Bowmansville Penssylvania USA
Just my bit on your inserted thought, being a sinner is a state of being. We will all be sinners on this earth. Even though we are saints. (Just a side note, but I think that the closer we are to God the more we see our sinfulness, as we see in Paul calling himself the chiefest of sinners.)[i]But[/i] even though we are sinners doesn't mean we sin (action). Now hear me out, I'm not saying we suddenly become immuned to sin or lose the ability to sin. There will always be the opportunity for each and every one of us to sin while we live on this earth, even Jesus could have sinned, but we can in the power of the Holy Ghost live totally above sin. I hope that makes sense :-o
| 2007/8/7 16:32||Profile|
I don't really want to open up another long debate which leads to more contention, division, and misunderstanding. [b]But...[/b]
So if you dont want to... then dont. :-)
This is going to sound arrogant, but I dont know how else to word this... either I have done a poor job of expressing myself, or you're grossly misunderstanding me, OR... you have a very poor understanding of scripture.
As best as I can, I dont present "strawman arguments" on things like this, unless you consider scripture to be a straw man, which I am positive that you dont.
Isaiah... are you saying that something being mentioned only once in the Bible means it doesnt matter and isnt important, and is not [b]"given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness"[/b]? Last time I checked, that passage started out with the word [b]ALL[/b] at the beginning.
I tend to think this is a simple matter of you hastily reading what i am saying and not taking the time to try and understand. If you're interested in understanding my point, you could just ask for clarification before you get sad. :-)
| 2007/8/7 16:49|
Bowmansville Penssylvania USA
Thank you for your post Isaiah64.
I've often wondered why people so react to what they call "the doctrine of sinless perfection" but which I understand to be, like you said, entire sanctification. I think maybe some mistake those that hold to the doctrine of entire sanctification as believing that we eventually come to the place where (like some say) we cannot sin. We somehow arrive at this spiritual hight where we are beyond sin. That's stretching things pretty far to get that out of what the entire sanctification camp says.
 I've taken part of this post out for the sake of not seeming contentious. It was not at all meant that way but it might have come across that way so I think it best to omit that portion of this post.
| 2007/8/7 17:07||Profile|
For over 4000 years, from the 10 commandments to Moses Law to the Cross of Christ, God has been trying to get man to save himself and he would not, and can not. Only Christ saves and only God sends those that are Christs', to Him. Jhn 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. The word "draw" latterly to drag.
Not one wants to be saved. Romans 3:11-26 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
How are we justified, "believeth in Jesus".
Man cannot choose Jesus in himself, the only free will man has is to choose hell. God finally gave up after 4000 years and chose to birth His Son in the ones that He would cause to believe that Jesus Christ is His Son. Born again of Spirit and Water. The Spirit of "Christ in you the hope of Glory", this is the only hope of salvation. The living water Himself given that we might never thirst again.
It is not I who died, but Christ who died. Him being the only One that could take the Ones that God has give Him to the Cross with Him that we might be dead to sin as He is.
Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
We cannot be a sinner and also be justified by Christ. Galatians 2:17-19 But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.
That is why we are dead to sin. It is no longer us who lives, it is Christ who lives in us with the Holy Spirit and the Father also.
Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Jhn 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
Jhn 14:17 [Even] the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit in you. This is the New Creature God has birthed and we are called Christ-Ones, Christians.
In Christ: Phillip
| 2007/8/7 17:24||Profile|
Here is my understanding.
Romans 6:17-18 YLT
and thanks to God, that ye were servants of the sin, and--were obedient from the heart to the form of teaching to which ye were delivered up; and having been freed from the sin, ye became servants to the righteousness.
I used Young's Literal Translation because it brings out well how Sin is personified in Romans 6.
I'm sure we all agree that Romans 6 is a great chapter. Our great delivernace from, as one version puts it, "the tyranny of Sin" is proclaimed by our baptism with Christ into death.
I selected these verses above because they show my view of how we are saved from sin.
