges: Push to the Promised Land: God sanctifies His people - Balaam, part 5. Num 23:1-10.

Class Outline:

Title: Joshua and Judges: Push to the Promised Land: God sanctifies His people - Balaam, part 5. NUM 23:1-10.  




Balaam is being used by God to instruct Israel to first sanctify themselves from heathenism in their hearts before crossing the Jordan and setting the heathen apart physically.


Before a believer can accomplish the works that God has destined for him he must first learn to sanctify God in his heart and walk sanctified unto God and away from the world system and the sin nature. In the work of God there is a right thing and a right way and the way is experiential sanctification.


NUM 23:7 And he took up his discourse [proverb or poetic language] and said,

"From Aram Balak has brought me,

Moab's king from the mountains of the East,

'Come curse Jacob for me,

And come, denounce Israel!'


So far so good…


NUM 23:8 "How shall I curse, whom God has not cursed?

And how can I denounce, whom the Lord has not denounced?


NUM 23:9 "As I see him from the top of the rocks,

And I look at him from the hills;

Behold, a people who dwells apart,

And shall not be reckoned among the nations.


Dwelling alone does not denote a quiet and safe retirement, but she is to be inwardly and outwardly separated from the rest of the nations.


This is sanctification.


Sanctification, or being set apart unto God and away from the sin nation and the world does not mean a life of seclusion and no temptations from without or within. It is not a safe retirement but a reality of position which, with positive volition, can be turned into a reality of experience, but if not, will be a reality in eternity in resurrection body. The attacks of the enemy cannot in any way undo our sanctification though they can push us to not walk in our sanctification if we let them. Yet truly, the attacks will never fully disappear from this life.


Sanctification = to be set apart to God for a special purpose.


This was true of Israel in the OT and of each individual believer in the NT. Because God is infinitely holy, God the Father, Son, and Spirit are eternally sanctified. They are separate from all else. Therefore, it is only holy God who can sanctify. Man in no way can accomplish it. 


Positional sanctification = At salvation each believer is entered into union with Christ and called saints (sanctified ones) forever.


All believers are holy. The Spirit has chosen to give believers the title of "saints" (62) more than any other designation except one, and that is "brethren." (184)


Many Christians do not believe they are saints because they do not know their position in Christ.


For us sanctification was accomplished by Christ at Calvary and applied to us when we believed. We are immediately set apart unto God as His children and away from sin and death and the world.


Experiential sanctification = through spiritual growth, our thoughts, motives, standards, desires, speech, and actions stand apart from the world and unto God for His purpose.


Through our own spiritual growth this positional sanctification becomes practical or experiential sanctification when our thoughts, our motives, our standards, our desires, our speech, and our actions stand separate from the world. We cannot reveal Jesus Christ or reveal His will to the world if our hearts are not set apart from it.


1JO 2:15

Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.


It was agape love that changed the whole landscape of human history and forever altered the barrier between God and man and between death and eternal life. That love in the message of the gospel will be clouded if the believer is greatly esteeming the same idols that the world loves.


Is the God of the Hebrews on practically the same level as the gods of the peoples in the land? Is Christianity just another religion? Is Christianity just another way of life that could have as much merit as achieving wealth, marrying and raising a family, becoming successful in society, etc.?


As the Jews must be sanctified in their hearts before they remove the heathen from the land, we must be sanctified in heart before we work the works of God.  


In experiential sanctification the daily experience of the believer has come to be in harmony with who he really is in Christ. In relation to Israel this would be analogous to driving the heathen out of the land and settling in the land from which there is a daily worship of God who gave the land. The typology is that Israel represents the believer's soul. The land is the soul and the heathen thoughts and thinking patterns left behind by the old nature must be removed and Christ must be at home in our hearts.


Experiential sanctification is achieved by inculcation of the word of God under the teaching ministry of the HS while He fills the soul and the consistent application of that truth to the details of life.


It is not an emotion and it cannot be defined by any one experience, though the effects of it will be experienced.


ROM 12:1 I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.


ROM 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.


This is followed by four chapters of the Royal Family honor code.


Ultimate sanctification = the believer in eternity in a resurrection body.


Positional and ultimate sanctification are guaranteed at salvation while experiential sanctification depends on our intake of doctrine, the filling of the Spirit, walking by means of the Spirit, and making good choices from that storehouse of wisdom and power. It is not an emotion, nor can it be defined by a certain experience. Although you will experience the fruit of experiential sanctification, the fruit of the Spirit, no certain type of feeling or experience can define it.