Question: “What does the Bible say about consecration?”
Answer: In the Bible the word consecration means “the separation of oneself from things that are unclean, especially anything that would contaminate one’s relationship with a perfect God.” Consecration also carries the connotation of sanctification, holiness, or purity.
The importance of being consecrated or pure in our relationship with God is emphasized in an incident in the book of Joshua. After forty years in the wilderness, the children of Israel were about to cross over the Jordan River into the Promised Land. They were then given a command and a promise: “Joshua told the people, ‘Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you’” (Joshua 3:5).
The people of God were commanded to bathe and change their clothes; the married couples were to devote themselves wholly to the Lord (1 Corinthians 7:1-6). The significance of this command was that in ancient times water was considered a luxury and wasn’t used often for personal hygiene. The bathing and changing clothes symbolised making a new beginning with the Lord. The picture here is that sin is defilement (Psalm 51:2, 7), and we have to be cleansed before we can truly follow God.
Upon consecrating themselves, the children of Israel were assured of God’s promises. The Lord promised that He would do amazing things among them (Joshua 3:5). Just as He opened the Red Sea to deliver them from their Egyptian bondage, He would open the Jordan River and take them into the Promised Land. In fact, this was just the beginning of the miracles God would perform for them in the conquest of the Promised Land. It’s no wonder the psalmist declares, “Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God? You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples” (Psalm 77:13-14).
Another good example of consecrating oneself is that of David upon confessing his sin of adultery. He bathed and changed clothes before he worshipped the Lord (2 Samuel 12:20). This same imagery is also used in the New Testament (Colossians 3:5-14; and in Ephesians 4:26-27).
The Bible tells believers to be a holy people, separate from the world: “Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you” (2 Corinthians 6:17). Being consecrated is a critical component in our relationship to God and to those in the world. Paul tells us, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:1-2).
In other words, as true believers in Christ, the act of consecration involves our lives being a living sacrifice to Him; we are totally separated from the defilement of the world. Each day, we are to live out our lives as a “holy” and “royal” priesthood to the glory of God, for we are now God’s people (1 Peter 2:9-10).
What Is Consecration and Why Do I Need to Consecrate Myself to God?
The birth of a child is an exciting and happy event, and we all recognised it as the beginning of a new life. We’d never say it’s an end or conclusion.
It’s the same with us believers. Our being saved and born again with the life of God is truly wondrous and joyful. But it’s not a conclusion. Our regeneration is only the beginning of our spiritual journey. And just as babies need to grow and develop, we Christians need to move forward step by step.
After we’re regenerated, the next step in our spiritual, life-long journey is to present, or give, ourselves to the Lord. This is to consecrate ourselves to Him.
What does “consecration” mean?
The word consecration isn’t a commonly used word, but even so, we might have an existing concept about what it means. In religion, the word consecration has been used in relation to the official ordaining of a person to be a preacher, a priest, or a missionary. This use implies consecration is for a special category of people.
But the consecration revealed in the New Testament is for every believer in Christ. It’s not something only for knowledgeable Christians or spiritually mature ones. In fact, as we’ll see, we cannot subjectively know the life of Christ in us or reach spiritual maturity without consecrating ourselves to the Lord. This is because consecration is the basis for every spiritual experience.
So what is consecration means? According to Paul in Romans 12:1:, Consecration is our giving ourselves to the Lord to become “a living sacrifice,”.
Rom. 12.1: “I exhort you therefore, brothers, through the compassions of God to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable service.”
In the Old Testament, a sacrifice was something set apart for God by being put on the altar. When people offered that thing to God, it no longer belonged to the one offering it. It belonged to God, for His use and His satisfaction.
Today, when we consecrate ourselves to the Lord, we become a living sacrifice. We give up our own claims on ourselves and put ourselves completely in His hands. Previously, our life was for our use and our satisfaction; now it is for His.
