For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.Philippians 1:6(NASB)
Every man and woman born of the Spirit is being conformed into the image of the Lord Jesus. This sanctification process, which started at rebirth, will be carried forward to full completion and beautiful perfection in the day that Jesus comes to take His own to be with Himself. Each child of God is being perfected, for God is perfect, but the work that is being carried out within the life of each believer is a work of God, not a work of our own flesh. God alone started the work in our life by faith when we were born again, and only God can complete it – for in no sense can man make himself perfect.
Man was not required to do anything in initial salvation for it was by the grace of God alone that we are saved – it was grace alone, by simply believing in Christ Jesus. And man is not required to continue this work of sanctifying salvation for we are also being conformed into the likeness of the Lord Jesus by the grace of God alone.
It is by faith alone that we were saved and by faith alone that we are being sanctified and changed into the likeness of the Lord Jesus. There is nothing that you or I could do to save ourselves. There is nothing you or I can do to keep ourselves saved and there is nothing you and I are able to do to make ourselves perfect – it is ALL by grace!
Paul could have no confidence in man to complete the good work of salvation for man has an imperfect, old sin nature that is weak, changeable, proud and focussed on self. But Paul has unshakable confidence that God Who started the work of sanctification in each of us will continue to mould and make, to fashion and form, to sculpt and shape each child of His into the vessel of His own choosing.
It was God Who began this amazing work of grace in the soul of each believer. He knew each one of us before we were formed in our mother’s womb and He scheduled each day of our lives. And it is the same God that will perfect and complete the good work that He began – to our eternal benefit and to His eternal praise. AMEN.