Who Owes Me Three Dollars?

September 16, 2005

Before I start with brief summaries of the chapter…

Filed under: Uncategorized — ineedsheetmusic @ 2:37 am

Before I start with
brief summaries of the chapters on reformed worship, I must get on with a sanctification view. If I delay it much longer, the mo-jo will die out completely and I will be deemed a total failure. So, without further adieu, I present sanctification view number 3. Please bear with me in this review since bulletizing hasn’t worked very well. I expect only the most keen readers (meaning those that actually give a fig) to read this. Blue, bold text is the Cliff notes version of this report. By all means, read at least that much. Also, due to lack of time, the verses listed here are not linked, sorry.

1) Normal christians are Christ like. By that is meant the normal Christian is characterized by loving responses to ingratitude and indifference, even hostility, and is filled with joy in the midst of unhappy circumstances and peace when everything is going wrong. The normal Christian overcomes in the battle with temptation, consistently obeys the laws of God, and grows in self control, contentment, humility and courage. Thought processes are so under the control of the Holy Spirit and instructed by Scripture that the normal Christian authentically reflects the attitudes and behavior of Jesus Christ. God has first place in his life, and the welfare of others takes precedence over personal desires. The normal Christian has power not only for godly living but for effective service in the church. Above all, he or she has the joy of constant companionship with the Lord.

2) However, the average christian is decent enough but there is nothing supernatural about him. When confronted by temptation he succumbs. He is characterized by self-interest.

Ed. note: If you are not in bullet one, but more like bullet two, then we can get you in 1) if you just follow the following easy steps.

3) Immediate abandonment of every known sin, doubt, indulgence, or conscious hindrance to holy living. Rom. 6:12-14; 8:12-14; 14:21-2 and Heb. 12:1-2.

4) Surrender of the will and the whole being to Jesus Christ as not only savior, but master and Lord, in loving and complete obedience. Rom 10:9, 1 Cor 12:3.

5) Appropriation by faith of God’s promise and power for holy and righteous living. Rom. 4:20-25; 6:2, 2 Peter 1:4 and Heb 8:10

6) voluntary renunciation and mortification of the self-life, which centers in self-indulgence and self-dependence, that God may be all in all. Gal.2:19-20; 4:24,25; Col 3:5; 2 Cor 5:15.

7) Enduement with power and infilling with the Spirit. Lk. 24:49, Acts 1:8; Eph 5:18

This view holds a strong view of sin, however. Sin is an offense to God, a ruling principle in man. Man is totally depraved. The power of sin is so intense that it is never broken. Sin is a spiritual disease. Sin is an indwelling tendency that remains throughout life. This view explicitly disavows eradication of the sin nature. Its answer to this is its doctrine of counteraction. It is by the power of the Spirit that the power of sin is counteracted. The tendency to sin remains with the believer, but is the greater force of the spirit dispels this darkness of sin. If one walks in the Spirit the Spirit carries the burden of Sin. If one sins, the Spirit no longer counteracts the tendency to sin and the believer is caught in a spiral of sin. He has no more help in overcoming sin than the unbeliever.

Four clear cut phases of sanctification in this view are:

a. positional sanctification – 1 Cor 1:30.

b. day to day transformation which begins at regeneration and continues throughout this life.

c. By a deliberate and decisive act of faith, one may step into his rightful heritage of sustained victory over known sin; constant defeat, grinding bondage and restless worry can be exchanged for a life of ‘perfect peace’. The Bible shows that in Christ there is liberty and rest. This is to be obtained not by a lifetime of struggle, but by surrender to the Spirit of God.

At the time of the above crisis comes a realization that Christ is our Sanctification. (1 Cor 1:30) Ed. note: same verse here as in the text for positional sanctification. He must be accepted as such by an act of faith.

Christ must be definitely accepted as our sanctification; if we wish to make any progress in holiness, we have to give up belief in the value of self-effort in holiness. The gift of holiness must be worked out in our daily life, but we work from holiness, not to holiness. To become holy we must possess the holy one. It must be Christ in us.

4.Transformation into the likeness of Christ after death.

There are two more key areas that this view focuses on.

The first is an act of consecration. By this is meant full surrender. As a result of this surrender all areas of life are changed. Through this experience the power of God will begin to flow in the life of the believer. This full surrender is necessary because the self is totally sinful and worthless. We must hate and utterly lose our own life. So long as I myself am still something, Jesus cannot be everything. When your life is cast out, God will fill you; your life must be expelled.

This view has an understanding of human nature in which the regenerate man is dualistic. There exists the old nature which is totally sinful and is to be identified with the self. Along side the Old nature there dwells the new nature which is the part of the individual which has communion with God.

The final key piece to this view of sanctification is the filling of the Holy Spirit. This emphasis flows from consecration. The understanding of the filing of the spirit is rooted in Ephesians 5:18 as seen through the exegetical lens of human sinfulness and absolute surrender. This is what or how the filling of the Holy Spirit works: We try to imitate Christ, struggling after perfect obedience. but at every turn we fail. Finally we give up. Then God gives us the vision of the indwelling Christ. He will unite himself to us, blending his life with ours. Christ will think through our minds. Christ will keep the law within us! He will destroy the dominion of sin and dethrone self in us.

My comments: This is a formulaic view. The crisis step (c above) is a second and necessary step that occurs post conversion. The dualistic view of the human soul is a distinctive of this view of sanctification.

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2 Comments »

  1. What’s the difference between Normal and Average? Normal sounds pretty good; there doesn’t seem to be any head-room above Normal to describe a better-than-average Christian!

    What I am most worried about here is that this view “explicitly disavows eradication of the sin nature”. That seems to contradict much of scripture, “You are in Christ a new creation”, etc. But then again, empirical evidence of our sinful lives also seems to contradict those same scriptures, so the paradox must be spanned somehow!

    Comment by son1 — September 16, 2005 @ 2:46 pm

  2. Average is what we all are. Normal is what you will be when you work this plan. Your second question is answered by the dualism idea. The new creation runs along side the old nature.

    Comment by Bruce S — September 16, 2005 @ 3:07 pm


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