When we present ourselves to the Lord as a living sacrifice, we’re simply saying, “Lord Jesus, I am for You. I’m no longer for myself, the world, or anything else. I am for Your use and Your satisfaction.”
Now we need to ask, How important is it for us to present ourselves to the Lord? Does it matter whether we do or don’t?
Four reasons why we should consecrate ourselves to the Lord:
1. So we can walk in the Lord’s way
Before we were saved, we walked in our own way, made our own decisions, and chose our own direction. But after we’re saved, God wants us to walk in His way, follow Him, and be led by Him. But if we don’t give ourselves to Him, how can we know what His way is? How can He lead us? Consecrating ourselves to Him keeps us in His way and saves us from taking our own way. We can pray, “Lord, I don’t want to make my own decisions or take my own way. I want to be kept in Your way. So Lord Jesus, I give myself to You.”
2. So we can grow in life
With any physical life, after birth comes growth. In the same way, when Christ comes into us His intention is for His divine life in us to grow. But any kind of life, even the divine life of Christ in us, needs the proper environment and opportunity to grow.
Our surrendering ourselves to Him provides the best opportunity for His life to grow in us. As we surrender every part of our being and every aspect of our lives to Him, we give His life the best opportunity to grow in us.
Whether or not we give ourselves to the Lord makes a big difference in our experience of Christ. When we keep ourselves in our own hands without consecrating ourselves to the Lord, we may not feel certain things are wrong, and we’re unable to tell whether or not something is of God. Our lack of consecrating ourselves to the Lord hinders the life within. The life in us simply doesn’t function that well because it doesn’t have the opportunity to grow or develop.
But when we surrender ourselves to the Lord, we provide the best opportunity for His life to grow and develop in us. Spontaneously, we can sense what is pleasing to Him and what is not, what is of God and what is not. This sensation comes from the functioning of God’s divine life in us. Our consecration is what activates this life function that gives us the sense of God’s life in us. As we go along with and obey God by this sense, we grow in the divine life in a real and practical way.
3. So God can work in us
Before we can go and work for God, God needs to work in us. Even though we’re saved, we all have to admit that He still has much work to do in us to conform our thoughts, feelings, decisions, and inner disposition—our whole being—to the image of His Son.
God is surely omnipotent, but in His relationship with us, He is not a dictator. He respects our human will and doesn’t force His work on us. He wants and needs our consent in order to work freely in us. Our consecration is our consent.
Since God will only work in us if we allow Him do so, this explains how a person can be genuinely saved for years and yet have little to no growth in the divine life, and little real change in their being. God will wait until we give Him the permission to work Himself into us for His purpose.
So instead of letting our time slip away or resisting His work in us, we can pray to Him, “Lord, I give You permission to work in me. I offer myself willingly to You. Lord, I open the door of my heart to You. Come into each room of my heart and conform me to Your dear Person in every way.”
4. To enjoy the riches of God’s salvation
God’s salvation is full of riches. It includes being saved from eternal perdition, certainly, but God’s salvation encompasses so much more. When we were saved, God blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ. The divine life, Christ’s perfect humanity and living, His effective death, His powerful resurrection, His victory over Satan, His ascension over all things—all are ours. But without consecrating ourselves to Him, we have no way to enter into the enjoyment of all of these blessings. We have them in fact, but for us to enjoy them in our daily lives, we must consecrate ourselves to God.
In this respect, consecration is like a gate or a door. To enter into a building, we must go through a door. If we don’t, no matter what wonderful thing awaits us on the other side, we can’t enjoy or participate in it. It’s there, but we’re on the outside. Consecration is the door for us to enter through to enjoy all the riches of God’s salvation. When we give ourselves to the Lord, He will lead us in our experience into the enjoyment of the rich blessings of God’s full salvation.
We can pray, “Lord, I don’t just want to know about the riches of Your salvation; I want to enjoy them. So Lord, here I am. I give myself to You fully. I belong to You. Lead me by Your Spirit into the experience and enjoyment of all You have for me in Your salvation.”
