Consecration is a concept that carries a deep significance in the Christian faith. At its core, consecration refers to the act of setting something apart for a sacred purpose, often involving the dedication of one’s life or possessions to the service of God.
As Christians, understanding the meaning and importance of consecration is essential, for it allows us to cultivate a deeper commitment to our faith and live a life that is pleasing to the Lord.
This blog post will delve into the concept of consecration as it is presented in the Bible, focusing on its various dimensions and manifestations.
Through exploring the biblical narratives that involve consecration, we will uncover the transformative power of dedicating ourselves to God and the ways in which this practice can bring us closer to Him.
Ultimately, we will discover that consecration is not just a one-time event but a continuous process that requires our ongoing dedication and commitment to living in accordance with God’s will.
The Old Testament: Consecration of Objects, Places, and People
In the Old Testament, consecration often involves the setting apart of objects, places, or people for the service of God. The most well-known example of this is the consecration of the Tabernacle and its furnishings, as described in Exodus 40.
Here, Moses anoints the various elements of the Tabernacle, thereby setting them apart for God’s purposes:
“And you shall take the anointing oil, and anoint the tabernacle and all that is in it; and you shall hallow it and all its utensils, and it shall be holy.” (Exodus 40:9, NKJV)
Similarly, the priests of Israel were consecrated for service to God through a process that involved anointing with oil, the laying on of hands, and the offering of sacrifices (Exodus 29:1-37). These rituals served to mark them as set apart for God’s work and sanctify them for their priestly duties.
“And you shall put them on Aaron your brother and on his sons with him. You shall anoint them, consecrate them, and sanctify them, that they may minister to Me as priests.” (Exodus 28:41, NKJV)
The New Testament: Consecration of Jesus and Believers
The New Testament shifts the focus of consecration from objects and places to the person of Jesus Christ and His followers. Jesus Himself was consecrated to God’s purposes even before His birth, as foretold by the angel Gabriel:
“Therefore also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:35, NKJV)
As the perfect example of consecration, Jesus lived a life entirely devoted to doing the will of His Father:
“And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him.” (John 8:29, NKJV)
Furthermore, Jesus consecrated Himself on behalf of His followers, setting the stage for their own consecration:
“And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth.” (John17:19, NKJV)
In light of Jesus’ example, believers are called to consecrate themselves to God as well. This consecration is not based on the rituals of the Old Testament but on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit.
The apostle Paul emphasizes the need for Christians to dedicate their lives as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God:
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” (Romans 12:1, NKJV)
Consecration as a Continuous Process
Consecration is not just a one-time event, but rather a continuous process that requires an ongoing commitment to living in accordance with God’s will. This involves a daily surrender of our desires and plans to the Lord, as well as a willingness to be guided and transformed by the Holy Spirit.
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2, NKJV)
As we grow in our understanding of God’s will and seek to live consecrated lives, we may encounter challenges and temptations. However, we can trust that God will provide the strength and grace needed to overcome these obstacles and continue on the path of consecration.
“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13, NKJV)
The Blessings of a Consecrated Life
Living a life of consecration brings many blessings, including a deeper intimacy with God, the assurance of His presence, and the joy of serving Him. As we dedicate ourselves to God, we are drawn into a closer relationship with Him, allowing us to experience His love, guidance, and peace in a more profound way.
“You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16:11, NKJV)
Moreover, a consecrated life enables us to bear fruit for the kingdom of God, as we are empowered by the Holy Spirit to serve others and share the gospel with those around us.
“You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.” (John 15:16, NKJV)
In conclusion, consecration is a central aspect of the Christian faith, encompassing the dedication of our lives and possessions to the service of God. Throughout the Bible, we find examples of consecration that demonstrate its importance and transformative power.
From the Old Testament’s focus on objects, places, and people to the New Testament’s emphasis on Jesus and believers, the concept of consecration is woven into the very fabric of the biblical narrative.
As Christians, we are called to follow the example of Jesus and consecrate ourselves to God, committing our lives to His purposes and seeking to do His will. This is not a one-time event but a lifelong journey, marked by daily surrender and reliance on the Holy Spirit.
By embracing a life of consecration, we can experience the blessings of intimacy with God, the assurance of His presence, and the joy of serving Him.
May we be inspired to dedicate ourselves more fully to the Lord, and in doing so, discover the profound impact that living a consecrated life can have on our spiritual growth and relationship with Him.
Let us remember the words of the apostle Paul, who encourages us to press on towards the goal, always striving to live a life that is pleasing to God:
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12-14, NKJV)
As we seek to live consecrated lives, may we be encouraged by the knowledge that God is always with us, providing the strength, guidance, and grace necessary to walk in obedience to His will. In the words of the prophet Isaiah:
Finally, let us remember that our ultimate goal is to glorify God in all that we do, allowing our consecrated lives to be a testimony of His love and goodness to those around us:
“Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31, NKJV)
In embracing a life of consecration, we can experience the fullness of God’s blessings and the joy of serving Him. Let us continue to dedicate our lives to the Lord, seeking His will, and allowing the Holy Spirit to guide us on this journey of faith.