We are ambassadors for Christ by God’s grace who have been entrusted with the word and ministry of reconciliation to reconcile unsaved people to God 2 Corinthians 5:17-21. As workers together with God this grace we have received would be in vain if we do not also walk in holiness. Living holy allows Him to use us in unlimited ways to reach our generation with the Gospel. Being conscious of God’s presence in us is a major key to living a holy life. 2 Corinthians 7:1 says, “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”
One of the promises is in 2 Corinthians 6:16 which says, “ye are the temple.” You will notice that all of the verses that reveal our bodies being God’s temple were written to the Corinthians (1 Cor. 3:17; 1 Cor. 6:19; 2 Cor. 6:16), which is also the same group that had the greatest problem with carnality/sin. This is a vital key to a holy life, being conscious of God’s presence in us. The filthiness we need cleansed from can come through what we look at and listen to (1 Jn. 2:15 17), what company we keep (1 Cor. 15:33), and what attitudes we allow (2 Cor. 7:1). Filthiness (defilement) of the spirit is not things in your spirit man but in the spirit of your mind (Ephesians 4:23, 24) or inward attitudinal sins. Things from the inward aspect of our being that defile like immoral thoughts, attitudes, and mental associations (pride, revenge, hatred, racism, evil ambition, rebellion, …). These are bad attitudes that need cleansed. Together, filthiness or defilement of the flesh and spirit are outward sins and inward sins that need cleansed.
We can have all the right associations and a defiled attitude can cut us off:
Think about Judas who was in the company of Jesus and the other disciples.
Think about Gehazi who was Elisha’s servant who could have received his mantle.
Think about Ananias and Sapphira who were associated with the outpouring of the Spirit on Pentecost.
Think about Lucifer, who originally was in the very presence of God.
All missed it and messed up because of a filthy attitude. Filthy attitudes are not a part of the mind of Christ which is ours by grace nor a part of the fruit of the spirit, the character of Christ. Perfecting holiness involves not just cleaning up the outside of our life but also the inside by allowing God’s implanted word to remove filthiness from within our soul James 1:21. Sometimes it is our bad attitudes that need a good washing from the water of God’s Word Ephesians 5:26; John 15:3.