The “How to …” instructions for fighting temptation and becoming more holy is clearly explained throughout the Scriptures. There are three passages though that are of particular practical significance in setting us firmly on the highway to holiness. These three passages are not only full of their own insights into sanctification, but also have a very clear common thread tying us to the right way to pursue holiness.

But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.

Romans 13:14

But that is not the way you learned Christ!—assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 2:20-24

So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions.

Romans 6:11-12

What these three passages have in common is a love for Christ and a plan for sin. All the bolded phrases turn out affections back on Christ who died for our sins, who taught spiritual truth, and who modelled practical righteousness. All the italics phrases put us to work, to stop pleasing ourselves as sin demands, to correct our way of thinking about sin and Christian living, and to act more like Christ would.

You will not grow in holiness if you skip any one, or both, of these: Love Jesus and have a plan not to sin. Then God will work in us so we can work out our salvation in practical holiness (Philippians 2:12-13).