Sanctification Management
Sin is a cancer that needs to be removed (T.B.F.A.B.)

By Brian S. Holmes

Christians need to diligently pursue sanctification, which is the process of God changing us,
making us good and holy, from the inside-out. Now, our “being good” isn’t helping to save
us. Salvation is the gift of God, by His grace alone, because we trust in Jesus, as Ephesians
2:8-9 says. This is about who we become after being saved. It’s not enough we just stop committing big
sins and try to do better. God desires and intends us to become like Jesus. 1 John 3:2-6 says, “Beloved,
we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he
appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him
purifies himself as he is pure. Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin
is lawlessness. You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one
who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him.”
In the book The Empowered Christian Road Map Pastor Brian Holmes teaches a number of things I
think will be helpful to you. First thing is to change the way we see sin. He wrote, “Sin is not a disease
that needs to be managed. It’s a cancer that needs to be removed.” It’s not enough to just stop choosing
to act on sin by not committing the sinful behavior. As though we’re still supposed to be full of sinful
thoughts and desires we just don’t act on. Sin is like a cancer. It will keep growing, getting bigger, trying
to replicate itself, and spread itself throughout the rest of our system. We don’t want to treat it like a
disease to manage. Visiting God weekly like a doctor to unburden our guilt, confess our sins, ask for
forgiveness, and get our sin treatment to heal the sin damage caused during the week. We need to get to
the root and destroy it. We need to go to where the sinful desire starts, recognize it for the wickedness it
is, come into agreement with the Lord that we don’t want it, and ask the Lord to destroy it at its root.
Pastor Holmes shares his story about the process he used to overcome his old anger problem, as well as
pornography, lust, and other sins in a similar way. Make the commitment today to destroy your sin too.
The second thing is the sanctification process isn’t supposed to feel natural. It isn’t natural! The “old
sinful you” is supposed to be dead, remember? It died with Christ. Romans 6:6 says, “For we know that
our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should
no longer be slaves to sin-” So, it isn’t going to feel normal. It isn’t. Your normal habits and routine way
of thinking and feeling and behaving is going to feel at odds with this new way, the way of the Holy
Spirit. But He must be in charge now. We must learn to submit to Him. Galatians 5:16 says, “walk by the
Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” Since this is new and requires change it will not
feel comfortable or certain. It will feel difficult and uncertain, and maybe even stressful or painful
sometimes. We must do it anyway. We must change. We must continue to become the new creation.
How how do you change and where do you start? Pastor Holmes developed an acronym: T.B.F.A.B.
Think, leads to Believe, leads to Feel, leads to Act, leads to Be. Who we are is what we repeatedly do.
And what we do begins with our thoughts. Our thoughts initiate and drive the rest of the chain via causeand-effect. If we don’t believe in the thought or embrace it it usually won’t drive our emotions. We’re
also usually emotionally engaged before we act. For example, you won’t Feel depression unless you first
Think about depressing things and then Believe them to be true or worth focusing on. You won’t Be an
angry person if you don’t first Feel angry and then Act angry. You won’t Act on lust if you don’t first
allow yourself to Think about things that produce lust, Believe that it’s okay to continue to do so, and
then let those thoughts stir up the Feelings of lust. Remember, you can stop up the process at any point
in the chain. You could think a lustful Thought and then instead of Believing in it, and allowing it to take
root and entertain it in your mind, cast it away immediately instead. Choose to Think about something
else, and then allow that to move forward through the chain. Think about something else, something
good and pure, something you believe is true and good, something you want to feel, and to act on, and to
become. Let the Holy Spirit guide and empower you in this process. Train yourself to be disciplined in
it, and you will eventually gain mastery over it. Now your energy won’t be used up in a daily rigorous
struggle with your sin disease and can be used to glorify God and advance His Kingdom instead!
Examine the fruit of your life and heart. If you’re Being something you shouldn’t, or Act in a way
you shouldn’t, examine the front of the chain. Closely examine what sinful or false Feelings, Beliefs,
and Thoughts are at the root cause of it. Confront it there with the truth of the Gospel and shine the light
there! Jesus purchased for us abundant life with His blood. In gratitude, let us honor Him not only with
what we do but with everything that we are. Romans 12:1 says, “in view of God's mercy, offer your
bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God--this is your true and proper worship.” 2
Corinthians 7:1 says, “Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves
from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.”
Let’s pray. Heavenly Father reveal to my heart and mind whatever thoughts, beliefs, or behaviors I
do that I need to change. Help me to listen to and surrender to your Spirit and become like Jesus. Amen.

Button

Section Title

This is a Paragraph. Click on "Edit Text" or double click on the text box to start editing the content and make sure to add any relevant details or information that you want to share with your visitors.

List Title

This is a Paragraph. Click on "Edit Text" or double click on the text box to start editing the content and make sure to add any relevant details or information that you want to share with your visitors.

List Title

This is a Paragraph. Click on "Edit Text" or double click on the text box to start editing the content and make sure to add any relevant details or information that you want to share with your visitors.

List Title

This is a Paragraph. Click on "Edit Text" or double click on the text box to start editing the content and make sure to add any relevant details or information that you want to share with your visitors.

List Title

This is a Paragraph. Click on "Edit Text" or double click on the text box to start editing the content and make sure to add any relevant details or information that you want to share with your visitors.