1) [b]ye were servants of the sin[/b] Unconverted men are servants of sin. By nature the unconverted are children of wrath and have a spirit or life of disobedience pushing them onward into sin. Men are seemingly beyond reason as they thrust themselves into more depravity, (John 8:34;Eph. 2:2-3)
2) [b]the form of teaching to which ye were delivered up[/b] The Word of God must be delivered up to the unconverted. The Gospel is the power of God to salvation. Without this power being manifest through resurection life, no power will be manifest to deliver the unconverted from sin since they are in total bondage to it's power as a bondslave to a master. The expression of Christ must be manifest for this very reason. When a Christian walks in resurection life this may provoke the unconverted to jealousy, especially for the religous since they outwardly seek the One who demands inward obedience. When the outward seeker sees truth manifest in the inward parts of another, they may very well hunger and thirst for true rightoueness and be filled. (Rom. 1:16;John 8:33-34;Rom. 10:19, 11:11; Matt 5:6)
3) [b]were obedient from the heart[/b] The unconverted must obey the word that was delivered to them. Faith comes through the word and we must obey the word that comes to us. This is faith. With every revelation of Christ we have, we have a responsibility. The more revelation we wrongly respond to the more wrath we may build up. Even if one is in complete disaray and serpents all around them, they must fix their eyes on Christ. No one else can do this for them, they must do it themselves. This trust and obedience must be authentic and with no double mind. (Heb 5:9; Rom 10:17; 2Thes 1:8; Luke 10:12; Heb 6:4-6; Rom 2:5;John 3; James 4:8)
4) [b]and having been freed from the sin, ye became servants to the righteousness.[/b]
Christ sets them free, not against their desire but because they want it. The verb is in the passive voice which means that the subject is the one that is being acted on. In this case, "ye" is the subject which means the "ye" was set free from sin. I know that sounds obvious, but if someone was set free and the voice is passive it would only follow that they didn't set themselves free. If that was the case rather than "being set free", we would have been "setting ourselves free." (Romans 6:18)
1) Man is enslaved to sin.
2) God sends forth His word.
3) Man believes.
4) God, Himself, sets them free from bondage.
In Acts chapter 2 you can see this transaction between God and Man.
Note: Saving yourself from a generation isn't the same as saving yourself from sin.
| 2007/8/7 18:44||Profile|
| Re: krispy|
[b]Straw man argument[/b](from wikipedia.org): [i]A straw man argument is an informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position. To "set up a straw man" or "set up a straw man argument" is to create a position that is easy to refute, then attribute that position to the opponent.[/i]
In this case, it would be a misunderstanding of the position and arguments of those who believe in being purely sanctified. And I wasn't refering to you only, but many Christians out there who attempt to refute "entire sanctification" without really understanding what we mean by the term.
Isaiah... are you saying that something being mentioned only once in the Bible means it doesnt matter and isnt important...
No, brother, I was pointing out that Paul only lamented his inability to have victory over the flesh ONCE because he WAS able to obtain victory. Though not by his own fleshly, legalistic efforts, but through Christ. The law of the Spirit of life set him free from the law of sin and death.
No matter what your view is on Romans 7:14-25 (whether Paul was speaking as a regenerate or unregenerate person), you can clearly see that he obtained victory over sin if you read the verses in their proper context, in the light of the preceding and following chapters.
God bless you brother, have a blessed day! :-)
| 2007/8/8 0:33||Profile|
| Re: Holiness Possible Today?|
The twofold message of the gospel is summed up in the words of Jesus to the woman caught in sin:
(i) I do not condemn you; and (ii) Do not sin any more. (Jn. 8:11).
Justification is the starting line of the Christian race and sanctification is the track on which the race is run. The word `sanctify' means to be set apart. And so sanctification is the process of being set apart increasingly from sin, the world and our own self-life.
The whole purpose of our coming to Christ is in order that we might be sanctified - just as the whole purpose of an athlete coming to the starting line of a race is to take part in the race. It's pointless an athlete joining others at the starting line if he doesn't intend taking part in the race itself!
