Skip to comments.The Rev. Paul G. Watts: "Can I Be Holy?"
Posted on 04/09/2006 6:00:33 PM PDT by sionnsar
Also from The Banner of Truth, here is an address by the Rev. Paul G. Watts of Lower Ford Street Baptist Church in the United Kingdom, titled Can I Be Holy? This is an excellent lecture, and I in particular liked this portion:
We can also observe that the righteousness we have by justification is imputed to us: the righteousness we have by sanctification is wrought in us by the Holy Spirit. Justification saves us from sin's guilt, sanctification from sin's power: justification cannot grow or increase: a person is as much justified when he first comes to Christ by faith as he ever will be: but sanctification is a progressive work. You can be more sanctified in one period of your life than another. Jesus never prayed 'justify them' but He did pray 'sanctify them'. There is such a thing as growing in grace. This does not mean that we get any better in the sense that we have less of a struggle with our sinful nature: but in the work of sanctification we do grow in our dependence on God, in our spiritual desires, and in our experience of God's grace and strength. It is right for believers to desire and strive to become more and more like Jesus.He then goes on to quote Bishop Ryle:
Of course there are also similarities between justification and sanctification. Both proceed from the grace of God and are His gift. Both are part of the great work of salvation that Christ has accomplished. Pardon and holiness both flow from Christ. Both are found in the same people. You won't find a Christian who is justified only and not sanctified. Even the dying thief experienced sanctification. It was what he said that indicated sanctification. The moment a person begins to realise his justification he begins to be sanctified. Iain Murray has written, 'According to Scripture it is quite impossible to be justified by faith and not to experience the commencement of true sanctification, because the spiritual life communicated by the Spirit in the act of regeneration (which introduces the new power to believe) is morally akin to the character of God and contains within it the germ of all holiness.'
J. C. Ryle in Holiness gives twelve marks of a holy man. Those familiar with Ryle's writings will be able to imagine how he applies each one. A holy man will:May we indeed follow after all these things on the path to holiness!
1. Endeavour to be of one mind with God as we find His mind described in Scripture.
2. Endeavour to shun every known sin and to keep every known commandment.
3. Strive to be like our Lord Jesus Christ.
4. Follow after meekness, longsuffering, gentleness, patience, kind tempers, government of his tongue. He will bear much, forbear much, overlook much.
5. Follow after temperance and self-denial.
6. Follow after charity and brotherly kindness.
7. Follow after a spirit of mercy and benevolence towards others.
8. Follow after purity of heart.
9. Follow after the fear of God.
10. Follow after humility.
11. Follow after faithfulness in all the duties and relations of life.
12. Follow after spiritual mindedness.
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