Take the next step
If we’re saved, we’ve taken the initial step of our spiritual journey. Thank the Lord for that! But we’ve only just begun. The next step for us is to consecrate ourselves to the Lord. When we do, we’ll be kept in God’s way, grow in His life, allow God to work in us, and enjoy the riches of His full salvation.
Whether we’re newly saved or we’ve been saved for a while, every one of us can give ourselves to the Lord. Even if we never heard of consecration, we can still present ourselves to the Lord right now. He is happy and willing to receive our consecration at any time!
In a subsequent post, we’ll cover further points on this important matter of consecration; we hope you’ll read and enjoy that one also.
Joshua 3:5 “consecrate yourself , for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you”.
18 “Flee sexual immorality! Every other sin , a person commits is outside the body, but the person who is sexually immoral sins against his own body.
19. Dont you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God?
20. For you were bought at a price. So glorify od with your body.
Romans 12.1, Therefore , brothers and sisters, in view of the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, a holy and pleasing to God; this is your true worship.
Consecration is an important spiritual act, but even if you’ve heard the term before, you may not understand what it means if it has never been explained to you. Take a few moments to understand what the term means, then consider how to apply the practice to your own life.
Method One of Two:
Part I: Understanding Consecration
1. Define “consecration.” In a general sense, the term “consecration” refers to the act of dedicating oneself to a specific purpose or intention. To “consecrate” yourself essentially means to wholly dedicate yourself to something of greatest important.When spoken plainly, however, “consecration” refers to the act of setting yourself aside and dedicating yourself to a deity, and that deity almost always refers to the God of Christianity.The term can also be used to refer to ordination into a sacred office. For most believers, however, it only refers to a basic, personal act of dedication.To “consecrate” something, one makes that thing holy or sacred. In that sense, the act of consecration can also be defined as the act of being made sacred.
2. Consider its spiritual roots. As a religious practice, consecration dates as far back as the Old Testament. There are discussions about consecration in both halves of the Bible, in fact, and the practice is also frequently referred to by the Christian community of today.One of the earliest biblical references to the act of consecration can be found in Joshua 3:5.
After wandering through the wilderness for 40 years, the people of Israel were commanded to consecrate themselves before entering the Promised Land. As this command was issued and followed, they were also assured that God would do great things and fulfill the promises He made to them.
The act of consecration is also referred to in the New Testament. In 2 Corinthians 6:17, God instructs his followers to “touch no unclean thing” and promises to receive them in response. Similarly, in Romans 12:1-2, Paul describes the necessity of viewing the body as a living sacrifice to God, set aside wholly for the worship of God and no longer for the ways of the world.
3. Understand God’s role in consecration. God calls humanity to be consecrated to Him. The ability to consecrate yourself is only made possible by God, and the calling to do so comes directly from God.All holiness comes from God, and any holiness demonstrated by a human being is transferred to that person from God. Only God has the power to transform a human into something sacred, so in a sense, God is consecrating you—making you holy—once you decide to consecrate yourself.As the Creator, God wants each person to live in God’s image and likeness. As such, God wants to dedicate each person to a sacred or consecrated life.
Method Two of Two:
Part Two: Consecrating Yourself to God
1. Dedicate your heart to God. To consecrate yourself is to answer God’s call to spiritual consecration. This means making a conscious, willing decision to dedicate your soul, mind, heart, and body to God.This decision must be one of will, intelligence, and affection. Only you can make the decision to consecrate yourself to God. No one else can push you into it.
2.Reflect on your motives. Since consecration is something that must be done voluntarily, you need to ask yourself if you are truly dedicated or if you are caving into outward pressures.Only you and God know your heart, so don’t worry about whether you appear to have the right motives.You should view your commitment to Christ as a priority, not a secondary option or passive experience.You should also be able to feel gratitude and love in your heart for God. If your heart is ready to be consecrated to God, it will love God in response to the love God has for you.