God's Purpose For Us
Most of us came to Christ at first with some selfish motive - to get some benefit for ourselves - perhaps healing, or deliverance from hellfire. But God still received us, in spite of that selfish motive. The father of the prodigal son loved him so much, that he welcomed him back, even though the son had come home only to fill his stomach. That's how good God is!
But it would be really sad if we continued in the Christian life, only because we wanted to go to heaven. As we understand more of God's purpose for our lives, we should long to fulfil that totally. Paul's prayer for the Christians at Ephesus was that they would have the eyes of their heart opened to see `the hope of His calling' (Eph. 1:18).
Romans 8:29,30 tells us what the hope of His calling is. "Whom God foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren."
God's purpose is that we might be transformed into the likeness of Jesus. That is what sanctification is all about - to become like Jesus increasingly. This is the Christian race that we are exhorted to run, fixing our eyes on Jesus Who has run the same race ahead of us (Heb. 12:1,2).
Finishing With Sin
The first step in this race is to stop sinning consciously. Under the Law, there was no exhortation to stop sinning. But under the new covenant, all the apostles are agreed that the twofold message of the gospel is exactly as Jesus put it : freedom from condemnation and ceasing from sin.
Paul says, "Stop sinning" (1 Cor. 15:34). John says, "I am writing these things to you that you may not sin" (1 Jn. 2:1). Peter also exhorts us to `cease from sin' (1 Pet. 4:1).
After explaining justification by faith in Romans 5, Paul asks this question, "What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may increase?" (Rom. 6:1). And again (with greater force this time), "What then? Shall we sin even once?" (Rom. 6:15 -Literal). The answer in both cases is a resounding `No'. We should seek not to sin even once, any more.
Does that sound like a heavy, burdensome message? It can be burdensome only to those who want to keep on sinning! But it's a joyful message of liberation to those who are sick and tired of sin's captivity. Any prisoner would be delighted if he heard a message that he could be free. That wouldn't sound burdensome to him, would it?
Jesus was anointed to proclaim "release to the captives (of sin) and to set free those who are trodden down (by Satan)" (Lk. 4:18).
The glorious new-covenant promise is : "Sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law (the old covenant), but under grace (the new covenant established by Jesus)" (Rom. 6:14). The first step to victory is to believe that such a life is possible for you.
Temptation and Sin
There is a difference between being tempted and sinning. The Bible says, "Each one is tempted when he is enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin" (Jas.1:14,15). Sin is not born in our heart, until the desire of our flesh has been allowed to conceive. When Satan or the flesh flash a suggestion into our mind, we are tempted. If our mind agrees with that temptation, then a conception takes place and sin is born.
To be tempted doesn't make us evil. Even Jesus Himself was tempted. But He never sinned even once in any way, and so He was totally pure.
The Scripture says that Jesus was "made like His brethren in all things" and "tempted in ALL THINGS as we are" (Heb. 2:17; 4:15). He was tempted exactly like us, yet He never sinned.
That may not sound very wonderful to some of us, because we may feel that Jesus, being God, could naturally overcome sin easily. But remember, He had "emptied Himself" of the prerogatives of equality with God, when He came to earth (Phil. 2:6,7). Although He was God, yet while He lived on earth as a man, He had access only to the same power of the Holy Spirit that He offers us today. That's why we are told to run the race, "fixing our eyes on Jesus." In our "striving against sin" today, we can look at His example and be encouraged (Heb. 12:2-4). That's because He overcame each temptation that we face, as a Man too. Thus He has become a Forerunner and an Example for us to follow (Heb. 6:20).
This is "the secret of godliness......- Christ came in the flesh ....... and was declared righteous in the spirit" (1 Tim. 3:16). Although He had our flesh, He kept His spirit pure throughout His life.
This is what gives us hope that we too can overcome as He overcame. For He has "inaugurated a new and living way through the flesh" for us, in which we can follow Him (Heb. 10:20). This is the way of sanctification.
