Friday, December 4, 2009

Sanctification Completed Yet Ongoing

Hebrews 10:11-14 (ESV)
And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. [12] But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, [13] waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. [14] For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

“For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.” So it is we are sanctified, and are constantly being sanctified, as often as we are being forgiven our sins. It is an odd paradox, yet what do you expect when dealing with God? The one thing here that does become appearant is that our sanctification, ongoing yet completed, is in the one sacrifice of Christ.


Jonathan said...

"Yet ongoing"--is that in the sense of "a process still progressing" or is it "still effectual/complete"?

Is this talking about "third use" in the sense of how we ought to live to serve our neighbor?

Steve Martin said...

"Complete, yet ongoing."

Sounds like a God thing, to me.

"He who began a good work in you will bring it to completeion."

You know He will. You can count on it, even though the evidence may appear to be otherwise.

Yep. Definitely a God thing. Thank God!

Bror Erickson said...

I am absolutely opposed to the mixing of the third use into any idea of progressive sanctification, which is the devil's teaching.
What I mean is the Holy Spirit is constantly sanctifying and resanctifying, He makes us pure, and yet he is constantly purifying us. Because we live in a sinful world we are constantly sinning, constantly being infected with sin. So we need to constantly be sanctified and cleansed of that sin.

See progress denotes an end game, a goal, somewhere it is bringing us that we aren't at yet. The sanctification is complete, it is done. We are a hundred percent sanctified, yet we are sanctified constantly, not in any sense that we are progressing anywhere. Were going to the grave, that is the only thing we progress to in this life, the grave. That is our end goal. But in the end when the grave thinks it has its victory over us, we rise Holy to stand before God completely sanctified by the Holy Spirit, because he kept us sanctified despite our sin.
There is a third function (use)of the law, that operates on Christians, who are sanctified. But it has little to nothing to do with the sanctification of the Christian. You see we no more become more sanctified by our works, especially at the cajolling of the third abuse, than we are more justified by our works. We live by faith, we are justified by faith, we are sanctified by faith, and neither to the exclusion of Grace. What has been begun by the spirit is completed by the spirit, we dare not even try to complete it by the flesh. Our works earn us nothing. They are for our neighbor. They may gain God a soul in our neighbor, our neighbor may even gain salvation because of them in so much as they may reflect the gospel in our lives, but us we receive nothing, not even another cobblestone's progress on the fictional road of sanctification.
As Steve says, it's a God thing, a mystery.

Jonathan said...

Yes, I'm a fan of the socratic method!