3.Repent. Repentance is one of the first acts you should undertake when you make the decision to consecrate yourself to God. The act of repenting involves the acknowledgement of your sins and the need for the salvation offered to you by Christ. Repentance is a personal experience, and it’s also a fairly straightforward one. Upon gaining the desire to repent, all you need to do is pray for forgiveness and ask God to help you fight against temptation in the future.
4. Be baptized. Water baptism is an outward sign of inner consecration. In being baptized, you are given a new spiritual life and dedicated to a life lived for the service of Christ.You should also take time to regularly renew your baptismal promises, especially if you were baptized as an infant before the decision was completely yours to make.Renewal of your baptismal promises can happen in several ways. Some denominations, like Roman Catholicism, have the Sacrament of Confirmation, in which you confirm your own intention to remain consecrated to God.Without a separate sacrament, you can still renew your baptismal promises by reciting a creed of faith or by regularly praying a personal vow to God about your desire and intention to remain consecrated.
5. Separate yourself from the evils of the world. The physical body will always be drawn to the ways of the world, but consecrating yourself means prioritizing the spiritual life over the physical one.There are plenty of things in the physical world that are good. For instance, on a basic level, food is good because it provides the human body with the nourishment it needs to survive. There is nothing wrong with enjoying the food you eat, either.As a fallen world, though, even good things can be hijacked and used for ill purposes. Using food as an example, you can ruin your body by eating too much food, especially if you eat the wrong foods.Rejecting the evils of the world does not mean that you have to reject the good things of the world. It only means that you have to reject the bad side of worldly things. It also means that you have to accept that worldly things are significantly less important than spiritual things.On a practical level, this means rejecting things the world promotes when your faith tells you that those things are wicked. It also means following God’s will for your life even when it seems to conflict with something neutral the world holds as a major priority—financial security, romantic love, etc. These “neutral” things can be good when used to serve God, but they are not to be prioritized over service to God.
6.Draw closer to God. Rejecting the wicked ways of the world will not be enough to truly transform you. The human spirit always needs to “drink” from some source. If you do not drink from a worldly source, you must drink from a divine source.Just as the body hungers for the ways of the world, the spirit thirsts of the ways of God. The more you train yourself to cave into the desire of your spirit, the easier it will become to continually turn to God.There are practical things you can do to draw closer to God. Regular prayer is one of the most important. Weekly worship at a church and study of the Scriptures are two other common and highly effective practices. Any activity that allows you to keep God as the focus of your life and encourages you to approach God can be used as a tool for that purpose.
7. Stay committed. Consecration is not a single, one-time-only decision. It is a way of living. When you make the decision to consecrate yourself, you must be prepared to continue pursuing God for the rest of your life.Even though you can only draw near to God after consecrating yourself, your consecration will never be “complete.” You will never achieve perfect righteousness.God does not demand complete perfection, though. You are only asked to make the commitment and to actively pursue it. You can stumble as you walk the path, but you must choose to keep walking even when you do.
Questions & Answers:
Question: How do a person’s time, finances and talents relate to consecration?
Time: Whatever we do, we must remember that the Holy Spirit lives in us; we need to stay in fellowship with Him always. Finances: If God owns our lives then He owns everything in our possession, including our hard-earned money. Talents: As stated above, all we have belongs to God; therefore we must glorify Him with whatever has been bestowed on us. We are stewards of all we have been given, and faithfulness is required in stewardship.
Question : What type of prayer topic can one pray?
Community Answer : You can pray about anything, whether it’s something that worries you or things you are thankful for or anything else.
Question: How do we meditate on the Word of God? What can we do while we fast?
Community Answer: We pray and seek directions from God. We read His word and then meditate on it. We ask ourselves what God is saying to us in each particular verse or passage of scripture