The Old Man and The New Man
We have already seen how the old man was like an unfaithful servant who allowed the thieves to enter the home. That old man however has been crucified, put off and buried. There is a new man now within us, who says, "Behold I have come to do Thy will, O God" (Heb. 10:7).
Yet we know that it's possible for a disciple of Jesus to sin. But there is a difference between a disciple sinning and an unbeliever sinning, just as there is a difference between a cat falling into dirty water and a pig choosing to jump into the dirty water! The cat hates the dirty water, but may fall into it accidentally. The pig, however, loves it. It's all a question of nature. The disciple of Jesus has a new nature that loves purity and hates sin.
The old man wants to sin. The new man never wants to sin. But if the new man is not strong enough, he may not be able to keep the door of his heart shut against the desires of the flesh. That's not because he wants those desires. No. But because he is not strong enough to resist them. This may be, because he has not fed himself sufficiently on the Word of God, or because he has not strengthened himself through prayer.
So, there's a difference between committing sin and falling into sin. It's important to know this difference; for we can then avoid a lot of unnecessary feelings of condemnation in our heart.
The Bible says that "the one who practises sin (that is, one who keeps on committing sin deliberately) is of the devil" (1 Jn. 3:8). On the other hand, he writes to believers saying, "If anyone sins (that is, if one falls into sin accidentally), we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He is the propitiation for our sins" (1 Jn. 2:1,2).
Conscious and Unconscious Sin
There is also a difference between falling into sin and having sin. To have sin is to have unconscious sin in our personality - sin that we ourselves are unaware of, even though others who are more mature than us may be able to notice it in us. But such unconscious sin need never make us feel guilty. For God's Word says, "sin is not imputed when there is no law" (Rom. 5:13). (This also means that God does not impute sin to us when there is no awareness of sin in our conscious mind).
We shall have unconscious sin in us, until our dying day - to a lesser and lesser degree, however, if we walk in the light. The Bible says, "If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves," (1 Jn. 1:8). One who says that he has no sin is actually claiming that he has already become perfect like Christ. But God's Word says that we shall "be like Him", only when He returns - not before that (1 Jn. 3:2). Those who claim to be totally sanctified and perfect already are therefore only deceiving themselves.
Unconscious sin however needs to be cleansed; and "the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all (unconscious) sin" too, as long as we walk in the light of God (1 Jn. 1:7). So we can stand boldly now, in the presence of an infinitely Holy God, without any fear.
Such is the power of the blood of Christ to justify us. Hallelujah!
Mercy and Grace
We are told to come boldly "to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Heb. 4:16). Mercy and grace are not the same. Mercy refers to the forgiveness of our sins. That relates to our past. But we also need grace - for our time of need, in the future.
Our time of need is when we are tempted, when we are about to fall - just like Peter, when he was about to sink in the sea of Galilee (Matt. 14:30). That's when we should cry out for grace; and just as Jesus stretched out His hand immediately to hold Peter, we'll find that we get grace too, so that we stand and don't fall.
There are wonderful promises in God's Word that assure us that God will keep us from falling. Just look at some of these:
First of all, God promises that He will never allow us to be tempted by any temptation that is too strong for us to overcome: "God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it" (1 Cor. 10:13).
God's Word also says : "He is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless" (Jude 24).
With these and many other wonderful promises given us in God's Word, there is no need for us to sin any more. Our life can henceforth be lived to do the will of God alone (as it says in 1 Peter 4:2).
Jesus told His apostles to teach others to obey all that He had commanded (Matt. 28:20). One who loves the Lord will first of all seek with all his heart to find out what those commandments are; and then he will seek to obey them (John 14:21).
Under the Law, God gave man commandments, but not the power to obey them. Why then did God give the Law? Only in order that man might discover that he's unable to come up to God's standards, and thus see his need of a Saviour and a Helper. "The Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ" (Gal. 3:24).
But now God has made a new covenant with man. And He has given us, not only commandments, but also an Example in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus demonstrated by His earthly life that it is possible for us to obey all of God's commandments.
