~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bible Verses ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
1 Corinthians 1:2 To the church of God which is in Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, the called saints, with all those who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ in every place, who is theirs and ours:
2 Timothy 1:10 When He comes to be glorified in His saints and to be marveled at in all those who have believed (because our testimony to you was believed) in that day.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Words of Ministry ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
According to grammar, “to the church of God” is in apposition to “to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus.” This indicates that “to the church of God” equals “to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus.” This strongly indicates that the church is a composition of the saints [believers], and the saints are the constituents of the church. The two should not be considered separate entities. Individually, we are the saints; corporately, we are the church. Thus, the church is not only constituted of God, but is also composed of the saints.
To be sanctified is to be made holy, separated unto God for the fulfillment of His purpose. Saints are separated ones, those who have been set apart to God. In this verse Paul says that we have been “sanctified in Christ Jesus.” We are sanctified in the element and sphere of Christ. Christ is the element and sphere that separated us, made us holy, unto God when we believed in Him, that is, when we were brought into organic union with Him through our faith in Him.
For example, those who have been called into military service have been separated from civilian life and drafted into the service. This illustrates God’s calling. When we were called by God, we were drafted, separated, by Him. As a result, we have been sanctified; that is, we have been separated unto a certain purpose. Because we all have been called by God unto His purpose, we are the called saints.
Many readers of 1 Corinthians find it difficult to recognize that the believers in Corinth were saints. To be sure, according to the Catholic definition, they were not saints. According to Catholicism, only certain persons, such as Theresa or Francis, can rightfully be called saints. We may wonder how the fleshly believers in Corinth could be called saints. Nevertheless, it is in the Word that Paul describes them as those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus and called saints.
Some of us may have the confidence only to say that we are believers, but not the assurance to say that we are saints.
Some may say, “I am a sinner saved by grace, and I am a believer in Christ. But I dare not say that I am a saint.” Others, aware of failures like losing their temper or quarreling with their spouse, may not have the confidence to say that they are saints. But whether or not you are a saint does not depend on whether or not you lose your temper or quarrel. It depends on whether or not you have been called.
Do you have the boldness to say that you are holy? Concerning this, we should not look at ourselves. Paul does not say that the Corinthians were sanctified in themselves; he declares that they had been sanctified in Christ Jesus. We need to forget ourselves and see that it is in Christ that we are sanctified. God does not look at us as we are in ourselves; rather, he looks at us in Christ.
(c) Living Stream Ministry. Bible verses are taken from the Recovery Version of the Bible and Words of Ministry from
Witness Lee, Life-study of 1 Corinthians, pp. 11-13. Both are published by Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA