Life-Study of 1 Peterby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Before we go on to verses 18 and 19, I would like to say a further word concerning the matter of becoming holy in all our manner of life (1:15). The phrase “manner of life” is a literal translation of the Greek. According to 1:15, we should not merely be holy and live a holy life; we should become holy in all our manner of life. Others should be able to see a certain manner in our living, and this manner should be holy. This does not mean that we are holy occasionally or that we are holy in certain things. For instance, it is not that in the morning we are holy in one matter, and then later in the day we are no longer holy in that matter. No, we need habitually to have a holy life. This is what constitutes a holy manner of life. If we would have a holy manner of life, we need to be habitually holy in our constitution. This means that we need to become a certain kind of person, a person who is holy in constitution.
We may use fruit trees as an illustration of what we mean by a holy manner of life. An apple tree produces apples according to the apple-tree manner of life. Likewise, an orange tree produces oranges according to its manner of life. The producing of apples by an apple tree and oranges by an orange tree is not accidental. On the contrary, it is altogether according to the manner of life characteristic of each tree.
The same should be true of our becoming holy in our manner of life. Some Christians who emphasize a so-called holiness may sometimes act holy, but at other times they may be very worldly or fleshly. This indicates that they do not have a holy manner of life. To have a holy manner of life is to have a life that is the expression of God. It is to have a living that is the expression of the holy nature of God.
When we were regenerated, the holy nature of the Father was imparted to us. This holy nature that is now within us is the basic factor for us to live a holy manner of life. Once again we may use fruit trees as an illustration. If an apple tree did not have the life of an apple tree, it could not possibly have the manner of life of an apple tree. Suppose someone tried to attach apples to the branches of another kind of tree. After a short period of time, the apples would fall down. But an apple tree, having an apple-tree manner of life, expresses the nature of the apple tree that is within it. The principle is the same with becoming holy in all our manner of life. The Father has imparted His holy nature into us, and this is what makes it possible for us to have a life that expresses the holy God.
Second, concerning a holy manner of life, the Holy Spirit is doing a sanctifying work within us. The Greek word for sanctify is the verb form of the adjective holy. When the Holy Spirit sanctifies us, He makes us holy. With the Father’s holy nature within us as a basis of operation, the Holy Spirit is working in us to make us holy.
Third, because we are often disobedient, we need God’s discipline. For this reason, Hebrews 12:10 says that God the Father disciplines us so that we may partake of His holiness.
To have a holy manner of life, we need three things: the impartation of the Father’s holy nature into our being, the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit to make us holy, and God’s discipline so that we may participate in the holiness of our holy God. These are the three factors for us to live a life of holiness. Our living should not only be holy to a certain extent, but our very manner of life should be holy. This means that we should have a living that is the expression of our holy God.
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