God has also promised under the new covenant to put His Laws into our minds and to write them upon our hearts (Heb. 8:10). He does this through the Holy Spirit dwelling in us. The Holy Spirit is our Helper Who not only shows us what the will of God is, but also gives us a desire to do that will and grace to obey all of it too.
God is the One Who is going to sanctify us entirely (1 Thess. 5:23). We can't do it on our own. We have to depend on Him - for He is the One Who works in us giving us both the desire as well as the ability to do His will. But we have to "work out our salvation with fear and trembling" (Phil. 2:12,13). We have to work out what God works in, for He hasn't turned us into robots!
God cleanses us from the guilt of sin. But we are commanded to "cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God" (2 Cor. 7:1). We have to do this, as and when we get light on any defilement within us.
It is thus, as we "by the Spirit, put to death the deeds of the body" (Rom. 8:13) that the fruit of the Spirit - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control - will become more and more manifest in us. This is what it means to be transformed into the likeness of Christ.
Thus our path will become one of increasing light (Prov. 4:18). This is the glorious way of sanctification that God has made for us.
[url=http://www.cfcindia.com/web/mainpages/book_window.php?book=a_good_foundation]A Good Foundation[/url]
| 2007/8/8 0:44||Profile|
It is the Holy Spirit that brings the word to the believer, sent forth from the Father by the prayer of Christ. He is not Christ.
Jhn 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Jhn 14:26 But the Comforter, [which is] the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Jhn 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, [even] the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:
Jhn 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
Jhn 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, [that] shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth, He only speaks what He hears, He shows us things that are to come, He testifies of Christ, The Father sends Him to make the things that Christ said come forth in our hearts.
This is how God sends forth His Word and His Word is Christ shed abroad in our hearts.
Man believes what the Holy Spirit has put in his mind, Then the Father gives birth to His Son in us because we believe. That Birth brings The Faith of Christ into our life, for He is now our life. Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Then He becomes our wisdom, our righteousness, our justification and our redemption.
This is our birth into these that are of God the Father.
1 Corinthians 1:29-31 That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
Ye must be born again. Jhn 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Jhn 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
1Pe 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. Christ is the Word.
These are the born again. 1Jo 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
1Jo 4:7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
1Jo 5:1 Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
1Jo 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, [even] our faith.
1Jo 5:18 We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.
I see none of this in Acts 2. Except the Holy Spirit came. From that time to Paul, the Holy Spirit was misused to do their bidding. He is still being misused and will continue unless the church learn that the Spirit of Christ and the Holy Spirit are different, as is the Father.
Paul makes it very clear, he speaks of Christ in you over 200 times and especially 147 time the in Christ statement is mentioned and elaborated upon. It is truly Christ in you that is the hope of Glory. Christ in us and us in Christ and the Holy Spirit in us also and the Father also, abiding in us to make us whole in Christ. Know this now. Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Rom 8:10 And if Christ [be] in you, the body [is] dead because of sin; but the Spirit [is] life because of righteousness.
Rom 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
Rom 15:29 And I am sure that, when I come unto you, I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.
In Christ: Phillip
| 2007/8/8 2:01||Profile|
"And He has given us, not only commandments, but also an Example in the person of our Lord Jesus"
Is it really about copying Jesus as a supreme example with the Holy Spirit giving us an extra boost of desire to be holy - unlike the challenges of keeping the law - don't we just become more likely to be either exalted because of our success, or depressed in despair because of our failure? What is the difference between trying to live up to the law vs living up to the example of Jesus?
Robert P. Fairman, Jr.
| 2007/8/8 2:06||Profile|
Brother Robert asks:
What is the difference between trying to live up to the law vs living up to the example of Jesus?
The "example of Jesus" is not predicated or defined by the naratives given to us in Scripture, rather it is the "process" by which Jesus demonstated to us in those naratives. Jesus followed the Spirit of God perfectly. Jesus demonstrated to us how to 'use the law of the Spirit" to overcome the works of Satan our former master.
| 2007/8/8 5:30||Profile|