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April 9 – The Holy Spirit sanctifies

“But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.” – II Thessalonians 2:13 

Scripture reading: II Thessalonians 2:13-17

As Christians, we love God and desire to live for Him, but if we’re honest with ourselves we see that our love is lacking. We want to obey Him, but often we disobey. As Luther would say, we are simul justus et peccator, which is Latin and means, “at the same time justified and a sinner.” We’re justified, saved, born again, belonging to Christ, temples of the Holy Spirit and have everlasting life. And even though that is true, we also covet, lie, lust, hate, and treat God lightly. This is every Christian’s struggle and reality in this world. Only death or Jesus’ second coming will put an end to our sinning.

But you ought not to despair. The Holy Spirit does indeed dwell in you and shines the light on Christ’s atoning work for you, reminding you that you need the gospel every day. But He is also at work in you sanctifying you and conforming you to the image of Jesus.

Lord’s Day 44 of the Heidelberg Catechism asks why God wants the Ten Commandments preached so pointedly. It answers in part, “so that we may never stop striving and never stop praying to God for the grace of the Holy Spirit, so that we may be renewed more and more after God’s image, until after this life we reach our goal: perfection.”

Suggestions for prayer

Pray for the grace of the Holy Spirit to renew you more and more after God’s image. And pray, “Come Lord Jesus, come quickly.”

Rev. Derrick Vander Meulen was born and raised in California and has been an ordained minister of the Gospel for nearly 33 years. He is now serving as pastor of Coram Deo Reformation Church (URC) near Denver, Colorado. He is also the General Editor of the Trinity Psalter Hymnal. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at

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