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As I sat down to ponder the beauty of being set apart and following Christ’s example in John 13, I began to thank God for giving me not only His Word, but His Spirit. Then I thought, Is there greater evidence of being “set apart” than to have the Holy Spirit of God living inside oneself? 

According to the Word of God in Romans 10:9, when you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you are saved. Praise God for the gift of salvation by grace, through faith! Praise God that He has conquered sin and death on our behalf.

At the moment of salvation, you are given an incredible gift: the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14). This means the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in you (Romans 8:11). What a powerful testament that you are set apart from the world. 

There is evidence throughout all of Scripture that we are set apart when we believe in Jesus. A powerful truth is contained in 1 Peter 2:10, which presents the miraculous before and after of the believer in Jesus: once we were not a people, but now we are God’s people. It is evident that, at the moment of salvation and spiritual rebirth, God is just getting started in the life of the believer. 

We praise God for the gift of His Spirit and for the new name He has given us as His very own children. What, then, can we offer the Lord in gratitude? As Paul puts it in 2 Corinthians 5:14-15, Christ’s love compels us to live not for ourselves but for Him who died for us and was raised! 

We look to Jesus, who shows us the way. The life of Jesus was lived for the Father’s will (John 5:30). When I read the beautiful passage of John 13, I hear Jesus saying to us, “Follow Me.” 

John 13:3 says that Jesus knew God had given Him complete authority and that He came from God and was going back to God. In other words, Jesus knew He was set apart. Guess what the result of His set-apartness was? Servant-hearted love. Being in very nature God (Philippians 2:6), Jesus took on the likeness of a servant, kneeling down to wash His disciples’ feet. 

Jesus calls us in John 13:34 to imitate His action of love by loving our brothers and sisters in Christ. Before we can love effectively those who are not in the family of God, we must first love our fellow believers in Jesus. This is God’s model for reaching the lost, for Jesus says by this (our love for one another), the world will know that we are God’s disciples. 1 John 4:12 puts it this way: the world can see God and know His heart by the way we love each other in the family of faith. 

As I ponder this mighty call from Christ Himself to imitate Him and love His Body, the church, I think of 1 Peter 3:15. This Scripture tells us to honor, or set apart, Christ as Lord in our hearts. Truly, this is the precursor to loving others. Cultivation of one’s intimate relationship with God is, in fact, the only way one is outwardly distinguished from the world. 

So, our purpose as born-again people is quite simple. We must discipline ourselves to seek the face of God daily—to listen and obey. When we seek first His Kingdom and move in connection with the Vine, we will bear the fruit of His love and live a truly set apart life, so the world can see God in us. 

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Grace Ann Hopkins

Grace Ann Hopkins

Grace Ann Hopkins loves Jesus. She is currently a student at Liberty University, excitedly studying Interdisciplinary Studies, concentrating on Business, Religion, and Christian Counseling. She has a deep love for God’s Word and seeks to share it with whoever crosses her path. Grace Ann loves her family and friends deeply, and her mission in life is to make sure the person next to her feels loved. She wants you to know that you indeed matter because God hand-crafted you specifically with a special purpose and loves you just the way you are (Ps 139:13-14, Eph 2:10, Jn 3:16). You can connect with Grace Ann on her website and blog.

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